Examining novel markers of pneumococcal vaccine immunity

Research Opportunity
Royal Children’s Hospital/Murdoch Childrens Research Institute
Primary Supervisor Email Number Webpage
A/Prof Paul Licciardi paul.licciardi@mcri.edu.au +61-3-9345-5554
Co-supervisor Email Number Webpage
Prof Kim Mulholland kim.mulholland@lshtm.ac.uk

Project Details

A PhD project is currently available within the Immunology team of the New Vaccines Research Group at MCRI on a NHMRC-funded project to investigate the immunological basis of long-term protection following pneumococcal conjugate vaccination in Vietnamese infants.
Pneumococcal diseases such as pneumonia, meningitis and sepsis are the biggest killers of children under 5 years of age worldwide, mostly in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs). There are two currently licensed pneumococcal conjugate vaccines (PCVs), PCV10 (Synflorix®, GlaxoSmithKline) and PCV13 (Prevnar-13®, Pfizer). As these are expensive vaccines, there has been an emphasis on PCV schedules with reduced numbers of doses that rely more
on herd immunity, mediated by reduction in carriage, rather than individual protection. However, the immunological determinants of long-term protection against pneumococcal carriage are poorly understood. In Vietnam, we are currently undertaking a randomised trial of reduced dose schedules of the two licensed PCVs, and have developed cutting-edge approaches to measure B-cell memory, follicular T helper cells, Th17 cells and agglutinating antibodies to comprehensively examine the immune response following PCV. Specifically, this proposal will determine whether these novel immune responses predict long-term protection against carriage, and their performance will be compared to conventional measures such as serotype-specific IgG and opsonophagocytic assays. This project will provide critical information on the utility of these novel immunological responses in relation to conventional serological methods, to predict protection against carriage, while also enabling policy makers in the region and globally to evaluate reduced dose PCV regimens.

Please contact A/Prof Paul Licciardi (paul.licciardi@mcri.edu.au) for more information.

Faculty Research Themes

Infection and Immunology

School Research Themes

Child Health in Medicine

Research Opportunities

Students who are interested in joining this project will need to consider their elegibility as well as other requirements before contacting the supervisor of this research

Graduate Research application

Honours application

Key Contact

For further information about this research, please contact a supervisor.



Research Node

Royal Children’s Hospital/Murdoch Childrens Research Institute

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