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Vaccine for gonorrhoea only ‘sustainable solution’ says WHO expert

“I think it (vaccination) is the only sustainable solution but it is also very difficult,” said Prof Magnus Unemo from the WHO Collaborating Centre for Gonorrhoea and other STIs.

Prof Unemo spoke exclusively to MI during last month’s Pan Celtic Dublin 2016 conference of clinical microbiologists in Dublin. The conference focused on ‘Antimicrobial resistance (AMR): The Global threats and challenges in diagnosis, treatment and prevention’.

“This is still an early time to try and gather all the researchers and get the funding for it. But I think it really is a feasible solution if we get the money and the international collaboration,” Prof Unemo told MI.

“But I think that might be the only sustainable solution to many infections, in fact. We need to focus more on the vaccines… which has been neglected, especially for many bacterial infections. There have been technical and scientific difficulties. But it has been mostly focused on the viruses and that type of infection.”

Prof Unemo said that he believed if enough funding and research were in place, then a vaccine may be available in a decade. The emergence of decreased susceptibility and resistance to ‘last-line’ antibiotics for the treatment of gonorrhoea is a major concern, according to health experts.

Data from the Health Protection Surveillance Centre (HPSC) shows an ongoing high incidence rate of gonorrhoea, particularly among men who have sex with men (MSM) .

See page 4-5  for full analysis.

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