Anthony Fauci, director of the US government’s National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease: “If deployed alongside our current armory of proven HIV prevention tools, a safe and effective vaccine could be the final nail in the coffin for HIV.”
Scientists in Johannesburg are basing the current trial on research from a similar 2009 study done in Thailand that showed HVTN 702 was 31.2% effective at preventing HIV infection over 3.5 years.
The team aim to enroll 5400 sexually active men and women, aged 18-35, and give them five injections (either vaccine or placebo) in the largest ever HIV clinical trial to take place in the country.
Results are expected to be published in 2020, and Fauci says that even moderate success would be something to celebrate.
“Even a moderately effective vaccine would significantly decrease the burden of HIV disease over time in countries and populations with high rates of HIV infection, such as South Africa.”