HIV is the acronym for human immunodeficiency virus, a virus that affects the immune system. HIV lives and multiplies only in the human body. Most people do not experience any feelings when they are infected with HIV. Sometimes a flu-like condition develops a few weeks after infection (fever, skin rashes, increased lymph nodes, diarrhea). For many years after infection, the person may feel healthy. This period is called the hidden (latent) stage of the disease. However, it is wrong to think that at this time nothing happens in the body. When a pathogen, including HIV, enters the body, the immune system forms an immune response. It tries to neutralize the pathogen and destroy it. For this purpose, the immune system produces antibodies. The antibodies bind the pathogen and help to destroy it. In addition, special white blood cells (lymphocytes) also begin to fight the pathogen. Unfortunately, all this is not enough in the fight against HIV – the immune system cannot neutralize HIV, and HIV, in turn, gradually destroys the immune system. Just because a person has contracted the virus, i.e. has become HIV-positive, does not mean that he or she has AIDS. It usually takes a long time (10-12 years on average) before AIDS develops.

AIDS

HVTN 702 HIV vaccine clinical trials

The virus gradually destroys the immune system, reducing the body’s resistance to infections. At some point, the body’s resistance becomes so low that a person may develop such infectious diseases that other people have little or no disease. These diseases are called “opportunistic” diseases. AIDS is talked about when a person infected with HIV develops infectious diseases due to an ineffective immune system destroyed by the virus.
AIDS is the last stage of HIV infection.
AIDS is the acquired immune deficiency syndrome.
The syndrome is a stable combination of several signs of disease (symptoms).
Purchased – means that the disease is not congenital, it has developed over a lifetime.
Immunodeficiency is a condition in which the body can not resist various infections.

Clinical trials of HVTN 702 HIV vaccine have been stopped

HVTN 702 HIV vaccine clinical trials

GENEVA, February 4, 2020. – The U.S. National Institutes of Health have announced the end of clinical trials for HVTN 702 HIV vaccine. Although the trials did not identify any health risk for the vaccine, an independent data monitoring committee said the vaccine’s effectiveness in preventing HIV transmission was not confirmed.

Over 5,400 HIV-negative individuals aged 18-35 years participated in trials at 14 sites in South Africa over 18 months. Six injections of vaccine or placebo were given to participants over a period of six months. An analysis conducted after at least 60% of participants were surveyed for more than 18 months found that 129 of those who were injected had been infected with the virus, compared to 123 of placebo participants.

“Although we are definitely disappointed with the result, we have gained important scientific knowledge that can be used in future trials. I thank the research team for conducting this important vaccine trial,” said Vinnie Byanima, UNAIDS Executive Director.

Extensive testing of other promising vaccines is currently underway – Mosaico clinical trials, which test the vaccine among transgender, gay, and other men who practice same-sex relationships in the Americas and Europe, and Imbokodo clinical trials among women in sub-Saharan Africa. An effective HIV vaccine may be key to sustainable progress in the future HIV response.

Despite significant investment in prevention during trials, women participating in trials have experienced HIV infection rates of approximately 4% per year. This is too much. HIV transmission is preventable. This requires the right combination of interventions, including HIV testing; antiretroviral therapy for people living with HIV; pre-exposure prophylaxis; condoms and other protective equipment; sexual and reproductive health care, including comprehensive sexuality education; ensuring girls’ continued education; and removing social, legal, and economic barriers to women and girls.