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Characterisation of fHbp, nhba (gna2132), nadA, porA and Sequence Type in group B meningococcal case isolates collected in England and Wales during January 2008, and potential coverage of an investigational group B meningococcal vaccine.

Clinical and Vaccine Immunology
American Society for Microbiology
Publication Date
  • Biology
  • Medicine


Invasive disease caused by meningococcal capsular groups A, C, W-135 and Y is now preventable by means of glycoconjugate vaccines that target their respective polysaccharide capsules. The capsule of group B meningococci (MenB) is poorly immunogenic and may induce autoimmunity. Vaccines based on the major immunodominant surface porin, PorA, are effective against clonal epidemics but, thus far, have limited scope of coverage against the wider MenB population at large. In an alternative approach, the first-generation, investigational, recombinant MenB plus outer membrane vesicle (rMenB-OMV) vaccine contains a number of relatively conserved surface proteins - fHBP, NHBA (previously GNA2132), and NadA, along-side PorA P1.4-containing OMVs from the New Zealand MeNZB vaccine. MenB currently accounts for approximately 90% of meningococcal disease in England and Wales. To assess potential rMenB-OMV coverage of pathogenic MenB within this region, all English and Welsh MenB case isolates from January 2008 (n=87) were genetically characterised with respect to fHBP, NHBA, NadA and PorA. Alleles for fHbp, nhba and porA were identified in all of the isolates, of which 22% were also found to harbour nadA alleles. Based on genotypic data and predicted immunological cross-reactivity, potential rMenB-OMV vaccine coverage in England and Wales ranges from 66% to 100%.

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