Unusual effect: scientists accidentally created a vaccine against gonorrhea

New Zealand scientists have created a vaccine against meningitis and discovered she had an unexpected side effect – it was effective against gonorrhea.

On the results of their research, they told the medical journal Lancet.

In 2004-2006 New Zealand experienced an outbreak of meningitis. To combat the disease have been developed the vaccine MeNZB. As the analysis of data from sexual health clinics, among patients vaccinated by 31% decreased the number of patients with gonorrhea.

All data was reviewed by 15 thousand patients 15-30 years. The vaccine was developed to combat the bacteria Neisseria meningitidis that causes meningitis, but turned out to be effective and for her “cousin” Neisseria gonorrhoeae, which causes gonorrhea.

The duration of action of the vaccine was about two years. It is not in use, but has a composition similar to 4CMenB vaccine, which is used in the UK.

Symptoms of gonorrhea include a yellow or green discharge from the genitals, pain during urination and bleeding. However, one in ten men and over ¾ of women are asymptomatic. Untreated infection leads to infertility, inflammatory diseases of the pelvic organs and can be transmitted to child during pregnancy. Each year, gonorrhea sick about 78 million people.