HIV vax could be as good as other interventions

AN EXPERIMENTAL vaccine offering partially effective protection against HIV could cut new infections among men who have sex with men (MSM) by more than 20% over 10 years, Australian modelling suggests.

University of NSW researchers projected the effect of a targeted inoculation using ALVAC-AIDSVAX, the vaccine confirmed in 2009 as the world’s first to show any protection against HIV, although it was limited (31% efficacy).

The modelling showed a one-off vaccination administered to 60% of MSM in NSW would reduce the cumulative incidence of HIV infection by 9.6% over 10 years, while one-off cover for 30% of the population would reduce transmission by 5.1%.

Additional boosters given at five years after 60% of the population was initially covered would reduce HIV transmission by 14.4%, while boosters every two years would reduce transmission by 22.8% or “440.8 averted HIV infections” over the decade.

Associate Professor David