Meet MGen, a New STI Going Around That No One is Talking About

Health experts are raising the alarm about a sharp rise in sexually transmitted infections. Preliminary data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention counted 2.5 million cases of syphilis, chlamydia and gonorrhea in 2021, all on a steep rise compared to previous years.

Antibiotics are clearly useful and have saved millions of lives, but if they kill off a large portion of Lactobacillus, it can create an imbalance and can develop into bacterial vaginosis, the most common vaginal disorder in women. This condition allows unwanted microbes to set up sticky biofilms that can resist being flushed out by the immune system or medications.

"BV actually sets you up for all viral, bacterial and parasitic sexually transmitted infections," said Melissa Herbst-Kralovetz, PhD, director of the Women's Health Research Program at University of Arizona Health Sciences and an associate professor of Basic Medical Sciences, Obstetrics and Gynecology, and Clinical Translational Sciences at the College of Medicine – Phoenix.

About the College

Founded in 2007, the University of Arizona College of Medicine – Phoenix inspires and trains exemplary physicians, scientists and leaders to optimize health and health care in Arizona and beyond. By cultivating collaborative research locally and globally, the college accelerates discovery in a number of critical areas — including cancer, stroke, traumatic brain injury and cardiovascular disease. Championed as a student-centric campus, the college has graduated 745 physicians, all of whom received exceptional training from nine clinical partners and more than 2,700 diverse faculty members. As the anchor to the Phoenix Bioscience Core, which is projected to have an economic impact of $3.1 billion by 2025, the college prides itself on engaging with the community, fostering education, inclusion, access and advocacy.