Researchers say step closer to meningitis B vaccine

Researchers said Monday they were a step closer to developing a vaccine against the type of meningitis that mostly affects Europe and North America and kills hundreds every year.

A trial in adolescents in Australia, Poland and Spain showed them developing an immune response without serious side-effects, according to a study published in The medical journal.

After taking the drug, the test group generated antibodies that are active against 90 percent of strains in the meningitis B group affecting the United States and Europe.

"Our data suggest that this vaccine is a promising and broadly protective meningococcal serogroup B ," said study lead author Peter Richmond from the University of Western Australia's School of Paediatrics and Child Health.

Meningitis, an inflammation of the lining around the brain and spinal cord, mostly targets teenagers -- with a of between five percent and 14 percent.

Many survivors suffer permanent and limb or hearing loss.

Vaccines exist against types A and C meningitis, but none that is broadly effective against strains in serogroup B, mostly prevalent in industrialised nations.

Type A is the primary cause of epidemic meningitis in Africa.

"The results showed that three doses produced an immune response, indicating protection, in 80 percent to 100 percent of adolescents," said a statement.

"Mild to moderate pain at the injection site was the most commonly reported side effect."

The authors said further trials must be held to determine the duration of vaccine protection.

"If additional studies show similar immunogenicity (the ability to produce an ) and tolerability, this vaccine might help to reduce the global burden of invasive meningococcal disease," said Richmond.

Related Stories

Meningitis B type vaccine available soon

date Jan 20, 2012

(Medical Xpress) -- Researchers in Chile have successfully tested a vaccine against meningococcus B, a strain of bacteria that causes meningococcal diseases, including one of the commonest forms of meningitis, a disease in ...

FDA expands meningitis vaccine approval

date Oct 22, 2007

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has expanded approval for the use of Menactra, a bacterial meningitis vaccine, to children ages 2 to 10.

Recommended for you

Vaccine for West Nile Virus enters human clinical trials

date 1 hour ago

A clinical trial of a new investigational vaccine designed to protect against West Nile Virus infection will be sponsored by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), part of the National Institutes ...

FDA clears drug for leading form of cystic fibrosis

date Jul 02, 2015

Federal health officials have approved a new combination drug for the most common form of cystic fibrosis, the debilitating inherited disease that causes internal mucus buildup, lung infections and early death. But it will ...

User comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.