Donation from M·A·C Cosmetics supports HIV prevention research at the Kirby Institute

News | Published on 19 Sep 2022

The Kirby Institute is pleased to continue its partnership with M·A·C Cosmetics, now into its third year, and welcomes a further donation of $46,000.

M·A·C Cosmetics fundraise through their Viva Glam products, with the funds generated through sale of these products supporting a range of organisations who improve the lives of people impacted by HIV.

The latest donation to the Kirby Institute will support preparatory research on the role of long-acting PrEP. PrEP is a currently once daily medication that prevents HIV negative people from acquiring HIV.

“PrEP has been a game-changer for HIV prevention, but if we are going to eliminate HIV transmission, it is important to have a range of prevention options for people at risk of HIV,” says Dr Benjamin Bavinton, group leader of the Biobehavioural Prevention Research Group at the Kirby Institute.  “Early studies on long-acting, injectable PrEP show that one injection every 8 weeks can effectively prevent HIV, but more research is needed to understand whether this type of prevention is acceptable to the communities of people at risk. The funds generously provided from M·A·C Cosmetics will support this research at the Kirby Institute.”

In previous years, the funds have supported research to assess health service provision of PrEP in NSW. Based on the findings of that analysis, the researchers have started a review of the regulatory, policy and legal barriers to innovative PrEP models in Australia.

These funds have also allowed research to monitor ‘event-driven PrEP’, which is when people take PrEP only around times when they are engaging in risk behaviour for HIV. The research provides an evidence-based to inform recommendations on how to optimise event-driven PrEP.

“We are very grateful for the funds from M·A·C Cosmetics,” says Professor Andrew Grulich, head of the HIV Epidemiology and Prevention Program at the Kirby Institute. “Innovations in science and technology frequently provide new options for HIV prevention, however without implementation research, there is a danger that these innovations won’t reach the people most in need of them. This donation allows us to undertake crucial research, in close collaboration with communities impacted by HIV.”

Header Image

Credit: NSW Ministry of Health