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February 25th, 2010
02:33 PM ET

When will we see a herpes cure?

As a feature of CNNhealth.com, our team of expert doctors will answer readers' questions. Here's a question for Dr. Gupta.

From Lloyd Bartley, Bowling Green, Kentucky

“How close are scientists to developing a cure for herpes, figuratively speaking will we be seeing a break through in 10, 20, or even 30 years?”

Answer:

Well, Lloyd, there is good news and bad news on the herpes front. The good news: Researchers have made serious strides and now better understand the mechanism behind herpes outbreaks. The bad news: There is very little funding for that research.

After receiving your question we reached out to a leading herpes expert, Bryan Cullen, the director at the Center for Virology at Duke University. Cullen is hopeful that a cure for herpes could come within 10 years, once funding hurdles are crossed.

Nearly one in five people over age 12 in the U.S. is affected by herpes. It is caused by a virus - either the herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV-1) or the herpes simplex virus type 2 (HSV-2). Both strains can cause genital herpes, but HSV-1 usually infects the mouth and produces cold sores.

Despite funding challenges, Cullen and his team are inching closer to a cure. They conducted a study recently that identified the pathway herpes takes as it infects. They now know how herpes embeds itself into the cells and how it eludes treatment. Now that they have honed in on the physiology of the disease - and its triggers - researchers believe they are steps closer to creating drugs that could cure herpes.

While we wait for a cure, there are drugs out there that can at least suppress herpes. Three antiviral drugs: acyclovir, valacyclovir, and famciclovir are commonly recommended to quell outbreaks. A physician might recommend taking these drugs when an outbreak occurs to quiet symptoms; or taking them continuously to reduce the likelihood of an outbreak.

And of course the best way to avoid spreading herpes is to abstain from sex, but if you are sexually active, engage in safe-sex practices such as using condoms.

Editor's Note: Medical news is a popular but sensitive subject rooted in science. We receive many comments on this blog each day; not all are posted. Our hope is that much will be learned from the sharing of useful information and personal experiences based on the medical and health topics of the blog. We encourage you to focus your comments on those medical and health topics and we appreciate your input. Thank you for your participation.


Filed under: Expert Q&A • Sex • Virus

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    🌴
    ____________________________
    _𝐇𝐄𝐑𝐏𝐄𝐒 𝐕𝐈𝐑𝐔𝐒 𝐂𝐔𝐑𝐄
    ____________________________
    𝐈 𝐡𝐚𝐯𝐞 𝐭𝐡𝐞 𝐡𝐞𝐫𝐛𝐚𝐥 𝐜𝐮𝐫𝐞 𝐟𝐨𝐫 _𝐇𝐄𝐑𝐏𝐄𝐒 𝐕𝐈𝐑𝐔𝐒 𝟏&𝟐,𝐦𝐲 𝐡𝐞𝐫𝐛𝐚𝐥 𝐜𝐮𝐫𝐞 𝐟𝐨𝐫 𝐭𝐡𝐞 𝐯𝐢𝐫𝐮𝐬 𝐰𝐨𝐫𝐤𝐬 𝐛𝐲 𝐛𝐨𝐨𝐬𝐭𝐢𝐧𝐠 𝐭𝐡𝐞 𝐢𝐦𝐦𝐮𝐧𝐞 𝐬𝐲𝐬𝐭𝐞𝐦 𝐚𝐧𝐝 𝐭𝐚𝐫𝐠𝐞𝐭𝐢𝐧𝐠 𝐭𝐡𝐞 𝐬𝐨𝐮𝐫𝐜𝐞 𝐨𝐟 𝐭𝐡𝐞 _𝐕𝐢𝐫𝐮𝐬.𝐑𝐞𝐬𝐮𝐥𝐭𝐬 𝐡𝐚𝐯𝐞 𝐫𝐞𝐩𝐞𝐚𝐭𝐞𝐝𝐥𝐲 𝐩𝐫𝐨𝐯𝐞𝐧 𝐭𝐡𝐚𝐭 𝐭𝐡𝐢𝐬 𝐢𝐬 𝐭𝐡𝐞 𝐰𝐨𝐫𝐥𝐝 𝐟𝐢𝐫𝐬𝐭 𝐩𝐫𝐨𝐝𝐮𝐜𝐭 𝐭𝐡𝐚𝐭 𝐡𝐚𝐬 𝐜𝐨𝐦𝐩𝐥𝐞𝐭𝐞𝐥𝐲 𝐜𝐮𝐫𝐞𝐝 𝐚 𝐥𝐨𝐭 𝐨𝐟 𝐩𝐞𝐨𝐩𝐥𝐞 𝐰𝐢𝐭𝐡 _𝐇𝐄𝐑𝐏𝐄𝐒.𝐍𝐨𝐭 𝐣𝐮𝐬𝐭 𝐒𝐮𝐩𝐩𝐫𝐞𝐬𝐬𝐢𝐧𝐠 𝐭𝐡𝐞 _𝐕𝐈𝐑𝐔𝐒 𝐛𝐮𝐭 𝐚𝐜𝐭𝐮𝐚𝐥𝐥𝐲 𝐜𝐨𝐦𝐩𝐥𝐞𝐭𝐞𝐥𝐲 𝐞𝐥𝐢𝐦𝐢𝐧𝐚𝐭𝐢𝐧𝐠 𝐢𝐭,𝐥𝐞𝐚𝐯𝐢𝐧𝐠 𝐭𝐡𝐞𝐦 𝐰𝐢𝐭𝐡 𝐚𝐛𝐬𝐨𝐥𝐮𝐭𝐞𝐥𝐲 𝐰𝐢𝐭𝐡 𝐧𝐨 𝐌𝐞𝐝𝐢𝐜𝐚𝐥 𝐭𝐫𝐚𝐜𝐞 𝐨𝐟 𝐭𝐡𝐞 _𝐯𝐢𝐫𝐮𝐬,𝐮𝐧𝐥𝐢𝐤𝐞 𝐩𝐫𝐞𝐬𝐜𝐫𝐢𝐩𝐭𝐢𝐨𝐧 𝐀𝐧𝐭𝐢𝐯𝐢𝐫𝐚𝐥 𝐦𝐞𝐝𝐢𝐜𝐚𝐭𝐢𝐨𝐧𝐬 𝐰𝐡𝐢𝐜𝐡 𝐨𝐧𝐥𝐲 𝐬𝐮𝐩𝐩𝐫𝐞𝐬𝐬𝐞𝐝 𝐭𝐡𝐞 _𝐯𝐢𝐫𝐮𝐬.𝐌𝐲 𝐧𝐚𝐭𝐮𝐫𝐚𝐥 𝐇𝐞𝐫𝐛𝐚𝐥 𝐜𝐨𝐦𝐛𝐢𝐧𝐚𝐭𝐢𝐨𝐧 𝐚𝐜𝐭𝐮𝐚𝐥𝐥𝐲 𝐚𝐭𝐭𝐚𝐜𝐤’𝐬 𝐭𝐡𝐞 _𝐡𝐞𝐫𝐩𝐞𝐬 𝐜𝐞𝐥𝐥𝐬 𝐭𝐡𝐚𝐭 𝐥𝐢𝐞𝐬 𝐢𝐧 𝐭𝐡𝐞 𝐧𝐞𝐫𝐯𝐨𝐮𝐬 𝐬𝐲𝐬𝐭𝐞𝐦 𝐰𝐢𝐭𝐡𝐨𝐮𝐭 𝐝𝐚𝐦𝐚𝐠𝐢𝐧𝐠 𝐚𝐧𝐲 𝐨𝐟 𝐲𝐨𝐮𝐫 𝐜𝐞𝐥𝐥 𝐚𝐧𝐝 𝐢𝐭 𝐡𝐚𝐬 𝐧𝐨 𝐬𝐢𝐝𝐞 𝐞𝐟𝐟𝐞𝐜𝐭𝐬.

    𝐓𝐨 𝐎𝐫𝐝𝐞𝐫 𝐅𝐨𝐫 _𝐇𝐄𝐑𝐏𝐄𝐒,_𝐇𝐈𝐕 & _𝐇𝐏𝐕 𝐇𝐞𝐫𝐛𝐚𝐥 𝐂𝐮𝐫𝐞:

    𝐂𝐎𝐍𝐓𝐀𝐂𝐓 𝐌𝐄 𝐃𝐑.𝐎𝐋𝐀𝐌𝐈𝐃𝐄 𝐒𝐀𝐌𝐁𝐎𝐋𝐀 𝐃𝐈𝐑𝐄𝐂𝐓𝐋𝐘 𝐍𝐎𝐖 𝐕𝐈𝐀:👇🏿

    ☎𝐖𝐇𝐀𝐓𝐒𝐀𝐏𝐏: +𝟐𝟑𝟒𝟕𝟎𝟓𝟕𝟎𝟎𝟕𝟎𝟐𝟑.

    𝐄𝐌𝐀𝐈𝐋:𝐇𝐄𝐑𝐁𝐀𝐋𝐈𝐒𝐓𝐎𝐋𝐀𝐌𝐈𝐃𝐄@𝐆𝐌𝐀𝐈𝐋.𝐂𝐎𝐌

    𝐖𝐄𝐁𝐒𝐈𝐓𝐄:𝐖𝐖𝐖.𝐃𝐑.𝐎𝐋𝐀𝐌𝐈𝐃𝐄𝐇𝐄𝐑𝐁𝐀𝐋𝐂𝐔𝐑𝐄.𝐂𝐎𝐌

    January 17, 2021 at 21:31 | Report abuse | Reply
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