Vaccine steps touted as ‘groundbreaking’

This year was one the most exciting in HIV prevention. It started very well — with results of the ALVAC-AIDSVAX trial in Thailand, the first-ever proof of HIV vaccine effectiveness. The trial’s protection rate of 31 percent may be modest, but it is a first victory of its kind.  

The vaccine is not good enough to be mass-produced, but it is a proof of concept, according to Mitchell Warren, executive director of AIDS activism group AVAC (AIDS Vaccine Advocacy Coalition).

In July 2010, a South African-led microbicide trial called Caprisa 004 — based on the use of a vaginal gel — saw a 39 percent effectiveness against infection.

“It is partial protection, but nevertheless groundbreaking,” Warren says. “Now we have to make them better, as trials answer some questions and raise additional ones.”

That same month, scientists from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases announced its discovery of three human antibodies that can neutralize 90 percent of circulating HIV-1 strains.

Then there’s the incredible results of the iPrEx trial, which combined two antiretrovirals, the drugs given to HIV-positive patients, to reduce the risk of HIV infection in healthy people. In the study, 44 percent of men were less likely to contract the virus with the pill.

How far are we from an effective HIV vaccine?

“Eighteen months ago, I would have given you a different answer,” Warren says. “We are closer that we ever thought we would be in the last few years. But as much as we want big surprises, science works in small steps. We moved a few steps in 2010, but we have more work to do.”



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
Breaking: National

Peter Theo Curtis: American released by Syrian militants…

An American writer freed this week from two years in the captivity of insurgents in Syria spoke briefly outside his family's Cambridge home Wednesday of…

News

Rock legend Neil Young files for divorce after…

The legendary Canadian rocker Neil Young has filed for divorce from his wife of 36 years.

Local

FDNY debuts new fire simulator for blazes at…

The New York City Fire Department christened its newest, state-of-the-art, custom-built simulator at its training academy on Randall's Island Tuesday.

Local

Brewer celebrates Women's Equality Day with voter pledge

Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer celebrated Women’s Equality Day Tuesday by pledging to register at least five women voters before the Oct. 10 deadline. Brewer…

Movies

Review: 'The Last of Robin Hood' is a…

Dakota Fanning plays Errol Flynn's (Kevin Kline) teenage gal pal in "The Last of Robin Hood," which takes a scandal and makes it dully empathetic.

Movies

Review: The uneven 'Life of Crime' mostly gets…

Elmore Leonard's "The Switch" becomes the new indie crime dramedy "Life of Crime," with Jennifer Aniston as a kidnapped woman whose husband won't pay up.

Movies

Review: Pierce Brosnan gets a cut-rate Bond knockoff…

Pierce Brosnan tries to reclaim his glory days with the spy thriller "The November Man" but instead gets a sad DTV-style ripoff with lame action.

Music

Tiesto headlines Made in America

Electronic music legend Tiesto is ready to get in touch with his inner Rocky at the Jay Z-curated Budweiser Made in America festival this weekend…

College

When are 2014 college football playoffs? (Schedule, date,…

When and where are 2014 college football playoffs? A look at the schedule, date, TV, time for the semi-finals at championship game.

NFL

Dimitri Patterson suspended only for rest of preseason…

Dimitri Patterson ended up getting just a slap on the wrist.

Sports

Eugenie Bouchard excited for 'rowdy' fans at US…

Eugenie Bouchard is sure to endear herself to New York's tennis faithful as she tries to win her first grand slam title across the next two weeks.

MLB

MLB Power Rankings: Angels and A's still at…

MLB Power Rankings: Angels and A's still at top, Nationals climb

Career

Stop eating lunch at your desk

What are you doing for lunch today? If you are like most workers, you'll be eating at your desk - which isn't much of a…

Parenting

Lure your baby to sleep with Maroon 5…

These new renditions of "Moves Like Jagger" and "Payphone" are Maroon 5 like you've never heard them before.

Wellbeing

Who is having the most orgasms?

  Single lesbians report having orgasms more often than heterosexual women but both gay and straight men still come out on top of the climax…

Home

Jonathan Adler shares his tips for a great…

Jonathan Adler took a break from boogie boarding at his beach house to tell us how to keep that Labor Day party festive.