Jul 12, 2017

Vaccine for meningitis may prevent gonorrhea

Oregon State University / Flickr

A vaccine against meningitis may also protect against gonorrhea, Science News reports. In a study of New Zealand residents published in The Lancet, vaccinated individuals were one-third less likely to develop gonorrhea infections than unvaccinated individuals.

Why it matters: So far, there's no vaccine for gonorrhea, which the World Health Organization says infects 88 million people each year. It's traditionally treated with antibiotics, but a recent WHO report found that untreatable strains of the STI are rapidly spreading.

"We are in desperate need for new therapies," Christine Johnston, an infectious disease specialist at the University of Washington in Seattle, told Science News.

How it works: The bacteria in the vaccine (group B meningococcal bacteria) and Neisseria gonorrhoeae are closely related. It isn't surprising that immunity to one might transfer to another.

The study: After noticing that gonorrhea rates seemed to decline in regions where the vaccine was introduced, the researchers cross-referenced the New Zealand vaccine registry with 14,000 New Zealanders who had chlamydia, gonorrhea or both. Since both groups were equally likely to contract chlamydia, the differences in gonorrhea rates probably weren't due to lifestyle.

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  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 7 p.m. ET: 1,192,028 — Total deaths: 64,549 — Total recoveries: 246,148Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 7 p.m. ET: 305,820 — Total deaths: 8,291 — Total recoveries: 14,616Map.
  3. Public health latest: CDC launches national trackers and recommends face coverings in public. Federal government will cover costs of COVID-19 treatment for uninsured. The virus is hitting poor, minority communities harder and upending childbirth.
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U.S. coronavirus updates: Death toll surpasses 8,200, case count tops 300,000

Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins; Map: Andrew Witherspoon/Axios

Recorded deaths from the coronavirus surpassed 8,100 in the U.S. on Saturday, per Johns Hopkins data. The death toll in the U.S. has risen over 1,000 every day for the past four days, since April 1.

The big picture: Trump said Saturday that America's "toughest week" is ahead. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, said the country should expect to see deaths continue to increase in the next week.

Go deeperArrowUpdated 3 hours ago - Health

World coronavirus updates: Spain tracks more cases than Italy

Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins, the CDC and China's Health Ministry. Note: China numbers are for the mainland only and U.S. numbers include repatriated citizens and confirmed plus presumptive cases from the CDC

Spain overtook Italy in its number of coronavirus cases on Saturday. The global death toll has surpassed 62,000, per Johns Hopkins data.

The latest: About half the planet's population is on lockdown amid the coronavirus crisis. Fatalities are exponentially increasing across Europe, with roughly half of deaths worldwide located in Italy and Spain.

Go deeperArrowUpdated 6 hours ago - Health