The risk and severity of specific infections are increased during pregnancy due to a combination of physiological and immunological changes. Characterizing the maternal immune system during pregnancy is important to understand how the maternal immune system maintains tolerance towards the allogeneic fetus. This may also inform strategies to prevent maternal fatalities due to infections and optimize maternal vaccination to best protect the mother-fetus dyad and the infant after birth. In this review, we describe what is known about the immunological changes that occur during a normal pregnancy.
Estimating the Risk of Human Herpesvirus 6 and Cytomegalovirus Transmission to Ugandan Infants from Viral Shedding in Saliva by Household Contacts
The lack of association between oral CMV shedding and transmission is consistent with breastfeeding being the dominant route of infant infection for that virus. These affirm saliva as the route of HHV-6 transmission and provide benchmarks for developing strategies to reduce the risk of infection and its related morbidity.
Performance of the Alethia CMV Assay for Detection of Cytomegalovirus by Use of Neonatal Saliva Swabs
The Alethia CMV assay is an accurate method for identifying neonates with cCMV infection and, given its simplicity, appears suitable for CMV testing using neonatal saliva outside a reference laboratory, including remote and resource-limited settings.
Investigating the association of receipt of seasonal influenza vaccine with occurrence of anesthesia/paresthesia and severe headaches
Our study found no association between severe anesthesia/paresthesia and seasonal influenza vaccination. While there was an association with severe headaches as an adverse event following influenza vaccination, the rates of these events are similar to rates reported from clinical trials and are not a cause for additional concern.
Estimated susceptibility of Canadian meningococcal B isolates to a meningococcal serogroup B vaccine (MenB-FHbp)
Julie A Bettinger's research shows that invasive meningococcal disease caused by Neisseria meningitidis serogroup B (MenB) remains a health risk in Canada and globally. Two MenB vaccines are now approved for use. An understanding of the genotype of Canadian strains and the potential strain coverage conferred by the MenB-FHbp vaccine is needed to inform immunization policies.
Understanding the immune response to pertussis vaccine during pregnancy
Dr. Sadarangani's lab has investigated the function of antibodies produced after immunization in pregnancy, and shown that immunization in the early third trimester produces highly functional antibodies in the newborn, with high binding to pertussis bacteria. (2019 Abu Raya)
As part of the national QUEST study, we have that the immune response to 2 doses of HPV vaccine in girls are as good as 3 doses in adult women 10 years after vaccination. Fewer doses mean a more affordable vaccine and protecting more women against cervical cancer in BC, across Canada and throughout the world. (2019 Donken)
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