Disease States / Health / Lab News

Vaccine helps reduce shedding of herpes

Vaccine helps reduce shedding of herpesResearch from IU School of Medicine has shown that an experimental protein subunit vaccine can reduce viral shedding.  It is being seen as a significant step forward in the treatment of herpes simplex virus 2 (HSV-2).

The lead researcher, Dr Kenneth Fife, explains, “Typically vaccines do not modulate a disease someone already has contracted.  The virus can be detected on the skin of people with genital herpes even when they are not having an outbreak.  That is often how the disease is spread, often called viral shedding.”

The vaccine, GEN-003, was given to participants several times over the course of treatment.  It is hoped the vaccine will reduce viral shedding, as well as the frequency of outbreaks and the transmission of HSV-2.

Dr Fife went on to comment, “although the ultimate goal of this vaccine is reducing genital herpes outbreaks and reducing transmission of the virus to others, this is only the first step on a long path toward reaching that goal.  It will take several more studies and a number of years to determine if we can reach that goal.”

With over 770,000 new cases of HSV-2 reported annually in the U.S and over 30,000 reported annually in the U.K, the research from Dr Fife and his team is a welcome one that will undoubtedly help combat sexually transmitted infections.

Reference: www.sciencedaily.com

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