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HIV/AIDS Vaccine Awareness Day Recognized May 18: Thousands of volunteers, researchers involved in vaccine search




 

USIS Washington File - May 16, 2006

HIV/AIDS activists, volunteers and researchers will be among those recognizing HIV/AIDS Vaccine Awareness Day May 18, an occasion that draws attention to the need for a vaccine to prevent this disease, according to the National Institute for Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), one of the National Institutes of Health.

Significant progress has been made in understanding the virus and its attack on the immune system in the 25 years since the disease first was reported, according to a NIAID press release. At least 58 vaccine candidates have been tested in 96 HIV vaccine clinical trials involving 23,000 volunteers without a breakthrough, but the search for a serum that will provide immunity to the virus goes on.

Washington - HIV/AIDS activists, volunteers and researchers will be among those recognizing HIV/AIDS Vaccine Awareness Day May 18, an occasion that draws attention to the need for a vaccine to prevent this disease, according to the National Institute for Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), one of the National Institutes of Health.

Significant progress has been made in understanding the virus and its attack on the immune system in the 25 years since the disease first was reported, according to a NIAID press release.

At least 58 vaccine candidates have been tested in 96 HIV vaccine clinical trials involving 23,000 volunteers without a breakthrough, but the search goes on for a serum that will provide immunity to the virus.

HIV/AIDS treatments also have been developed that prolong life and allow persons with AIDS to live productively with the disease, but still the disease has taken the lives of 25 million people since its 1981 identification.

The NIAID statement says international collaborative research projects continue the pursuit of a vaccine. The Global HIV/AIDS Vaccine Enterprise is working to accelerate the development of a new HIV vaccine, and the Center for HIV-AIDS Vaccine Immunology is working on problems in vaccine design and development. Community organizations have joined the scientists in the effort to develop and test HIV vaccines.

The May 15 press release says that about 20 community groups across the United States are educating their communities about this work, trying to recruit more volunteers and expand support for the research.

The NIAID statement thanks all the volunteers, scientists and health professionals engaged in this campaign on HIV/AIDS Vaccine Awareness Day. It also promotes a theme of "Be the Generation" to find an HIV vaccine in the ninth annual recognition of the event.

"With over 40 million people living with HIV worldwide," says the campaign Web site, "and over 20 million lives already lost, the need for an HIV vaccine is more urgent than ever." More information is available on NIAID's HIV Vaccine Awareness Day Web site and the Web sites of the HIV Vaccine Trials Network and Be the Generation.



 


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Information in this article was accurate in May 16, 2006. The state of the art may have changed since the publication date. This material is designed to support, not replace, the relationship that exists between you and your doctor. Always discuss treatment options with a doctor who specializes in treating HIV.