TOP

Scientists inventing new TB vaccine

By Violet Nabatanzi, Juliet Waiswa

Added 3rd March 2019 11:01 AM

According to World Health Organisation (WHO) TB is the ninth leading cause of death worldwide and the leading cause from a single infectious agent, ranking above HIV/AIDS.

Download 703x422

According to World Health Organisation (WHO) TB is the ninth leading cause of death worldwide and the leading cause from a single infectious agent, ranking above HIV/AIDS.

HEALTH  TUBERCULOSIS

Scientists are inventing a new vaccine in the management of Tuberculosis (TB) which they say will be effective in the resistance of the disease.

The new innovation is being developed by a group of Ugandan and international scientists. The new vaccine will be part of the combination of the current Bacillus Calmette- Guerin (BCG) given to babies at birth.

Scientists however claim that although children at birth are receiving BCG, it has been discovered that children later develop TB when they are adolescents.

According to World Health Organisation (WHO) TB is the ninth leading cause of death worldwide and the leading cause from a single infectious agent, ranking above HIV/AIDS.

 Dr. Anne Wajja, a researcher chatting with Dr Simon Kimuda after presenting their paper on New TB vaccine during Makerere University –Uganda Virus Research Institute (UVRI) Centre of excellence for infection and immunity Research and Training symposium in Entebbe recently. (Photo by Violet Nabatanzi)

 

Globally, the TB mortality rate is falling at about 3% per year. TB incidence is falling at about 2% per year, this needs to improve to 4–5% per year by 2020 to reach the first milestones of the End TB Strategy.

Global targets and milestones for reductions in the burden of TB disease have been set as part of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and WHO’s End TB Strategy.

Speaking during the Makerere University –Uganda Virus Research Institute (UVRI) Centre of excellence for infection and immunity Research and Training symposium Dr. Anne Wajja a researcher revealed that a recent study by UVRI discovered that the vaccine can prevent TB in countries except those below the Equator.

“The current BCG is used to protect against TB, however, it offers low protection against pulmonary TB, the most common form of the disease, in areas close to the Equator such as Uganda,’’ she said.

Different studies show that the disease is the leading cause of death from a single infectious microbe in the world.

Dr. Simon Kimuda said new vaccines that prevent TB more efficiently are urgently needed.

He added that the new vaccine will produce higher levels of long-lasting cellular immunity when used together with the older TB vaccine BCG among adolescents, the experts revealed.

Wajja  said the clinical trial will be carried out on a 13-year-old of the Entebbe Mother and Baby Study Clinic next month. 

She explained that a team of other scientist is in preparations to conduct a Phase II randomised, open-label trial among Ugandan adolescents comparing BCG and the new vaccine.

“We are carrying out two trials of two combinations on adolescents in Entebbe to compare BCG with the new vaccine,” Wajja further revealed.

She revealed that 600 new born babies in Entebbe Hospital will be given either BCG or the new vaccine to compare how safe and effective it is.

Kimuda said given the lack of an established immunological correlate of protection against TB, it is important to assess the functionality of immune responses elicited by these vaccines because this may have the potential to predict efficacy.

The Director Health Services in charge clinical services at the health ministry, Dr. Charles Olara said there is a need to do research in all sectors.“ We need push towards a certain level of research,” he emphasised.

 

 

Related Articles

More From The Author

Related articles