In the present study, the protective effect of 1T1, a lambda-carrageenan extracted from the red seaweed Gigartina skottsbergii was evaluated in a murine model of herpes simplex virus type 2 (HSV-2) genital infection. Six to eight-week-old female BALB/c mice were intravaginally inoculated with a lethal dose of HSV-2 (MS strain) and pre- or post-infection treated with different doses of a 10mg/ml solution of 1T1. A single topical administration of 1T1 shortly before infection of BALB/c mice with HSV-2 protected 9 out of 10 mice from HSV-2-induced lesions and mortality, compared with only 10% survival in control mice. In addition, 1T1 produced a total blockade in virus shedding in the vaginal secretions. When 1T1 pre-treatment was reinforced with a second dose 2h after infection, total protection was observed even when the prophylactic administration had taken place at 60min before infection. The irreversible virucidal action of 1T1 against herpes virus seems to be responsible of its protective effect against virus replication and mortality following vaginal HSV-2 infection.