(Reuters Health) – A clinical trial testing a promising HIV vaccine in more than 5,000 people in South Africa has been halted because it failed to show a benefit, U.S. health officials said on Monday. The study, known as HVTN 702, built on results from the 2009 RV144 vaccine trial in Thailand, which was the first to show it was possible to prevent HIV infection in humans. In that study, the vaccine cut the rate of HIV infections by 30% compared with people who got a placebo. “It is very disappointing that this vaccine candidate does not work, but the trial was well-conducted and got an answer as quickly as possible,” Mitchell Warren, executive director of AVAC, an HIV prevention advocacy group, said in a statement. Despite the discovery of effective treatments that can put the virus in remission, experts say an HIV vaccine is critical to eradicating the virus that causes AIDS, which has infected 75 million people and killed 37.9 million globally as of 2018. “An HIV vaccine is essential to end the global pandemic, and we hoped this vaccine candidate would work. Regrettably, it does not,” said Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy… Read full this story
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