What We're Reading: FDA Launches HIV Drug Database; HIV Vaccine Trial Fails; NJ Enacts Coronavirus Task Force

February 4, 2020

The FDA launched a mobile-friendly, interactive database providing information on eligible HIV antiretroviral treatments available; an HIV vaccine trial by Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center ended after failing to provide protection from the virus; New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy established a coronavirus task force to manage the state’s preparedness and response to the virus.

FDA Launches Mobile-Friendly HIV Drug Database

Last Wednesday, the FDA announced the launch of an interactive database that will provide information on eligible antiretroviral treatments for purchase. The release noted that the drugs are “low-cost, quality-assured, life-saving” treatments for HIV. In accordance with the President’s Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief, or PEPFAR, program, the launch seeks to address the global HIV epidemic and follows efforts to increase public access to effective medications, such as a similar launch to bring free doses of pre-exposure prophylaxis.

HIV Vaccine Trial Ended After Data Reveal Insignificant Benefit

Researchers are ending efforts to continue the largest ongoing clinical trial for a HIV vaccine after a review in January showed that the experimental injections provided no protection from the virus, according to Seattle Times. Conducted by the HIV Vaccine Trials Network based at Seattle’s Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, the $120 million study involved 5407 volunteers in South Africa who exhibited no significant benefit in effectiveness between placebo and the proposed vaccine.

Governor Establishes NJ Coronavirus Task Force

New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy created a coronavirus task force to address the state’s response to the virus’ outbreak, with Newark Liberty International Airport beginning to accept rerouted flights from China who require enhanced health screening, according to The Wall Street Journal. The task force will include New Jersey health, human services, education, and homeland security officials who will manage the state’s preparedness and response to the coronavirus.