Skip to main content

Clinical Trials

The Adult AIDS Clinical Trials Group--Knowing Your Options

Adult ACTG

The Adult AIDS Clinical Trials Group (AACTG) is a program of the National Institutes of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, Division of AIDS.

The AACTG is the largest HIV research group in the world. The group works to develop medical treatments that may improve the health and the quality of life of persons living with HIV/AIDS.

The AACTG is directed by leading HIV scientists and health care providers, and persons living with HIV/AIDS.

Individual AIDS Clinical Trial Units (ACTUs) are located around the United States and Puerto Rico. Each local ACTU has a consumer group called the Community Advisory Board (CAB).

What are Clinical Trials?

Clinical Trials are carefully designed research studies, which examine the safety and effectiveness of HIV medicines and therapies. There are three different types of clinical trials that test new medications prior to Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approval.

Phase I trials are short, small studies checking the safety of medicine(s) in people.

Phase II trials test medicine(s) in larger groups of people to measure their effectiveness and safety.

Phase III trials study medicine(s) in very large groups of people to verify drug safety and effectiveness.

What is studied in a Clinical Trial?

  • New medications to treat HIV and AIDS
  • FDA approved medications used in new ways or in new combinations
  • Medications to prevent or treat related infections
  • Ways to help persons manage their HIV/AIDS medications
  • The long-term general health of persons living with HIV/AIDS

Are Clinical Trials Safe?

  • Each trial is carefully reviewed by a local institutional review board and the FDA
  • Volunteers are informed about the major risks and benefits and must consent before participating
  • All studies offer at least the current recommended care
  • All volunteers are carefully monitored

If you are considering joining a clinical trial take time to learn about the trial first—it's a serious decision.

Talk with your health care provider and people you trust and remember that you can stop your participation at anytime.

If you would like more information about clinical trials: