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A new hepatitis C vaccine has shown promising results in an early clinical trial at Oxford University, generating strong and broad immune responses against the virus causing the disease.

The vaccine was found to be very safe and well tolerated in the 15 healthy human volunteers who took part in the phase 1 safety trial.

A trial to test the efficacy of the vaccine is now underway among intravenous drug users in two sites in the USA. It is the first hepatitis C vaccine to reach this stage of clinical trials.

The aim is to see if the vaccine is able to offer any protection from infection in this group at high risk of hepatitis C compared with placebo.

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