PHARMEXA AND HVTN START HIV TRIAL
Pharmexa-Epimmune and the HIV Vaccine Trials Network (HVTN) have launched a Phase I study designed to test the safety of two HIV vaccine candidates developed by Pharmexa-Epimmune. This trial will test whether the two study vaccines, which are designed for use in combination, are well-tolerated, and whether they cause appropriate immune responses in people. The first study vaccine, EP HIV-1090, is a DNA plasmid that has been tested previously in humans and shown to be safe. The second study vaccine, EP-1043, is a recombinant protein that is being tested for the first time in humans.
EP-1043 is an epitope-based recombinant protein vaccine designed to induce HIV-1 specific helper T-lymphocyte responses. The vaccine consists of a string of 18 HIV-derived HTL epitopes, each separated by a spacer designed to optimize potency. The EP-HIV-1090 DNA vaccine encodes 21 HIV-1 derived cytotoxic T-lymphocyte (CTL) epitopes, which are highly conserved amongst viral subtypes.