HIV vaccine trial starts in SA

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An NIH-led safety and efficacy trial of an experimental HIV vaccine regimen has begun in South Africa. Healio reports that the HVTN 100 trial will enroll 252 heterosexual adults aged 18 years to 40 years who are not infected with HIV. It will consist of two experimental vaccines – a ALVAC-HIV (canarypox-based vaccine, Sanofi Pasteur) and a gp120 protein sub-unit vaccine with adjuvant (Novartis Vaccines) – that have been modified to be HIV sub-type C specific.

Participants will receive eight injections of either the treatment or a placebo during a 1-year period, with booster shots given at the 1-year mark. “Our country is helping lead the way in HIV prevention research,” Dr Glenda Gray, president of the South African Medical Research Council, said. “A safe and effective vaccine is our best hope for stopping new HIV infections and protecting the health of our communities.”

The vaccine regimen is based on one previously tested in the RV144 clinical trial. Led by the US Military HIV Research Programme, its regimen was found to be 31.2% effective at preventing infection after 3.5 years and 60% effective 1 year after vaccination, results that the researchers hope to improve upon with the HVTN 100’s modified treatments.

Full Healio report

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