Pneumococcal disease is caused by a type of bacteria called Streptococcus pneumoniae.
It is a major cause of ear infections, as well as serious infections of the blood, lungs (pneumonia) and brain (meningitis). Although serious pneumococcal disease is rare, babies and children under five years of age are at the greatest risk.
All babies are currently recommended to receive a pneumococcal vaccine at six - eight weeks, four months and 12 months of age to protect them from pneumococcal disease. The current vaccine given as part of Australia’s National Immunisation Program provides protection against 13 types of the pneumococcal bacteria.
We are looking for healthy babies to take part in a study investigating a new pneumococcal vaccine designed to protect babies against 15 different types of pneumococcal bacteria.
What will researchers investigate?
Researchers will be evaluating the body’s immune response to the new pneumoccal vaccine. This will include assessing the response of the new vaccine when it is given at the same time as other routine childhood vaccines used in Australia.
Almost 1200 babies from around the world will be participating in this study.
What happens in the study?
Participation in the study will be until your baby is 17 - 21 months of age, and involvement will include:
Six visits to our study clinic at Perth Children’s Hospital for vaccinations and check-ups.
Babies will be randomly assigned to receive the new pneumococcal vaccine or the current vaccine from six weeks of age. Participants will receive additional doses at three months (preterm babies only), four months and a booster dose at approximately 12 months of age.
All recommended immunisations on the National Immunisation Program provided during visits to the study clinic.
Follow-up phone calls throughout the study to ask about your baby’s health.
Three blood tests taken throughout the study to assess immune response to the vaccine.
Participation in the study is voluntary and reasonable travel costs will be reimbursed. Your child will receive the current pneumococcal vaccine through the National Immunisation Program if you decide not to participate in the study.
Is it safe?
The new pneumococcal vaccine has been given to over 5,000 babies, toddlers and adults participating in other research studies.
In earlier studies the new vaccine was found to be generally well tolerated.
Who can participate?
We are recruiting healthy babies who are six to 12 weeks of age and have not yet received their routine baby immunisations. Babies born prematurely are welcome to participate in this study.
Please contact the study staff at the Vaccine Trials Group if you would like more information or to get involved. Phone: 0400 450 240 Email: Pneumo@telethonkids.org.au
What is pneumococcal disease?
What is pneumococcal disease?
Guest reporter Jamie gets the inside scoop from Professor Peter Richmond about the latest study designed to protect babies against pneumococcal disease.
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