A LARGE-scale HIV vaccine trial will be conducted in South Africa to determine whether it is effective at preventing infection.

The US’ National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) will lead the study trial, called HVTN702.

NIAID director Anthony S. Fauci said it is the first time in seven years that the scientific community is conducting a large-scale clinical trial of a HIV vaccine.

“A safe and effective HIV vaccine could help bring about a durable end to the HIV/AIDS pandemic and is particularly needed in southern Africa, where HIV is more pervasive than anywhere else in the world,” he said.

The trial will be based off an earlier US Military-led trial in Thailand that delivered remarkable results in 2009.

The new vaccine has been adapted to suit the HIV subtype that is found in southern Africa.

Initial trials found the vaccine was 31.2 per cent effective during the 3.5 years after vaccination, and 60 per cent effective one year after.

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