Will herpes ever be cured?
Genital Herpes Treatment and Care There is no cure for genital herpes. However, daily use of antiviral medications can prevent or shorten outbreaks. Antiviral medicines can also reduce your chance of infecting it to others. It will still be a long time before these experiments lead to the first human trials of gene therapy to cure herpes.
Jerome estimates that there are at least three years to go. From the early days of the experiments, Jerome's team learned to use a cutting enzyme called “meganuclease” that can concentrate on a segment of herpes DNA and cut both chains of the double helix. Herpes can hide in nerve cells for a long time before becoming active, making it difficult to find a cure. Herpes can be transmitted when an infected person has lesions, blisters, and open sores on their body or when you don't have any symptoms.
Recurrent genital herpes is most common in the first year after the initial infection and decreases as time goes on. Keith Jerome began to explore the idea that lifelong herpes virus infections could be cured by using gene therapy tools to cut DNA. While there is no cure for herpes, the severity of the virus varies over the lifespan of an infected person. The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that approximately 500 million people live with genital herpes worldwide and several billion have an oral herpes infection.
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Transmission of both types can occur with or without sores, since herpes can be released or eliminated through skin cells. The first step will be to repeat their experiments with HSV-2 in guinea pigs, which, unlike mice, experience natural reactivations of herpes virus infections, just like humans. Hidden herpes viruses are disabled by an injection that tracks infected nerve cells and induces them to produce special enzymes that cut genes, which work like molecular scissors, to cut viral genes in specific locations. In contrast, genital herpes is caused by the herpes simplex virus type 2 (HSV-), which is normally transmitted through anal, vaginal, or oral sex.
However, there is currently no vaccine that can help prevent the spread of herpes, so a person should use appropriate protection and precautions when having sex with other people. It will still be a long time before these experiments with mice lead to human clinical trials to cure herpes. People who have HSV I are likely to be infected with HSV II, the most common cause of genital herpes.