A team of Spanish researchers has developed an HIV vaccine that promises to reduce the virus to a minor chronic infection.
After testing the MVA-B vaccine on 24 healthy people, researchers found that 22 of them (92%) developed an immune response to HIV.
Professor Mariano Esteban, head of the team of researchers at the National Biotech Centre in Madrid , explained how the vaccine works: “It is like showing a picture of the HIV so that it is able to recognize it if it sees it again in the future.”
The vaccine contains four HIV genes that stimulate T and B lymphocytes, which are types of white blood cells.
“Our body is full of lymphocytes, each of them programmed to fight against a different pathogen,” Professor Esteban explained.
“Training is needed when it involves a pathogen, like the HIV one, which cannot be naturally defeated”.
Researchers hope that this vaccine will enter production soon.
“If this genetic cocktail passes Phase II and Phase III future clinic trials, and makes it into production, in the future HIV could be compared to herpes virus nowadays,” they said.