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HIV/AIDS Vaccine To Begin Phase I Human Trials

timothy posted more than 5 years ago | from the soon-enough-mandatory-like-gardasil dept.

Medicine 329

An anonymous reader writes "An HIV/AIDS vaccine developed in Ontario has applied for Phase 1 human trials. Safety and immunogenicity studies of the vaccine, dubbed SAV001-H, have already been completed on animals. Phase 1 human trials will check the safety of the vaccine on HIV positive volunteers. Phase 2 will then test immunogenicity."

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Which is It? (5, Insightful)

sexconker (1179573) | more than 5 years ago | (#28562527)

Is this a vaccine for the virus, as one with half a brain would assume?

Or is this a magic serum that cures you of AIDS while not dealing with HIV?

HIV/AIDS is stupid.
HIV and AIDS are separate, though related, things.

Think of the confusion:
Person with AIDS gets vaccine and thinks it's okay to have unprotected sex willy-nilly.

Re:Which is It? (0)

sexconker (1179573) | more than 5 years ago | (#28562567)

Just to clarify, I'm not confused about it.
Others will be with headlines like that.

Re:Which is It? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28562653)

I'm confused now :(

Re:Which is It? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28562673)

Well I'm smart enough to know what they were talking about, obviously, but those proletariats surely won't.

Hurr hurr *puffs cigar*

Re:Which is It? (2, Insightful)

Absolut187 (816431) | more than 5 years ago | (#28562615)

This is a vaccine against getting the HIV virus in the first place.

There is no "magic serum" that cures AIDS. If you want to cure your AIDS, you need to have sex with a virgin, preferably an infant.
http://www.snopes.com/inboxer/petition/babyrape.asp [snopes.com]

Re:Which is It? (2, Funny)

eneville (745111) | more than 5 years ago | (#28562705)

Michael Jackson beat you to it.

Re:Which is It? (1)

greatica (1586137) | more than 5 years ago | (#28562771)

Nah, you cure it by taking walks along the beach, climbing rocks, and mountain biking with your significant other! Oh wait, nope...that's suppression. Sorry.

Re:Which is It? (4, Funny)

Flea of Pain (1577213) | more than 5 years ago | (#28563191)

Researcher1: Are you sure this will work? Researcher2: Not only am I sure, I'm HIV positive! Sorry, had to throw a South Park joke in there...

Re:Which is It? (2, Informative)

Hojima (1228978) | more than 5 years ago | (#28563453)

I would use my mod points to help you, but I think it's best to post a reply telling future moderators that the above is not a troll. That is what I thought before clicking the link. This is in fact a post spreading the awareness of child abuse in South Africa (at times resulting in gang-rape of an infant) because of the foolish and terrible myth that having sex with a virgin infant can cure your AIDS. Click on the link and help with the petition if you are interested

Re:Which is It? (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28564055)

Actually, that link is explaining that the cause of rape in Africa is not in any way linked to the myth that sex with a virgin would cure AIDS.
Read the whole page.

RTFA (1)

Swordopolis (1159065) | more than 5 years ago | (#28562625)

"We hope this vaccine is it, and hopefully this vaccine will prevent HIV infection and save millions of lives."

Re:RTFA (1)

sexconker (1179573) | more than 5 years ago | (#28563119)

Obviously.
The point is that saying HIV/AIDS in headlines is stupid.
This is a vaccine for HIV.

Fast forward to when we're passing it out like candy in Africa.

People who already have AIDS will get it, and with a lack of good information (such as the headline's "HIV/AIDS"), people will think they're cured, that they can't pass it on, etc.

Re:RTFA (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28564193)

Then people can buttfuck each other with impunity.

Re:Which is It? (5, Insightful)

Excelcia (906188) | more than 5 years ago | (#28562931)

HIV/AIDS is stupid

Are you trying to promote the HIV doesn't necessarily cause aids [wikipedia.org] point of view?

The vaccine in question does as any viral vaccine does, which is to help prevent an exposure to a virus from turning into an infection. In this case, it is intended to help prevent exposure to HIV from becoming AIDS. Once exposure has progressed into an infection, vaccines have little, if any, efficacy.

Re:Which is It? (1)

sexconker (1179573) | more than 5 years ago | (#28563077)

No I'm not.
Are you trying to promote that they are the same thing?

Re:Which is It? (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28563189)

What about GNU/HIV/AIDS?

Re:Which is It? (2, Insightful)

Excelcia (906188) | more than 5 years ago | (#28563895)

Are you trying to promote that they are the same thing?

Of course not. No more than the common cold is the same thing as the enterovirus that causes it.

There has always been a differentiation between illnesses and the viruses that cause them. Partially because sometimes there is more than one virus that causes a given named set of symptoms, but mostly because of the simple fact that knowledge of illness predated knowledge of viruses. Because people think of HIV in terms of the illness it causes, we are going to hear about this vaccine that way - as an AIDS vaccine, rather than an HIV vaccine. Just like the smallpox vaccine was just that, and not the variola vaccine.

Re:Which is It? (2, Informative)

lazy_playboy (236084) | more than 5 years ago | (#28564209)

Of course not. No more than the common cold is the same thing as the enterovirus that causes it.

Common cold is most commonly caused by rhinovirus.

Re:Which is It? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28563061)

Think of the confusion: Person with AIDS gets vaccine and thinks it's okay to have unprotected sex willy-nilly.

Having sex all willy-nilly is just plain silly. Just ask Milli Vanilli or Hillbilly Bildilli.

Re:Which is It? (2, Insightful)

Ian Alexander (997430) | more than 5 years ago | (#28563145)

If you have AIDS you're probably better-educated about your syndrome than your average bear.

I find it highly improbably that anyone could confuse AIDS and HIV that badly; I was educated on the difference in middle school as part and parcel of the health curriculum.

Re:Which is It? (0, Troll)

DoofusOfDeath (636671) | more than 5 years ago | (#28563291)

If you have AIDS you're probably better-educated about your syndrome than your average bear.

Sssh, or the Democrats will demand that all bear cubs and human children get an equal education.

Re:Which is It? (1, Redundant)

sexconker (1179573) | more than 5 years ago | (#28563149)

Did anyone read my post, or my own reply?
No, guess not.
And no one will read this.

I KNOW THAT THIS IS FOR HIV.
MY BEEF IS THE USE OF "HIV/AIDS" IN THE HEADLINE.

Re:Which is It? (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28563631)

Everyone confused by what you wrote? Maybe it's you!

Re:Which is It? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28563847)

Does it also bother you when people use their and there interchangeably? Or it's and its? Because the rest of us all get what they mean by an "HIV/AIDS Vaccine", and it seems you do too... you're just being needlessly pedantic.

Re:Which is It? (1)

sound+vision (884283) | more than 5 years ago | (#28563765)

"HIV/AIDS" is like "GNU/Linux". Simply unnecessary specificity.

Cue objections from the religious right: (-1, Troll)

oldspewey (1303305) | more than 5 years ago | (#28562581)

AIDS is a form of divine wrath; punishment for the fornicators. Using science to cure AIDS is an evil, godless pursuit.

Re:Cue objections from the religious right: (0, Flamebait)

WarJolt (990309) | more than 5 years ago | (#28562679)

Nah the religious right wouldn't wish AIDS on anyone...except /. trolls.

Re:Cue objections from the religious right: (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28562855)

I certainly wouldn't wish it on anyone.

But I certainly don't have any sympathy for those who contract it while engaging in risky behavior. Go ahead and die, why should I fucking care? You're the moron that got the disease. If you're dumb enough to contract HIV in any way other than a clinical fuck-up, then frankly, I hope you die, and I hope you never managed to reproduce. The population is too dense, in all possible meanings of the word.

I have no delusions of how evil I am. I truly wish we'd let HIV thin the herd.

Re:Cue objections from the religious right: (5, Insightful)

localman57 (1340533) | more than 5 years ago | (#28563177)

If you're dumb enough to contract HIV in any way other than a clinical fuck-up, then frankly, I hope you die, and I hope you never managed to reproduce.

Nice sentiment. Until you find out that your husband/wife was not, in fact, on a hiking trip. Suddenly you need an urgent blood test, despite never having done anything more risky than trusting your spouse.

And, just for the record, you should care because empathy is one of the things that separates you from lower species.

Re:Cue objections from the religious right: (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28563395)

Plenty of 'lower species' have empathy for their pack / herd mates.

Re:Cue objections from the religious right: (0, Flamebait)

Kokuyo (549451) | more than 5 years ago | (#28563841)

Frankly, sometimes I think empathy is rather what separates some of the lower species from us, if you get my meaning.

Although I have to admit, the longer I live on this planet, the less empathy I have for other human beings. I'm getting overloaded with dumb.

Re:Cue objections from the religious right: (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28563915)

Heh, trusting women is pretty risky.

Re:Cue objections from the religious right: (4, Interesting)

Starlon (1492461) | more than 5 years ago | (#28562683)

Not all of us conservative Christians are superstitious like you illustrate. Some of us even believe in evolution. Some of us don't mind gays getting married. People want to believe that the stereotype is real though, and you don't help the situation.

Re:Cue objections from the religious right: (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28562749)

you sound more like an enlightened christian than a conservative christian

Re:Cue objections from the religious right: (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28562885)

But you can't deny there are people out there like that. Pat Robertson has said something pretty close to that on a number of occasions.

Re:Cue objections from the religious right: (2, Insightful)

dyingtolive (1393037) | more than 5 years ago | (#28563245)

Yeah, but I know plenty of atheists who are douchebags as well. Correlation != causation, again, even in this case.

Re:Cue objections from the religious right: (0, Flamebait)

petrus4 (213815) | more than 5 years ago | (#28563959)

Yeah, but I know plenty of atheists who are douchebags as well.

Atheists are generally far more obnoxious than most Christians, in my experience. If I get a Mormon at my front door, I can tell them I'm not interested, and they'll go away.

Try doing that with an evangelical atheist sometime. Atheists don't take no for an answer, because they think that the only reason why someone might not want to listen to them, is because said person wants to "remain ignorant."

Aside from anything else, in the case of most people, contemporary atheism is actually complete bullshit. Most people these days who are atheists aren't because they're scientific rationalists or intellectuals. Rather, they're atheists because they're generally close to being sociopathic; the proverbial 4chan or WoW-addicted, 15 year old asshole who exploits online anonymity to be savage and devoid of empathy towards as many people as possible, and being a theist might imply that they actually gave a fuck about something.

Re:Cue objections from the religious right: (5, Insightful)

Calithulu (1487963) | more than 5 years ago | (#28564229)

Good plan. The next time an atheist comes to my door to preach at me I'll just tell them to go away. Oh, wait, that never happens.

On the other hand, evangelical religious folk do come to my door and try to convert me or, as has happened int the past, try to convince neighborhood kids to join their church when they think the parents aren't home.

Re:Cue objections from the religious right: (2, Insightful)

RelaxedTension (914174) | more than 5 years ago | (#28562971)

People want to believe that the stereotype is real though, and you don't help the situation.

Conservative christians are doing just fine at reinforcing that stereotype by themselves. Oklahoma-Morality-Proclamation-blames-gays-porn-abortion-for-economic-woe [examiner.com]

Re:Cue objections from the religious right: (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28563919)

"Not all of us conservative Christians are superstitious like you illustrate...."

Actually, I think you'll find that the definition of your religion REQUIRES superstitious belief.

Re:Cue objections from the religious right: (0, Troll)

McGregorMortis (536146) | more than 5 years ago | (#28562725)

Ideas like that should be encouraged, as they could be very helpful in ridding the world of the religious right.

Re:Cue objections from the religious right: (1, Troll)

Attila Dimedici (1036002) | more than 5 years ago | (#28562743)

I'm sorry, who on the religious right has ever expressed sentiments similar to what you are suggesting?

Test on (3, Funny)

Kryptonian Jor-El (970056) | more than 5 years ago | (#28562583)

Phase 1 human trials will check the safety of the vaccine on HIV positive volunteers

Well, at least they're not doing drug trials on animals anymore, better to use those damn AIDS people. Finally good for something

/Sarcasm

Re:Test on (2, Funny)

Monkeedude1212 (1560403) | more than 5 years ago | (#28562777)

PETA will be happy.

Re:Test on (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28563717)

You've never met PETA have you?

Is this it? (4, Insightful)

davek (18465) | more than 5 years ago | (#28562707)

From TFA:

"We hope this vaccine is it, and hopefully this vaccine will prevent HIV infection and save millions of lives." University of Western Ontario professor Chil-Yong Kang.

Human trials are necessary to test the efficacy of the vaccine in protecting against HIV infection because the HIV virus does not cause AIDS-like symptoms in animals, says Kang. However, the immune responses in the animal trials have been promising, he says.

Sounds like if this is for real, HIV will go the way of smallpox and polio. Is this as huge as it sounds?

Re:Is this it? (5, Insightful)

geoffspear (692508) | more than 5 years ago | (#28562809)

No, because parents will refuse to let their children get vaccinated because that would encourage them to have premarital sex.

Re:Is this it? (5, Funny)

Jason Levine (196982) | more than 5 years ago | (#28562887)

Or because they fear it'll cause autism (ala Jenny McCarthy). Combine the two and you have premarital autistic sex! We can't have that! Won't someone think of the children?

Re:Is this it? (1, Flamebait)

sfritsche (154480) | more than 5 years ago | (#28563095)

Relax. Just think of this as natural selection in action. It's all good.

Re:Is this it? (5, Insightful)

BlueBoxSW.com (745855) | more than 5 years ago | (#28562873)

Phase I is really too early to get any hope up. Most "promising" drugs that enter Phase I don't make it to the end of Phase III (FDA approval).

Re:Is this it? (5, Insightful)

im_thatoneguy (819432) | more than 5 years ago | (#28562877)

I assume that depends on the level of immunity it provides. Are we talking Flu Vaccine or Small Pox vaccine level of protection?

Influenza Vaccine (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28563039)

The influenza vaccine works extremely well against the strain of flu it's developed for. The problem being that there's so many strains of flu, and they're constantly mutating.

Course, that's also true of HIV. So I'm going to guess it's going to be more like the influenza vaccine.

Re:Is this it? (3, Insightful)

Opportunist (166417) | more than 5 years ago | (#28563281)

Could some mod drop some insightful on that post?

It was pretty much what I was thinking. Vaccine for a highly mutating virus. Good for how long? A day?

What we should wait for before rejoicing is whether the vaccine is still working a year from now.

Re:Is this it? (5, Insightful)

rumblin'rabbit (711865) | more than 5 years ago | (#28564107)

It wouldn't have to be 100% effective to eradicate HIV. Slowing the spread of a disease can be enough to make it (eventually) disappear.

Re:Is this it? (4, Informative)

dunezone (899268) | more than 5 years ago | (#28562981)

The question is really if this is a vaccine or therapeutic vaccine, I couldn't find that in the article. The difference being a regular vaccine will prevent the virus from infecting you while a therapeutic will either prevent the virus from spreading in your body but you might still be a carrier or eradicate the virus from you completely thus destroying it.


Just a side note since a lot of discussion on HIV and AIDS. HIV is the virus, the virus attacks the immune system destroying your white blood cells, when your white blood cell count falls below a certain amount per 1mm of blood or some measurement you have AIDS or auto-immune deficiency syndrome caused by HIV.


The virus wont kill you, what will kill you in the end is a basic infection that your body cant handle, even the common cold.

Re:Is this it? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28563001)

No. It'll go the way of HPV. "This vaccine encourages people to have sex, so we want to forbid children from getting it." Which will prevent herd immunity even if the religious right's efforts to ban it fail, so HIV will be around forever.

Re:Is this it? (1)

Jafafa Hots (580169) | more than 5 years ago | (#28563531)

It will be worse than that. It will be "this vaccine is part of the gay agenda to indoctrinate and recruit our children!"

how do you test it? (5, Funny)

mofag (709856) | more than 5 years ago | (#28562789)

If I take the vaccine and I only sleep with my wife and in 10 years I'm HIV free does it work?

Or is one of the pre-requisites of joining the trial that you commit to sleeping with as many sleeezy whores as you can find?

These are the questions that keep me from being a productive member of society.....

Re:how do you test it? (1)

Kurusuki (1049294) | more than 5 years ago | (#28562893)

I'd imagine introducing the HIV virus to a test subject requires far lest effort than sleeping with multiple prostitutes.

Re:how do you test it? (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28563349)

But is it as much fun?

Re:how do you test it? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28563223)

If I take the vaccine and I only sleep with my wife and in 10 years I'm HIV free does it work?

It depends on who your wife is screwing.

Re:how do you test it? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28563247)

I think that it would depend a great deal on your wife. Where was she last night? Maybe this is a question you should spend some time pondering...

Re:how do you test it? (2, Informative)

Ian Alexander (997430) | more than 5 years ago | (#28563307)

Geez, can't people even be bothered to read the summary anymore? From the summary:

Phase 1 human trials will check the safety of the vaccine on HIV positive volunteers.

Presumably this is a therapeutic vaccine intended to equip the immune system to fight HIV before it trashes your immune system irreparably. I didn't bother to read the article (but I was able to finish the summary) so I wouldn't really know.

Re:how do you test it? (1)

CanadianRealist (1258974) | more than 5 years ago | (#28563335)

They give the vaccine to people in high risk groups. Over time they watch to see if the rate of infection ends up being less than the rate in other people in the same group, who were not vaccinated.

Deliberately infection someone with a fatal disease, to test a vaccine that you are not sure is effective (hence the need for the test) sounds like criminal negligence, on top of violating the Hippocratic Oath.

Re:how do you test it? (1)

tinkerghost (944862) | more than 5 years ago | (#28563505)

Deliberately infection someone with a fatal disease, to test a vaccine that you are not sure is effective (hence the need for the test) sounds like criminal negligence

That would be "depraved indifference" not negligence.

Re:how do you test it? (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28563347)

No there is no prerequisite like that.

Here's how the studies typically work.

1. Locate a country that has an extremely high HIV prevalance (some countries in Africa have 20% or higher HIV rates)
2. Advertise for a few thousand prostitutes and IV drug users and other high risk people to participate (even if some non high risk people come no big deal .. because statistically half of them will get he placebo so it will not hurt the study).
3. Offer adequate compensation for participation in the study
4. Inform each particpatant equally and thoruoghly about the dangers of risky sex
5. Stress that being vaccinated may not protect them and that furthermore they may be getting a fake injection (termed a placebo).
6. Innoculate half (or whatever) of the participants with the vaccine, the other half get a bogus injection (the placebo).

Human nature is such that no matter how sincere and good faith your effort was to inform them of the risks of HIV, many of the participants will still go out and have risky sex.

7. After 1 or 2 years test the participants in the study. If the vacccinated group has significantly less HIV positive people than the ones from the placebo group .. you vaccine works. If there is no statistical difference .. your vaccine's a dud. If the placebo group has less HIV positive people (like what happened in a recent study) .. then yikes your vaccine increases the risk.

Re:how do you test it? (1)

avilliers (1158273) | more than 5 years ago | (#28563351)

The original smallpox immunization test was run on an orphan girl by exposing her to smallpox after she'd been immunized. Practices have been changed since then.

The 'ultimate' endpoint for a vaccine trials compares two large groups, one vaccinated, one not, over a long period of time and compare to infection rates. Since volunteers are assigned randomly to one group, if the overall rates are lower in the vaccine group than the control, and the difference holds up to statistical analysis, you have good evidence it works. The signal is weak, meaning the trials have to be long and large to tell the difference. They are expensive.

In the early stages of trials, you're looking more directly for markers that the vaccine might be working--are you stimulating antibody production of the type you intended to do? These are smaller and cheaper, and can at least tell you it won't work.

Re:how do you test it? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28563353)

If I take the vaccine and I only sleep with my wife and in 10 years I'm HIV free does it work?

Are you saying your wife is HIV positive? Anyway, this is only phase I. You're thinking of phase II.

Re:how do you test it? (4, Informative)

TheRaven64 (641858) | more than 5 years ago | (#28563397)

This is a phase one trial, which doesn't test whether it works, it tests whether it is harmful. The vaccine will be administered to a number of people who already have HIV to see if they have any adverse reaction to it. Presumably the next phase of the trial will be to give it to some people in high-risk demographics and see whether any of them still manage to contract HIV. If they do, then the vaccine doesn't work, although if a smaller number of them contract the disease than would be expected to statistically then it may be worth bringing to market anyway. The final stage will almost certainly involve injecting someone who has been vaccinated with blood from an HIV-positive patient to see whether it really works.

Re:how do you test it? (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28563705)

These are the questions that keep me from being a reproductive member of society....

It's okay, we all Freudian slip sometimes.

Yay! (0, Troll)

brian0918 (638904) | more than 5 years ago | (#28562831)

Just 80,000 more government hoops to jump through, and we could one day be allowed to save the lives of our loved ones who in the mean time have died. Thank you, federal government, for saving us from making decisions for ourselves!

Re:Yay! (1)

aegis17 (1448049) | more than 5 years ago | (#28563231)

Thank the government? You should be furious! I mean, think of all the children who could have been saved by the vaccine attempts drug companies tried and failed to create. Who cares if it turns your eyeballs into slush and your intestines catch fire - the drug showed so much promise! All these clinical trials and testing, for what? Verifiable drugs that don't kill those people it tries to save?

We need to get rid of all these government imposed hoops, and let companies sell drugs and test on humans the moment they have a prototype of any vaccine, serum, or medication they develop. It's especially important in cases such as AIDS, where current drugs are only effective at stalling the progression of the disease for what, 20, 30, 40 years? So many people could resume the life they are already living by testing a cure with the negligible risk of a 99% mortality rate. What faster way is there to get a product on the market or saving our loved ones?

Re:Yay! (1)

johnsonav (1098915) | more than 5 years ago | (#28563953)

It's especially important in cases such as AIDS, where current drugs are only effective at stalling the progression of the disease for what, 20, 30, 40 years?

Tell that to the average HIV-positive African. Sure, he probably has trouble affording a simple dose of penicillin, but I suppose a lifetime supply of expensive HIV drugs is no problem.

Re:Yay! (2, Insightful)

TheRaven64 (641858) | more than 5 years ago | (#28563413)

Thalidomide.

No Optimism on HIV (3, Interesting)

reporter (666905) | more than 5 years ago | (#28562905)

I am not optimistic about this vaccine. HIV mutates at an astonishing rate, and I doubt that one brand of vaccine can prevent an infection.

Right now, we in America -- of all places -- have a silent crisis: an HIV epidemic. Read the shocking article [washingtonpost.com] published recently by "The Washington Post". About 3% of the residents of the District of Columbia is infected with HIV. That percentage is roughly the percentage in Uganda and parts of Kenya.

The only way to eradicate this virus is either (1) universal mandatory testing for all Americans and visitors to America (followed by tough enforcement of laws prohibiting unsafe behavior by those who are infected) or (2) a gene therapy that transfers the natural immunity enjoyed by a few Europeans to the American population. As for point #1, mandatory testing is taboo and would never be implemented. As for point #2, a small percentage of Europeans have a cellular mutation that prevents HIV infection.

Kenya? (0, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28563041)

According to a report [cnn.com] by CNN, the Kenyans still hunt and burn supposed witches. Curiously, Barack Hussein Obama has often parised the culture of Kenya. His father is a Kenyan.

Re:No Optimism on HIV (0, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28563069)

Or, just let the disease kill all the morons, and quit strapping the rest of society with the financial burden of keeping these twits 1.) Alive, 2.) Believing that they're entitled to existence despite the fact that they've engaged in behavior that is obviously counter self-preservation in our current society.

DUH.

You do not have a right to burden society through your existence.

This is not a question of race, sexuality, or ethnicity. It's a case of stupid people doing stupid things, getting a chronic and fatal disease. Let them die. They're stupid, and they place the rest of us (especially the bleeding hearts who want to help really really badly) at risk.

I say, bring back the leper colonies -- except make them HIV / AIDS colonies.

Re:No Optimism on HIV (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28563709)

It's a case of stupid people doing stupid things, getting a chronic and fatal disease

Sadly, such ignorance is helping spread the virus. You can get infected from tainted blood transfusions, as happened before screen blood donors for HIV was routine. You can get infected if you're faithful to your partner, but unbeknownst to you, they are not being faithful in return. You can get infected through rape or other assaults involving exposure to bodily fluids.

While abstinence and faithfulness are the best way to contain the disease, they're not going to eliminate it completely. Hence it's still worthwhile to look for a vaccine.

Re:No Optimism on HIV (4, Funny)

Yold (473518) | more than 5 years ago | (#28563201)

(3) Abstaining/reducing risky sexual behaviors. For slashdotters, this shouldn't be a problem.

Re:No Optimism on HIV (1)

Opportunist (166417) | more than 5 years ago | (#28563313)

Great idea. It worked for teenage pregnancy, it should work like a dream for a disease that you don't notice after 3 months when your belly starts to swell.

Re:No Optimism on HIV (1)

Your.Master (1088569) | more than 5 years ago | (#28563519)

It may be unrealistic, but so is the first option presented, and the second option is wishful thinking for a miracle vaccination despite the rest of the post repudiating the possibility of vaccination (albeit using a new method, but based on a supposed immunity of certain European populations that actually only impacts a subset of all HIV infections).

Re:No Optimism on HIV (1)

petrus4 (213815) | more than 5 years ago | (#28563651)

(3) Abstaining/reducing risky sexual behaviors. For slashdotters, this shouldn't be a problem.

a) Use condoms/spermicides etc.

b) If you're going to be in more than a one night stand with someone, (which is preferable, from a disease point of view) then at least see if they'd be willing to get tested; especially if they've previously engaged in bisexual activity. It might not be politically correct to say it, but outside of the Third World, HIV is a primarily gay or bi disease. Call me a bigot for that as much as you want, and then once you've finished, go and look up the statistics.

c) Don't go near the ass. No anal sex, no analingus, and none of the other related activities, either. In sexual terms, HIV's primary means of transmission/propogation are either anal sex or anal/oral contact.

d) If you need blood work or transfusions done, find out what the hygeine policies of the place in question are, in advance.

e) Realise that abstinence will not kill you, and that consequently, contrary to popular perception, sex is actually a want, rather than a need.

Fixed that for you ;) (1)

turing_m (1030530) | more than 5 years ago | (#28564257)

(3) Abstaining/reducing risky sexual behaviors involving other people. For slashdotters, this shouldn't be a problem.

Re:No Optimism on HIV (2, Informative)

TheMohel (143568) | more than 5 years ago | (#28563319)

Unfortunately (OK, it's not unfortunate at all, actually), option #1 isn't just taboo, it's impossible in any human society. Even if we had a completely accurate test (which we certainly do NOT have), and even if you could somehow prevent all positive contacts from continuing their infectious behavior (and I'm not sure anything short of summary execution would be reliable), you'd still have leakers, avoiders, corruption, and resistance. Not even North Korea has managed to avoid HIV, although they're close, at least by report. Largely, I suspect, because summary execution is a routine thing for them.

Option #2 is science fiction for now. The genetic resistance to HIV is conferred by the lack of a particular cell-surface receptor, so you'd have to find a way to effectively eliminate that piece of genetic material from every genome in the body. And since T cells are quite long-lived, you'd have to mess with a lot of quiescent DNA to do it. Maybe some day, but not soon.

Which leaves vaccination. I'm in agreement with your skepticism on this one, not because it's impossible but because HIV, due to its unique targeting system, has been very intractable. You do have to target relatively stable regions of its proteins or its DNA, but this isn't unique to HIV, and we've solved it with polyvalent vaccines elsewhere (think Menactra, or the recent HPV vaccine, or even the flu shot). HIV is a pretty wimpy virus from a spread perspective, so a good polyvalent vaccine would seem possible. The problem is practical immunogenicity, and that's the issue that has torpedoed previous vaccines.

Re:No Optimism on HIV (1)

ae1294 (1547521) | more than 5 years ago | (#28563469)

The only way to eradicate this virus is either

You forgot one option. We can nuke the site from orbit as it's really the only way to be sure...It's DC after all...

No Cure? (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28563003)

What is the expected effect of giving the vaccine to HIV positive test subjects?

Re:No Cure? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28563981)

I think that the goal is to train the hiv virus to be resistant to this vaccine ~

Too late; Gambia's president claims cure for AIDS (1)

Culture20 (968837) | more than 5 years ago | (#28563025)

Gambia's president claims he has cure for AIDS: http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/17244005/ [msn.com]
No need for a vaccine, people. When will people learn that science can't hold a candle to sympathetic magic?
FYI, I am not a doctor, and this is not medical advice. Ask your Doctor if Gambia's President's magic is right for you.

Re:Too late; Gambia's president claims cure for AI (1)

Opportunist (166417) | more than 5 years ago | (#28563379)

It works! Sure, the patient dies in the process because he develops AIDS and croaks, but the virus dies as well. Sympathetic, ya know...

How does this work? (1)

Nautical Insanity (1190003) | more than 5 years ago | (#28563135)

This is great they have a vaccine ready for human trials. However, I went through the article (suprise!) and it seemed absent of any details as to what mechanism the vaccine used to inhibit an HIV infection. I thought the difficulty in making a vaccine was that the virus mutated quickly and attacked the immune system, the typical tool that vaccines train to attack viruses. Does anyone have any more information on what's novel about this vaccine? (Other than it works)

It's just phase I testing (5, Informative)

Animats (122034) | more than 5 years ago | (#28563277)

Don't get too excited. A few other promising AIDS vaccines have made it this far. Phase I testing is just testing for safety, not effectiveness. Phase II testing is for effectiveness, and phase III testing is for effectiveness in a larger population. VaxGen's vaccine made it to Phase III before it turned out not to be very effective. 95% of the new drugs that make it to the beginning of testing in humans don't turn out to be useful.

Re:It's just phase I testing (3, Interesting)

TheMohel (143568) | more than 5 years ago | (#28563473)

Amen. The vaccine has showed animal immunogenicity, which is not a bad thing, but since the animals in question don't get AIDS from HIV, their immune systems don't react the same way that human ones do. Which means you need to proceed to human testing, and that takes a long time.

Phase I trials are important, and announcing them is not a bad thing. And nobody particularly expects cures in the HIV-positive population, although circulating HIV may be interesting (if the virus can cause a practical immune response in subjects with HIV but who have fairly normal T4 counts and you can show reduced circulating viral load, you have an interesting data point for efficacy).

My biggest problem with this kind of press release is that they don't include the details. I'd be interested in knowing why this vaccine is likely to work better than the last two hundred that have been tried, what the actual animal studies showed, and so on. Oh well. I'm not going to be waiting up this weekend to hear more. It will be a couple of years before we know whether this one works.

Well, If I ever learned anything... (1)

jonaskoelker (922170) | more than 5 years ago | (#28563447)

If I ever learned anything from watching South Park, it's that any successful HIV vaccine has to contain large amounts of raw money! ;-)

All kidding aside, this is wonderful. I hope this gets to save a lot of people very soon.

And to be pedantic, since it's a vaccine, I guess it works against the Human Immunodeficiency Virus, not the Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome.

In other news... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28563541)

In other news the Umbrella Corporation is going to be distributing the vaccine. As I'm told there is almost zero chance of zombie outbreaks this time around!

What kind of injections? (Rim shot) (1)

SoundGuyNoise (864550) | more than 5 years ago | (#28563551)

A vaccine is usually a weaker version of the original virus, right? If HIV is spread sexually, does the vaccine spread sexually as well? This really puts a wrench into sex education.

Porn Industry here I go!! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28563559)

Porn Industry here I go!!

Hicks (3, Funny)

WilyCoder (736280) | more than 5 years ago | (#28563599)

When they find a cure for HIV there will be fucking in the streets.

-Bill Hicks

Who is nuts enough to test effectiveness? (1)

gubers33 (1302099) | more than 5 years ago | (#28563607)

I want to know what crazy bastards are volunteering for Phase II and Phase III testing.

Test: How? (1)

Fallen Kell (165468) | more than 5 years ago | (#28563773)

I mean, how are they going to really test that it works? Because, I am sure there are just tons of people out there that want to be exposed to HIV just to see if the vaccine they took actually keeps you from getting a virus that WILL kill you.

Re:Test: How? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#28563971)

it's quite easy, actually. vaccinate a couple of people from a population where HIV infections are prevalent and/or who are in a high risk category (unprotected sex, intra vein drug use) and see how they do

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