Planned AIDS vaccine trial raises concerns

The AIDS Vaccine Research Subcommittee of the NIH has OK'd a new AIDS vaccine trial, prompting some skeptics to caution against plunging back into trials so soon after a Merck program misfired.

"We're redesigning the aims of human HIV vaccine research without redesigning the vaccine," said Scripps Research Institute immunologist Dennis Burton. "Let's not go into a human experiment without a clear idea of what we're going to learn."

Emory University's Eric Hunter, though, said the new vaccine was sufficiently different from Merck's to warrant a study. The vaccine is based on the adenovirus type 5 and given after a schedule of three DNA-based immunizations aimed at priming the human immune system. Merck's vaccine was administered without the DNA priming.

- read the article from The Scientist

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