Edmund Tramont, the US chief of AIDS research has revealed that the Government will have to develop a vaccine for HIV as he is convinced that there is a lack of incentive to private players to develop a vaccine. The National Institutes of Health's AIDS Research Chief made this announcement at an employment lawsuit. Such a vaccine developed by the Government can fetch profits, if the vaccine really works.
Strong reservations have been expressed by the country's pharmaceutical research companies to Tramont's statement. The Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA) sources insist that as many as 15 potential vaccines are under development. Several billions of dollars have already been spent on developing an AIDS vaccine, with little sign of success.
There has been considerable frustration as a result of the failure of quite a few promising vaccine candidates. A senior HIV/AIDS official belonging to the United Nations has already admitted that it may be impossible to contain the HIV pandemic by 2015. It is also believed that it will take as long as 2025 to create such a vaccine. The science involved in developing such a vaccine is complicated, and the poor nations who need such a vaccine may not be able to afford it, assuming it is developed.
Over 30 vaccine candidates are undergoing tests in 19 countries, according to the International AIDS Vaccines Initiative (IAVI). An amount of US$ 682 million is being spent on possible AIDS vaccines annually, according to IAVI sources, and the private sector accounts for only US$ 100 million of this amount.