On World Meningitis Day (October 5th 2022) we remind ourselves that meningitis remains a deadly disease, but there has been significant progress thanks to safe and effective vaccines. The Meningococcal A conjugate vaccine (MenAfriVac®) that protects against serogroup A meningococci is now widely implemented in the meningitis belt of Sub-Saharan Africa and is estimated to have already saved more than 150,000 lives through 2020. But other serogroups are still circulating, and the introduction of the next generation of a meningococcal vaccine covering 5 strains of the meningococcus A, C, W, X, and Y (NmCV5) is eagerly anticipated. A vaccine against GroupB streptococcus, the most common cause of meningitis in newborns is also progressing through late-stage clinical trials, as recently discussed at the ISSAD 2021 meeting, which was hosted by LSHTM.
For World Meningitis Day 2022, the Vaccine Centre is joined by colleagues from the MRC Gambia Unit to discuss Meningitis in the African Meningitis Belt and these exciting new vaccine developments that could help bring us closer to defeating meningitis by 2030-an ambitious plan developed by the WHO and supported by LSHTM, the Meningitis Research Foundation, and many other agencies around the world.
Dr Wariri Oghenebrume and Dr Ama-Onyebuchi Umesi, both research clinicians at the MRC Unit in The Gambia, discuss the reality of meningitis epidemics in the Meningitis Belt and the promising results of a new clinical trial which examined the efficacy of the new pentavalent vaccine.
Watch the interview below
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