Anthony Fauci Opens Up About HIV Vaccine Trial Failing – Vows Not to Give Up!

Anthony Fauci Opens Up About HIV Vaccine Trial Failing – Vows Not to Give Up!

Dr. Anthony Fauci spoke about the state of HIV vaccine research in an interview with Yahoo News following the recent failure of a late-stage trial.

Vaccines are without a doubt a controversial subject today.

However, according to Dr. Anthony Fauci, there is one vaccine that, if ever developed, would be enthusiastically received, at least by those who are most at risk.

Around 40 million people have died and 84 million people have gotten infected with HIV globally since the epidemic’s start.

HIV is not the death sentence it used to be thanks to the development of antiretroviral therapies, however.

Now, 1.2 million Americans carry the virus, and annual infections have decreased by more than 2 thirds since the crisis’ peak in the mid ’80s.

A vaccine, however, continues to escape researchers despite the advancements made over the last few decades.

That being said, not too long ago, the manufacturers of the only vaccine tested in later stage clinical trials revealed they were going to end the trial after it was found to be ineffective.

Just like those who need it most, Fauci was also “disappointed” the vaccine research failed although the result did not exactly surprise him either.

So what makes HIV/AIDS such a tough disease to prevent?

Fauci pointed out that in spite of decades of medical and lab work, HIV is still “one of the most challenging health problems that we’ve been faced with in history globally.”

Epidemiology professor at Columbia University, Dr. Jessica Justman, also shared with Yahoo News that “We have had 40 years of this HIV epidemic, and there have only been about 5 strategies tested in a clinical trial setting. So it just illustrates with clear numbers just how much harder it’s been to come up with strategies that might work.”

HIV mutates at such a speedy rate that the immune system does not have a chance to detect it, which is part of what makes it so great at evading the immune system.

Additionally, HIV is special in that no one has ever recovered from it, unlike other viruses for which we have created vaccines.

This is one of the reasons why conventional vaccination techniques don’t work with HIV, according to Justman.

It also implies, according to Fauci, that an HIV vaccine would need to function much better than natural immunity in order to be successful.

Regardless of how discouraging the last decades of research have been, however, Fauci and others like him, are not giving up on trying to make a vaccine.

“I cannot guarantee that we are going to have a vaccine, but I certainly think it is feasible. It is going to be a formidable scientific challenge and scientific problem and hurdle to overcome, but I do not give up on it. The fact that we do not have a safe and effective vaccine is obviously disappointing, but that does not mean you stop trying. Because if we’d stopped trying to get antiretroviral drugs back in the 1980s and early to mid 1990s, we would not have had the resounding success we have right now. So I do not get discouraged by my failures. I just get more inspired to do more and continue the fight, and continue the efforts to get a success,” Fauci stated.

Katherine Baldwin

Katherine is just getting her start as a journalist. She attended a technical school while still in high school where she learned a variety of skills, from photography to nutrition. Her enthusiasm for both natural and human sciences is real so she particularly enjoys covering topics on medicine and the environment.

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