27 January 2023
Japanese encephalitis vaccine delivery study – subcutaneous injection versus intradermal injection
Researchers are calling for participants from the Hilltops Shire to take part in a new research study which launched today investigating the effectiveness of intradermal administration of the existing TGA-approved Japanese encephalitis (JE) vaccine Imojev® compared with subcutaneous administration.
JE is a rare but serious illness caused by the Japanese encephalitis virus (JEV) and is spread to humans by infected mosquitoes. Although most infections are asymptomatic, those with severe infection may develop encephalitis which can lead to death or permanent disability. There is currently no treatment for JE viral infection once acquired. Vaccination and taking action to avoid being bitten by mosquitoes remain the best protection.
The study – sponsored by The Sydney Children’s Hospitals Network and led by the National Centre for Immunisation Research and Surveillance and Murrumbidgee Local Health District, with funding support from NSW Health – has established a clinic in Young, NSW which will operate Monday to Friday for approximately four to six weeks beginning Monday 30 January 2023.
Healthy, non-pregnant individuals aged five years and older who live in, work in, or frequently visit the Hilltops Local Government Area and do not currently meet NSW Health JE vaccine eligibility criteria are invited to participate in the study.
The Imojev® vaccine being administered in the study has been used extensively across the world for more than a decade and is proven to be both safe and effective. Enrolled individuals will be randomised in equal numbers to receive the JEV vaccine Imojev® either by intradermal injection – administered into the space between the two outer layers (epidermis and dermis) of the skin – or by subcutaneous injection – administered in the fatty tissue layer (subcutaneous layer) located between the skin and the muscle.
If intradermal vaccination proves effective, more people across NSW and Australia will be able to be protected against JEV sooner.
Participants will be actively followed up over 12 months to collect data on the immune response and safety profile of each vaccine delivery method. Findings will be published and will inform future vaccination policies and strategies in Australia.
How to take part?
If you live in, work in, or frequently visit the Hilltops Local Government Area and meet the eligibility criteria outlined in the patient information sheet below, you can book an appointment at a time that suits you at the link below.
Click here to book a JE vaccine delivery study appointment
More information on the study can be found on the NCIRS clinical research study page or you can email SCHN-NCIRS-Research@health.nsw.gov.au