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Superbug vaccines “within 10 years”

A vaccine for C difficile is possible within three years, and a vaccine for MRSA within 10 years, according to Sir Liam Donaldson, Chief Medical Officer for England.

Sir Liam made the claim at the launch of his 2007 Annual Report, which was published yesterday.
"Vaccination is arguably the most important public health development in the history of humankind," he said. "Over the last 200 years it has saved hundreds of millions of lives worldwide.

"The continuing work to develop new vaccines and potentially save more lives in the future is a testament to the work of Edward Jenner two centuries ago. New vaccines could not just prevent infectious diseases, but could also prevent or treat some cancers and other chronic conditions."

As well as vaccinations against hospital "superbugs", Sir Liam highlighted the development of a wider spectrum influenza vaccine to combat the threat of an influenza pandemic. The report also describes potential vaccines for chronic diseases, including type 1 diabetes.

Annual Report of the Chief Medical Officer 2007

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Do you think a vaccine for C difficile is possible? Your comments: (Terms and conditions apply)

"Maybe, but I don't think so. This government and the CMO are simply wasting time and funds and hyping up hopes. Scientists worked on a vaccine for Staphylococcus some 20 years before penicillin was invented but did not succeed. Now we know the vaccination developed against MRSA works for some 45 days. It looks as if the CMO is ill informed and is hyping up false hope." - Dr Srivasta, Guildford