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Immunizing Against Misinformation and Shortsightedness
Date:5/15/2008

launch another vaccine efficacy trial using a strategy developed by the NIH's Vaccine Research Center.

"With recent pessimistic headlines and the creation of naive and false dichotomies between research and clinical trials or between treatment and prevention or existing interventions and new research, we at AVAC say enough is enough," said Mitchell Warren, executive director of AVAC. "An AIDS vaccine is possible, and it is essential."

"It's been a challenging year for the AIDS vaccine field and for HIV prevention research generally, but the recent spate of statements that seem to revise the history of the past few years of AIDS vaccine research are deeply troubling," said Warren. "Now more than ever, we must maintain momentum in AIDS vaccine and other HIV prevention research while simultaneously continuing to ramp up provision of existing treatment and prevention options for all those who need them."

"We were all disappointed with the results from the trials of Merck's vaccine candidate last year," said Pontiano Kaleebu, Assistant Director of the Uganda Virus Research Institute, Chairperson of the African AIDS Vaccine Programme, and an AVAC board member. "But we must now reclaim the narrative of what happened with trials of that vaccine and of what they mean for the future of AIDS vaccines and HIV prevention. Here in Uganda and throughout Africa and the world, we still desperately need an AIDS vaccine and we are committed to continuing the search."

"There have been major changes in the AIDS vaccine field and in biomedical HIV prevention research in the last year. The AVAC Report provides a comprehensive and sensible guide to where the vaccine field stands now and where it needs to go," said Alan Bernstein, executive director of the Global HIV Vaccine Enterprise.

In The Search Must Continue, AVAC makes several key recommendations for moving the AIDS vaccine and HIV prevention research fields forward, based on a comprehensive review
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SOURCE AIDS Vaccine Advocacy Coalition
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