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Vaccine for HIV

About microscopic forms of life, including Bacteria, Archea, protozoans, algae and fungi. Topics relating to viruses, viroids and prions also belong here.

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Vaccine for HIV

Postby kumar985 » Thu Jul 19, 2012 4:31 pm

Why there is no vaccine for HIV?
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Postby suzidoc8 » Mon Jul 23, 2012 2:47 pm

In 1984, after the confirmation of the etiological agent of AIDS by scientists at the U.S. National Institutes of Health and the Pasteur Institute, the United States Health and Human Services Secretary Margaret Heckler declared that a vaccine would be available within two years.
However, the classical vaccination approaches that have been successful in the control of various viral diseases by priming the adaptive immunity to recognize the viral envelope proteins have failed in the case of HIV-1. Some have stated that an HIV vaccine may not be possible without significant theoretical advances.
There are a number of factors that cause development of an HIV vaccine to differ from the development of other classic vaccines:
Classic vaccines mimic natural immunity against reinfection generally seen in individuals recovered from infection; there are almost no recovered AIDS patients.
Most vaccines protect against disease, not against infection; HIV infection may remain latent for long periods before causing AIDS.
Most effective vaccines are whole-killed or live-attenuated organisms; killed HIV-1 does not retain antigenicity and the use of a live retrovirus vaccine raises safety issues.
Most vaccines protect against infections that are infrequently encountered; HIV may be encountered daily by individuals at high risk.
Most vaccines protect against infections through mucosal surfaces of the respiratory or gastrointestinal tract; the great majority of HIV infection is through the genital tract.

HIV structure

The epitopes of the viral envelope are more variable than those of many other viruses. Furthermore, the functionally important epitopes of the gp120 protein are masked by glycosylation, trimerisation and receptor-induced conformational changes making it difficult to block with neutralising antibodies.
The ineffectiveness of previously developed vaccines primarily stems from two related factors.
First, HIV is highly mutable. Because of the virus' ability to rapidly respond to selective pressures imposed by the immune system, the population of virus in an infected individual typically evolves so that it can evade the two major arms of the adaptive immune system; humoral (antibody-mediated) and cellular (mediated by T cells) immunity.
Second, HIV isolates are themselves highly variable. HIV can be categorized into multiple clades and subtypes with a high degree of genetic divergence. Therefore, the immune responses raised by any vaccine need to be broad enough to account for this variability. Any vaccine that lacks this breadth is unlikely to be effective.
The difficulties in stimulating a reliable antibody response has led to the attempts to develop a vaccine that stimulates a response by cytotoxic T-lymphocytes.
Another response to the challenge has been to create a single peptide that contains the least variable components of all the known HIV strains.
Currently, there is no effective vaccine against HIV, the virus that causes AIDS. Vaccine development is one of several strategies to reduce the worldwide harm from AIDS, with other approaches based upon antiviral treatments such as highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART) and social approaches such as safe sex prevention and awareness campaigns.
Last edited by suzidoc8 on Mon Jul 23, 2012 2:49 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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