New TB vaccine protects half of people with latent infection


ISLAMABAD: An experimental GlaxoSmithKline vaccine could prevent tuberculosis from developing in half of those who receive it, making it potentially the first new shot against the global killer in a century, researchers say.
Given the failure of other candidates in recent years, it marks a milestone in the fight against TB, although the 54 percent efficacy rate achieved in adults in a mid-stage clinical trial is low compared to immunizations for other diseases.
The current vaccine called Bacille Calmette-Guérin (BCG) was developed in 1921 and is given routinely to babies in countries with high rates of TB to prevent severe disease.
However, BCG protection wears off in just a few years and it does nothing to protect against the most common form of TB that invades the lungs of adults and adolescents, and can be transmitted through coughing and sneezing.


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