A new vaccine has been developed by scientists to reduce the number of Rotavirus deaths around the globe, specifically in sub-Saharan Africa, according to npr.org.
Over 100,000 children are killed by this disease every year, and this new vaccine is expected to lower that number by as much as two-thirds when it gets approved by the World Health Association, according to npr.org.
Rotavirus is a contagious disease that causes newborn babies to have “Irritable Bowel Syndrome,” or diarrhea. Numerous vaccines already exist for this condition, but they are all liquid and need to be refrigerated. The new vaccine has been freeze-dried, or dipped in liquid nitrogen, and has had all the liquid taken out of it via a vacuum chamber, according to Google News.
The vaccine is able to stay at room temperature for years, and in over 100-degree weather for months, this way it can be stored in developing countries without expiration, according to Google News.
When the vaccine (BRV-PV) is needed, the doctor inserts a salt solution into the powder and puts a few drops in the baby’s mouth, according to nejm.org.
“The bottom line is: This is a fantastic new development,” said Zulfiqar Bhutta, who studies global health at the Hospital for Sick Children in Toronto, reported npr.org.