• Characteristics of human encounters and social mixing patterns relevant to infectious diseases spread by close contact: a survey in Southwest Uganda

      le Polain de Waroux, O; Cohuet, S; Ndazima, D; Kucharski, AJ; Juan-Giner, A; Flasche, S; Tumwesigye, E; Arinaitwe, R; Mwanga-Amumpaire, J; Boum, Y; et al. (BioMed Central, 2018-04-11)
      Quantification of human interactions relevant to infectious disease transmission through social contact is central to predict disease dynamics, yet data from low-resource settings remain scarce.
    • A cluster randomized non-inferiority field trial on the immunogenicity and safety of tetanus toxoid vaccine kept in controlled temperature chain compared to cold chain

      Juan-Giner, A; Domicent, C; Langendorf, C; Roper, M H; Baoundoh, P; Fermon, F; Gakima, P; Zipursky, S; Tamadji, M; Grais, RF (2014-09-23)
      In resource-poor settings, cold chain requirements present barriers for vaccine delivery. We evaluated the immunogenicity and safety of tetanus toxoid (TT) vaccine in "Controlled Temperature Chain" (CTC; up to 40°C for <30 days before administration), compared to standard cold chain (SCC; 2-8°C). Prior to the study, stability parameters of TT-CTC were shown to meet international requirements.
    • Evaluation of the stability of measles vaccine out of the cold chain under extended controlled temperature conditions.

      Juan-Giner, A; Alsalhani, A; Panunzi, I; Lambert, V; Van Herp, M; Gairola, S (Elsevier, 2020-02-08)
      Measles outbreaks occur periodically in remote and difficult to reach areas in countries such as the Democratic Republic of Congo. The possibility to keep measles vaccines at temperatures outside the cold chain for a limited period prior to administration would be an advantage for organizations such as Médecins Sans Frontières, which repeatedly respond to measles outbreaks in difficult contexts. Using stability data at 37 °C and 40 °C provided by Serum Institute of India Private Limited we applied the product release model for Extended Controlled Temperature Conditions (ECTC) to evaluate the possibility of an out of the cold chain excursion. Measles vaccine in the lyophilized form remains above the minimum required potency at the end of the shelf-life for up to 6 days at 37 °C or for 2 days at 40 °C. This evaluation supports the use of a monodose presentation of measles vaccine in ECTC. This could be an advantage for outbreak response in isolated and difficult to reach areas. However the operational advantages of this approach need to be established.
    • Factors influencing participation in an Ebola vaccine trial among front-line workers in Guinea

      Grantz, KH; Claudot, C; Kambala, M; Kouyate, M; Soumah, A; Boum, Y; Juan-Giner, A; Jemmy, JP; Cummings, DAT; Grais, RFF (Elsevier, 2019-10-14)
      Background Alongside the clinical aspects of the immunogenicity and safety trial of an Ebola vaccine deployed among front-line workers, a qualitative study was conducted to describe motivations behind individuals’ decisions to participate – or not to participate – in the study. Methods In July and August 2015, focus group discussions and semi-structured individual interviews were conducted in Conakry, Guinea. Individuals were eligible for the qualitative study if they met the inclusion criteria of the immunogenicity and safety study irrespective of their participation. Surveys were also conducted among several institution and department heads of staff included in the study as well as vaccine trial staff members. Discussion and interview transcripts were analyzed using content thematic analysis. Results Interviews and focus groups were conducted among 110 persons, of whom about two-thirds (67%) participated in the vaccine trial. There was at least one group interview conducted at each participating trial site, along with numerous formal and informal interviews and conversations through the enrollment period. Participants were often motivated by a desire to save and protect themselves and others, contribute to scientific progress, or lead by example. Non-participants expressed concerns regarding the risk and costs of participation, particularly the fear of unknown side effects following vaccination, and distrust or fear of stigmatization. Conclusions Despite the unique nature of the 2014–2015 Ebola outbreak, front-line workers employed much of the same logic when choosing to participate as in other clinical trials in similar settings. Special consideration should be given to addressing perceived inequity, misunderstanding, and mistrust among the target populations in future trials.
    • Humoral and cellular immune response induced by rVSVΔG-ZEBOV-GP vaccine among frontline workers during the 2013-2016 West Africa Ebola outbreak in Guinea

      Boum, Y; Juan-Giner, A; Hitchings, M; Soumah, A; Strecker, T; Sadjo, M; Cuthbertson, H; Hayes, P; Tchaton, M; Jemmy, JP; et al. (Elsevier, 2020-06-26)
      Background As part of a Phase III trial with the Ebola vaccine rVSVΔG-ZEBOV-GP in Guinea, we invited frontline workers (FLWs) to participate in a sub-study to provide additional information on the immunogenicity of the vaccine. Methods We conducted an open‐label, non‐randomized, single-arm immunogenicity evaluation of one dose of rVSVΔG-ZEBOV-GP among healthy FLWs in Guinea. FLWs who refused vaccination were offered to participate as a control group. We followed participants for 84 days with a subset followed-up for 180 days. The primary endpoint was immune response, as measured by ELISA for ZEBOV-glycoprotein–specific antibodies (ELISA-GP) at 28 days. We also conducted neutralization, whole virion ELISA and enzyme-linked immunospot (ELISPOT) assay for cellular response. Results A total of 1172 participants received one dose of vaccine and were followed-up for 84 days, among them 114 participants were followed-up for 180 days. Additionally, 99 participants were included in the control group and followed up for 180 days. Overall, 86.4% (95% CI 84.1–88.4) of vaccinated participants seroresponded at 28 days post-vaccination (ELISA- GP) with 65% of these seroresponding at 14 days post-vaccination. Among those who seroresponded at 28 days, 90.7% (95% CI 82.0–95.4) were still seropositive at 180 days. The proportion of seropositivity in the unvaccinated group was 0.0% (95% CI 0.0–3.8) at 28 days and 5.4% (95% CI 2.1–13.1) at 180 days post-vaccination. We found weak correlation between ELISA-GP and neutralization at baseline but significant pairwise correlation at 28 days post-vaccination. Among samples analysed for cellular response, only 1 (2.2%) exhibited responses towards the Zaire Ebola glycoprotein (Ebola GP ≥ 10) at baseline, 10 (13.5%) at day 28 post-vaccination and 27 (48.2%) at Day 180. Conclusions We found one dose of rVSVΔG-ZEBOV-GP to be highly immunogenic at 28- and 180-days post vaccination among frontline workers in Guinea. We also found a cellular response that increased with time.
    • Immunogenicity and safety of fractional doses of yellow fever vaccines: a randomised, double-blind, non-inferiority trial

      Juan-Giner, A; Kimathi, D; Grantz, KH; Hamaluba, M; Kazooba, P; Njugana, P; Fall, G; Dia, M; Bob, NS; Monath, TP; et al. (Elsevier, 2021-01-09)
      Background Stocks of yellow fever vaccine are insufficient to cover exceptional demands for outbreak response. Fractional dosing has shown efficacy, but evidence is limited to the 17DD substrain vaccine. We assessed the immunogenicity and safety of one-fifth fractional dose compared with standard dose of four WHO-prequalified yellow fever vaccines produced from three substrains. Methods We did this randomised, double-blind, non-inferiority trial at research centres in Mbarara, Uganda, and Kilifi, Kenya. Eligible participants were aged 18–59 years, had no contraindications for vaccination, were not pregnant or lactating, had no history of yellow fever vaccination or infection, and did not require yellow fever vaccination for travel. Eligible participants were recruited from communities and randomly assigned to one of eight groups, corresponding to the four vaccines at standard or fractional dose. The vaccine was administered subcutaneously by nurses who were not masked to treatment, but participants and other study personnel were masked to vaccine allocation. The primary outcome was proportion of participants with seroconversion 28 days after vaccination. Seroconversion was defined as post-vaccination neutralising antibody titres at least 4 times pre-vaccination measurement measured by 50% plaque reduction neutralisation test (PRNT50). We defined non-inferiority as less than 10% decrease in seroconversion in fractional compared with standard dose groups 28 days after vaccination. The primary outcome was measured in the per-protocol population, and safety analyses included all vaccinated participants. This trial is registered with ClinicalTrials.gov, NCT02991495. Findings Between Nov 6, 2017, and Feb 21, 2018, 1029 participants were assessed for inclusion. 69 people were ineligible, and 960 participants were enrolled and randomly assigned to vaccine manufacturer and dose (120 to Bio-Manguinhos-Fiocruz standard dose, 120 to Bio-Manguinhos-Fiocruz fractional dose, 120 to Chumakov Institute of Poliomyelitis and Viral Encephalitides standard dose, 120 to Chumakov Institute of Poliomyelitis and Viral Encephalitides fractional dose, 120 to Institut Pasteur Dakar standard dose, 120 to Institut Pasteur Dakar fractional dose, 120 to Sanofi Pasteur standard dose, and 120 to Sanofi Pasteur fractional dose). 49 participants had detectable PRNT50 at baseline and 11 had missing PRNT50 results at baseline or 28 days. 900 were included in the per-protocol analysis. 959 participants were included in the safety analysis. The absolute difference in seroconversion between fractional and standard doses by vaccine was 1·71% (95% CI −2·60 to 5·28) for Bio-Manguinhos-Fiocruz, −0·90% (–4·24 to 3·13) for Chumakov Institute of Poliomyelitis and Viral Encephalitides, 1·82% (–2·75 to 5·39) for Institut Pasteur Dakar, and 0·0% (–3·32 to 3·29) for Sanofi Pasteur. Fractional doses from all four vaccines met the non-inferiority criterion. The most common treatment-related adverse events were headache (22·2%), fatigue (13·7%), myalgia (13·3%) and self-reported fever (9·0%). There were no study-vaccine related serious adverse events. Interpretation Fractional doses of all WHO-prequalified yellow fever vaccines were non-inferior to the standard dose in inducing seroconversion 28 days after vaccination, with no major safety concerns. These results support the use of fractional dosage in the general adult population for outbreak response in situations of vaccine shortage.
    • Measles Seroprevalence in Chiradzulu District, Malawi: Implications for Evaluating Vaccine Coverage

      Polonsky, J A; Juan-Giner, A; Hurtado, N; Masiku, C; Kagoli, M; Grais, RF (Elsevier, 2015-07-26)
      Self-reported measles vaccination coverage is frequently used to inform vaccination strategies in resource-poor settings. However, little is known to what extent this is a reliable indicator of underlying seroprotection, information that could provide guidance ensuring the success of measles control and elimination strategies.
    • Safety of the rVSV ZEBOV vaccine against Ebola Zaire among frontline workers in Guinea

      Juan-Giner, A; Tchaton, M; Jemmy, JP; Soumah, A; Boum, Y; Faga, EM; Cisse, M; Grais, RFF (Elsevier, 2018-09-25)
      As part of the ring vaccination trial in Guinea, Front Line Workers were invited to participate in a sub-study to provide additional information on the immunogenicity and safety of rVSVΔG/ZEBOV-GP. Here we summarize the information on the safety follow-up.
    • Vaccination in humanitarian crises: satisficing should no longer suffice

      Grais, RF; Juan-Giner, A (Oxford University Press, 2014-08-04)
      There are more possible vaccination interventions to mitigate the adverse health consequences of populations in crises than ever before, but recent reviews suggest delivering these vaccines has been fraught with difficulty. The decision to implement vaccination interventions in crises remains, more often than not, an exercise in satisficing. The sparse credible epidemiologic and effectiveness data in populations affected by crises contributes greatly to decision-making difficulty, as do the limits of vaccine presentations, formulations and storage. Political considerations and lack of decision-making guidance contribute further. Moving forward requires sound effectiveness studies to help ensure that decision-making is based to the degree possible on substance.