Differentiating a Vaccinated Individual from an Infected Individual 28 July 2004
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Tony Floyd,
Medical Student
Newcastle University

Send response to journal:
Re: Differentiating a Vaccinated Individual from an Infected Individual

Pennee Atkinson wrote:

> To all those searching for a vaccine

I don't think that any of the respondents above are vaccine researchers, hence I don't believe any will respond to your question, which I believe is a valid one. i.e.

> how then are you going to tell the difference between someone who was, “infected” with “HIV” or someone who was just inoculated?

Whilst I usually stick to the all-too-easy sport of confirming that references used often don't support the argument put forward, I'll be happy to attempt to respond to this interesting question.

There are in fact numerous HIV vaccines currently in clinical trials. Some are using a single immunogen such as gp120, env, gag or nef. Others are using several immunogens in combination, such as env-gag-pol or gag-pol-nef.

However no vaccines are designed to generate antibodies against all possible immunogens on HIV. Hence someone inoculated with a real virus could be differentiated from someone vaccinated by detecting whatever antibodies were not stimulated by that specific vaccine.

Competing interests: None declared