Philanthropist Bill Gates has donated $6 million to help find a vaccine for HIV.
The Microsoft founder retired from his role with the tech firm in 2008 to dedicate himself to philanthropy and work with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.
Last week, he donated $5.8 million to researchers at the Scripps Research Institute in Jupiter, Florida, to fund HIV research.
The institute is working on an innovative new procedure, that could ‘teach’ the immune system to fight HIV by delivering genes into muscle cells.
Scripps immunology professor Michael Farzan told Buzzfeed: “It’s taking what is a basic gene therapy technology and using it to address the problem of a HIV vaccine.
“We’ve got to think about getting away from the conventional mode of thinking about vaccines, especially when it comes to HIV.”
The research is one of a number of promising avenues of research into HIV/AIDS that could revolutionise treatment – though changes are likely to be a few years off.
Speaking at the World Economic Forum in Davos earlier this year, Gates predicted a vaccine for HIV will be available within the next fifteen years.
He said: “We’re pretty optimistic in this 15-year period we will get those two new tools.
“We won’t see the end of AIDS… but both for malaria and AIDS we’re seeing the tools that will let us do 95-100% reduction. Those tools will be invented during this 15-year period.”