By – Devanshi Srivastava
Young women in Sub-Saharan Africa who were at high risk of contracting HIV were enrolled in a clinical study of an experimental HIV vaccine conducted by Johnson & Johnson, but the trial was terminated when it failed to offer enough protection.
Imbokodo, the research’s name, drew 2,600 female volunteers from five countries: Malawi, Mozambique, South Africa, Zambia, and Zimbabwe, according to a press release issued by the firm conducting the study. The vaccination did not cause any damage and was well accepted, however, it only had a 25.2 percent effectiveness rate, which was disappointing.
“As a consequence of these findings, the Imbokodo research will not be continued,” according to the press statement.
Johnson & Johnson has said that the quest for an HIV vaccine would not be discontinued.
The study, according to Paul Stoffels, M.D., Johnson & Johnson’s vice chairman of the Executive Committee and chief scientific officer, will provide important scientific findings in the ongoing search for a vaccine to prevent HIV infection. “While we are disappointed that the vaccine candidate did not provide a sufficient level of protection against HIV infection in the Imbokodo trial, the study will provide us with important scientific findings in the ongoing search for a vaccine to prevent HIV infection,” Stoffels said.
“While this is certainly not the study outcome that we had hoped for, we must use the knowledge gained from the Imbokodo trial,” said Anthony Fauci, MD, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) of the National Institutes of Health in a news release posted on the organization’s website.
Adenovirus platform utilized in J&J’s COVID-19 injection is employed in the Imbokodo trial to produce the investigational vaccination being tested.
Those who took part in the research will be notified of the results, and they will also have follow-up appointments with the study scientists, the firm stated.
According to Reuters, the vaccination study was highly anticipated since HIV, which causes AIDS, was responsible for 680,000 deaths in the United States last year. While certain medicines may help to put the illness into remission, an efficient vaccination is required for eradication of the disease completely.
Women and girls will account for 63 percent of all new HIV infections in the five sub-Saharan countries examined in 2020, according to the study.