Canada cuts off funds to AIDS vax initiative; Research team explores molecular activity of three main flu vax types;

Vaccine Market

After providing $80 million to the International AIDS Vaccine Initiative from 2001 to 2008, Canada has cut off the cash flow and says it is reviewing its work in the field. Stephen Lewis, co-director of AIDS Free World, castigated the cutoff as "unconscionable." Report

A sharp spike in oral cancer rates in the U.S. and the U.K. has been attributed to the human papillomavirus, and experts note that the new HPV vaccines available would go a long way to reducing the number of new cases. Report

Novartis' meningitis vaccine, Menveo, is now available in Europe. Health officials are particularly keen for people traveling to sub-Saharan Africa to get a shot before they leave the continent. Story

Vaccine Research

A group of Japanese investigators studied the way the three main types of flu vaccines--live virus, inactivated whole virus and split virus--work on the immune system. "By understanding the molecular mechanism of different flu vaccines through our findings, not only the rationale for current live-attenuated influenza vaccine for children, currently available in the United States, is warranted, but also what kind of adjuvant is needed for safer as well as efficient flu vaccine development," said Dr. Ken J. Ishii, an adjunct professor in the Osaka University Laboratory of Vaccine Science in Suita. Story

The FDA is giving GeoVax a green light to launch an early-stage study of its therapeutic HIV vaccine. Report

Anthony Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, says there are "unexpected similarities" to be seen in the deadly 1918 Spanish flu virus and the far more mild H1N1 strain. "It gives us a new understanding of how pandemic viruses evolve into seasonal strains, and, importantly, provides direction for developing vaccines to slow or prevent that transformation," Fauci said. Story