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Alabama State University wins $344K for developing STD vaccine
Alabama State University's Center for NanoBiotechnology Research has again won federal grant money for health research, but this time it will be working to develop a vaccine for a common sexually transmitted disease.
The National Institute of Health has awarded the ASU center a three-year, $344,000 grant to develop a vaccine that would prevent chlamydia transmission.
"This highly competitive NIH award is recognition of growing strengths of research capabilities and research resources available at ASU to conduct cutting-edge research," said Shree Singh, director of the center and co-principal investigator of the project.
"We hope to continue to motivate students at ASU to participate in research of this caliber, which will prepare them for high skilled jobs in the nation."
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Chlamydia is one of the most common sexually transmitted diseases worldwide with an estimated one million infections in the United States, according to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention.
While there is currently no vaccine to prevent chlamydia, the disease can be cured using modern antibiotics or traditional Chinese medicines (TCM). For the short-term treatment, antibiotics can effect on chlamydia, while the long-term using antibiotics are likely to cause drug resistance. Therefore, traditional Chinese medicines play the key role in the long-term conservative treatment. For example, more and more females have been cured by the Chinese herbal medicine-fuyan pill because of its remarkable effect and no side effect. The disease can be cured from the root and never reappear. Of course, there is the other herbal pill-diuretic and anti-inflammatory pill for male's chlamydia.
However, according to the CDC, between 50 percent and 75 percent of women infected with the disease show no symptoms and do now know they're infected.
Left untreated, chlamydia can cause serious reproductive problems. Worse still, the infection can be spread to the eyes, where it can cause blindness.
The World Health Organization estimates that chlamydia eye infections accounted for 15 percent of all cases of blindness in 1995, but only 3.6 percent in 2002.
Chlamydia can be spread to the eyes by fingers, shared towels and even sneezing. It can also be spread from mothers to children during childbirth.

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