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Protection against chlamydia through effective vaccine
A vaccine against one of the most common sexually transmitted infections could be available within the next ten years after a clinical trial has now shown promising results.
The latest study by Imperial College London found that a new chlamydial vaccine could effectively protect against the disease in the future. The results of the study were published in the English language journal "The Lancet Infectious Diseases".
There are 131 million chlamydia cases worldwide each year
Chlamydia is a major global health problem. There are 131 million cases of the disease annually worldwide. However, since three out of four people affected by the disease have no symptoms, the true number of diseases is likely to be massively underestimated. The infection is particularly common in young women and adolescents and can lead to pelvic inflammatory diseases, which in turn cause infertility and chronic pelvic pain.
Two formulations of the vaccine were tested
For the study, two different formulations of the vaccine were tested on 35 healthy volunteers. 15 women received a version of the vaccine with additional liposomes. 15 other women received an aluminum hydroxide vaccine. Five of the women received sham or placebo treatment. Both formulations of the vaccine elicited an immune response, but the vaccine with added liposomes performed better and produced more antibodies. The presence of an immune response does not necessarily mean that the vaccine will reliably prevent the disease. Further studies are now required, the researchers report.
Vaccine available in five years?
Antibody studies in mice have shown that the antibodies in the vagina are the first line of defense against chlamydial infections, suggesting that they are key to the effectiveness of the new vaccine. If the vaccine gets positive results in the next test phase, it could be available in just five years, explains the study team. If a vaccine works, it should completely prevent infection and ensure immunity for a longer period of time. Ideally, the vaccine should be administered at the same time as the human papillomavirus vaccine in teenage girls, the researchers advise. In the end, however, the vaccine should also be given to boys. Delivery to both sexes could greatly reduce the amount of chlamydia circulating. (as)
Author and source information
This text corresponds to the specifications of the medical literature, medical guidelines and current studies and has been checked by medical doctors.
- Taylor B Poston, Toni Darville: First genital chlamydia vaccine enters in-human clinical trial, in The Lancet Infectious Diseases (query: 15.08.2019), The Lancet Infectious Diseases