The British biotech company Acambis has recently become the only company to have taken a vaccine against C. difficile into clinical development.
The British biotech company Acambis has recently become the only company to have taken a vaccine against C. difficile into clinical development. In fact, 600 men and women will be given the vaccine in the coming month, and, if successful, the vaccine could be “on the market within three years and used to treat severely ill patients or to mass vaccinate pensioners. C. difficile, which thrives in filthy conditions and has been a contributing factor to approximately 18,000 deaths in the past decade, can be treated with antibiotics, although many patients relapse with bouts of diarrhea.
Up to this point, clinical trials have shown that the new vaccine has been safe, with documentation of minor side effects like occasional red arm or headache. In the lone trial that was conducted in the United States, the vaccine was shown to rapidly clear up recurrent infections. If new trails are successful, more larger-scale trials will need to be conducted before the vaccine is approved for any widespread use.