Boosters backed for pertussis epidemic

Earlier and more frequent booster shots could help combat a new strain of pertussis that is fuelling the national epidemic, experts say.

Australian researchers recently reported that the new strain of Bordetella pertussis bacterium now accounted for 84% of pertussis cases in Australia.

Vaccine-induced immunity not only wore off quicker with the new strain, but it also appeared to cause more severe disease, the researchers said.

Study author