The Impact of the Tuberculosis Vaccine Essay

1630 Words7 Pages
The Impact of the Tuberculosis Vaccine Abstract Tuberculosis is one of the most infectious diseases in the world. With almost one third of the world infected with this virus, people are striving to help prevent the spread of this disease (NIAID, 2001). One prevention technique for tuberculosis is the BCG (Bacillus of Calmette and Guerin) vaccine. In the early twentieth century Calmette and Guerin worked together to isolate a strain of the disease creating the first BCG vaccine. Throughout the century the scientists improved the BCG vaccine and today there are several different strains of the vaccine available. However, even today its full effects on the disease are unknown. The exploration of the effects of the vaccine, the best…show more content…
When the body is finally faced with the Tuberculosis Vaccine Page 2 organism, it will hopefully have adapted enough to the strain of Mycobacterium bovis to immediately contain the Mycobacterium tuberculosis. The goal of the vaccine is to keep the body functioning normally, even after contact with Mycobacterium tuberculosis. The BCG vaccine was first created in the early twentieth century. In 1906, in Paris, scientists Calmette and Guerin began experimenting with the vaccine for tuberculosis (NIAID, 2001). They isolated a strain of Mycobacterium bovis from a cow and began their experimentation on the living organism. After running tests on animals for over a decade, genetic changes began occurring in the original strain; this new strain was called the BCG vaccine. In Europe, in 1921, Calmette and Guerin introduced their vaccine to their first human subjects (WHO, 5). They fed the vaccine to baby patients orally. By 1928, the Health Committee of the League of Nations admitted it into use (Pediatric Research, 2002). Tuberculosis got off to a rocky start when it was first administered. In Lubeck, Germany, almost a quarter of the babies given the BCG vaccine got the tuberculosis disease or infection from the vaccine itself. The scandal caused general public to be skeptical of the vaccine. Following the outbreak, it was discovered that the vaccine had been
Open Document