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CROI Dendritic Cell Vaccine
Mar 2, 2005

Doc,

I read the Boody's CROI review. Much appreciated.

I'm kind of bummed with regard to the lack of feedback in the realm of therapeutic vaccines. I thought there would be more information following the relative success of the Brazilian/French Study. Wasn't this topic discussed at the CROI?

Yes, it seems a bit labor intensive to manufacture the vaccine in the lab, but there are many people who would pay to get monthly/quarterly/Annual(?) vaccines instead of taking daily medication. I am enamoured with the idea of of no long term side effects and no drugs...

The French Brazilian Study focused on a series of annual injections...how about every six months? I guess they are looking into that now.

The French Doc anticipated the annual cost to be 4-6000 USD. Even if there was a need for biannual injections the cost will still be similar to one year of drug therapy.

Let's put on the creative cap for a few...I'm looking 3 to 5 years down the road and I see a biotech company with two(one east coast and one west coast) major labs focused on pumping out dendritic cell vaccines.

I am not clear with regard to how difficult/labor intensive it is to produce such vaccines. You must have an idea(?)as to the process after reading about it of late.....Can you shed some light?

Thanks Doc

Response from Dr. Henry

I am not sure which study you are referring to (which abstract). In general the results of the few therapeutic vaccine trials were fairly under-whelming with the best one perhaps being the ACTG study (abstract 525) where immune control was modestly enhanced with the ALVAC vCP1452 vaccine during a treatment interruption. Harnessing the defective human immune system in the setting of chronic HIV infection has proven difficult. The results of the QUEST study (using same vaccine as above plus Remune) in acutely infected patients also showed minimal or no benefit. More work needs to be done to understand the immune response and how to manipulate it. KH



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