FDA lowers approval age for meningococcal vaccine

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announced on Friday that the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has lowered the approval age range for use of the MenACWY-CRM vaccine to counteract meningococcal disease.

The CDC reported the change in the Aug. 5 issue of its Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report. The FDA lowered the age range to include individuals aged two through 55 years, MD News reports.

Another quadrivalent meningococcal conjugate vaccine, MenACWY-D, is approved in the United States for preventing meningococcal disease caused by serogroups A, C, Y and W-135 among those aged two through 55 years. MenACWY-D has also been approved as a two dose series for children aged nine to 23 months.

The Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices recommends that individuals between the ages of two and 55 years of age that are at an elevated risk for meningococcal disease, and all adolescents aged 11 to 18 years, be immunized with meningococcal conjugate vaccine. The ACIP also recommends that all adolescents receive a booster dose of quadrivalent meningococcal conjugate vaccine at the age of 16.

"At this time, no data exist on the use of MenACWY-D following primary vaccination with MenACWY-CRM," the authors wrote, according to MD News. "Health care providers should use every opportunity to provide the booster dose when indicated, regardless of the vaccine brand used for the previous dose or doses."