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UF researchers report cats may be the key to human HIV vaccine

Blood from HIV-infected human subjects shows an immune response against a cat AIDS virus protein, a surprise finding that could help scientists find a way to develop a human AIDS vaccine, report University of Florida and University of California, San Francisco researchers.

Their findings appear in the October issue of the Journal of Virology. This discovery supports further exploration of a human AIDS vaccine derived from regions of the feline AIDS virus.

“One major reason why there has been no successful HIV vaccine to date is that we do not know which parts of HIV to combine to produce the most effective vaccine,” said Janet Yamamoto, a professor of retroviral immunology at the UF College of Veterinary Medicine and the study’s corresponding author.

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