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HIV Vaccine One Step Closer According to Harvard Study

10 July 2018

A new study published on Friday in the Lancet showed that an experimental, preventive HIV-1 vaccine regimen was well-tolerated and generated comparable and robust immune responses against HIV in healthy adults and rhesus monkeys. However, because the mosaic vaccine attacks multiple strains of the virus, doctors would be able to administer it on a much broader scale, and it could potentially be a powerful weapon against HIV if all goes well. The age of participants was of 18-50; all were healthy, and none of them had HIV.

Barouch disclosed support from the NIH, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, and Janssen Vaccines & Prevention BV, and is a co-inventor on HIV-1 vaccine antigen patents that have been licensed to Janssen Vaccines & Prevention BV.

About nine years ago, another HIV vaccine, RV144, also showed positive results in initial experiments carried out on 16,000 volunteers in Thailand. The human trial, which involved 393 participants, produced an anti-HIV immune system response.

Nearly 37 million people worldwide are living with HIV/AIDS, with an estimated 1.8 million new cases every year.

As of June 2018, data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said there were an estimated 38,500 new HIV infections in 2015 in the United States. This invention was a real challenge for scientists, because of this virus many strains. Both groups were also given an injection of the common cold virus to boost their immune systems - once at the start of the trial and again 12 weeks in.

In the APPROACH trial of almost 400 participants, researchers conducted a multicenter, randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study to assess the safety, tolerability, and immunogenicity of several vaccine regimens in humans.

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A parallel study in rhesus monkeys was also performed so that immunogenicity and protective efficacy of the various vaccines could be assessed and the optimal vaccine regimen could be realised to transfer to further clinical studies. In the phase one clinical trial, researchers focused on HIV-1. Each year, around 2 million people are diagnosed with HIV.

The study used so-called "mosaic" vaccine combinations.

In the meantime, the vaccine will be tested on women in South Africa, who are most at risk of contracting the virus. In early human trials the vaccine has been found to be safe in humans. "We don't know whether protection in monkeys means there will be protection in humans".

The most effective version, given to 12 monkeys, managed to provide protection to 8 of them, while the other 4 eventually became infected. "We eagerly await the results of the phase 2b efficacy trial called HVTN705, or "Imbokodo", which will determine whether or not this vaccine will protect humans against acquiring HIV".

HIV mainly is a virus which is causing a deadly disease known as AIDS, Acquired immunodeficiency syndrome. "But the data is promising and we are happy to report the immune response". The HIV-1 vaccine proved safe and is now set to go to the next phase, which will be conducted in 2600 women in Southern Africa in a trial called imbokodo, a Zulu word for "rock". Partly because there are so many different HIV strains.

HIV Vaccine One Step Closer According to Harvard Study