09 October 2017 - PRESSE RELEASE
Ebola vaccine can now be used on children
An international team of researchers has successfully tested a vaccine against the Ebola virus: The medical experts have established a dose which could offer successful protection against the Ebola virus and have tested the vaccine on children for the first time. The clinical trial was led by tropical disease specialists Dr Selidji T. Agnandji from DZIF´s African partner institution “Centre de Recherches Médicales de Lambaréné” in Gabon and DZIF coordinator Professor Peter Kremsner, Institute of Tropical Medicine in Tübingen.
115 adults, 20 adolescents and 20 children were given the vaccine against the virus in Gabon and successfully developed immune responses with very few side effects. The results of the study were published in the medical journal PLOS Medicine.
Up to now there have been 22 Ebola outbreaks worldwide up to now with more than 11,000 individuals who died resulted in an international effort to jointly develop a vaccine that can be used on humans. As part of a global effort, a total of eight vaccines were selected for clinical trials from a panel of vaccine candidates that had been pre-examined. The rVSVΔG-ZEBOV-GP vaccine has been used in clinical trials in Africa since 2015. It has now been tested in different doses and on adolescents and children for the first time. Participants received part of a gene from the Ebola virus introduced into a carrier virus which by itself does not cause disease in humans.
The trial showed that participants from countries that had previously experienced Ebola outbreaks often possessed antibodies against the virus even before they were vaccinated. After the vaccination, their immune response was superior to that of participants without such antibodies. Even small doses of vaccine led to an excellent immune response.
Selidji T. Agnandji et al.: Safety and immunogenicity of rVSVΔG-ZEBOVGP-Ebola vaccine in adults and children in Lambaréné, Gabon: A phase I randomised trial.“ PLOS Medicine, DOI: 10.1371/journal.pmed.1002402
Prof. Dr. Peter G. Kremsner
DZIF-Koordinator des Forschungsbereichs „Malaria“
Universitätsklinikum Tübingen / Universität Tübingen
Institut für Tropenmedizin
T +49 7071 29-87179