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One Aids Vaccine, Two Interpretations Essay

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Below is an essay on "One Aids Vaccine, Two Interpretations" from Anti Essays, your source for research papers, essays, and term paper examples.


The study being done here is on the AIDS vaccine.   USA Today said that the vaccine for AIDS showed promise, while New York Times did the same story, but reported that the large trial finds AIDS vaccine fails to stop infection.   Research looked at a sample of 5,400 high risk patients (most were gay and from US, Puerile Rico, Canada, and Netherlands).   Those who received the active vaccine were no less likely to become infected HIV-infected than those who received a placebo.   A surprising fact which came from this was that the people who received the active vaccine appeared to be at a little higher risk of becoming ill.   The non-white participants may have experienced some sort of protection. About 9.9% of those in the placebo group became infected, while only 3.7% of those who received the real vaccine did.   These numbers ended up adding to 70% protection and for those of African descent in the sample, the number was 80%.   This seems like a great thing, however, one has to look at the actual numbers in a statistical context.   The paper reported that among 314 black volunteers, VaxGen (vaccine manufactured company) reported 13 infections: 4 among 203 volunteers who received the vaccine and nine in the placebo group of 111.   Of the Asian volunteers, 2 of the 20 who got the placebo became HIV infected, as did two of the fifty three who got the vaccine which was reported by Dr. Michael Para.   The vaccine also does not produce the kind of immune response believed to be necessary to control infection in humans.   The numbers here are so small as to be statistically suspected.   Therefore in order to really understand the statistics in such articles, one must make sure that they understand how to interpret the statistics.   In this came, New York Times Magazine seemed to be correct with their headline.

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