Good news as mRNA vaccine for HIV elicits an immune response in 97% of participants in phase I human trials


Wednesday, April 7, 2021 – Scientists have discovered a new vaccine that will be able to defeat the Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) in the coming days.

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In a report published in the European Pharmaceutical Review-journal by Scripps Research Institute in California, the new vaccine is efficient in producing antibodies in 97 percent of the participants.

Dr. William Schief, a professor at Scripps Institute, said the vaccine successfully stimulated the production of rare immune cells needed to generate antibodies against HIV, which causes AIDS and interferes with the body’s ability to fight infections.

“We and others postulated many years ago that in order to induce broadly neutralizing antibodies (bnAbs), you must start the process by triggering the right B cells – cells that have special properties giving them the potential to develop into bnAb-secreting cells,” Dr. Schief explained.

While a 97% response rate is exceptionally positive, it is important to note that this is representative of an initial study of 48 adult volunteers who enrolled in the trial.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the next step, Phase II, would be to expand the clinical study and give the vaccine to people similar to those for whom the new vaccine is intended. By Phase III, the vaccine is given to thousands of people to test efficacy and safety before being submitted for a rigorous approval and licensing process. Often, vaccines undergo a Phase IV in which the vaccine would go through a formal, ongoing study even after it’s been approved.


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