Impact of meningococcal ACWY conjugate vaccines on pharyngeal carriage in adolescents: evidence for herd protection from the UK MenACWY programme.
Carr JP., MacLennan JM., Plested E., Bratcher HB., Harrison OB., Aley PK., Bray JE., Camara S., Rodrigues CMC., Davis K., Bartolf A., Baxter D., Cameron JC., Cunningham R., Faust SN., Fidler K., Gowda R., Heath PT., Hughes S., Khajuria S., Orr D., Raman M., Smith A., Turner DPJ., Whittaker E., Williams CJ., Zipitis CS., Pollard AJ., Oliver J., Morales-Aza B., Lekshmi A., Clark SA., Borrow R., Christensen H., Trotter C., Finn A., Maiden MC., Snape MD., UKMenCar4 and ‘Be on the TEAM’ Study Collaborators None.
ObjectiveSerogroup W and Y invasive meningococcal disease increased globally from 2000 onwards. Responding to a rapid increase in serogroup W clonal complex 11 (W:cc11) invasive meningococcal disease, the UK replaced an adolescent booster dose of meningococcal C conjugate vaccine with quadrivalent MenACWY conjugate vaccine in 2015. By 2018, the vaccine coverage in the eligible school cohorts aged 14 to 19 years was 84%. We assessed the impact of the MenACWY vaccination programme on meningococcal carriage.MethodsAn observational study of culture-defined oropharyngeal meningococcal carriage prevalence before and after the start of the MenACWY vaccination programme in UK school students, aged 15 to 19 years, using two cross-sectional studies: 2014 to 2015 "UKMenCar4" and 2018 "Be on the TEAM" (ISRCTN75858406).ResultsA total of 10 625 participants preimplementation and 13 434 postimplementation were included. Carriage of genogroups C, W, and Y (combined) decreased from 2.03 to 0.71% (OR 0.34 [95% CI 0.27-0.44], p DiscussionThe UK MenACWY vaccination programme reduced carriage acquisition of genogroup and serogroup Y and W meningococci and sustained low levels of genogroup C carriage. These data support the use of quadrivalent MenACWY conjugate vaccine for indirect (herd) protection.