Oral Presentation 20th Lancefield International Symposium on Streptococci and Streptococcal Diseases 2017

Progress in Group B Streptococcal vaccine development (#123)

Johan Vekemans 1
  1. World Health Organization, Geneva 27, GENEVA, Switzerland

Group B streptococcus (GBS) is a leading cause of perinatal and early life invasive infections. Existing control strategies based on bacteriologic or clinical screening-guided intravenous antibiotic prophylaxis are only partially effective, seldom implemented in low and middle income countries, and drive a high volume of perinatal antibiotic use. Evidence from observational studies about the role of maternal antibodies acquired following natural GBS exposure suggests that maternal immunization with multiple serotypes of protein-conjugated GBS capsular polysaccharides may reduce the risk of invasive disease. Protein-based vaccine candidates are also under evaluation.  The World Health Organization recently highlighted priority activities in GBS vaccine development, strategic goals and preferred product characteristics (1, 2). Ongoing candidate vaccines development activities  will be reviewed, and potential pathways to licensure and policy decision for global use will be discussed.

  1. WHO Preferred Product Characteristics for Group B Streptococcus Vaccines. Geneva: World Health Organization; 2017. Licence: CC BY-NC-SA 3.0 IGO.
  2. Group B Streptococcus Vaccine Development Technology Roadmap. Priority activities for development, testing, licensure and global availability of Group B streptococcus vaccines. Geneva: World Health Organization; 2017. Licence: CC BY-NC-SA 3.0 IGO.