Researchers Take a Step Toward a Herpes Vaccine

Wednesday, 08 May 2013 04:53 PM

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Medical investigators are reporting an advance that could pave the way for a potential vaccine for genital herpes, one of the most common types of sexually transmitted infections in the United States.

Researchers from the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center say they have identified a subtype of immune cells that suppress outbreaks caused by the herpes simplex virus type 2 (HSV-2). The discovery could lead to a vaccine capable of preventing herpes lesions on people who have already contracted the disease — offering a “clinically cure” for herpes symptoms.
 
 “What we found was that [these T-cells] are turned on and making all sorts of antiviral substances,” lead author Dr. Larry Corey, an internationally renowned virologist and president and director of the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, told FoxNews.com.

 “When the virus reactivates, they are the first cells in to contain the virus, and we showed they contain it very well. They can contain it before the virus escapes above the skin.”
 
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