Research reveals further progress toward AIDS vaccine

December 14, 2009

(PHILADELPHIA) Researchers from Thomas Jefferson University are one step closer to developing a vaccine against the AIDS disease.

Led by Matthias J. Schnell, Ph.D., director of the Jefferson Vaccine Center, the researchers found that a rabies virus-based vaccine administered to monkeys protected against the simian equivalent of the (SIV). The data were published in the journal Vaccine.

The researchers previously showed that a rabies-based vaccine expressing and SIV antigens protective against a chimeric HIV/SIV virus in monkeys. In this study, they used highly attenuated rabies vectors to protect against challenge with the highly pathogenic SIVmac251. This type of SIV virus causes a more similar disease in monkeys compared to human infection with HIV-1. In addition, it is difficult to protect monkeys against AIDS-like disease after challenge with SIVmac251.

Two vaccine strategies were used: immunization with a recombinant rabies virus expressing SIVmac239GagPol, or a combination of that and a rabies virus expressing SIVmac239Env. Both strategies induced neutralizing antibody production, CD8+ responses, and increased protection. Although the combination with Env helped immediately following the infection, the long-term benefits were minimal. However, it was surprising that the rabies-based was able to induce such potent anti-SIV humoral responses.

"Although we can't yet block the infection, we showed that we can protect against disease," said Dr. Schnell. "We also saw significant antibody activity against the virus, which is promising. In addition, this is a very simple approach that only took two immunizations."

Source: Thomas Jefferson University (news : web)

Related Stories

Recommended for you

Study suggests a way to stop HIV in its tracks

December 1, 2017
When HIV-1 infects an immune cell, the virus travels to the nucleus so quickly there's not enough time to set off the cell's alarm system.

Discovery puts the brakes on HIV's ability to infect

November 30, 2017
Viewed with a microscope, the virus faintly resembles a pineapple—the universal symbol of welcome. But HIV, the virus that causes AIDS, is anything but that. It has claimed the lives of more than 35 million people so far.

Rising levels of HIV drug resistance

November 30, 2017
HIV drug resistance is approaching and exceeding 10% in people living with HIV who are about to initiate or reinitiate first-line antiretroviral therapy, according to the largest meta-analysis to date on HIV drug resistance, ...

Male circumcision and antiviral drugs appear to sharply reduce HIV infection rate

November 29, 2017
A steep drop in the local incidence of new HIV infections accompanied the rollout of a U.S.-funded anti-HIV program in a large East-African population, according to a study led by researchers at Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School ...

Combination HIV prevention reduces new infections by 42 percent in Ugandan district

November 29, 2017
A study published today in the New England Journal of Medicine provides real-world evidence that implementing a combination of proven HIV prevention measures across communities can substantially reduce new HIV infections ...

Research on HIV viral load urges updates to WHO therapy guidelines

November 24, 2017
A large cohort study in South Africa has revealed that that low-level viraemia (LLV) in HIV-positive patients who are receiving antiretroviral treatment (ART) is an important risk factor for treatment failure.

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.