Is China’s DNA-rTV a Potentially more Advanced HIV Vaccine?

Is China’s DNA-rTV a Potentially more Advanced HIV Vaccine?

China’s National Health Commission reports that an ongoing, multi-center clinical trial for a Chinese-developed AIDS vaccine commenced this year. The China Center for Disease Control and Prevention recently held an online interview with the China’s National Health Commission to discuss.

No Safe and Effective HIV Vaccine

The Chinese report that presently there is no effective and safe vaccine to prevent HIV, reported Jin Cong, director of the AIDS Prevention Office at the China Center for Disease Control and Prevention. Jing noted, “In general, all vaccines require a long process from development to the market. It is even more difficult for the AIDS vaccine, which is determined by the characteristics of the AIDS virus itself.”

Made in China but not in a Vacuum

Although Chinese scientists and investigators are developing a “made in China” vaccine, it was noted in recent Chinese press that the AIDS vaccine research in China is in fact “synchronized with international research” efforts.

The Vaccine: DNA-rTV

DNA-rTV vaccine is developed and owned by the China Center for Disease Control and Prevention. Meaning they have filed the requisite international intellectual property right protection for this experimental product. They claim that it is the first replicative viral vector AIDS vaccine in the world to complete a Phase II clinical trial, reports Jin Cong. Jin noted, “the early clinical trials have shown that the DNA-rTV vaccine is safe and can induce subjects to produce strong antibody responses and cellular immune responses.”

DNA-rTV Sponsors

According to independent research from the Target Action Group in the United States, DNA-rTV sponsors include:

·         Beijing Youan Hospital (affiliated with Capital Medical University)

·         Capital Medical University and the Center for STD/AIDS Prevention, and Control of China CDA

·         Beijing Biproducts Research Institute Company, Ltd.

Comment from China STID/AIDS Prevention and Control Centre

Li Dongmin, deputy Director of the government prevention agency, noted, “The transmission of AIDs through blood transfusion has basically been blocked, and transmission through drug use and mother-to-child transmission have also been effectively controlled. The overall AIDS epidemic has continued to be controlled bringing it to a low epidemic level.” However, Li commented that sexual transmission is the main route of transmission and reaffirmed that the task of preventing and treating AIDs still a big challenge.

Who is China Center for Disease Control?

China Center for Disease Control or China CDC is a governmental and national-level technical organization specialized on disease control and prevention and public health. It’s mission: create a safe and healthy environment, maintain social stability and ensure national security and promote the health of people through the prevention and control of disease, injury and disability.

Falling under the leadership of the central government’s National Health Commission (a cabinet-level executive department of the State Council of the People’s Republic of China, which is responsible for sanitation and health in the country ), China CDC focuses on technical guidance and support of public health. By 2016, the agency hired 2,120 staff including 1,876 technical professionals, 133 managerial staff and 111 logistical staff.

HIV Vaccine Pipeline Worldwide: Treatment Action Group Report

Recently, Treatment Action Group commissioned a survey and pipeline of global progress for HIV vaccine clinical research pipeline authored by Richard Jeffreys. He noted that Janssen Vaccines & Prevention B.V. was “taking center stage” this year for HIV vaccine pipeline development with their “prime-boost approach.” A large Phase III clinical trial called MOSAICO will start patient recruitment with plans of enrolling 3,800 cisgender men and transgender individuals in a number of countries from the U.S. to Argentina, Brazil, Italy, Mexico, Peru and others totaling 57 sites. The vaccine candidate comprises adenovirus serotype 26 (Ad26) vectors encoding four different mosaic HIV antigens—designed to induce immune responses to diverse HIV variants. This Phase III trial complements a Phase IIb trial known as Imbokodo (HPX2008/HVTN 705 ) a collaboration between Janssen and the HIV Vaccines Trial Network (HVTN). That study was designed to test an HIV preventive vaccine regimen that covers the different types of HIV found worldwide. It commenced in November 2018 across 26 sites in five sub-Saharan African countries including South Africa, Zimbabwe, Mozambique, Malawi and Zambia. Key investigators include Dr. Kathy Mngadi (eThekwini CRS) and Dr. Susan Birchbinder (Bridge HIV CRS) and a research and a HVTN 705 protocol team.

Jeffries includes a pipeline covering HIV vaccine Agent, Class/Type, Trial Registry ID, Sponsor and Status and includes the Chinese DNA-rTV vaccine.

Key Contacts

Chinese Vaccine Study

Jin Cong, director of the AIDS Prevention Office at the China Center for Disease Control and Prevention

Li Dongmin, deputy Director, Epidemiology Department, STD/AIDS Prevention and Control Centre

Call to Action: For those Interested in HIV/AIDS vaccine research, a number of resources follows this research such as Treatment Action Group. TrialSite News monitors the efforts of these studies to increase transparency and education for those interested.