An innovative vaccine against tuberculosis has shown promise in persons with HIV, researchers from Dartmouth Medical School and the National Public Health Institute of Finland report in the Nov. 7 issue of the journal AIDS.
An international team led by DMS infectious disease expert Dr. C. Fordham von Reyn, professor of medicine, found that the new booster, a killed vaccine, enhanced the TB immunity of HIV patients. Their weakened immune systems make the current TB vaccine, which is a live vaccine, more risky.
In most countries where TB is widespread, children generally receive a vaccine made from live Mycobacterium bovis, Bacille Calmette-Guerin (BCG) that has been used to reduce the risk of TB for more than half century. Despite the widespread use of BCG, TB has been growing dramatically in the world, fueled by the increased susceptibility of HIV-infected people to TB.
TB remains the largest cause of death worldwide from any single infectious disease, according to the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, which calls it "the major attributable cause of death" in HIV/AIDS patients.
Andy Nordhoff | EurekAlert!
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