ASTRA and its associated studies, CIPHER and AURAH, present independent research funded by the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) under its Programme Grants for Applied Research funding scheme (RP-PG-0608-10142).

The studies are some of the components of CAPRA, a programme for the Comprehensive Assessment of the Prevention Role of Antiretroviral therapy.

The studies also receive support through the Comprehensive Clinical Research Network.

This website is provided courtesy of University College London.

UCL Logo

About ASTRA, CIPHER and AURAH

ASTRA is one of the component studies of a research programme which aims to assess whether a policy of offering antiretroviral therapy (ART) treatment to all people diagnosed with HIV in the UK would be acceptable, effective and cost-effective. The programme is called CAPRA, a programme for the Comprehensive Assessment of the Prevention Role of Antiretroviral therapy.

This site provides information on ASTRA and two of its associated studies, CIPHER and AURAH:

  • ASTRA is a questionnaire study which aims to assess sexual risk behaviours, beliefs about HIV transmission risk, and attitudes to use of early antiretroviral treatment, in patients with HIV in the UK.
  • CIPHER is based on a subset of the patients who have answered the ASTRA questionnaire and it aims to assess any HIV associated changes to neurocognitive functioning and their impact on risk behaviours.
  • AURAH is a questionnaire study based on ASTRA which assesses sexual risk behaviour, attitudes to HIV transmission and antiretroviral treatment in HIV-negative individuals at risk of HIV-infection recruited from sexual health clinics.

The CAPRA programme of work also involves

  • a sub-study within the START trial which will assess the extent to which people starting very early ART have increases in high risk sexual behaviour, compared to those not starting ART.
  • support for the PARTNER study which will estimate the rate of transmission from HIV positive to HIV negative sex partners when someone is taking effective ART therapy and assess any factors associated with transmission of HIV.
  • an assessment of whether a policy of providing ART treatment to all people diagnosed with HIV in the UK will lead to a reduction in the number of people being infected and be cost-effective. The assessment is taking place using a stochastic computer simulation model and its first results have recently been published.

CAPRA is overseen by an Advisory Board, whose members are:

  • Sir Nick Partridge
  • Kay Orton
  • Anthony Nardone
  • Ann Sullivan