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Scientists closer to developing an AIDS vaccine

In Philadelphia, researchers at Thomas Jefferson University are making further strides in developing what could one day soon be a vaccine that is effective against AIDS.

The director of the Jefferson Vaccine Center, Dr. Matthias Schnell, leads this research, and he and his team have come across some pretty surprising results.

The recent study deals with monkeys and the simian-equivalent of the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), called SIV. The team’s research shows that when administered a rabies-based vaccine, the monkeys were protected from contracting SIV.

Commenting on the study, Dr. Schnell says that "although we can't yet block the infection, we showed that we can protect against disease," said Dr. Schnell. "We also saw significant antibody activity against the virus, which is promising. In addition, this is a very simple approach that only took two immunizations."

The full study is published in the journal Vaccine, and more information can be found at the Thomas Jefferson University Hospital website.