GeoVax readies mid-stage AIDS vaccine trial

Atlanta-based GeoVax Labs is planning to launch a mid-stage study of its AIDS vaccine this fall. The Emory University spin-off says that the NIH study would recruit 225 volunteers to help test the safety and immunogenicity of their experimental vaccine.

The company has been developing a vaccine that it believes can significantly reduce the amount of drugs someone infected with HIV would have to take in order to control the viral load. CEO Robert McNally said that in animal studies the vaccine kept the viral load in check after six weeks of conventional therapy.

"You give these monkeys the virus, and they start developing the symptoms," McNally told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. "Those given our vaccine, it slows down or reduces the viral load of the infection. This is significant because it is suppressing AIDS in monkeys. And that's what we are trying to do in people."

- read the report in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution