Who is IRMA?
Created in 2005, the International Rectal Microbicide Advocates (IRMA) is is a network of over 1,200 advocates, policymakers and leading scientists from six continents working together to advance a robust rectal microbicide research and development agenda, with the goal of creating safe, effective, acceptable and accessible rectal microbicides for the women, men, and transgender individuals around the world who engage in anal intercourse.
Our priorities include pushing for safe, condom-compatible sexual lubricants, and concerted advocacy for adequate access to these important products for people all over the world. IRMA works to confront the institutional, socio-cultural and political stigma around the public health need for rectal microbicide research, and to increase funding and commitment within this field of inquiry. AIDS Foundation of Chicago is the IRMA Secretariat.
Be sure to check out our new video "The Rectal Revolution is Here - An intrdouction to rectal microbicide clinical trials." The video is available in English, Spanish, and Thai, features animation and live action, and includes interviews with researchers, advocates, and a trial participant. It discusses the need for rectal microbicides and the role of clinical trials in developing products that are safe and effective. There is also a facilitator guide that accompanies the video. The video may be viewed on YouTube and is available as an electonic file for individuals and organizations who want to use it for workshops and educational sessions. Please email IRMA at firstname.lastname@example.org to request the video in electronic file format. Click here for the video's facilitator guide in English. Click here for the Spanish version of the facilitator guide, and click here for the facilitator guide in Thai.
- Join our highly active, moderated listserv - which automatically makes you an IRMAmember. Click here for IRMA membership information. Click here to join us on Facebook, and click here to follow us on Twitter.
What is a rectal microbicide?
Currently in development, a microbicide is a cream or gel, or maybe a douche or an enema, that could be used to reduce a person’s risk of HIV infection vaginally or rectally. Rectal microbicides could offer both primary protection in the absence of condoms and back-up protection if a condom breaks or slips off during anal intercourse. For those unable or unwilling to use condoms, rectal microbicides could be a safe and effective alternative means of reducing risk, especially if they were unobtrusive and/or enhanced sexual pleasure enough to motivate consistent use. Such alternatives are essential if we are to address the full spectrum of prevalent sexual practices and the basic human need for accessible, user-controlled HIV and STD prevention tools. Women, men, and transgender individuals will all need rectal microbicides.
*Click here for the Rectal Microbicides 101 fact sheet, updated in May, 2010. Click here to access the fact sheet in other languages, including Arabic, Chinese, French, Portuguese, Spanish, and Russian.
*Click here for more materials in Spanish, on the IRMA-ALC page.