Thursday, September 24, 2009
Progress on an HIV vaccine
According to the AIDS Vaccine Advocacy Coalition (AVAC), results from a recent clinical study show promising results. We won't have a vaccine ready anytime soon, but we may now have evidence to show that there is a way to reduce the risk of HIV infection. Consider it a "test of concept" more than anything at this point.
AVAC executive director Mitchell Warren says, “It will take time and resources to fully analyze, understand and validate the data, but there is little doubt that this finding will energize and redirect the AIDS vaccine field as all of us begin the hard work to translate this landmark result into true public health benefit.”
This study involved more than 16,000 men and women living in Thailand. They found that HIV infection were roughly 30 percent lower among volunteers who received the vaccine versus those who received the placebo. Volunteers were injected with vaccines that contained synthetic fragments of common HIV strains known to circulate in Thailand and Southeast Asia. So, as long as you're not a world traveler engaging in high-risk behavior, maybe a local vaccine strategy can be protective.
To read the press release (AVAC Praises Thai AIDS Vaccine Trial Collaborators and Volunteers for Historic Study) on the AVAC site, click here.