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PERTINENT, Pertussis in Infants European Network

Project description

PERTINENT is an European hospital network that aimed to estimate the burden of pertussis in infants aged less than one year in terms of incidence and severity, as well as the vaccine effectiveness against hospitalisation for pertussis with regards to primary vaccination in infants but also vaccination in pregnancy.

Context situation

In the ten years before the project started, pertussis had re-emerged in many regions including the European Union (EU) and European Economic Area (EEA), despite high and stable vaccine coverage with the primary series of acellular pertussis vaccine. This increase in pertussis incidence has been observed among adolescents, adults and particularly among children too young to be vaccinated or to have completed the primary series. The majority of severe complications (including pneumonia, convulsions, encephalopathy and death) occur in infants aged <6 months and half of infants less than 1 year of age who get the disease require hospitalisation. The PERTINENT network consisted of 11 partner institutions including seven study sites (six EU/EEA countries) and 41 hospitals.

Project activities

Generic protocol

Development of a generic protocol on active surveillance of pertussis in infants and pertussis vaccine effectiveness.

Pooled analysis of surveillance data

Including all infants with pertussis-like symptoms aged less than one year and who tested positive to Bordetella pertussis, we estimated pertussis annual incidence and monitored trends in incidence for the respective seven study sites.

Pooled analysis of pertussis vaccine effectiveness at EU/EEA level

Data management, data validation, development of scripts, report writing, scientific communication. Using a test-negative design, we measured vaccine effectiveness of infant vaccination and mother vaccination in pregnancy.

Scientific meetings

Organisation of scientific meetings and technical workshops to present results, exchange with other international partners, discuss epidemiological and methodological issues.



    Scientific publications

    Effectiveness of pertussis vaccination in pregnancy to prevent hospitalisation in infants aged <2 months and effectiveness of both primary vaccination and mother's vaccination in pregnancy in infants aged 2-11 months. Vaccine. 2022 Oct 19;40(44):6374-6382. doi: 10.1016/j.vaccine.2022.09.054. Epub 2022 Sep 29. PMID: 36182617; PMCID: PMC9589240.

    Merdrignac L, Acosta L, Habington A, Garcìa Cenoz M, Pandolfi E, Fabiánová K, Jordan I, O’Sullivan N, Navasués A, Tozzi AE, Zavadilová J, Jané M, Cotter S, Pitillas NI, Rizzo C, Křížová P, Hanslik T, Muñoz Almagro C, Pastore L, Bacci S, Moren A, Valenciano M; PERTINENT Group.

    Available here

    Exploring the nasopharyngeal microbiota composition in infants with whooping cough: A test-negative case-control study

    Rocafort M, Henares D, Brotons P, Barrabeig I, Launes C, Merdrignac L, Valenciano M, Domínguez A, Godoy P, Muñoz-Almagro C

    PLoS One. 2021 Oct 29;16(10):e0259318. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0259318. PMID: 34714887; PMCID: PMC8555781

    Available here

    The impact of pertussis in infants: insights from a hospital-based enhanced surveillance system, Lazio region, Italy, 2016 to 2019.

    Pandolfi Elisabetta, Gesualdo Francesco, Rizzo Caterina, Russo Luisa, Campagna Ilaria, Carloni Emanuela, Concato Carlo, Linardos Giulia, Villani Alberto, Ciampini Sara, Reale Antonino, Boccuzzi Elena, Midulla Fabio, Tozzi Alberto E.

    Euro Surveill. 2021;26(24):pii=2000562

    Available here

    Incidence and severity of pertussis hospitalisations in infants aged less than 1 year in 37 hospitals of six EU/EEA countries, results of PERTINENT sentinel pilot surveillance system, December 2015 to December 2018

    Merdrignac L, Aït El Belghiti F, Pandolfi E, Jané M, Murphy J, Fabiánová K, García Cenoz M, Flem E, Guillot S, Tozzi AE, Carmona G, Habington A, Zavadilová J, Navasués A, Bøås H, Lévy-Brühl D, Ferretti B, Lanaspa M, O’Sullivan N, Křížová P, Fernandino L, Bekkevold T, Hanslik T, Muñoz-Almagro C, Bacci S, Spiteri G, Valenciano M, Moren A, PERTINENT Group.

    Euro Surveill. 2021;26(4):pii=1900762

    Available here

    A data driven clinical algorithm for differential diagnosis of pertussis and other respiratory infections in infants

    Tozzi AE, Gesualdo F, Rizzo C, Carloni E, Russo L, Campagna I, et al. (2020)

    PLoS ONE 15(7): e0236041

    Available here

    Breastfeeding and respiratory infections in the first 6 months of life: A Case Control Study

    Pandolfi E, Gesualdo F, Rizzo C, Carloni E, Villani A, Concato C, Linardos G, Russo L, Ferretti B, Campagna I, Tozzi A.

    Front Pediatr. 2019 Apr 24;7:152.

    Available here

    Validation and implementation of a diagnostic algorithm for DNA Detection of Bordetella pertussis, B. parapertussis, and B. holmesii in a pediatric referral Hospital in Barcelona, Spain

    Valero-Rello A, Henares D, Acosta L, Jane M, Jordan I, Godoy P, Muñoz-Almagro, C.

    J Clin Microbiol. 2019 Jan 2;57(1). pii: e01231-18. doi: 10.1128/JCM.01231-18. Print 2019 Jan. PubMed PMID: 30404946; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC6322476

    Available here

    PERTINENT – measuring the burden of Pertussis/ Whooping Cough in hospitalised infants

    Murphy J, PERTINENT Ireland Group

    Epi-Insight, Volume 18, Issue 12, December 2017

    Available here

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