A new AIDS vaccine research center will open in California. The $30 million facility is a joint venture by the nonprofit Scripps Research Institute in La Jolla and the International AIDS Vaccine Initiative.
"The world needs an AIDS vaccine to turn the tide on this devastating pandemic," Dr. Richard Lerner, president of the Scripps Research Institute, said in a statement.
"We are confident that this center will facilitate more productive exchanges among researchers and stimulate new ideas that will help to accelerate AIDS vaccine science."
The center at Scripps will be dedicated to one important aspect of making a vaccine -- stimulating the production of immune system compounds called neutralizing antibodies.
I was extremely shocked to hear that the AIDS virus infects an estimated 33 million people globally and has killed 25 million since it was identified in the 1980s.