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Tuesday, August 3, 2021

COVID-19 vaccine abandoned after trail participants tested HIV positive

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Australia had previously agreed to buy 51 million doses of the vaccine being developed by Australian firm CSL and the University of Queensland (UQ).

AThepromising Australian candidate for a coronavirus vaccine has been abandoned after trial participants returned false HIV positive results.

The government said orders of other vaccines would now fill the shortfall.

CSL and UQ stressed that the positive results were false – meaning trial participants’ health was not at risk.

The Australian government said it had now entered an agreement for the Novavax vaccine, and upped its existing order of the Oxford/AstraZeneca vaccine.

The UK was the first to begin rolling out a vaccine from Pfizer this week.
The vaccine had been in stage one of trials, and proving to be effective in making antibodies.

But it also generated HIV antibodies in some recipients – which meant it showed false positives for HIV. Further testing proved the HIV wasn’t there.

CSL and UQ said fixing the flaw would take about a year, prompting a decision to abandon the trial.

“It was likely to work. But we knew that we didn’t want to have any issues with confidence, and this false-positive test may have caused some confusion and lack of confidence,” said Brendan Murphy, secretary of Australia’s Department of Health.

-BBC

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