Group of 8 leaders endorse proposed AIDS vaccine enterprise

The leaders of the Group of Eight (G8) nations have endorsed the establishment of a global AIDS Vaccine Enterprise to help enhance international coordination, information sharing and collaboration in the development of an AIDS vaccine. The G8 nations are the United States, Britain, France, Germany, Italy, Canada, Russia and Japan.

The concept for a global vaccine enterprise was first proposed in a paper published in Science magazine in June 2003 by an international group of leading AIDS experts organized by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

The G8 issued its statement of support on 11 June 2004 during their most recent meeting. The statement calls for the Enterprise to “establish a strategic plan that would prioritize the scientific challenges to be addressed, coordinate research and product development efforts, and encourage greater use of information sharing networks and technologies. This plan should serve as a blueprint for helping to align better existing resources and to channel more efficiently to the needs at hand new resources as they become available.”

Key AIDS vaccine stakeholders are already working to develop the strategic plan for the proposed Enterprise. The final document will be based on the recommendations of the five working groups formed during an August 2003 meeting held by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to help develop firm objectives and activities.