Community Research and Development Information Service - CORDIS

H2020

PERISCOPE Report Summary

Project ID: 115910
Funded under: H2020-EU.3.1.7.12.

Periodic Reporting for period 1 - PERISCOPE (PERtussIS COrrelates of Protection Europe)

Reporting period: 2016-03-01 to 2017-02-28

Summary of the context and overall objectives of the project

A new generation of Pertussis vaccines or improved vaccination schedules is needed to meet the persistent burden of Pertussis infection in developing countries and to reduce the risk of contracting Pertussis disease in industrialised countries, which recent observations indicate has risen in some segments of the population compared with previous estimations.
The PERISCOPE consortium was created to meet these challenges by facilitating collaboration between Pertussis stakeholders, particularly from vaccines manufacturing and the academic and public research communities in Europe. The key objective of the project is to gain a better understanding of the immune mechanisms needed to ensure long lasting immunity to Pertussis in humans. This will be achieved through investigation of the immune response generated by infection and colonization of Bordetella pertussis and by comparing the immune response to 1st and 2nd generation Pertussis vaccines in humans. To achieve this goal, the consortium will develop an extensive tool box of bioassays, to support pan-European vaccination studies. It is hoped that the data generated from these studies will ultimately allow the vaccine-developing community to define an ideal immunological profile or signature that vaccines need to generate in humans for them to become effective at preventing infection in a durable manner.
PERISCOPE will also develop laboratory and clinical models of Pertussis infection. Once established, these models will be used to study the capacity of novel formulations of Pertussis candidate vaccines to prevent infection, with the aim of providing an early indication of their potential value as vaccines.
PERISCOPE will also increase our understanding of the benefits of Pertussis immunisation during pregnancy with regards to the immune status of new-borns and infants, leading to further implementation of maternal vaccination programs in low, medium and high income countries.
Finally, PERISCOPE will establish a multidisciplinary clinical and laboratory network including up-to-date bioinformatics analysis platforms and biobanks to support the various stakeholders as they study Pertussis vaccination.
The tools and networks developed by PERISCOPE should enable the development of a new generation of Pertussis vaccines and/or vaccination schedules in Europe and beyond.

Work performed from the beginning of the project to the end of the period covered by the report and main results achieved so far

Progress has been made in designing and planning the clinical studies that will be carried out to explore immune responses to Pertussis vaccination at sites in the Netherlands, United Kingdom, Finland and The Gambia (West Africa).
The protocol for a clinical study aimed at developing a model of Pertussis infection in human volunteers was finalised and approved by the consortium’s governance bodies and local ethical committees. The required authorisations are being sought prior to setting up the study.
Advances were made towards developing a toolbox of immunological and microbiological tests to be used to explore immune responses to Pertussis vaccination and infection.
The PERISCOPE project was presented to the European Medicines Agency (EMA). This is the start of a dialogue with the regulatory authorities that will continue throughout the project.
Communication, dissemination and training activities were launched as planned. Notably, an open access public website was set up and the first consortium newsletter published.

Progress beyond the state of the art and expected potential impact (including the socio-economic impact and the wider societal implications of the project so far)

Beyond the public health objectives of PERISCOPE, the project will revitalize and connect the Pertussis research community in Europe and beyond. It is expected that this network of stakeholders will continue to contribute to the development of novel vaccines and immunization methodologies beyond the life of the project. A variety of discussion forums and meetings have been held throughout this first year of the program in order to plan the operational aspects of the PERISCOPE program. Through these discussions, areas for future work were identified, new interfaces created among partners and long-standing collaborative links strengthened. This has already had a positive impact on the Pertussis community in Europe and beyond.
Bringing together industrial and academic partners with different approaches and working practices means that both learn from each other, not only about what they do, but also how they do it.

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