The MAP Vaccine – A Cure for IBD?!

5 things you NEED to know about the MAP vaccine – our biggest lead to curing Crohn’s!

My new posting schedule is once a week – Monday at 8am! Enjoy this article!

  1. First the basics

Johne’s disease is a disease of cattle that is strikingly similar to IBD. It is chronic and sometimes fatal, and it affects the small intestines. Some side effects are diarrhea and weight loss. Johne’s disease is caused by mycobacterium avium, subspecies paratuberculosis, or MAP. Because of its similarities to IBD, scientists began to question if MAP could also be related to IBD, and after their studies, they have concluded that there is a strong association and consistency between the MAP bacteria and crohn’s disease. With this information, scientists are now developing a vaccine that is currently in its early stages. The goal of this vaccine is to eliminate the MAP bacteria and, therefore, cure IBD.

  1. How does MAP spread from cattle to people?

The MAP bacteria is found in cattle. Therefore, the most prominent way that this bacteria is spread is through milk, however, it can also be spread through cattle feces. An estimated 68% to 91% of dairy herds are infected with MAP in the U.S. However, not everyone who comes in contact with the MAP bacteria gets the disease. Age, sex, and genes play a factor in if you will get IBD in result of ingesting the bacteria. Furthermore, studies show that how much of the bacteria that you ingest determines if you will develop ulcerative colitis or crohn’s disease, with crohn’s disease meaning that you ingested a larger amount of the bacteria.

  1. Is dysbiosis a lie?

Remember when your doctor explained to you that your own immune system was attacking “good” bacteria in your intestine, leaving your intestine in the crossfire? That’s called dysbiosis. And this theory that we have believed for so long may be true! Everyone has good bacterias in their intestines. Scientists have believed that IBD was the cause of a hyperactive immune system that attacks the bacteria in your intestines. There is evidence to support this, so there are still a lot of questions as to what is true or false. No one can definitely prove one theory right or wrong just yet.

  1. The damage is done 😦

I’m very sorry to report that even if this vaccine was created tomorrow, it is not expected to fix the inflammation that has already occured. This means that if you already have IBD, whatever inflammation, strictures, or obstructions you already have will have to be treated the old-fashioned way, which many times means infusions or surgery.

  1. What’s our progress right now?

The good news is that this vaccine is being worked on as you read this so don’t lose hope! This vaccine is still in early stages. However, hopefully I have something a lot better to report come 2022.

Thanks for reading!


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Works Cited

“Crohn’s MAP Vaccine.” Crohn’s MAP Vaccine,

McNees, Adrienne L., et al. “Mycobacterium Paratuberculosis as a Cause of Crohn’s Disease.” Current Neurology and Neuroscience Reports., U.S. National Library of Medicine, 2015,

Pierce, Ellen S. “Ulcerative Colitis and Crohn’s Disease: Is Mycobacterium Avium Subspecies Paratuberculosis the Common Villain?” Current Neurology and Neuroscience Reports., U.S. National Library of Medicine, 2010,