Staphylococcus aureus is a bacterium that causes a range of potentially fatal infections. It is the most common cause of hospital-acquired infections, could cause inflammation of the heart or endocarditis, toxic-shock syndrome, severe lung infections as well as food poisoning.
Bacterial infections caught in hospitals kill 90,000 people per year in the USA. Staphylococcus aureus makes 80% of all the acquired infections.
The bacterium has even become resistant to many antibiotics which makes treatment difficult and sometimes even impossible. Back in 1972 only 2% of the Staphylococcus aureus bacteria were drug resistant. Today this number has risen to 63%.
This is when generating protective immunity against invasive S. aureus has become an important goal.
The new vaccine combines four of the proteins that triggered the most immune response in mice. When the mice were exposed to bacteria that cause infections in humans, the vaccine showed complete protection. Mice who did not receive the vaccines developed bacterial abscesses.
Many previous vaccines failed to be effective in human trials as well as they were in mice trials but hopefully this one won’t.