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Ambitious Clinical Trial Stirs Debate

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Science  24 Sep 1999:
Vol. 285, Issue 5436, pp. 2039-2042
DOI: 10.1126/science.285.5436.2039c

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Summary

The National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases last week decided to fund what will likely be the largest and most expensive trial of an AIDS treatment the institute has ever backed, involving 210 sites in 18 countries. During the next 5 years, the $43 million study will follow 4000 HIV-infected people who are already taking anti-HIV drugs to see whether adding an immune-system messenger called interleukin-2 can help prevent disease and death. But some members of the AIDS research community believe the trial's flexible design and relatively healthy subjects may blur any results.