Chilean researchers are reporting promising results with a new vaccine that can prevent a common cause of bacterial meningitis.
Researchers tested the effectiveness of the vaccine --- called 4CMenB – in more than 1,600 adolescents in Chile. After two or three doses, nearly all of the teens were found to be protected from meningococcus B – a common cause of the disease.
The study, published online in The Lancet, noted vaccines already exist for four other bacterial strains that causes meningococcal disease, which is common in North America, South America and Europe.
The new vaccine had no harmful effects on the teens involved in the trial.
"Further study is needed to provide information about the immunogenicity and tolerability of 4CMenB in various age groups, including infants, who bear the largest disease burden worldwide," they wrote.
Meningitis, which can be caused by a virus or bacteria, is an inflammation of the membranes surrounding the spinal cord and the brain. According to the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the bacterial version is more severe and can cause brain damage and even death.