Lakeside Healthcare's Research team is recruiting women for a vaccine trial for a little-known, but common virus that affects nearly 1,000 newborns in the UK per year.
Cytomegalovirus or CMV, was discovered in the 1950s by the same research team that discovered polio, mumps and rubella but, so far there is no vaccine. Most people won't even know if they have CMV but if a pregnant woman contracts the virus she can pass it on to her unborn child with catastrophic results.
CMV can cause miscarriage and stillbirths, five out of every 1,000 babies born with CMV die at birth or in their first year of life. It is the leading preventable cause of hearing loss in babies, responsible for around 25% of childhood hearing loss as well as other disabilities including cerebral palsy, epilepsy, physical impairment, vision loss and ADHD, behavioural and learning difficulties.
The Moderna CMVictory phase 3 vaccine trial will test a new vaccine for its safety and effectiveness in preventing CMV in healthy adult females. They will be assigned into one of two groups; one group is given the vaccine, while the other receives a placebo dose.
The vaccine uses a new technology called messenger ribonucleic acid (mRNA). Traditionally, vaccines against viruses were administered by injecting certain antigens into the body to create an immune system response as if someone was naturally exposed to the virus. Now mRNA vaccines can tell the body to produce the antigen to create the same immune system response. The investigational vaccine will be given as an injection into the upper arm, with an initial dose and follow up injections at two and six months and further monitoring for another 24 months.