Every day, about 14,000 people worldwide become infected with HIV, according to the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS). In developing countries, where therapies are not readily available, HIV infection is a death sentence.
Of the 3 million deaths attributed to AIDS worldwide in 2001, 2.2 million occurred in Africa1; UNAIDS estimates that in 2002, 3.5 million people in sub-Saharan Africa were newly infected. It is essential that new therapies and preventatives be developed, and that these be made available in clinical trials to populations most at risk. "Right now, the developing world, with the highest HIV burden, needs a vaccine urgently," e-mails Job Bwayo of the Kenya AIDS Vaccine Initiative (KAVI).
While clinical trials with HIV/AIDS drugs or vaccines may be hard to conduct in developed countries, where issues of recruiting and sensitivity to underrepresented minority groups,...