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Vaginal Gel Shows Promise Against HIV Infection

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An experimental vaginal gel shows promise in reducing women's risk of HIV infection, according to results of a preliminary study that included about 3,100 women in Africa and the United States.

Women who used the gel had a 30 percent lower risk of HIV infection, according to the U.S. National Institutes of Health-funded study presented Monday at a medical conference on retroviruses in Montreal, the Associated Press reported.

However, the researchers noted this difference wasn't statistically significant, which means the reduced risk could have occurred by chance.

The true effectiveness of the gel, made by Massachusetts-based Indevus Pharmaceuticals Inc., needs to be assessed in larger studies, such as one involving 9,400 women that's scheduled to conclude in August, the AP reported.

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