Healthcare Industry News:  pneumococcal conjugate vaccine 


 News Release - May 14, 2008

New Data Support Routine Childhood Vaccination With PREVENAR in Europe

PREVENAR Shown to Reduce Invasive Pneumococcal Disease in Young Children

MAIDENHEAD, England, May 14 (HSMN NewsFeed) -- Data presented at the 26th annual meeting of the European Society for Paediatric Infectious Diseases (ESPID) in Graz, Austria, provide additional evidence of the public health impact of the routine use of Prevenar* (Pneumococcal Saccharide Conjugated Vaccine, Adsorbed), which helps protect against the seven pneumococcal serotypes causing the majority of disease worldwide.(1)

Specifically, since the introduction of Prevenar, also referred to as PCV7, into Germany's pediatric immunization schedule in 2006, there has been a 50 percent reduction in vaccine-type invasive pneumococcal disease (IPD) in children younger than 2 years old compared with a pre-vaccine baseline.(2) In addition, a slight reduction in vaccine-type IPD among children aged 2-5 years old, an unvaccinated group, also was documented, suggesting a potential "indirect" effect among older children who were not immunized.(2)

"These data are compelling and demonstrate the rapid reduction of IPD in German children following the inclusion of Prevenar in Germany's national childhood immunization schedule," says Dr. Mark van der Linden, Head of the National Reference Center for Streptococci at the Institute of Medical Microbiology, RWTH-Aachen, Germany. "Importantly, the results are consistent with the disease reduction documented in France and the United Kingdom, where young children are routinely immunized with Prevenar, highlighting the impact of the vaccine in countries where it is used across Europe." (3),(4)

"Since pneumococcal disease is the number one vaccine-preventable cause of death in children younger than five years of age, we are incredibly proud of the growing body of evidence supporting universal childhood vaccination with Prevenar and are committed in our mission to help save children's lives," says Bernard Fritzell, Vice President, International Scientific & Clinical Affairs, Wyeth.(5)

In view of the demonstrated vaccine efficacy and high disease burden in young children, WHO recommends the priority inclusion of PCV7 in national immunization programs worldwide.(6) Further, in January 2008, the Strategic Advisory Group of Experts (SAGE) to WHO issued a preliminary recommendation that pneumococcal disease prevention be ranked as a very high priority on a global basis.(7) Prevenar, the only licensed pneumococcal conjugate vaccine, is available in 88 countries worldwide and is part of the routine national childhood immunization schedule in more than 20 of these countries, 12 of which are in Europe.(8)

Pneumococcal Disease

Pneumococcal disease affects both children and adults and is a leading cause of illness and death worldwide.(9) Pneumococcal disease is caused by the bacterium Streptococcus pneumoniae and describes a group of illnesses, including invasive infections, such as bacteremia/sepsis and meningitis, as well as pneumonia and upper respiratory tract infections, including otitis media and sinusitis.

Wyeth Pharmaceuticals

Wyeth Pharmaceuticals, a division of Wyeth, has leading products in the areas of women's health care, infectious disease, gastrointestinal health, central nervous system, inflammation, transplantation, hemophilia, oncology, vaccines and nutritional products.

Wyeth is one of the world's largest research-driven pharmaceutical and health care products companies. It is a leader in the discovery, development, manufacturing and marketing of pharmaceuticals, vaccines, biotechnology products, nutritionals and non-prescription medicines that improve the quality of life for people worldwide. The Company's major divisions include Wyeth Pharmaceuticals, Wyeth Consumer Healthcare and Fort Dodge Animal Health.


(1). Hausdorff WP, Bryant J, Paradiso PR. Which pneumococcal serogroups cause the most invasive disease: implications for conjugate vaccine formulation and use, part I. CID 2000; 30:100-21.

(2). van der Linden M, Reinert R. Effects of the national immunization program for PCV7 on IPD in children in Germany. Poster presented at the 26th annual meeting of the European Society for Paediatric Infectious Diseases (ESPID).

(3). Lepoutre A, Varon E, Georges S, et al. Impact des recommandations de vaccination antipneumococcique par le vaccin conjugé heptavalent sur l'incidence des infections invasives à pneumocoque chez les enfants de moins de deux ans. Institut de Veille Sanitaire. 2006.

(4). Health Protection Agency (HPA): Centre for Infections. Cumulative weekly number of reports of invasive pneumococcal disease due to any of the seven serotypes present in PCV-7: children <2 years in England and Wales by epidemiological year: July - June (2003 to date). Cumulative Weekly Report IPD. February 2008.

(5). Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Vaccine preventable deaths and the global immunization vision and strategy, 2006-2015. MMWR. 2006;55(18)511-515.

(6). World Health Organization. pneumococcal conjugate vaccine for childhood immunization, March 2007- WHO position paper. Wkly Epidemiol Record 2007;12: 93-104.

(7). World Health Organization. Meeting of the Immunization Strategic Advisory Group of Experts, November 2007 - conclusions and recommendations. Wkly Epidemiol Record 2008; (83):1-16.

(8). Data on file, Wyeth Pharmaceuticals Inc.

(9). Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Prevention of pneumococcal disease: recommendations of the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP). MMWR. 1997;46(RR-8):1-24. Available at: Accessed September 5, 2006.

* Trademark.

Source: Wyeth Pharmaceuticals

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