There has been a lot of talk this year about a vaccine that could finally cure herpes. Scientists have been trying to develop one for decades, and until recently there have not been any big advancements made in the field. But 2016 has been a big year for all herpes sufferers: there has finally been a breakthrough in herpes vaccine development. Does that mean that 2017 could be the year when doctors will finally find herpes cure? Let’s take a look at all the recent developments in the herpes field and see whether there is hope for herpes cure in 2017.
Biopharmaceutical company Genocea Biosciences, Inc. has been working on the experimental herpes
vaccine for several years now. It has recently been reported, that a series of three injections of their drug called GEN-003 showed great success in reducing viral shedding caused by herpes virus, therefore lowering the risk of future outbreaks and spreading the virus to others. GEN-003 manages herpes virus by targeting the T-cells in the immune system. Phase 3 trials are expected to start in 2017.
Genocea Biosciences is not the only company that is working on herpes vaccine at the moment. Rational Vaccines (RVx) is a biotechnology startup that was founded two years ago to develop a vaccine that could prevent and possibly even cure herpes viruses (both HSV-1 and HSV-2). Rational Vaccines are developing a new class of live herpes mutant vaccines called Profavax and Theravax. These vaccines resemble the outer coating of the HSV virus, and that makes them different from any previous herpes vaccines developed by Genocea Biosciences and other companies. Many people believe that these vaccines may have a significant advantage over GEN-003 and other herpes vaccines. However, there hasn’t been any testing of RVx’s vaccines on humans, so it is still too early to tell whether it could control herpes. Rational Vaccines has completed Phase I safety trials, and Genocea Biosciences is about to start Phase III trials in a few months. However, none of those vaccines, even if approved by FDA in the future, can’t guarantee to cure herpes. Trial reports provided by both companies are full of scientific data and can give false hope to people who do not have any medical background and fall under impression that those vaccines could miraculously cure herpes. There are also not a lot of information about the people who participated in the trials (overall health condition, eating habits, etc.). Hopefully, there will be more information about GEN-003 after Phase III trials are completed.
Today, more than 500 million people around the world are infected with herpes, and this number is rapidly growing each and every year. If we do nothing about this problem right now, by 2025 50% of women and 40% of men in the U.S. alone could suffer from genital herpes. So should we all just sit around and wait for herpes cure or is there another way to tackle herpes?
Luckily, there are many natural treatments that can help control herpes. Keeping your immune system healthy is a key to preventing outbreaks. That includes eating a healthy diet rich in fruits and vegetables and avoiding dairy, red meat, coffee, alcohol and junk food; exercising regularly, getting 7-8 hours of sleep every night and going to bed before 11 PM and eliminating stress from your life. There are also various herbs and foods that can help manage herpes, such as raw honey, garlic, oregano oil, etc. You are in control of your life, and it is important that you take care of yourself. There is no point of just waiting for some “miracle” herpes cure; it may take years for scientists to develop a vaccine that would actually work. Until then, you can take charge of your life and find out what you can do to help your body fight herpes virus.