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Promising Vaccine Candidate Could Lead To a Definitive Cure For HIV

samzenpus posted about a year ago | from the a-shot-for-the-cure dept.

Medicine 185

Zothecula writes "A very promising vaccine candidate for HIV/AIDS has shown the ability to completely clear the simian immunodeficiency virus (SIV), a very aggressive form of HIV that leads to AIDS in monkeys. Developed at the Vaccine and Gene Therapy Institute at the Oregon Health and Science University (OHSU), the vaccine proved successful in about fifty percent of the subjects tested and could lead to a human vaccine preventing the onset of HIV/AIDS and even cure patients currently on anti-retroviral drugs."

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Not gonna happen (-1)

Rosco P. Coltrane (209368) | about a year ago | (#44838849)

Pharma companies make boatloads of money selling lifelong drugs to HIV sufferers. The last thing they want is a cure that'd kill the cash cow. Same reason why people with total kidney failure still can't benefit from artificial kidneys (too much money in dialysis machines, ambulance trips, special vacation packages... And no, kidney transplants don't kill the cash cow - patients are still on drugs for the rest of their lives) and why people diabetes still can't get artificial pancreata (too much money in insulin, needles...)

Re:Not gonna happen (5, Insightful)

jkflying (2190798) | about a year ago | (#44838919)

Which is why they spent over $500 million in 2011 just on HIV vaccine clinical trials? Sorry, your argument doesn't really hold water, and anyway the company that *does* come up with the vaccine will make a killing.

Re:Not gonna happen (4, Insightful)

RivenAleem (1590553) | about a year ago | (#44838931)

Not just make a killing, but will put all the other companies out of business as their treatments become worthless.

Re:Not gonna happen (4, Insightful)

DrXym (126579) | about a year ago | (#44838997)

Not worthless, since it's unlikely any vaccine will be 100% effective even assuming all at-risk people were to receive it.

Besides any vaccination campaign would take some years to ramp up and anti-retrovirals become less effective and ultimately go out of patent over time any way. So it's not like their business is going to go bust over night or wouldn't have drawn to a natural end anyway.

Re:Not gonna happen (4, Insightful)

AmiMoJo (196126) | about a year ago | (#44839079)

Only if they price it so that everyone who needs it can afford it. Obviously that won't happen, they will want to maximize profit in rich countries instead of practically giving it away in Africa, so all those poor people will still need the other cheaper treatments.

Re:Not gonna happen (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44839103)

There are provisions in international law that state that poor countries can ignore patents on life-saving drugs if the patent-holder prices them prohibitively expensively. In practice, this means that drug companies price the products by region, trying to replicate the US model of "rich people can afford it, poor people can go and die in a corner."

Re:Not gonna happen (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44839295)

, trying to replicate the US model of "rich people can afford it, poor people can go and die in a corner."

Naw,that's the official GOP 'replacement' for Obamacare.

Re:Not gonna happen (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44839677)

*rolls eyes*
2014 is not going to be very fun for you.
Just remember, when the ACA kicks into full gear and you suddenly realize how much butthurt and suck are in obamacare, not a single GOP congress-critter voted for it. It is a 100% bought and paid for Democrat control mechanism.
Enjoy your socialism.

Re:Not gonna happen (4, Informative)

Defenestrar (1773808) | about a year ago | (#44839381)

Actually, a number of big pharma companies do give away (or sell at cost) to poor regions like sub-Saharan Africa the same medications they charge an arm and a leg for in the richer parts of the world. Where the process breaks down is when a disease disproportionally affects a poor region (like malaria) such that there is not a fiscally sound business model for pursuing the high risk/benefit research involved with drug development.

As an aside, I think that one of the most commendable fields of the Gates Foundation is their promotion of research for malaria (see the TED talk where Gates releases a jar of mosquitoes into the audience).

Re:Not gonna happen (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44839755)

Note: This is not an attack aimed at you. I'm just using part of your otherwise good post as an example.

Namely, seeing things like

a fiscally sound business model for pursuing the high risk/benefit research

in conjunction with saving the lives of people and realizing that that kind of reasoning decides who gets to live and who gets to die, is ... sickening.

The human race has a long way to go. Hopefully we'll not kill ourselves off before getting there.

Re:Not gonna happen (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44839985)

Namely, seeing things like

a fiscally sound business model for pursuing the high risk/benefit research

in conjunction with saving the lives of people and realizing that that kind of reasoning decides who gets to live and who gets to die, is ... sickening.

So are you saying you don't understand that drugs cost huge amounts of money to research, develop, test, and approve? Or is it that you don't understand that no business concern can operate at a loss indefinitely?

It may SUCK that we have to make these decisions, but unless you have a way of funding drug research that doesn't involve the companies doing the research losing money year after year, then this is the reality we live in.

Education would make those poor people's lives better. Better food. Better medicine. Better housing. Better water treatment. Is it "sickening" that I didn't buy a house for a poor family in Africa, yet bought a house for myself and my family? Is the contractor who built my house morally reprehensible for working for me, instead of losing his life's savings building houses that people can't afford in Africa?

Please learn to divorce the touchy-feely "every human is special and deserves to live like Warren Buffett" from the practical reality that there's no such thing as a free lunch.

Re:Not gonna happen (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44840159)

So are you saying you don't understand that drugs cost huge amounts of money to research, develop, test, and approve?

You should go to Wiki and look up the Fallacy of Sunk Costs.

Re:Not gonna happen (1)

MightyYar (622222) | about a year ago | (#44839325)

Usually they practice price discrimination, which any Econ 101 student can demonstrate as a way to price that maximizes your profits. A single, fixed price only benefits the wealthy.

Re:Not gonna happen (-1, Troll)

slashmydots (2189826) | about a year ago | (#44839855)

I thought they did develop a cheaper treatment: stop catching it. HIV is the biggest Darwin award disease ever.

Re: Not gonna happen (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44839965)

Yes, those children who catch it from their mothers really ought to know better.

http://www.cdc.gov/hiv/risk/gender/pregnantwomen/index.html

Re:Not gonna happen (4, Funny)

morgauxo (974071) | about a year ago | (#44839835)

Nah, then they will just pay someone to write a paper stating that HIV vaccine causes autism.

Re:Not gonna happen (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44839853)

Not just make a killing, but will put all the other companies out of business as their treatments become worthless.

You think the drug companies that make HIV treatments will go out of business? You think all Bayer makes is HIV treatments? Losing one product doesn't make a company go bankrupt.

Re:Not gonna happen (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44838933)

Which is why they spent over $500 million in 2011 just on HIV vaccine clinical trials? Sorry, your argument doesn't really hold water, and anyway the company that *does* come up with the vaccine will make a killing.

I agree, but you are arguing against a conspiracy theory, never works.

Re:Not gonna happen (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44839347)

This is because there is no such thing as conspiracies.

And no such thing as collusion, cartels, corruption etc. either. It's all in his head. Why does he hate pharma so much? They're only doing their level best to make people healthy and happy and provide sunshine and ponies for all.

Re:Not gonna happen (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44839361)

Sounds like someone is off his meds

Re:Not gonna happen (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44838965)

Yes no real conspiracies here, although they don't help their case when they do get caught fabricating positive results to sell more drugs.
The real problem is that with vaccines being less profitable they have spent less than half a billion on vaccines but much more than that on drugs.
They don't conspire to suppress but they wont bother to put nearly as much effort in to the lower profit products.
This is why we wont get completely new antibiotics until the last moment and possibly too late for some, until you have a customer base why run the timer out on a new patient when you could just wait.

Re:Not gonna happen (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44838973)

Which is why they spent over $500 million in 2011 just on HIV vaccine clinical trials? Sorry, your argument doesn't really hold water, and anyway the company that *does* come up with the vaccine will make a killing.

that's for sure.
either by selling the vaccine, or by being bought by an HIV pharmaceutical company to be buried.

that's not a conspiracy theory. that's common practice everywhere else, so why wouldn't it be in pharma?
they just have to keep it quiet because of the moral outrage.

Re:Not gonna happen (1)

Opportunist (166417) | about a year ago | (#44839365)

Yeah, like that's gonna work. Patents you have to keep secret are worthless, because as soon as someone else develops it (and your patent could strike), you'd have to go public with it anyway.

Tech burying only works exactly if you can go public with it but can claim that not releasing it is in some way good for the consumers.

Re:Not gonna happen (2)

K. S. Kyosuke (729550) | about a year ago | (#44840243)

Patents you have to keep secret are worthless

Yeah, things that don't exist often are.

Re:Not gonna happen (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44839037)

That's just to show the public that they are "researching" for it, but in the end, if they can't sell this thing for more than a lifetime of the current product, won't happen.

Re:Not gonna happen (1)

isorox (205688) | about a year ago | (#44839111)

the company that *does* come up with the vaccine will make a killing.

Wouldn't that mean the vaccine doesn't work?

Re:Not gonna happen (1)

Bengie (1121981) | about a year ago | (#44839437)

$500m of whom's money? I know there are lots of grants out there. I remember my ISP saying similar things. "We spent over $1bil upgrading our state-of-the-art fiber network in your state." But they don't tell you about most of the money coming from the Government.

On related news (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44838955)

"Researchers working on a promising HIV vaccine just got hired by big pharma. The trials of this promising cure will go on under close scrutiny by their new man-in-charge".

Re:Not gonna happen (1)

macson_g (1551397) | about a year ago | (#44838985)

Nice tinfoil hat. When can I buy one?

Re:Not gonna happen (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44839049)

You don't buy tinfoil hats. The ones you buy are all compromised. Learn how to build a tinfoil hat yourself.

Re:Not gonna happen (1)

Opportunist (166417) | about a year ago | (#44839373)

Nice try, shill. That's the new tactic, trying to sound like you're helping while undermining the system and paving the way for THEM. We all know already that you made sure that all the tinfoil we could buy on the open market has been tampered with to make it useless for building hats.

Re:Not gonna happen (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44839833)

Pffft! You buy tinfoil to build your hat? I make my own tinfoil with some hydrogen atoms.

Re:Not gonna happen (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44839081)

You can join the Tinfoil Hat Society [youtube.com] .

Re:Not gonna happen (1)

ericloewe (2129490) | about a year ago | (#44839095)

You don't! You have to make it yourself, otherwise it could be made to allow the establishment to read your thoughts just when you thought you were safe!

Re:Not gonna happen (1)

TWiTfan (2887093) | about a year ago | (#44839603)

Nice tinfoil hat. When can I buy one?

The NSA has already read your post and will be mailing you one later today.

Re:Not gonna happen (1)

Half-pint HAL (718102) | about a year ago | (#44839155)

Pharma companies make boatloads of money selling lifelong drugs to HIV sufferers. The last thing they want is a cure that'd kill the cash cow.

OTOH, have you any idea what would happen to the share price of the first company to produce a cure for AIDS? Any individuals in a position to suppress it would also likely stand to profit from a bonanza share options windfall. And suppressing it without shareholder approval would be potentially criminal, and definitely actionable in the civil courts.

Re:Not gonna happen (1)

Mashiki (184564) | about a year ago | (#44839223)

I always liked this line of tinfoil hat craziness. It reminds me of the people who say "there will never be a cure for cancer" except when you point out that there are indeed various clinical trials up now, and in some case experimental deployment of various cancer drugs now. My grandmother who has stage 4 lung cancer received a non-radiation treatment as part of her treatment plan, it reduced the size of the tumors by 50%. Sadly it didn't reduce it enough that they could successfully operate and remove said cancer, or even remove the lung itself.

Or people who complain that there won't be a cure for diabetes, except where you can point out things like...islet implants(aka a artificial pancreas). Where the failure rate over time is in the 20-30% range after 15 years. My sister got that, as part of the clinical trials here in Canada. Sadly she was in the very small subset(~10%) where it fails within 3 years.

Re:Not gonna happen (2)

Talderas (1212466) | about a year ago | (#44839243)

It boils down to "Dead people don't make you money."

Re:Not gonna happen (1)

clickclickdrone (964164) | about a year ago | (#44839563)

It boils down to "Dead people don't make you money."

Unless you're an undertaker.

Re:Not gonna happen (1)

omnichad (1198475) | about a year ago | (#44840095)

An increase in supply now only decreases the pool for later profits. You want them to live long enough to:
A) Have children
B) Bug their children to give them grandchildren.

Re:Not gonna happen (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44839337)

The patents on those will expire in a few years, allowing their competitors to start producing them at rock bottom prices. They'll lose the market anyway. Their solution is to invent it's replacement (the cure) and then exploit their monopoly on that for 10-20 years. So they Do have an incentive to find the cure.

Re:Not gonna happen (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44839345)

...and your kidney analogy is flawed because the hardware (artificial kidneys dialysis etc) costs much more and can't drop in price in the same way as a pill can that's as cheap/easy to manufacture as aspirin.

Re:Not gonna happen (1)

dindi (78034) | about a year ago | (#44839467)

They can vaccinate you with some poorly tested crap as well, then cash-in on the medication needed to cure the "side effects". Alzheimer's, cancers ... and restless leg syndrome.

It is a win-win situation for the pharma-industrial-complex. Also even if you don't FSCK around like rabbits, you will be either required or scared into thinking that you need the vaccination. Maybe some "accidental" blood contaminations breaking news will do that for you...
 

Re:Not gonna happen (1)

backslashdot (95548) | about a year ago | (#44839949)

What cash cow? There is a lot of competition from India and elsewhere and in fact the profit from HIV drugs has become very low now. It used to cost $1000 a day to treat HIV .. now it's about $10 and there are many different companies making the drugs. How did the cost drop? Why didn't they keep the cost at $1000 a day so they can make more money?

If it's such a profitable business to make HIV drugs why don't you make them? You can make them in India or South Africa where patents on medicines are not recognized. Also you can slightly modify the drug's molecular structure (without affecting its effectiveness much) and not have to worry about the patent.

Re:Not gonna happen (1)

omnichad (1198475) | about a year ago | (#44840071)

Even if that were true, if a competitor could kill that business and make only a few million in the process, that's still profit for them instead of the competitor.

Unprotected sex? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44838857)

Hell yeah!

Re:Unprotected sex? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44839059)

There's other STDs too, yanno. Might want still to whip a rubber on your cock.

Re:Unprotected sex? (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44839125)

Nah, he'll be fine. A Kleenex is using enough when self-abusing in mommy's basement

Re:Unprotected sex? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44839595)

Now men can feel free to once again fuck each other up the ass without fear.

Keep trying. (1)

SuricouRaven (1897204) | about a year ago | (#44838863)

Most of these potential vaccines turn out to be unworkable - but try long enough and hard enough, eventually scientists will hit upon a really good one.

Re:Keep trying. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44838889)

Well, they did hard try for long time. Not wearing pink glasses here, but could it be the case finally?

Re:Keep trying. (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44838921)

The key seems to be they use modified CMV, which is itself persistent, so the body keeps generating the strong immune response to HIV rather than decreasing over time.

If it works, it sounds like it may be promising to treat other persistent viral infections - not that I know anything about this field.

Captcha: Despair - something you might not need to have after a HIV diagnosis if this pans out.

Re:Keep trying. (1)

somersault (912633) | about a year ago | (#44838923)

This sounds like a pretty damn good one already, even if it only has a 50% success rate so far.

Re:Keep trying. (1)

SuricouRaven (1897204) | about a year ago | (#44839169)

On SIV. We don't know yet if it even even work on HIV, and if it can how well the virus can evolve to counter it. HIV is exceptionally adaptive, even by viral standards.

Re:Keep trying. (1)

somersault (912633) | about a year ago | (#44839239)

According to TFA:

As with most early vaccine candidates, the study revolves around SIV. SIV is much more aggressive than HIV: it replicates up to 100 times faster and when unchecked it can cause AIDS in only two years.

To me that sounds like it should actually be easier to clear HIV than SIV.

Re:Keep trying. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44840001)

Maybe that explains the 50% effectiveness. Supposedly the virus strain is more likely to mutate while the concentration is still very high. They should maybe produce several different strains of CMV with different HIV (SIV) antigens to make the countering mutation less probable when infected with those CMVs at the same time.
Overall looks very promising, but no guarantees that it will work in humans. Let's hope it does though.

Re:Keep trying. (0)

Threni (635302) | about a year ago | (#44839455)

I'm sure they've got the next disease ready - be ready for `new cases` of a `previously unknown illness` or perhaps a single instance or two from the last 30 odd years (ie during testing).

Re:Keep trying. (4, Insightful)

Amouth (879122) | about a year ago | (#44839645)

I'm just waiting for there to be an accidental release of smallpox. I know that nearly no one from my generation on has been vaccinated. A single out break of that in a major metro area and international airport would be one of the most devastating things our generation could witness.

Re:Keep trying. (1)

jones_supa (887896) | about a year ago | (#44839093)

Most of these potential vaccines turn out to be unworkable - but try long enough and hard enough, eventually scientists will hit upon a really good one.

I agree. We've seen [slashdot.org] these headlines before on Slashdot, but they seem to be getting more and more closer to the target each time.

Here today, forgotten tomorrow. (1)

rhook (943951) | about a year ago | (#44838945)

I hear about these HIV/AIDS cures every year but they always disappear.

Re:Here today, forgotten tomorrow. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44839051)

oblig [xkcd.com]

Re:Here today, forgotten tomorrow. (1)

cdrudge (68377) | about a year ago | (#44839349)

See where it says promising, candidate, and could in the title? Those means that it's not here, but we're getting closer. Doesn't mean that we're there yet, and as such all those promising candidates that could be a cure disappear because they were just that, promising candidates that could be...but ended up not being.

Actual Pathogenesis Data relegated to Supps? (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44838947)

Why is figure 12 in the supplements, it seems to be the most important part (it compares cd4+ T-cell levels)? It is not even mentioned in the main text. Isn't reduction in the actual pathology the most important goal of a treatment?

Re:Actual Pathogenesis Data relegated to Supps? (2)

Electricity Likes Me (1098643) | about a year ago | (#44839083)

Nature papers are really short compared to others. Pretty much all the actual content gets put in supplements.

Re:Actual Pathogenesis Data relegated to Supps? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44839137)

I am aware with the problem of nature papers (eg im sure no one could replicate the study from info contained in this paper). It still seems that "This treatment reduced the amount of T-helper cell depletion" should be the main point of the study. Why use the proxy of viral load as your main outcome when you have measured the actual pathology? Seems strange to me but I do not know enough details to guess why.

But God won't like it (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44838951)

I'm sure he'll just do something worse.

After watching the video (4, Insightful)

canadiannomad (1745008) | about a year ago | (#44838963)

This sounds really interesting...
It sounds like, instead of infecting the patient with a blunted virus that would eventually die away, they are permanently infecting the patient with a persistent virus that looks and acts like their target but causes no harm to keep up the immune response over the long haul. Sounds to me like a really interesting approach.
Maybe someone could enlighten me to the history of this approach in the treatment of other diseases, or is it novel?

Re:After watching the video (1)

somersault (912633) | about a year ago | (#44839043)

Maybe someone could enlighten me to the history of this approach in the treatment of other diseases, or is it novel?

The Smallpox [wikipedia.org] vaccine used this approach very succesfully :)

Re:After watching the video (2)

canadiannomad (1745008) | about a year ago | (#44839099)

The Smallpox [wikipedia.org] vaccine used this approach very succesfully :)

Well they are using a live vaccine (based on Adenoviridae), but the idea is that it will get killed by the immune system and therefor reduce immune response over time... Whereas this vaccine is going for a persistent infection of the vaccine virus. Or am I misreading the info on the Smallpox vaccine?

Re:After watching the video (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44839071)

Is this persistent virus infectious? I guess a vaccination that you get by having sex with a vaccinated person might prove quite popular ;-)

Captcha: screwed - are the Captchas generated by an AI?

Re:After watching the video (1)

slashmydots (2189826) | about a year ago | (#44839875)

By interesting approach, you mean unbelievably dangerous? One little unfortunately mutation in those couple trillion virus cells over several decades and the patient is dead.

Great news for vets! (1)

tonymercmobily (658708) | about a year ago | (#44838971)

Vets all over the world rejoice! Your monkeys will be free of HIV anytime now!

Re:Great news for vets! (2)

canadiannomad (1745008) | about a year ago | (#44838991)

:)
Though vets in the US and Canada might not have much need, I can see an immediate use for this vaccine as it stands...

From: Wikipedia: Simian immunodeficiency virus [wikipedia.org]

Beatrice Hahn of the University of Pennsylvania recently led a team of researchers to find that chimpanzees do die from simian AIDS in the wild and that the AIDS outbreak in Africa has contributed to the decline of chimpanzee populations.

Isn't the internest about cats? (0)

spokenoise (2140056) | about a year ago | (#44839001)

Monkeys? This could work for feline aids. Then I could vaccinate my cat! Then all the cat lovers on the internets could have aids free pussies!

Re:Great news for vets! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44839061)

I'm sure vets will be very happy if this at least leads to a treatment for cats infected with FIV.

At long last (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44839011)

I can't tell you how long I've wanted to have unprotected sex with monkeys. It doesn't feel the same when using a rubber.

I agree with OP (0)

davidmcg (796487) | about a year ago | (#44839025)

There is an entire industry with an innate economic interest to obstruct, suppress and discredit any information about the eradication of diseases. The pharmaceutical industry makes over one trillion dollars from selling drugs for ongoing diseases. These drugs may relieve symptoms, but they do not cure. We have to realize that the mission of this industry is to make money from ongoing diseases. The cure or eradication of a disease leads to the collapse of a multi-billion dollar market of pharmaceuticals. We are bombarded with advertising campaigns by pharmaceutical companies wanting to make us believe that they are “Searching for Cures” “Striving for the Eradication of Diseases” or “Increasing Life Expectancy” and other false promises. With these deceptive statements, the pharmaceutical industry has for decades been able to disguise the true nature of its business – maximum profit from ongoing diseases. In other words, a cure for HIV will never see the light of day as it would undermine the profits made from selling life-long drugs to patients and would pretty much destroy the pharmaceutical industry. This would only benefit one company who would make massive profits and would refuse to share the cure with other companies and organisations.

Re:I agree with OP (1)

MBGMorden (803437) | about a year ago | (#44839529)

True, but there are multiple companies working on these things. If one doesn't have a drug on the market then they're not benefitting from the other companies making money and it WOULD work better for them to develop a cure.

Also, take note that this isn't a straight-up cure - its a vaccination. Think about that for a second - its expanding the market. If you're marketting a cure, or even just treatments, then you're only selling your drug to people that actually have the disease. A vaccination gets taken even by people who DON'T. Why sell your AIDS treatment to the tiny bit of the population that actually has AIDS you you can sell your vaccination to the entire population instead?

Weird. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44839101)

That's odd. I've managed to avoid AIDs by using a rubber, not having unprotected gay sex (well, no gay sex in my case, but whatever) and not doing intravenous drugs.

Re:Weird. (1)

SuricouRaven (1897204) | about a year ago | (#44839189)

The world is full of stupid and reckless people. We can't fix this, but at least a vaccine can contain the damage.

Re:Weird. (1)

dindi (78034) | about a year ago | (#44839521)

There are also blood bank contaminations, health workers get it from blood, and there are the unlucky who are born with it.

Also rubbers break and if you are really unlucky thee are other ways to get it... blood contacting your wound, eyes.. etc.. While not common, it can happen...

phase 1 trials (1)

tantrum (261762) | about a year ago | (#44839257)

Several companies are starting their phase 3 trials about now. I've invested in one of them. If they are successfull I'll retire, but I mostly invested just to make sure someone is working on it.

It takes time to move from "killing viruses in a jar" to actually making something that removes the viruses from people without killing them at the same time.

Submitted another like this days ago (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44839285)

That was rejected http://now.msn.com/hiv-vaccine-trial-subjects-experience-no-adverse-effects [msn.com] from submissions...

* Interesting reading, & I, for one, hope they wipe this SOB out - it has royally messed up folks lives in many ways for decades now.

APK

P.S.=> Don't understand HOW or WHY it was rejected, but "that's slashdot" for you - Still, the folks in question here aren't the ONLY ONES ontop of a fix for this killer it seems... apk

Population growth (3, Insightful)

benjfowler (239527) | about a year ago | (#44839309)

Given that HIV/AIDS has made the population growth rates in certain places explode, and that these places have very young populations, would a definitive cure for HIV/AIDS set off a massive population timebomb? Has any thought been given to the consequences of very suddenly removing a big source of mortality?

The public doesn't care (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44839435)

In spite of the population explosion in Africa, since the 1960s, charities still guilt people in wealthy, industrialized nations into giving lots of money. They've been guilting people since the 1970s. China was also poor in the 1970s...

The general public doesn't know. The politicians, and the charities will continue guilting people. They don't care.

Re:Population growth (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44839505)

Short term yes, long term no. Anything that increases that odds of having grandchildren will have a negative effect on reproductive rates.

Yes. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44839591)

Poor people gonna poor.

Meanwhile, the rest of us will continue to be grossly overweight and use water like it falls from the sky.

Sorry kids, Earth isn't full. It's just filled with idiots.

Re:Yes. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44839929)

... water does fall from the sky.

Re:Population growth (2)

felipekk (1007591) | about a year ago | (#44840143)

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/AIDS#Epidemiology [wikipedia.org]

HIV/AIDS is a global pandemic. As of 2010, approximately 34 million people have HIV worldwide. Of these approximately 16.8 million are women and 3.4 million are less than 15 years old. It resulted in about 1.8 million deaths in 2010, down from a peak of 2.2 million in 2005.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Population_growth#Human_population_growth_rate [wikipedia.org]

The CIA World Factbook gives the world annual birthrate, mortality rate, and growth rate as 1.89%, 0.79%, and 1.095% respectively.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/World_Population [wikipedia.org]

  As of today, it is estimated to number 7.109 billion by the United States Census Bureau (USCB).

0.79% * 7.1 bi = 56 mi deaths yearly.

If these calculations are correct this means AIDS accounts for 3.5% of yearly deaths worldwide, I don't think this counts as a "big source".

But I could be wrong...

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mortality_rate [wikipedia.org]

According to the World Health Organization, the 10 leading causes of death in 2002 were:

        12.6% Ischaemic heart disease
        9.7% Cerebrovascular disease
        6.8% Lower respiratory infections
        4.9% HIV/AIDS
        4.8% Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease
        3.2% Diarrhoeal diseases
        2.7% Tuberculosis
        2.2% Trachea/bronchus/lung cancers
        2.2% Malaria
        2.1% Road traffic accidents

CMV and Heterlogous Antigen Delivery (5, Informative)

Guppy (12314) | about a year ago | (#44839433)

As someone who actually worked on (albeit briefly) an HIV vaccine candidate, I'd like to comment that there have been a number of successful anti-SIV vaccines already, each of which have gone on to miserable -- and expensive -- failures when the underlying technology was applied to an HIV vaccine. And for those candidates that actually made it to human trials before failure, each attempt had a human cost as well (conspiracy theorists, go fuck yourselves).

That being said, the approach used is rather clever, if someone risky. The technique used is what is known as a "Heterologous Antigen" delivery, but in this case it has been combined with a persistent agent that establishes a life-long infection. The vector used was Rhesus Cytomegalovirus, which has a analogous human virus known as Human Cytomegalovirus [wikipedia.org] , aka Herpesvirus-5.

CMV is a very common infection (in some countries 90+%, although somewhat lower in the United States). It's generally considered harmless to healthy individuals, and most pick it up during childhood, where it is commonly passed around in daycare centers and such. Initial symptoms are usually mild and non-specific (although in some individuals it can produce Mono-like symptoms [wikipedia.org] ), and typically afterwards the viral infection is well-controlled with no further signs of infection. Unlike some more famous members of the Herpesvirus family, it does not produce any sores or vesicles or such.

However, on occasion it can be dangerous, as one of the infectious agents that can sometimes result in TORCH syndrome [wikipedia.org] effects (like the infamous "Blueberry Muffin Baby") when primary infections (first encounter with the infectious agent for an individual) occurs in a pregnant women. It can also be dangerous in immunosuppressed individuals, such as organ transplant recipients and advanced AIDS patients.

Re:CMV and Heterlogous Antigen Delivery (1)

morethanapapercert (749527) | about a year ago | (#44839697)

+1 Informative

Re:CMV and Heterlogous Antigen Delivery (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44839969)

That being said, the approach used is rather clever, if someone risky. The technique used is what is known as a "Heterologous Antigen" delivery, but in this case it has been combined with a persistent agent that establishes a life-long infection. The vector used was Rhesus Cytomegalovirus, which has a analogous human virus known as Human Cytomegalovirus [wikipedia.org], aka Herpesvirus-5.

So we can cure cancer by giving you aids, then we cure your aids by giving you herpes?

I suppose it's a start.

Basic research? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44839593)

"simian immunodeficiency virus (SIV), a very aggressive form of HIV"
Those are two different viruses, one is not a different form of another. Yes they are from the same family but they infect different hosts and are targeted (affected) by different host defenses....

Re:Basic research? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44839753)

They are similar viruses and share many biological mechanisms. It is interesting that we as species have been often exposed to SIV. A mutation provided us (and probably some monkeys) immunity to it. And, unfortunately, the same mutation made us vulnerable to HIV.
Yet many "promising" HIV vaccines proved unsuccessful in human trials, so don't hold your breath yet.

Re:Basic research? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44840141)

Yes you're right. That's the point I was trying to make, SIV doesn't infect humans, and HIV doesn't infect monkeys (to my knowledge).
A working vaccine in monkeys is a long way from a working vaccine for HIV.

Not convinced (0)

pchasco (651819) | about a year ago | (#44839785)

How can they be sure that these monkeys haven't been cured simply by practicing better hygiene?

Re:Not convinced (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44840063)

SIV (and HIV) is not something thats cured by hygiene. It's a persistent viral infection that hides in the immune cells.

CMV keeps up immune response (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44839921)

They use genetically modified CMV to keep the immune system alert and keep the sustained level of antibodies that kill SIV. CMV is otherwise harmless, but can not be cleared up completely and the body produces antibodies all the time. So, the immune system is fooled to produce antibodies that target SIV, trying to actually destroy CMV. Over time SIV gets wiped out even in viral reservoirs. After some months, the viral concentration is not even detectable anymore.

Why it works in 50% of monkeys is not yet understood. I guess in some of the monkeys, antibodies might not have properties that result with an attack on SIV (could be resolved by designing a better CMV hybrid), or the immune response wanes after some time. Maybe we humans will have more luck though - or maybe the teick doesn't work at all with out immune system.

Re:CMV keeps up immune response (1)

omnichad (1198475) | about a year ago | (#44840183)

Why it works in 50% might have something to do with how the CMV vaccines already in trials (not for HIV) only have a 50% efficacy rate in humans. This is according to a 2009 study I found via Wikipedia...

Super Monkey Rage Virus (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44839925)

Is it me or does this sound like it could quickly turn into some super virus gone wrong? "Sir our vaccine just bonded with the HIV T cells and has begun to rapidly spread throughout the infected hosts, SIR the hosts..they ar....they are eating the treatment staff!"

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