Natural immunity against serogroup X meningococci in Togo
Tackling a previously rare form of meningococcal disease
Dr Gunnstein Norheim, Dr Judith Mueller, Dr Ray Borrow, Prof Andrew Pollard
- Start Date:
01 September 2009
Oxford University, Oxford, UK, Agence de Médecine Préventive, Dapaong, Togo, Ministry of Health, Lomé, Togo
Meningitis epidemics periodically sweep across the African meningitis belt, which stretches from Senegal in the west to Ethiopia in the east, affecting up to 250,000 people in a single year.
These epidemics have been largely due to meningococcus A, and the introduction of a new men A vaccine during the next few years should reduce their severity. In the meantime, meningococcus X (previously a rare type of meningitis) has emerged as an increasingly important cause of the disease, and is not covered by any vaccine.
Meningococcus X is not considered a rewarding target for research, since those affected by the disease are in countries that could not afford a vaccine.
We need to find out if the strategy used for developing other successful meningitis vaccines, using the polysaccharide or ‘sugar’ coat of the bacteria, will work for meningococcus X. This project addresses a major step in vaccine research by studying naturally acquired immunity against meningococcus X bacteria in an area of Togo, West Africa that was affected by an outbreak in 2007. In this project, scientists will recruit healthy individuals from Togo, who will be compared with healthy control individuals from Burkina Faso and the U.K. within the same age range.
We will also undertake capacity building activities with Togolese health officials and doctors, in order to improve laboratory diagnosis and surveillance.
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So far £0.00 has been raised for this project including these recent donations...