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The use of pneumococcal conjugate vaccine (PCV) in infancy reduces the rate of antibiotic-resistant pneumococcal disease in the community generally, according to new research.
The authors of a study published in Clinical Infectious Diseases say that PCV immunization is a prime example of how vaccination of a target risk group can be a very powerful tool for the reduction of disease due to serious pathogens in everyone.
The U.S. researchers evaluated the effects of the introduction of PCV in 2000 on the epidemiology of antibiotic-nonsusceptible invasive pneumococcal disease (IPD) using a database of cases encountered in five Tennessee counties between 1995 and 2002.
After the introduction of PCV, the annual incidence of IPD declined by 38 percent.
The decline was greater among children younger than two years (an 80 percent decline), but was still significant among persons aged two years and older (a 25 percent decline).
The proportion of antibiotic-nonsusceptible pneumococcal isolates also fell significantly after the introduction of PCV.
This amounted to 40.8 percent to 26.4 percent for penicillin nonsusceptible, from 34.9 percent to 9.4 percent for cephalosporin nonsusceptible and from 29.5 percent to 18.1 percent erythromycin nonsusceptible.
Routine vaccination of children with PCV has impacted the incidence of pneumococcal disease not only in the target age group but also in adults, suggesting development of herd immunity to these pneumococcal serotypes, conclude the authors.
Reference: Talbot T et al (2004) Reduction in High Rates of Antibiotic-Nonsusceptible Invasive Pneumococcal Disease in Tennessee after Introduction of the Pneumococcal Conjugate Vaccine Clin Infect Dis 39 (6) 641-648.
Source: NT Online Clinical News