SATURDAY, OCTOBER 1, 2016

C. difficile vaccine trials planned for U.K. hospitals

North Manchester General Hospital said on Oct. 29 that a vaccine for "super bug" Clostridium difficile will begin trials in England hospitals in November.

Approximately 1,000 patients contracted the hospital-acquired infection in Greater Manchester hospitals last year. The infection is highly contagious and immune to most antibiotics, making it difficult to cure.

The hospital trials in Manchester will test the vaccine with 200 people, and an additional 1,600 people across the country, Manchester Evening News reports.

Thomas Blanchard, an infectious diseases consultant at North Manchester General Hospital, said they are looking for people who have been in the hospital twice in the past 12 months for the trials.

"This is very exciting as this will be the first vaccine to fight a hospital super bug," Blanchard said, according to Manchester Evening News. "Tetanus is gone from the U.K. and the reason is that everyone gets vaccinated against it. There's a strong track record that this type of vaccine is really safe. It will have to go into general widespread use before it does that, but I really think it will work."

Researchers have been looking for a C. difficile vaccine for more than 10 years, and officials are confident that the hospital trials will be successful and a license will be granted, Manchester Evening News reports.