Clinical vaccine research in children in Malta

Authors: David Pace

Corresponding: David Pace (david.pace@um.edu.mt)

Keywords: meningococcal vaccines, clinical trial, vaccinology

Doi: none

Abstract:
Clinical vaccine trials in children are extremely important for the investigation of new vaccines as well as for studying different ways of scheduling vaccines that are currently in use. Data from such trials, in addition to epidemiological data on the infectious disease the vaccines are trying to prevent, can be used to introduce vaccines as well as to improve the current immunisation schedules. The purpose of this review is to showcase the clinical vaccine research on meningococcal C vaccines in children that was carried out in Malta in collaboration with the UK from 2010 to 2013, data from which have already been presented and published in peer reviewed journals. This review gives a synopsis of the immunogenicity of reduced dose meningococcal C vaccine schedules in infants as well as the immune kinetics of the antibodies induced following a booster dose at 12 months of age. The practicality of the study findings are discussed, including their relevance to the meningococcal vaccines that were recently introduced on the national immunisation schedule in Malta. Hopefully this research will encourage doctors to show interest in leading future research in children in Malta with appropriate support from our clinical and academic institutions.

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