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Serogroup B Meningococcal Vaccine & Outbreaks

Three serogroups, or strains, of meningococcal bacteria (serogroups, B, C, and Y) circulate and cause disease in the United States. In certain outbreaks, vaccination against meningococcal disease is recommended to help stop the disease from spreading. However, until recently, there were no serogroup B meningococcal vaccines licensed for use in the United States.

On October 29, 2014, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) licensed the first serogroup B meningococcal vaccine (Trumenba®). FDA approved this vaccine for use in people 10-25 years of age as a 3-dose series. While there is no routine recommendation for this vaccine at this time, physicians can use the vaccine for people 10-25 years of age consistent with the labeled indication.

Based on CDC’s interim guidance, this vaccine can be an important tool for controlling outbreaks of serogroup B meningococcal disease.

Historical Serogroup B Outbreaks

See Princeton University Meningococcal Disease Outbreak for information on disease prevention efforts associated with the 2013-2014 outbreak at that institution.

The University of California, Santa Barbara (UCSB), the Santa Barbara County Public Health Department, the California Department of Public Health, and CDC collaborated in late 2013 through spring 2014 to monitor and respond to an outbreak of serogroup B meningococcal disease; four confirmed cases were reported and more than 17,000 UCSB students received a serogroup B vaccine through an FDA investigational new drug application.

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