Essential addition to understanding the importance of keeping up pertussis vaccination/s and not succumbing to antivax fear mongering. Remember, whilst only 5% of children are not vaccinated against pertussis they make up close to 30% of infections.
And that’s on top of being up to four times less likely to visit a conventional doctor and be diagnosed in the first place!
Before reading this post be aware that as of April 2014 we now know that Australian strains of B. pertussis have largely lost expression of the protein whose variation is a key feature of this piece. An explanation of that study can be found here.
Recent coverage in the mainstream media and from anti-vaccine proponents has suggested that the whooping cough bacterium has evolved around the current acellular vaccine. Such reports occurred following publication of a paper attributing over 80% of Australian cases to a new strain apparently not well covered by the vaccine.
This review analyses these claims. Careful examination of the current literature indicates that while the bacterium’s genome does appear to have changed in response to…
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