Diseases, Conditions, Syndromes

Researchers bring us one step closer to universal influenza vaccine

The scourge of the influenza virus devastates health and claims many lives worldwide each year. It is especially daunting because vaccines are only protective when they are well matched to the strains circulating in the population. ...

Health

Can surgical masks protect you from getting the flu?

Australia has just suffered a severe flu season, with 299,211 laboratory-confirmed cases, at last count, and 662 deaths. This might be a sign of what's to come for the UK and US as the virus spreads to the northern hemisphere.

Diseases, Conditions, Syndromes

A new way to fight deadly fungal infections

Only a small fraction of the more than one million species of fungi can cause infectious disease in humans. But for the growing population of people with weakened immune systems in the United States and around the world, ...

Diseases, Conditions, Syndromes

Philippines begins mass vaccinations after polio returns

Parents lined up from sunrise holding sleeping infants as the Philippines launched a campaign on Monday to vaccinate millions of children against polio, which has re-emerged nearly two decades after the nation's last cases.

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Vaccine

A vaccine is a biological preparation that improves immunity to a particular disease. A vaccine typically contains a small amount of an agent that resembles a microorganism. The agent stimulates the body's immune system to recognize the agent as foreign, destroy it, and "remember" it, so that the immune system can more easily recognize and destroy any of these microorganisms that it later encounters.

Vaccines can be prophylactic (e.g. to prevent or ameliorate the effects of a future infection by any natural or "wild" pathogen), or therapeutic (e.g. vaccines against cancer are also being investigated; see cancer vaccine).

The term vaccine derives from Edward Jenner's 1796 use of the term cow pox (Latin variolæ vaccinæ, adapted from the Latin vaccīn-us, from vacca cow), which, when administered to humans, provided them protection against smallpox.

This text uses material from Wikipedia, licensed under CC BY-SA