Study: Old HIV pediatric vaccines might provide protection after all

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Looking back on data from old pediatric HIV vaccine trials, researchers have found that two vaccines studied in the 1990s elicited a specific antibody response that was unknown at the time to be associated with HIV protection. HIV vaccine research has largely focused on designing a jab that could induce the broadly neutralizing antibodies long considered necessary for widespread success. Twenty years ago, when two pediatric HIV vaccine trials were being carried out, the specific antibody response identified in the study was unknown, so it was not measured back then. The retrospective study, conducted by Duke University researchers, found that at one year of age, 59% of infants who received one of the investigational vaccines--by a company called VaxGen--and 79% of those receiving another, by Chiron, showed this response. At two years of age, 28% of those who received the VaxGen shot and 56% of those who got the Chiron jab continued to have detectable responses. The new research could help scientists design a vaccine intended to protect infants of HIV-infected mothers, who can transfer the virus through breast feeding. More | Abstract

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