Thai Ministry Says AIDSVAX Trial Using ALVAC Vaccine Not Affected by VaxGen’s Withdrawal From Other Trial
A new clinical trial of an AIDS vaccine regimen involving VaxGen's AIDSVAX and Aventis Pasteur's ALVAC in Thailand will not be affected by VaxGen's expected decision to withdraw its financial support from a separate Thai AIDSVAX trial, the Bangkok Post reports (Bhatiasevi, Bangkok Post, 7/3). Although the decision has not yet been confirmed, VaxGen has informally stated its intention to withdraw from the ongoing AIDSVAX trial because it did not have the money to fund the final analysis of trial data, according to Xinhua News Agency (Xinhua News Agency, 7/3). Dr. Kajit Choopanya, principal investigator of the trial, said that despite the company's funding withdrawal, researchers plan to complete the data analysis with assistance from the U.S. government (Nation, 7/2). The new trial, which will involve 16,000 HIV-negative volunteers from the Rayong and Chon Buri provinces, will begin by the end of the year. In that trial, AIDSVAX will be used as a booster for the ALVAC vaccine (Chevajumroen, Nation, 7/3). The new trial will be run jointly by the Thai Public Health Ministry and the Armed Forces Research Institute for Medical Sciences, a joint research and disease surveillance institute that addresses militarily important infectious and tropical diseases. AFRIMS has purchased sufficient amounts of AIDSVAX to carry out the five-year study, according to the Post (Bangkok Post, 7/3).This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.