LEXINGTON, Ky. (FOX 56/WKYT) – Doctors in Lexington are taking part in a vaccine study that could help treat another respiratory virus.
Officials at AMR in Lexington are looking for volunteers to take part in clinical trials for a respiratory syncytial virus, or RSV, vaccine. Dr. Mark Adams, the lead investigator at AMR, says RSV is more common than you might believe.
“I can look back on my clinical career and can pretty well say that this was a complicated bronchitis case, there’s a good probability that could have been an RSV,” Dr. Adams said.
The virus that, for a long time, seemed to affect children, for the most part, but that isn’t the case.
“It’s very prevalent. In fact, it’s probably about half the incidents of flu which is quite a bit of numbers from that stand point,” Dr. Adams said. “It affects the elder population probably like it does the pediatric.”
Dr. Adams is tells us testing for the virus is relatively new and, since it began, data shows RSV impacts roughly 177,000 and kills nearly 14,000 Americans over the age of 65 every year, compared to just 200-500 children.
“Now, we have the ability to test for it and this vaccine is the first to be developed to try to prevent that,” Dr. Adams said.
AMR is taking part in that vaccine trial. There are two going on right now and third will start soon. They’re looking for generally healthy people 65 and older to take part.
Dr. Adams tells us the vaccine’s have proven safe and effective. Now, this trial will look at how effective they are.
“These vaccine candidates have already gone through the phase 1 and phase 2 testing which means basically they’ve gone through for safety issues as well as efficacy issues so by the time they come here they have to pass muster on those two issues,” Dr. Adams said.
Dr. Adams says participating in a trial like this will do more than just help scientists.
“I look at vaccine studies as somewhat of a community service option because, obviously, if they come out well, then there’s a population that’s going to benefit from this.”