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admin 25.07.2015

Early clinical trials in the United States have found the vaccine can prevent infection in three out of four women.
An estimated 100m people around the world are infected with what is known as herpes simplex virus type 2. The virus can cause painful itching and sores that in some cases reappear years after infection. However, many people do not have symptoms and can therefore pass on the infection without knowing it. A vaccine could be of real benefit to the thousands of infants born every year with the virus.
Dr Lawrence Stanberry and colleagues at the University of Texas Medical Branch tested the vaccine on 978 women and 1,736 men whose partners had genital herpes. Each received three injections containing the vaccine or injections containing a placebo over the course of six months.
The researchers found that the vaccine did not work well in women who had been infected with a related virus - herpes simplex virus 1.
GlaxoSmithKline is now recruiting 7,550 women between the ages of 18 and 30 across the US for final stage clinical trials. The UK Herpes Viruses Association said most new cases of genital herpes are actually caused by herpes simplex virus 1 - the virus that causes cold sores. Marian Nicholson, its director, said there was a need to tackle the stigma around the virus.


Genital herpes currently affects up to one in six Americans between the ages of 14 and 49, yet no vaccine or cure for this, common sexually transmitted infection (STI) exists. The herpes virus first infects epithelial cells before invading the neurons, where it remains latent until later reactivated by hormones or stress. To get around this issue, the researchers designed a method that would allow another type of white blood cell, the T cell, to get to the site of infection and provide protection. The first step of this process, or the “prime,” involves a conventional vaccination with weakened HSV-2, which activates HSV-2-specific T cells throughout the body. In addition to effective protection, the prime and pull immunization also causes little to no inflammation in the genital tract, a problem which had plagued previous vaccine models that fought herpes.
While the immunization is surprisingly effective, researchers are still working to understand exactly how it works.
In addition to a vaccine against genital herpes, the prime and pull method has many other promising applications.
The researchers’ “prime and pull” immunization brings T cells, pictured here in a scanning electron micrograph, to the site of infection, allowing for effective vaccination. However, half of those infants who contract the virus die unless they receive powerful antiviral drugs. However, a recent paper by Yale professor Akiko Iwasaki and postdoctoral fellow Haina Shin published in Nature reports a promising new vaccine strategy termed “prime and pull” that could easily and effectively protect against the main cause of genital herpes, herpes simplex virus 2 (HSV-2). The body’s B cells, a type of white blood cell, then produce antibodies targeting the invader, which prepares the immune system to respond quickly to future infection.


T cells have already been shown to play a role in controlling HSV-2 but have limited access to the genital tract, which prevents their entry in the absence of inflammation or infection. Then, in the second step, the activated T cells are “pulled” to the genital tract by topical application of chemokines, substances that attract immune cells. Mice treated with the method had increased survival rates, as compared to mice given the immunization (prime) without the chemokine pull, and did not develop clinical herpes when infected with the virus. At first, the T cells were expected to attack infected cells in the vaginal lining, but as Iwasaki explains, “our data showed that the protection is really at the level of the neuron.” Specifically, the T cells are hypothesized to prevent virus entry into neurons, where HSV-2 would otherwise remain dormant and cause recurring outbreaks.
It could be useful in any situation in which T cells are required locally, such as in preventing HIV and other STIs, or even in treatment of solid tumors.
Therefore, it seemed likely that T cells would be even more effective when immediately moved to the infected tissue. If T cells can indeed prevent the virus from getting into the nervous system, Iwasaki adds, the vaccination “can hopefully provide protection for life.”. In the future, Iwasaki would like to see other researchers use the method both for their own applications and for making the new herpes vaccine clinically available.



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  • RAZIN_USAGI, 25.07.2015 at 21:48:29
    Your gluts around the may additionally request HSV.
  • dj_ram_georgia, 25.07.2015 at 21:31:21
    Not any reporting system for herpes in Canada.
  • rocker, 25.07.2015 at 18:39:38
    And understand why they need to believe there one..however there.