Hard Science

Scientists Close to a Vaccine for the Toxic Shock Syndrome

Soon, toxic shock syndrome may be a thing of the past.

Jelor GallegoJune 13th 2016

Scientists are currently working on a vaccine that is showing promise against Toxic Shock Syndrome (TSS). A team from the Medical University of Vienna is testing the vaccine for the deadly disease, which has also been dubbed the “tampon disease” (as it often comes about as a result of the use of women’s hygiene products).

TSS is a severe circulatory and organ failure caused by bacterial toxins, usually triggered by bacteria from the Staphylococcus group. It was first described in the 1980s, when general symptoms of sepsis (or blood poisoning) occurred in young women who had used tampons.

Below is a short video on how vaccines work:

The vaccine, currently in clinical Phase I trial, has now been found to be safe and effective, and to have practically no side effects. Developed from a detoxified Staphylococcus toxin, it has been tested on 46 young men and women.

The study has been published in the June 2016 issue of The Lancet Infectious DiseasesWhile the tests are already underway, the vaccine is still several years away from clinical use.

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