Children’s Tests Are Scheduled for HIV Vaccines
Researchers will test experimental vaccines on children infected with HIV, the virus that causes AIDS, the National Institutes of Health said Monday.
Three vaccines will be administered to 90 children ages 1 month to 12 years at hospitals in at least 12 locations nationwide.
“This is the first time we have tried HIV vaccines on children,” said NIH spokeswoman Laurie K. Doepel.
The tests will be used to help researchers determine if the vaccines slow the progress of the disease by triggering immunological responses to HIV in children who are not yet sick.
There are about 10,000 children in this country who are infected with the human immunodeficiency virus, born mostly to women who became infected from intravenous drug use or sexual contact, according to government estimates.
The symptoms of AIDS show up more quickly in children infected with HIV than in adults. About half of the infants born with HIV develop a serious AIDS-related infection between the ages of 3 and 6.
The University of Rochester Medical School has received formal approval to begin the tests, and trials of the three experimental HIV vaccines will eventually be conducted at the other sites.