Research holds promise for herpes vaccine

A study by a Montana State University researcher suggests a new avenue for developing a vaccine against genital herpes and other diseases caused by herpes simplex viruses. In a study published earlier this year in the Virology Journal, MSU virologist William Halford showed that mice vaccinated with a live, genetically-modified herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV-1) showed no signs of disease 30 days after being exposed to a particularly lethal “wild-type” strain of the virus.A study by a Montana State University researcher suggests a new avenue for developing a vaccine against genital herpes and other diseases caused by herpes simplex viruses.

In a study published earlier this year in the Virology Journal, MSU virologist William Halford showed that mice vaccinated with a live, genetically-modified herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV-1) showed no signs of disease 30 days after being exposed to a particularly lethal “wild-type” strain of the virus.

In contrast, a second group of mice that received a more conventional vaccine died within six days of being exposed to the same “wild-type” strain.

“We have a clear roadmap for producing an effective live vaccine against genital herpes,” said Halford, who works in MSU’s Department of Veterinary Molecular Biology. “Although my studies were performed with HSV-1, the implications for HSV-2-induced genital herpes are clear. Overall the two viruses are about 99 percent genetically identical.”

An estimated 55 million Americans carry herpes simplex virus type 2 (HSV-2), which causes genital herpes. Infection is life-long. Approximately 5 percent of those with genital herpes – 2 million to 3 million Americans – suffer outbreaks one to four times annually. A vaccine offering life-long protection does not exist.

The key to Halford’s research was understanding how the herpes simplex virus overcame the body’s natural defenses.

A cell infected with the herpes simplex virus sends a warning to neighboring cells. This warning — an interferon response — causes neighboring cells to enter “an anti-viral state” akin to putting on a suit of armor, Halford said.

However, herpes produces a protein, ICP0, that tricks every infected cell into destroying its own armor. Once the cell’s armor is gone, the virus can propagate itself and spread to other cells, which are in turn tricked into lowering their defenses.

In his research, Halford created a vaccine where the genetic instructions that make ICP0 were disrupted. Without instructions on how to do its clever ICP0 trick, the virus can still establish an infection in animals, but the spread of the virus is stopped long before disease can occur.

“In short, we can disarm the virus such that it is absolutely unable to cause disease, but is still remarkably potent as a vaccine,” Halford said.

In a human vaccine, the genetic instructions for ICP0 would actually be removed, creating an “attenuated,” or weakened virus. The rest of the herpes simplex virus’ genetic code would remain intact. Measles, mumps, rubella, polio and yellow fever vaccines are all made from attenuated viruses.

Research in recent decades has focused on subunit vaccines, which are made from one piece of a virus (a protein subunit). Subunit vaccines are safer than attenuated virus vaccines because the subunit cannot replicate or cause disease. However, subunit vaccines have proven ineffective in protecting people against persistent infections like genital herpes and AIDS, Halford said.

“From a theoretical standpoint, subunit vaccines are poor mimics of a natural virus infection,” Halford said. “There’s not enough there for our immune systems to build a protective response against the actual virus.”

Halford, 38, is aware that his approach is controversial.

“This is where I’m young enough that I don’t know how long it can take to swing popular opinion among scientists and clinicians,” he said. “I would hope that in five to six years the scientific community would be willing to seriously consider these proposals.”

Halford hopes to find a commercial partner or secure government funding to advance his research toward a human vaccine.

“I’d like to take this concept from the chalkboard to the clinics,” he said.

From Montana State University

 

259 thoughts on “Research holds promise for herpes vaccine

  1. It seems to me that governments throughout the world have ignored this virus its stated here that over 55million US citizens carry the virus I don,t understand why some one hasent formed a political party and stand for election demanding funding from the government to find a treatment for herpies (vacine or preventable medication) surely if 55million people voted for that person the US government would have to do something about it

  2. This paper leaves me with a bunch of questions. Will this new vaccine or the research around it lead to something that will help those that are aready infected with the HSV ? Or is this just going to prevent those that take if from becoming infected? Seems to me that there are still a lot of questions to be answered and that we remain years away from any help of importance. I like to keep my readers abreast of any new developments at http://www.feverblistercure.com and hope that you will be bring more “exacting” information to light regarding this research.

  3. It is important to see your doctor right away for treatment for the infection if you find yourself suffering from any herpes symptoms. Genital herpes can be managed quite effectively if your doctor examines the male herpes symptoms soon after you become aware of them. Suffering from the disease does not mean that life, as you know it will end. You can still live a normal and active life, both outside and inside the bedroom.

    With this said, the psychological effects can become a problem. Men have been known to become extremely depressed, due to fear of having more outbreaks or infecting their partner. By learning about the true risks of genital herpes, you can start to consider male herpes symptoms and outbreaks a minor nuisance instead of something to be feared.

  4. Correction, I researched recent results of these herpes vaccine trials at herpes symptoms and it seems that the HerpeVac trial was found ineffective in women. I do understand from further research that there are more vaccine trials and treatment options in the works at multiple pharma companies.

  5. I researched recent results of these herpes vaccine trials at herpes symptoms and it seems that the HerpeVac trial was found ineffective in women. I do understand from further research that there are more vaccine trials and treatment options in the works at multiple pharma companies.

  6. I really appreciate all this information it sucks to know how many people on this world suffer with this virus all we ask is that u help get rid of it so we can have more stability with our families and loved ones thank u so much for just trying!!!!!!!! It means the world!!!!!!!!!!!!:-(
    I never had an outbreak but sometimes I feel the symptoms and it drives me crazy I to have have children and it makes mr sad because I’m always depressed about having it when I should be happy cause they are around and I just feel out of place no matter how many people try to tell me it’s not that bad it’s not the end of the world I feel it is I just want my life back the way it was bd

  7. I really appreciate all this information it sucks to know how many people on this world suffer with this virus all we ask is that u help get rid of it so we can have more stability with our families and loved ones thank u so much for just trying!!!!!!!! It means the world!!!!!!!!!!!!:-(
    I never had an outbreak but sometimes I feel the symptoms and it drives me crazy I to have childrea

  8. i like so many others just recently found out i have the virus as well. it came as such a shock and i cried like a baby trying to get my head to wrap around it. i have been with my fiance for almost five years now and the thought of telling him and losing him made me sick to my stomach.i have always been honest with him and could not hold this from him regardless to the after fact.i gathered up as much courage as i could and told him the next day, i knew this was the result of someething bad and that couldnt b prevented. as we talked he said it ok i love you and regardless im not goin anywhere. at first i would have never thought someone could be so understanding and loving and now i know that there are people out there who realy love you when they say they do threw thick and thin. i have been blessed to have him in my life and even more now i thank god every morning for bringin him into my life. i hope that mayb one day they will be able to help us with this problem it was created from somewhere hopefully it can end somewhere . juss have faith and be true to your self and the ones you love and it will hopefully work out for the best .

    • http://health.change.org/petitions/view/will_medicine_and_science_use_a_cure_that_cant_be_patented_not_wo_your_help

      Anon, please help end herpes once and for all by signing this petition.

      Research into patentable cures has run it’s course and it is time we start a proper science that utilizes man’s own immunity for cures that cannot be patented.

      You have all the tools you need to cure herpes and all that is lacking is the knowledge and understanding. Help me make this knowledge and understanding available to the public. There is no woo woo or hamana hamana, just a more righteous form of science, consequently a righteous form that can’t be made profitable.

      • Mr. Flowers,

        It is extremely offensive and honestly disgusting that you can find it in yourself to advertise on a website where people are distraught and desperate. It is not even worth taking my time to describe the science behind the virus and how you are a scam artist and complete and utter bullshitter. You should take a look in the mirror and reevaluate your life if your interested in cures. I am not even religious, but if they’re was a hell, i would hope that you wind up there. Do not take advantage of people going through a hard time and propose that you have “the answer.”

        To the actual people reading this who have herpes and may be down – don’t be. You will be okay. The virus becomes less severe over time. It is very common and people are more accepting of it than you think. 1/5 people have HSV-2. It’s estimated that >75% of the global population is infected with either HSV-1 or HSV-2. Most people are asymptomatic. Since they already have the virus, however, they have formed immunity and most likely will not become symptomatic even if exposed to someone who is symptomatic. Regardless, sex should always be abstained from during an outbreak because the virus is very contagious at this point. If you keep your body healthy for long enough (stop smoking, start exercising, eat right and take vitamins), outbreaks will most likely go away. When they are latent (no visible outbreaks), they can be contagious but not too a great extent. If an outbreak does come back, take acyclovir and that’s it. If you get them recurrently no matter what, take acyclovir daily. this will also reduce your chances of spreading to a partner because you will not shed virus even while it is dormant.

        What is most important in this difficult and trying time, is to keep your strength. Retain who you are. Keep your character and your resolve to overcome. Positive thinking can go a long way. There are actually scientific reports based on that. Do not resort to some scum (ie David Flowers) trying to take advantage of you. Please. Read, educate yourself, educate others.

      • I want to see a cure too. I cant understand why we dont have one yet. Please let me know what I can do to support these efforts for I suffer from it as well.

  9. I been reading this post, and I found out 4 years ago i had it. I guess i could say im blessed in a away. Except for the first six months i havent had an out break in 3 yrs an therefore dont take the medicine for it. Best advice i can give you is dont this thing ruin your life. I let a man and wanted to be with me go because i was to scared to tell him and now he married. I loved this man so much and basically pushed him into the arms of someone else because i didnt want to give this thing to him ad hurt him and felt he could do better. I finally told a guy last year partly because he was persistent to know why i wouldnt sleep with him for months though i cared about him. It was such a relief he basically looked at me an was like its no a big deal,and its not like its a death sentence. Unfortunately , were not together cuz he’s a cheater but it help me to realize that it not hat big a deal. Every guy i have told so far has accept me and i know thats noot common i guess im just lucky. But you are still the same perso u were before u had this. You determine ur future dont let this disease do it fo u

    • I’ve been reading everyone’s posts here and must say that I have found some relief in the stories (so thank you all for that).

      I was just told today of terrible news. As someone here had mentioned, the doctor told me in such an arrogant way; as if I was merely an additional statistic.

      That isn’t what bugs me though. See, I became a single father at a young age. Things were a mess and I basically became “undatable” in my own mind. So I travelled all over Canada and had sex with random women every chance I got. Lucky for me I didn’t pick anything up (well, unless this is karma’s ass-whooping delay).

      I never saw it coming, but I’ve actually fallen in love with someone that isn’t my daughter. The last few months have been heart-fluttering and unlike anything I’ve ever experienced.

      Tonight I’m stuggling with the potential loss of the greatest girl; the same girl that has made me a better man. I don’t often ask for help, but I know there are others like me who’ve had to break the news to the love of their life.

      I never thought I’d find love, and now I’m so afraid to lose it :(

      • I contracted HSV2 when I was young during a date rape. I didn’t know I had it for years (I could give a long background story, but won’t,, however I know without a doubt this is when it happened, I was tested at the time, but my results were negative), until I was already married and had given birth to one child. We were planning for our second when I found out. I was shocked and horrified. I was disgusted by myself, my future, the danger I thought I’d put my first child in (vaginal delivery). But more than anything I didn’t know how to tell my husband or what he would think, what would become of our marriage.

        When I finally told my husband, he didn’t bat an eye. He doesn’t care. It hasn’t changed a thing in our relationship and we went ahead and had that second child. We still don’t use condoms, he hates them and always has. He doesn’t care to get tested and doesn’t care if he ever contracts it. He says I’m “so hot I blister.”

        So, it’s very possible you are in love with someone that accepts you for you and doesn’t have conditions on your relationship.

        • I don’t know how to react when I know that I have herpes. Been 3 years and I do not know if I should start a family and when I am old.. How will I die..I may die young becus I cannot take the virus and it may get worst I am old.,..

      • The only option my friend is communication. Forgive me if this sounds cliche but if this woman truly loves you then i dont think you have anything to worry about. Ive recently been diagnosed myself, and like you it wasnt the virus that bothered me, i could handle that. The thought of losing the one i loved is what tugged on my heart strings, or worse passing the virus on to her. She was with me the morning i got my test results and without missing a beat she looked at me and said ” baby i love you and this doesnt change a thing” She admired how honest and upfront i was with her about everything. So if i have any advice to give you its to be open and honest, i promise she will respect you alot more for your honesty and courage. Best wishes my friend.

    • thanks for writing that, this is exactly the way I feel and your words were inspirational to me. I have felt so ashamed, I got this from a guy who was sleeping around on me, I have not been able to think about being with anyone else, because of fearr of telling someone, and also fear of rejection… How did you tell them?

  10. EVERYONE PLZ IM BEGGING YOU ALL SRRY IF I MISS SPELL BUT LISTEN THERE IS A CURE FOR EVERY VIRUS AND DISEASE ITS REAL ITS CALLED OXYGENATION THERAPY TREATMENT IF YOU DONT BELIEVE ME LOOK IT UP ON GOOGLE BUT DO SO FAST B 4 THE GOVERNMENT AND FDA AND EVERY MEDICALE PLACE BANNES IT THIS IS HIGHLY CLASSIFIED INFO BUT I WANT EVERYONE TO NOE THT THERE IS A CURE. THE THING IS USA DOES NOT WANNA RELEASE IT, WHY CUZZ IT WULD RUIN THERE TRILLION DOLLAR PROFIT THEY MAKE BY SELLING POSIONS AND MEDICATIONS WITH SIDE EFFECTS, THE DOCTORS U GUYS GO TO DNT EVEN RELIZE WHAT THEY R MISSING OUT ON, MOST DOCTORS DONT BELIEVE THIS CUZZ THEY WHERE NVR TOLD BOUT IT, THERE A REPORTS THT RUSSIA MEXICO CANADA AND OTHER COUNTRYS THT USE THIS TREATMENT AND APROVE OF HOW WELL IT WORKS, FIRST OFF NO SIDE EFFECTS LIKE THE MEDICATIONS THE PERSCRIBE US WIT,SECOND ITS PURE OXYGEN FROM THE OZONE, 3RD IT DOES CURE THEY HAVE EVIDENCE ON IT, PEOPLE WHO WHERE HIV/AIDS HERPES AND ON DEATHS DOOR TOOK THIS TREATMENT AND WAS CURED, BUT THE DOCTORS THT DID THIS IN THE PAST WERE THREATN IF THEY DONT STOP THIS THEY WOULD B KILLED OR JAILED FOR LIFE Y IS THT, BECUZZ THIS TREATMENT WORKS AND WOULD RUIN THE PROFIT. PHARMACIST OR WHAT EVER U CALL THE PEOPLE THT APPROVE OF HERBS MEDICINES AND STUFF LIKE THT PAY THE GOVERNMENT TO PROTECT THEM AND TO KEEP CURES OUTTA THERE BUILDING I HEAR 7BILLION DOLLARS IS WHAT THEY PAY, PEOPLE IM SERIOUS ABOUT THIS THIS IS REAL THE WORLD IS F’D UP AND ALL THEY WANT IS MONEY NOT TO CURE PEOPLE CUZZ THE NO CUSTOMERS MAKES SENSE RITE, WELL THE THING IS I WANT TO GET THE WORD OUT THTTHERES IS A CURE FOR ALMOST ALL VIRUSES AND DISEASES LOOK IT UP AND THE WILL GIVE U ALIST OF WHAT THEY USED OXYGEN THERAPY ON IM BEGGIN ALL U PEOPLE NO MATTER GENDER NOR RACE PLZ GET THE WORD OUT ABOUT OXYGENATION THERAPY WE NEED TO TAKE A STAND AND HEAD FOR A BETTA FUTURE FOR THE CHILDREN AND FOR HUMANATY PLZ IF ANY OF U TALK TO UR DOCTOR ABOUT IT THEY MIGHT NOE ABOUT BUT NOT TELL U ON PURPOSE FIND OUT THE TRUTH WE CAN ALL HEAL THE WORLD MAKE IT A BETTA PLACE AND GET RID OF ILLUMINATI LIKE MICHEAL JACKSON SAID IM BEING DEAD SERIOUS I DID HELLA RESEARCH FOR THE PAST 3 DAYS SINCE I WAS TESTED POSITIVE FOR HERPES AND IM WANNA B WITH THIS GIRL I FELL INLOVE WIT 5YRS AGO IM BEGGIN GET THE WORD OUT LETS MAKE A CHANGE AND SAVE HUMANATY F THE FDA IM ALL ABOUT THE PEOPLE AND IM WILLING TO DO ANYTHING EVEN RISK MY LIFE FOR ANYONE WHO WANTS THT CURE CUZZ I WANT IT TO AND ITS ABOUT TIME WE TALK ABOUT OXYGEN THERAPY GOD BLESS EVERYONE AND NOE U GUYS AND GIRLS ARE NOT ALONE IF ANYONE WANTS TO CHAT HIT ME AT [email protected] I WILL DO MY BEST TO ANSWER ANY QUESTIONS IM NOT THE SMARTEST BUT WEN IT COMES TO IT I DO MY BEST THOUGH I HHAVENT FINISHD SCHOOL YET N IM 23 WELL SRRY IM NOT GUNNA GIVE UP FIGHTING FOR WATS RITE N I WILL HELP CHANGE THIS WORLD MUCH LOVE TO ALL

    • i wish tHere was a CURE I STRESS EVERY DAY I PRAY THAT I DONT HAVE A OUTBREAK.I STAY SO STRESSED ABOUT IT FEELS LIKE I CANT MOVE ON I HAVE TO I HAVE MY KIDS I HAD IT EVERY SINCE 2004 IT JUST GETS ME AT TIME S.THANK GOD I DONT HAVE BAD OUT BREAKS, I THINK THE REASONS OF THE ONES THAT I HAVE IS FROM STRESS I THINK THE MEDICINE FOR IT MAKES ME THAT WAY.DONT WANT TO TALK TO NO ONE ABOUT IT I THINK THEY MIGHT THINK I AM NASTY,I AM ASHAMED BUT IT IS SOMETHING I HAVE TO LIVE WITH.

  11. To all who are newly infected by either of the Herpes strains, please take the time to get educated and take comfort in the fact that having Herpes is not a death sentence.
    It is very important to protect your sex partners. It is also very important to learn how to limit the number and severity of outbreaks.
    For those who criticize people infected with Herpes:
    Having herpes is NOT a big deal. You get a painful rash that lasts a few days in your genital area 1-4 times a year (though for most it is once a year or less). The number of annual breakouts decrease with time. That is it. No body parts falling off, no crippling episodes or loss of pleasure when not in an outbreak.
    And because it is most often spread by an unknowing carrier, contracting the virus is ABSOLUTELY no indication of promiscuity. It can just as easily be spread from one unknowing partner to another. People who have had sex with only a few partners their whole life can contract the disease from a loving partner, while sluts and gigoloes who have had sex with 100 partners can get lucky and not contract the virus. (Then they go on websites like this and criticize those who have practiced safe sex in monogamous relationships and still contracted the virus.)
    Herpes will only “ruin your life” if you let it. Get educated, be more careful, treat the outbreaks aggressively, and move on with your life. A LOT more people you know have herpes than you realize. 1 out of 5 of YOU KNOW have herpes. Think about it.

  12. Hey.. I put up a post about two months ago about me having herpes type 2.. Turns out the doc was wrong.. I was never blood tested till about a month ago.. What I had before was just a rash.. If this mistake happen to me, it prolly could happen to u.. So make sure u get blood tested.. Don’t just let the doc take a look at u and say yeah u got herpes.. For those of you that do have it, my prayers go out to u.. I hope a cure is found soon.. Good luck and God bless.. You can still rite to me if u want.. Ima good listener =] [email protected]

  13. reaad all these very sad stories….. pls do us all a big favour do not spread it around!!!!!!! i fell sorry for everyone but &èyrs aold all having sex,being promuscious is not too smart a thing to indulge in

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