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Not Enough

Johnson & Johnson has announced that its experimental HIV vaccine failed to provide sufficient protection against infection with the virus and that it will be ending the trial, Reuters reports.

The phase 2 trial, dubbed Imbokodo, included 2,600 women in several sub-Saharan African countries at high risk of becoming infected with HIV, according to J&J. The candidate vaccine uses adenovirus to deliver four mosaic viral antigens. In the trial, 63 of 1,109 participants who received placebo became infected with HIV, while 51 of 1,079 participants who received the candidate vaccine did, indicating a vaccine efficacy of 25.2 percent. Based on this, J&J said the Imbokodo study will not continue.

The New York Times notes that other HIV vaccine trials have ended in disappointment. "I should be used to it by now, but you're never used to it — you still put your heart and soul into it," Glenda Gray, principal investigator of the trial and chair of the South African Medical Research Council, tells it.

The Times adds that new vaccine approaches are also under study to tackle HIV. Gizmodo recently reported that Moderna is ready to begin testing an mRNA-based HIV vaccine.