The director of the SA Tuberculosis Vaccine Initiative (Satvi), Professor Mark Hatherill, said: “Although we have a licensed TB vaccine (BCG) that’s been in use for almost 100 years, it only offers partial protection against TB. We need a new, more effective TB vaccine that offers better protection and which lasts into adulthood.”
The team tested the effectiveness of the MTBVAC in comparison to the Bacillus Calmette-Guérin (BCG) vaccine, in which both vaccines are used to fight TB and prevent children from being diagnosed with TB in their childhood.
Hatherill said that an estimated 10million people developed TB and 1.6million people died from the disease worldwide in 2017. About 10% of those TB cases are in children.
The Satvi, Biofabri, the University of Zaragoza in Spain and Tuberculosis Vaccine Initiative (TBVI) worked together in the testing and announced promising new safety and immunogenicity results.