People who live with HIV/AIDS and their supporters marked HIV Vaccine Awareness Day yesterday, with their hopes put in the research to find a vaccine to prevent HIV infection.

The Aids Institute highlights on HIV Vaccine Awareness Day the progress that has been made in vaccine research and development, but for now the search continues.

The institute points out that minorities are disproportionally impacted. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Blacks and Hispanics represent more than half of all HIV/AIDS cases in the United States. According to the Florida Bureau of HIV/AIDS (pdf.) by 2009 Black men and women had the highest rate of HIV infection, and they also had the highest death rates. A 2009 report (pdf.) indicates that Florida ranked third in the U.S. for reported AIDS cases by 2008 and third among 38 for reported HIV cases.

Daniel C. Montoya Deputy, Executive Director National Minority AIDS Council, said in a statement that despite the disproportionate impact HIV has on African American and Latino communities, “these same communities are often under-represented in HIV vaccine trials.”

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