M a r k e t N e w s

Kenya: Experts Explore New Way of Preventing HIV Contraction

Posted on : Monday, 15th August 2016

Kenyans could soon use a simple injection of antibodies to prevent contracting HIV.
A study by the Kenya Medical Research Institute titled "AMP (Antibody Mediated Prevention)" seeks to use antibodies to prevent the spread of HIV.
"Traditionally in HIV vaccine studies, people get a vaccine and researchers wait to see if their bodies will make antibodies against HIV in response to the vaccine," said Dr Larry Corey, principal investigator in the study. He said in this case, however, the antibodies would be administered.
"We need to know if this antibody will protect against infection," said Dr Corey. "Giving people antibodies to prevent an infection is an accepted medical practice that is more than 100 years old."
Antibodies are natural proteins in the body that fight disease.
"Laboratory studies have shown that giving antibodies can stop up to 90 per cent of HIV strains worldwide from infecting human cells," he added.
The study, being done in Kisumu by the HIV Vaccine Trials Network and the HIV Prevention Trials Network, will enrol adults at high risk of infection.
It is also being carried out in Botswana, Malawi, Mozambique, South Africa, Tanzania and Zimbabwe.
Dr Corey said the antibodies will be given to participants the same way a dehydrated person gets salt water.
"The drip starts out with a bag of normal saline solution," he said. "The antibody is added to the saline solution by a doctor."
Volunteers will be tested for HIV infection once every four weeks and at any time after reporting possible exposure to the virus.
Those who test positive for HIV will stop receiving infusions but will remain in the study for follow-up and be referred to professionals.
The results of the trials are expected in 2022.


Source : allafrica.com
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