AIDS Vaccine Testing Taking Place in South Africa
Thursday is World AIDS Day.
For almost 30 years, the United Nations has marked World AIDS Day on December 1.
People often note the number of deaths from AIDS, short for acquired immune deficiency syndrome. The virus has killed tens of millions of people since it was first identified in the 1980s.
But on this World AIDS Day, there is more hope than ever before that researchers are getting close to finding a vaccine to protect against infection.
Much has happened since the first World AIDS Day observance in 1988. Countries where people did not talk about the virus now test people and treat those who are infected.
Mothers with HIV -- the virus that causes AIDS -- can give birth to healthy babies and live to raise them. Drugs can keep the virus from spreading.
And now, scientists are discussing the possibility that a vaccine and cure may be developed.
On Monday, researchers in South Africa began injecting thousands of volunteers with a possible vaccine.
Other researchers are examining whether the body's own defenses against disease can help fight the virus.
An American study shows this may be possible. One of the researchers was Pablo Tebas of the University of Pennsylvania. Dr. Tebas spoke to VOA on Skype.
"We infuse antibodies into the patients, the participants in the study, and we want to see if those antibodies will control the HIV virus -- will keep it quiet, and prevent the virus from coming back when we stop antiretroviral therapy."
The research in controlling HIV with antibodies is similar to that being done in the fight against cancer. Proteins are used to attack cancer cells. Like cancer, HIV hides in cells. If a person stops taking anti-AIDS drugs, the virus returns.
"You want to eliminate the cells that harbor the virus and by making the immune system more active, in finding and eliminating those cells."
The researchers discovered that the antibodies suppressed HIV for 21 days. The goal is to find a combination of antibodies that can suppress the virus for six months to a year. Then, those infected will no longer have to take medicine every day for the rest of their lives.
A new test using two antibodies should begin in the next few months.
I'm Anne Ball.
1.taking place 发生
History is taking place before your very eyes.
2.short for ...的简称
That would be short for william, I imagine.
3.immune deficiency 免疫缺陷
Poor sleep has already been linked to depression, immune deficiency and heart disease.
4.take medicine 吃药
You know you have to take medicine if you are to be cured of the disease.
1.But on this World AIDS Day, there is more hope than ever before that researchers are getting close to finding a vaccine to protect against infection.
getting close to 逐渐接近
She is receiving steady orders and "getting close to break even".
Tourism gives us a chance of getting close to the nature.
2.The research in controlling HIV with antibodies is similar to that being done in the fight against cancer.
fight against 对抗；抗争
He died after a brave but unavailing fight against a terminal illness.
His whole life is a fight against poverty and unemployment.
人们经常会注意到因艾滋病（获得性免疫缺陷综合症）而死亡的人数 。自上世纪80年代被首次确认以来，艾滋病已致数千万人死亡 。
1988年首次世界艾滋病日纪念活动开展以来取得了很大进展 。现在一些谈“艾”色变的国家也开始做艾滋病检测并医治感染者 。
感染艾滋病毒的孕妇也可以生下健康的婴儿并将孩子抚养成人 。药物可阻止艾滋病毒传播 。
美国一项研究证实了这一可能性 。宾夕法尼亚大学的研究员帕布洛·特巴斯（Pablo Tebas）通过Skype接受了美国之音的采访 。
用抗体抑制艾滋病毒的研究类似于对抗癌症的研究 。蛋白质能够杀死癌细胞 。艾滋病毒跟癌细胞都隐藏在细胞里 。如果患者停用抗艾滋病毒药物，病毒又会复发 。
研究人员发现该抗体可抑制艾滋病毒21天 。他们想研发一种可抑制病毒长达半年或一年的抗体组合 。这样感染者在接下来的日子里就不用每天服用药物 。