February 17, 2005
The Aeras Global TB Vaccine Foundation and the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA today announced they have begun the first clinical trial of a live recombinant tuberculosis vaccine in the U.S. Each year 8 million people develop new cases of TB, and 2 million people die of the disease - nearly all of them in the developing world. The current TB vaccine used throughout most of the world, BCG, is almost a century old and has limited efficacy. In conjunction with drug therapy, a more effective vaccine would greatly reduce the TB disease burden around the world.
"We are within reach of new vaccines that could not only save millions of lives, but achieve the longstanding goal of bringing TB under control in the developing world," said Dr. Jerald Sadoff, President & CEO of Aeras Global TB Vaccine Foundation, which is sponsoring the human trial with support from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. "This is the first step in using modern vaccines to defeat this global pandemic."
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