Researchers say outlook for an HIV vaccine is poor
Participants at a New York Academy of Sciences and AIDS Vaccine Coalition symposium last week said the current prospects for developing a preventative HIV vaccine are poor, the British Medical Journal reports. Conference attendees said several factors are affecting vaccine development: the ability of HIV to quickly adapt to medications, the possibility that humans can be infected with two or more strains of the virus, the lack of a good animal model in which to study experimental vaccines, and the fact that the body's immune system doesn't do a very good job at fighting the virus. "Coming up with a vaccine against this virus is going to be tough," David Ho, director of the Aaron Diamond Research Center, told the journal. Conference attendees said that because of the difficulties in crafting a preventative vaccine, antiretroviral drug development and HIV prevention initiatives are more important than ever.