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1.  Conjugate Meningococcal Vaccines Development: GSK Biologicals Experience 
Meningococcal diseases are serious threats to global health, and new vaccines specifically tailored to meet the age-related needs of various geographical areas are required. This paper focuses on the meningococcal conjugate vaccines developed by GSK Biologicals. Two combined conjugate vaccines were developed to help protect infants and young children in countries where the incidence of meningococcal serogroup C or serogroup C and Y disease is important: Hib-MenC-TT vaccine, which offers protection against Haemophilus influenzae type b and Neisseria meningitidis serogroup C diseases, is approved in several countries; and Hib-MenCY-TT vaccine, which adds N. meningitidis serogroup Y antigen, is currently in the final stages of development. Additionally, a tetravalent conjugate vaccine (MenACWY-TT) designed to help protect against four meningococcal serogroups is presently being evaluated for global use in all age groups. All of these vaccines were shown to be highly immunogenic and to have clinically acceptable safety profiles.
doi:10.4061/2011/846756
PMCID: PMC3170757  PMID: 21991444
2.  Meningococcal Polysaccharide A O-Acetylation Levels Do Not Impact the Immunogenicity of the Quadrivalent Meningococcal Tetanus Toxoid Conjugate Vaccine: Results from a Randomized, Controlled Phase III Study of Healthy Adults Aged 18 to 25 Years 
Clinical and Vaccine Immunology : CVI  2013;20(10):1499-1507.
In this study, we compared the immunogenicities of two lots of meningococcal ACWY-tetanus toxoid conjugate vaccine (MenACWY-TT) that differed in serogroup A polysaccharide (PS) O-acetylation levels and evaluated their immunogenicities and safety in comparison to a licensed ACWY polysaccharide vaccine (Men-PS). In this phase III, partially blinded, controlled study, 1,170 healthy subjects aged 18 to 25 years were randomized (1:1:1) to receive one dose of MenACWY-TT lot A (ACWY-A) (68% O-acetylation), MenACWY-TT lot B (ACWY-B) (92% O-acetylation), or Men-PS (82% O-acetylation). Immunogenicity was evaluated in terms of serum bactericidal activity using rabbit complement (i.e., rabbit serum bactericidal activity [rSBA]). Solicited symptoms, unsolicited adverse events (AEs), and serious AEs (SAEs) were recorded. The immunogenicities, in terms of rSBA geometric mean titers, were comparable for both lots of MenACWY-TT. The vaccine response rates across the serogroups were 79.1 to 97.0% in the two ACWY groups and 73.7 to 94.1% in the Men-PS group. All subjects achieved rSBA titers of ≥1:8 for all serogroups. All subjects in the two ACWY groups and 99.5 to 100% in the Men-PS group achieved rSBA titers of ≥1:128. Pain was the most common solicited local symptom and was reported more frequently in the ACWY group (53.9 to 54.7%) than in the Men-PS group (36.8%). The most common solicited general symptoms were fatigue and headache, which were reported by 28.6 to 30.3% and 26.9 to 31.0% of subjects, respectively. Two subjects reported SAEs; one SAE was considered to be related to vaccination (blighted ovum; ACWY-B group). The level of serogroup A PS O-acetylation did not affect vaccine immunogenicity. MenACWY-TT (lot A) was not inferior to Men-PS in terms of vaccine response and was well tolerated.
doi:10.1128/CVI.00162-13
PMCID: PMC3807210  PMID: 23885033
3.  Immunogenicity and Safety of a Quadrivalent Meningococcal Serogroups A, C, W-135 and Y Tetanus Toxoid Conjugate Vaccine (MenACWY-TT) Administered to Adults Aged 56 Years and Older: Results of an Open-Label, Randomized, Controlled Trial 
Drugs & Aging  2013;30(5):309-319.
Background
The burden of invasive meningococcal disease is substantial in older adults in whom the case fatality rate is high. Travelers to regions with high rates of meningococcal disease, such as Hajj pilgrims, are at increased risk of meningococcal infection, and disease transmission from travelers to their close contacts has been documented. In younger individuals, meningococcal conjugate vaccines offer advantages over polysaccharide vaccines in terms of duration of protection and boostability, and induction of herd immune effects through reductions in nasopharyngeal carriage of meningococci. To date, few data are available evaluating meningococcal conjugate vaccine use in adults >55 years of age.
Objective
To evaluate the immunogenicity and safety of quadrivalent meningococcal serogroups A, C, W-135 and Y vaccine with all serogroups conjugated to tetanus toxoid (MenACWY-TT, Nimenrix™, GlaxoSmithKline, Belgium) and a licensed quadrivalent polysaccharide vaccine (MenPS, Mencevax™ GlaxoSmithKline, Belgium) in adults >55 years of age.
Methods
This was a phase IIIb, open-label, randomized (3:1), controlled study conducted at one study center in Lebanon. A total of 400 healthy adults between 56 and 103 years of age without previous MenPS or tetanus toxoid vaccination within the previous 5 years or meningococcal conjugate vaccination at any time previously were included. They received a single-dose vaccination with MenACWY-TT or MenPS with blood sampling before and 1 month after vaccination. The main outcome measures were serum bactericidal activity (rabbit complement source: rSBA) vaccine response (VR) rate [rSBA titer of ≥1:32 in initially seronegative subjects (rSBA titer <1:8); ≥4-fold increase in subjects with pre-vaccination rSBA titers between 1:8 and 1:128, and ≥2-fold increase in subjects with pre-vaccination rSBA titers ≥1:128]. The percentages of subjects with rSBA titers ≥1:8 and ≥1:128 and rSBA geometric mean titers (GMTs) were assessed. Solicited adverse events were recorded for 4 days following vaccination, and all other adverse events, including the incidence of new onset chronic diseases, were recorded for 31 days after vaccination.
Results
One month after a single dose of MenACWY-TT, the rSBA VR rate in the MenACWY-TT group was 76.6 % for serogroup A, 80.3 % for serogroup C, 77.5 % for serogroup W-135 and 81.9 % for serogroup Y. VR rates in the MenPS group were 91.7, 84.8, 87.1 and 89.1 %, respectively. One month after vaccination, ≥93.2 % of subjects in the MenACWY-TT group and ≥93.9 % in the MenPS group had rSBA titers ≥1:128. In each group, GMTs increased by ≥13-fold for each serogroup. rSBA VR and GMTs tended to be lower in subjects who were over 65 years compared to 56–65 years of age. Only 6.3 % of MenACWY-TT recipients had anti-TT ≥0.1 IU/ml prior to vaccination, increasing to 28.1 % post-vaccination. The rSBA GMTs were 1.9- to 4-fold higher in anti-TT responders. Each local and general solicited symptom was reported by no more than 3.0 % of subjects in either group. No serious adverse events were considered vaccine related.
Conclusion
In adults 56 years of age and older, MenACWY-TT was immunogenic, with a vaccine response rate ≥76 % and with ≥93 % of subjects achieving rSBA titers ≥1:128 against all four serogroups after a single dose. MenACWY-TT induced low anti-TT concentrations in this population, which deserves further study.
Electronic supplementary material
The online version of this article (doi:10.1007/s40266-013-0065-0) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.
doi:10.1007/s40266-013-0065-0
PMCID: PMC3634976  PMID: 23494214
4.  A randomized study to assess the immunogenicity, antibody persistence and safety of a tetravalent meningococcal serogroups A, C, W-135 and Y tetanus toxoid conjugate vaccine in children aged 2–10 years 
Human Vaccines & Immunotherapeutics  2012;8(12):1882-1891.
Incidence of meningococcal diseases is high in children, and effective vaccines are needed for this age group. In this phase II, open, controlled study, 309 children aged 2–10 y from Finland were randomized (3:1) into two parallel groups to receive one dose of meningococcal ACWY-tetanus toxoid conjugate vaccine (ACWY-TT group; n = 231) or a licensed meningococcal ACWY polysaccharide vaccine (Men-PS group; n = 78). Serum bactericidal activity using rabbit complement (rSBA) was evaluated up to three years post-vaccination. Exploratory comparisons suggested that rSBA vaccine response rates and geometric mean titers (GMTs) for each serogroup at one month post-vaccination and rSBA GMTs for serogroups A, W-135 and Y up to three years post-vaccination were higher in the ACWY-TT compared with Men-PS group, but did not detect any difference between groups in terms of rSBA-MenC GMTs at three years post-vaccination; this is explained by the higher proportion of children from the Men-PS group who were excluded because they were re-vaccinated with a monovalent meningococcal serogroup C vaccine due to loss of protective antibody levels against this serogroup. Although there was a higher incidence of local reactogenicity in the ACWY-TT group, general and unsolicited symptoms reporting rates were comparable in both groups. This study showed that MenACWY-TT was immunogenic with a clinically acceptable safety profile in children aged 2–10 y. MenACWY-TT induced higher functional antibody titers for all serogroups, which persisted longer for serogroups A, W-135 and Y, than the MenACWY polysaccharide vaccine. This study has been registered at www.clinicaltrials.gov NCT00427908.
doi:10.4161/hv.22165
PMCID: PMC3656081  PMID: 23032168
tetravalent meningococcal vaccine; conjugate vaccine; polysaccharide vaccine; bactericidal activity; child; safety; immunogenicity; persistence
5.  Randomized trial to assess the immunogenicity, safety and antibody persistence up to three years after a single dose of a tetravalent meningococcal serogroups A, C, W-135 and Y tetanus toxoid conjugate vaccine in toddlers 
Human Vaccines & Immunotherapeutics  2012;8(12):1892-1903.
Effective vaccines offering broad protection to toddlers, who are at high risk for invasive meningococcal disease, are needed. Here, the immunogenicity, safety and antibody persistence of the tetravalent meningococcal ACWY tetanus toxoid conjugate vaccine (MenACWY-TT) were evaluated in toddlers. Healthy participants aged 12 to 23 mo (n = 304) were randomized (3:1) to receive one dose of MenACWY-TT or a monovalent meningococcal serogroup C conjugate vaccine (MenC-CRM197). Serum bactericidal activity was evaluated with assays using rabbit (rSBA) and human (hSBA) complement up to three years post-vaccination. MenACWY-TT was demonstrated to be non-inferior to MenC-CRM197 in terms of immunogenicity to serogroup C, and the pre-specified immunogenicity criteria for serogroups A, W-135 and Y were met. Exploratory analyses suggested that rSBA geometric mean titers (GMTs), hSBA GMTs and proportions of toddlers with rSBA titers ≥ 1:128 and hSBA titers ≥ 1:4 and ≥ 1:8 were higher for all serogroups at one month post-vaccination with MenACWY-TT compared with MenC-CRM197. At three years post-vaccination, at least 90.8% and 73.6% of MenACWY-TT recipients retained rSBA titers ≥ 1:8 for all serogroups and hSBA titers ≥ 1:4 for serogroups C, W-135 and Y, respectively, but the percentages of toddlers with hSBA titers ≥ 1:4 for serogroup A decreased to 21.8%. In both groups, grade 3 adverse events were infrequently reported and no serious adverse events were considered causally related to vaccination. These results suggest that one single dose of MenACWY-TT induces a robust and persistent immune response and has an acceptable safety profile in toddlers. This study has been registered at www.clinicaltrials.gov NCT00427908.
doi:10.4161/hv.22166
PMCID: PMC3656082  PMID: 23032159
tetravalent meningococcal vaccine; conjugate vaccine; toddler; bactericidal activity; persistence; safety
6.  Immunogenicity and safety of measles-mumps-rubella and varicella vaccines coadministered with a fourth dose of Haemophilus influenzae type b and Neisseria meningitidis serogroups C and Y-tetanus toxoid conjugate vaccine in toddlers 
Human Vaccines & Immunotherapeutics  2012;8(8):1036-1041.
A pooled analysis was conducted of 1257 toddlers who received a fourth dose of Haemophilus influenzae type b-Neisseria meningitidis serogroups C and Y-tetanus toxoid conjugate vaccine (HibMenCY-TT) or Hib conjugate vaccine (Hib polysaccharide conjugated to N. meningitidis outer membrane protein) coadministered with measles-mumps-rubella (MMR) and varicella (VAR) vaccines (NCT00134719/NCT00289783). Noninferiority of immunological responses to MMR and VAR was demonstrated between groups and incidences of MMR- and VAR-specific solicited symptoms were similar, indicating that HibMenCY-TT can be coadministered with MMR and VAR.
doi:10.4161/hv.20357
PMCID: PMC3551873  PMID: 22617844
Haemophilus influenzae type b; Neisseria meningitidis serogroups C and Y; MMR; varicella; vaccination; toddlers
7.  Antibody persistence and immune memory 15 months after priming with an investigational tetravalent meningococcal tetanus toxoid conjugate vaccine (MenACWY-TT) in toddlers and young children 
The present extension study, conducted in children originally vaccinated at 12–14 mo or 3–5 y of age, assessed antibody persistence and immune memory induced by an investigational tetravalent meningococcal serogroups A, C, W-135 and Y tetanus toxoid conjugate vaccine (MenACWY-TT). In the original study, participants were randomized to receive one dose of MenACWY-TT or licensed age-appropriate meningococcal control vaccines. Fifteen months post-vaccination, all participants underwent serum sampling to evaluate antibody persistence and participants previously vaccinated as toddlers received a polysaccharide challenge to assess immune memory development.
 
Exploratory comparisons showed that (1) All children and ≥ 92.3% of the toddlers maintained serum bactericidal (rSBA) titers ≥ 1:8 at 15 mo post MenACWY-TT vaccination; statistically significantly higher rSBA geometric mean titers (GMTs) were observed compared with control vaccines. (2) At one month after polysaccharide challenge, all toddlers primed with MenACWY-TT or with the monovalent serogroup C conjugate vaccine had rSBA titers ≥ 1:8 and ≥ 1:128 for serogroup C and similar rSBA-GMTs; rSBA-GMTs for serogroups A, W-135 and Y were statistically significantly higher in toddlers primed with MenACWY-TT compared with the control vaccine. Thus, a single dose of MenACWY-TT induced persisting antibodies in toddlers and children and immune memory in toddlers.
This study has been registered at www.clinicaltrials.gov NCT00126984.
doi:10.4161/hv.20229
PMCID: PMC3495722  PMID: 22485049
children; immune memory; meningococcal vaccine; persistence; tetanus toxoid; toddlers
8.  The safety profile of Haemophilus influenzae type b–Neisseria meningitidis serogroups C and Y tetanus toxoid conjugate vaccine (HibMenCY) 
The safety profile of HibMenCY was compared with licensed Hib conjugate vaccines in a pooled analysis that included more than 8,500 subjects who were administered a four-dose series of HibMenCY or commercially available Hib vaccines at 2, 4, 6 and 12–15 mo of age in two primary vaccination and two fourth dose phase 3 studies. In all studies, HibMenCY or Hib vaccine was co-administered with age-appropriate, routinely recommended vaccines. In one primary and one fourth dose study (n = 4180), local and general symptoms were solicited using diary cards for 4 d after each dose. Serious adverse events (SAEs) and the occurrence of adverse events (AEs) indicating new onset of chronic disease (NOCD), rash, and conditions prompting Emergency Room (ER) visits were reported from dose 1 until 6 mo after dose 4. The incidences of solicited local and general symptoms were similar following HibMenCY and commercially available Hib vaccines. For some solicited symptoms (pain at the injection site and irritability), rates were lower in the HibMenCY group compared with the Hib control group (p value < 0.05). There were no statistically significant differences between groups in the incidences of SAEs, NOCDs, rash, or AEs leading to ER visits, with the exceptions of anemia and viral gastroenteritis, which occurred significantly less frequently in those receiving HibMenCY than those receiving commercially available Hib vaccines. In this pooled safety analysis, the safety profile of HibMenCY was similar to the safety profile of licensed monovalent Hib vaccines, despite the addition of meningococcal antigens.
 
These studies are registered at www.clinicaltrials.gov NCT00345579 (primary vaccination study), NCT00345683 (fourth dose vaccination study) and NCT00289783 (primary and fourth dose vaccination studies)
doi:10.4161/hv.18752
PMCID: PMC3426078  PMID: 22327493
Neisseria meningitidis; Haemophilus influenzae type b; adverse drug event; vaccine

Results 1-8 (8)