A complete vaccine with four components, the protein-based meningococcal serogroup B vaccine (4CMenB) is effective in preventing invasive meningococcal disease in children younger than 5 years of age, according to a study published in the Feb. 2 issue of New England Journal of Medicine.
Jesus Castilla, MD, Ph.D., from the Instituto de Salud Pública de Navarra in Pamplona, Spain. and colleagues examined the efficacy of 4CMenB in preventing invasive meningococcal disease in children in a nationwide matched case-control study. All laboratory-confirmed cases of invasive meningococcal disease in children younger than 60 months of age were identified between October 5, 2015 and October 6, 2019; 306 cases (79.4 percent with serogroup B disease) were matched with 1,224 controls.
The researchers found that 11.4 and 24.3 percent of case patients and controls, respectively, received at least one dose of 4CMenB. Efficacy against invasive meningococcal disease caused by any serogroup was 76 percent for full vaccination (at least two doses received) and 54 percent for partial vaccination. Efficacy against meningococcal serogroup B disease was 71 percent for complete vaccination. Vaccine efficacy with at least one dose of 4CMenB was 64 and 82 percent against serogroup B disease and non-serogroup B disease, respectively. Forty-four case patients had serogroup B strains expected to be covered by 4CMenB; None of these patients had been vaccinated.
“This evidence may be useful in deciding whether to include this vaccine in the immunization programs of countries where invasive meningococcal disease in children is problematic and whose prevention is a priority,” the authors write.
Several authors disclosed financial ties to the pharmaceutical industry.
Jesus Castilla et al., Efficacy of Meningococcal Group B Vaccine (4CMenB) in Children, New England Journal of Medicine (2023). DOI: 10.1056/NEJMoa2206433
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