Death Of A Vaccine?; July 1999; Scientific American Magazine; by Ezzell; 1 Page(s)
In the late 1980s AIDS researchers began to notice that some of their patients just weren't getting AIDS-despite the fact that they had been infected for roughly 10 years with the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV). The scientists started to hope that such "longterm nonprogressors," some of whom happened to have strains of HIV that were missing some genetic information, might hold the keys to developing an AIDS vaccine.
That hope has now been dampened. At least two long-term nonprogressors have now done just that-progressed toward AIDS. Besides being bad news for other people with HIV who do not yet have symptoms, this turn of events supports other evidence that an AIDS vaccine based on a live form of HIV that is missing one or more genes might not be safe enough to administer to humans.