An HIV vaccine developed by scientists and researchers at Oregon Health & Science University cleared the virus that causes AIDS in monkeys and are hoping to develop a similar vaccine for humans.
According to BBC News, AIDS in non-human patients is caused by simian immunodeficiency virus (SIV) which is similar to HIV but 100 times more deadly. The researchers created the vaccine from a modified version of a common virus called cytomegalovirus (CMV), which prompted the monkeys’ white blood cells to seek out and destroy the SIV-infected cells.
The team tested the vaccine on 16 rhesus macaque monkeys and then infected them with SIV about two months later. Seven of the monkeys didn’t survive, while the virus took hold of the other nine before the vaccine kicked in. Eight of the monkeys showed no sign of infection after a year and remained SIV-free three years later. Researchers said that low levels of the virus did reappear in one of the monkeys.
Researchers are now investigating why the vaccine only worked on a portion of the monkeys and also want to see if it will be effective in humans.
SOURCE: NY Daily