Progress in the development of a long-awaited vaccine that could block the bacterial infection that causes tuberculosis appears to be closer to reality, according to new findings from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and reported by NPR.
Tuberculosis (TB) is considered to be a major global health crisis, with approximately 10 million new cases reported each year worldwide. The infection, caused by the bacteria mycobacterium tuberculosis, can cause serious and even fatal damage to the lungs.
This announcement follows years of research into a more effective vaccine for TB. Currently, there is only one available TB vaccine, known as the Bacillus Calmette-Guerin (BCG)- which is given to infants in many countries. While this vaccine can be effective to a certain degree, efficacy has been shown to vary widely in different populations.
That’s why researchers have been looking for ways to develop a newer and more effective TB vaccine. Recently, the CDC has made significant strides towards achieving this goal by testing a second potential vaccine, known as the MVA85A. This vaccine contains “manipulated versions of a bacteria and a virus” which could help to spur “an immune response against TB” cells.
The CDC has recently released the results of the Phase 2 clinical trials of this promising vaccine, which were conducted over the course of 3.5 years. The vaccine was tested on 442 infants and young children, with preliminary results showing a “significant reduction in TB infections among vaccinated subjects.” In addition, this vaccine was seen to be generally safe and well tolerated in the tested population.
While these results are encouraging, the CDC stresses that more research and clinical trials are necessary before this new vaccine can be used as a viable TB-blocking tool. However, these recent findings offer hope that we may be closer to a more effective TB vaccine, as well as improved protection against a global health crisis. [ad_1]
Researchers in South Africa have built a breakthrough on establishing a vaccine for tuberculosis.
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