Southampton joins €28M project to tackle whooping cough


As part of a major project to prevent whooping cough, our NIHR Wellcome Trust Southampton Clinical Research Facility is enabling new research to improve vaccine testing and development.

Southampton researchers have joined a European project, known as PERISCOPE, bringing together world renowned scientists to develop new vaccination strategies to tackle whooping cough.

Improving vaccine research

Professor Robert Read, head of clinical and experimental sciences within the faculty of medicine at the University of Southampton and professor of infectious diseases, has received €2,726,093 through the project to develop a method to safely infect volunteers for research purposes.

This work, conducted at NIHR Wellcome Trust Southampton Clinical Research Facility, will allow researchers to test new whooping cough vaccines and understand more about them.  

In total, PERISCOPE has received a combined pledge of €28M over the next five years from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and the Innovative Medicines Initiative (IMI), a joint undertaking of the European Commission and the European Federation of Pharmaceutical Industries and Associations.  

Preventing children’s deaths

Also known as pertussis, whooping cough affects around 16 million people each year worldwide, particularly in developing countries, causing almost 200,000 vaccine-preventable deaths in children.

In order to tackle this global health problem, PERISCOPE has brought together leading experts from 22 partnering institutions across 11 countries with long-standing experience in pertussis research, clinical trials, bioinformatics, immunology and public health.

The consortium also includes Sanofi Pasteur and GlaxoSmithKline, two of the world’s largest and most experienced vaccine manufacturers, as industrial partners.

Posted on Monday 10 October 2016