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Taking a Shot at Sinking the 'Cruise Ship' Virus

An experimental vaccine shows promise for protecting people against a nasty stomach virus known for causing outbreaks of diarrhea and vomiting on cruise ships, in nursing homes, and in other close quarters.

The research is very early and much more testing is needed. But the injectable norovirus vaccine cleared its first hurdle, proving safe and stimulating an immune response in a study of about 75 healthy adults.

Norovirus is responsible for about half of all outbreaks traced to contaminated food or water. It causes 21 million cases of acute gastroenteritis (stomach flu) per year in the United States.

"You really can't do anything while it runs its course," says researcher John Treanor, MD, chief of the infectious diseases division at the University of Rochester Medical Center in New York.
 
 

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