Pierre Van Damme

Pierre Van Damme
University of Antwerp | UA · Vaccine & infectious disease institute

MD, PhD

About

809
Publications
71,609
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Introduction
Pierre Van Damme is full professor at the University of Antwerp and chairman of the Vaccine & Infectious Disease Institute (VAXINFECTIO, University of Antwerp) (established in 2008. It is formally recognized as ‘Centre of Excellence’ of the University of Antwerp. The Centre for the Evaluation of Vaccination, one of the entities within VAXINFECTIO, conducts research in epidemiology of inectious diseases and in vaccinology (performing since 1984 more than 300 vaccine trials).
Additional affiliations
January 1989 - December 2013
University of Antwerp

Publications

Publications (809)
Preprint
Objectives: To estimate the prevalence, incidence, and longevity of antibodies against SARS-CoV-2 among primary healthcare providers (PHCPs). Design: Prospective cohort study with 12 months of follow-up. Setting: Primary care in Belgium Participants: Any general practitioner (GP) working in primary care in Belgium and any other PHCP from the same G...
Article
Background In the general population, the seroconversion rate after primary vaccination with two doses of an anti-SARS-CoV-2 mRNA vaccine reaches nearly 100%, with significantly higher antibody titers after mRNA-1273 vaccination compared to BNT162b2 vaccination. Here, we performed a systematic review and meta-analysis to compare the antibody respon...
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Full-text available
Since the largest Ebola outbreak in West Africa (2013–2016) highlighted the potential threat of the Ebola virus to the world, several vaccines have been under development by different pharmaceutical companies. To obtain vaccine licensure, vaccine trials assessing the safety, immunogenicity and efficacy of new vaccines among different populations (e...
Article
Presence of SARS-CoV-2 was monitored in nasopharyngeal samples from young children aged 6-30 months attending day-care centres (DCCs) in Belgium from May 2020-February 2022. SARS-CoV-2 carriage among DCC children was only detected from November 2021, after emergence of Delta and Omicron variants, in 9 of the 42 DCCs screened. In only one DCC, two c...
Article
Background One strategy to develop a universal influenza virus vaccine is to redirect the immune system to the highly conserved haemagglutinin stalk domain by sequentially administering vaccines expressing chimeric (c) haemagglutinins with a conserved stalk domain and divergent head domain, to which humans are naive. We aimed to assess the reactoge...
Article
Background To control epidemic waves, it is important to know the susceptibility to SARS-CoV-2 and its evolution over time in relation to the control measures taken. Aim To assess the evolving SARS-CoV-2 seroprevalence and seroincidence related to the first national lockdown in Belgium, we performed a nationwide seroprevalence study, stratified by...
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Background COVID-19 mortality, excess mortality, deaths per million population (DPM), infection fatality ratio (IFR) and case fatality ratio (CFR) are reported and compared for many countries globally. These measures may appear objective, however, they should be interpreted with caution. Aim We examined reported COVID-19-related mortality in Belgi...
Article
Governments worldwide are relying on the COVID-19 vaccines as the solution for ending the coronavirus pandemic and the resulting crisis. Although scientific progress in the development of a vaccine has been astonishing, policymakers are facing an extra hurdle as increasingly more people appear to be hesitant in their intention to take such a vaccin...
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Full-text available
Introduction: National SARS-CoV-2 seroprevalence data provide essential information about population exposure to the virus and help predict the future course of the epidemic. Early cohort studies have suggested declines in levels of antibodies in individuals associated with, for example, illness severity, age and comorbidities. This protocol focus...
Article
Full-text available
Antigen recognition through the T cell receptor (TCR) αβ heterodimer is one of the primary determinants of the adaptive immune response. Vaccines activate naïve T cells with high specificity to expand and differentiate into memory T cells. However, antigen-specific memory CD4 T cells exist in unexposed antigen-naïve hosts. In this study, we use hig...
Preprint
Full-text available
In the general population, the seroconversion rate after primary vaccination with two doses of anti-SARS-CoV-2 mRNA vaccine reaches nearly 100%, with significantly higher antibody titers after mRNA-1273 vaccination compared to BNT162b2 vaccination. Here, we performed a systematic review and meta-analysis to compare the antibody response after two-d...
Article
Full-text available
Background A year after the start of the COVID-19 outbreak, the global rollout of vaccines gives us hope of ending the pandemic. Lack of vaccine confidence, however, poses a threat to vaccination campaigns. This study aims at identifying individuals’ characteristics that explain vaccine willingness in Flanders (Belgium), while also describing trend...
Article
Introduction Maternal antibody interference of the infant’s humoral immune responses raises some concern to the strategy of maternal Tdap (tetanus, diphtheria, acellular pertussis [aP]) vaccination. This study assessed the impact of maternal Tdap antibodies on the infant’s pertussis-specific T lymphocyte responses following infant vaccination with...
Article
Background OVX836 is a recombinant protein vaccine targeting the highly conserved influenza nucleoprotein (NP), which could confer broad-spectrum protection against this disease. Methods This was a randomized, placebo-controlled, double-blind, dose-escalating, single center first-in-human study, conducted in 36 healthy adults aged 18-49 years. Twe...
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Importance There is a need for improved immunogenicity of hepatitis B virus (HBV) vaccines among young adults with risk of infection. Objectives To demonstrate manufacturing equivalence of a 3-antigen (3A) HBV vaccine, evaluate noninferiority of seroprotection rate (SPR) of 3A-HBV vs single-antigen (1A) HBV after 2 and 3 vaccine doses, and compare...
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Full-text available
p>Importance: There is a need for improved immunogenicity of hepatitis B virus (HBV) vaccines among young adults with risk of infection. Objectives: To demonstrate manufacturing equivalence of a 3-antigen (3A) HBV vaccine, evaluate noninferiority of seroprotection rate (SPR) of 3A-HBV vs single-antigen (1A) HBV after 2 and 3 vaccine doses, and comp...
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Hepatitis B is caused by the hepatitis B virus (HBV), which infects the liver and may lead to chronic liver disease, including cirrhosis and hepatocellular carcinoma. HBV represents a worldwide public health problem, causing major morbidity and mortality. Affordable, safe, and effective, hepatitis B vaccines are the best tools we have to control an...
Preprint
Full-text available
In this study of the humoral immune response after the SARS-CoV-2 mRNA vaccination, low seroconversion rates were noted in both kidney transplant recipients and dialysis patients after first dose administration. While in DP the seroconversion rate levelled up to 92.8% after a second dose of SARS-CoV-2 mRNA vaccination, KTR stayed behind with a sero...
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Introduction This article describes the protocol of an Ebola vaccine clinical trial which investigates the safety and immunogenicity of a two-dose prophylactic Ebola vaccine regimen comprised of two Ebola vaccines (Ad26.ZEBOV and MVA-BN-Filo) administered 56 days apart, followed by a booster vaccination with Ad26.ZEBOV offered at either 1 year or 2...
Article
Background: Primary health care providers (PHCPs) are assumed to be at high risk of a COVID-19 infection, as they are exposed to patients with usually less personal protective equipment (PPE) than other frontline health care workers (HCWs). Nevertheless, current research efforts focussed on the assessment of COVID-19 seroprevalence rates in the ge...
Chapter
Hepatitis A is an acute, usually self-limiting disease of the liver caused by hepatitis A virus (HAV). HAV is transmitted from person to person, primarily by the fecal–oral route. The incidence of hepatitis A is closely related to socioeconomic development, and seroepidemiological studies show that prevalence of anti-HAV antibodies in the general p...
Chapter
Hepatitis B is caused by the hepatitis B virus (HBV), which infects the liver and may lead to chronic liver disease, including cirrhosis and hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC). HBV causes worldwide major morbidity and mortality. In 2019, an estimated 14 million people in the World Health Organization European Region were chronically infected with hepat...
Chapter
The diversity of the European Region is reflected not only in the cultures and languages but also by economies and health systems. The economic, cultural, and historical differences have all contributed to the resulting diversity seen in the health systems and health governance among them, differences that have contributed to the wide variation of...
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Although the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) pandemic is lasting for more than 1 year, the exposition risks of health-care providers are still unclear. Available evidence is conflicting. We investigated the prevalence of antibodies against SARS-CoV-2 in the staff of a large public hospital with multiple sites in the Ant...
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For more than a decade human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine have been implemented in most high-income countries, and more recently also in several low- and middle-income countries. The vaccines are safe and their impact and effectiveness in preventing HPV vaccine type infection and associated diseases has been thoroughly established. Currently, the p...
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Sabin-strain oral polio vaccines (OPV) can, in rare instances, cause disease in recipients and susceptible contacts or evolve to become circulating vaccine-derived strains with the potential to cause outbreaks. Two novel type 2 OPV (nOPV2) candidates were designed to stabilize the genome against the rapid reversion that is observed following vaccin...
Preprint
Full-text available
Introduction National severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) seroprevalence data provides essential information about population exposure to the virus and helps predict the future course of the epidemic. Early cohort studies have suggested declines in levels of antibodies in individuals, associated with, for example, illness s...
Article
Full-text available
Implementing an Ebola vaccine trial in a remote area in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC), and being confronted with a dysfunctional health care system and acute unmet health needs of participants, ethical considerations were made regarding the ancillary care obligations of the sponsor and researchers. Spurred by the occurrence of non-rela...
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Differences in innate immune 'imprinting' between vaccine adjuvants may mediate dissimilar effects on the quantity/quality of persisting adaptive responses. We compared antibody avidity maturation, antibody/memory B cell/CD4+ T cell response durability, and recall responses to non-adjuvanted fractional-dose antigen administered 1-year post-immuniza...
Article
Background Limited data exist on the impact of maternal Tetanus, Diphtheria, acellular Pertussis (aP) (Tdap) vaccination for preterm born infants. We report its effect at birth and on antibody-mediated immune responses to a DTaP-IPV-HB-PRP~T vaccine in preterm compared to term infants. Methods Women delivering at term or prematurely were either va...
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Background & Aims Approximately 5‐10% of the general population respond inadequately to licensed recombinant hepatitis B vaccines. We assessed the immunogenicity and safety of a new HBAI20 vaccine, consisting of a new AI20 adjuvant (20µg recombinant human IL‐2 attached to 20µg aluminum hydroxide) in combination with HBVaxPro®‐10µg. Methods In a do...
Article
Background The seroprotection rate (SPR) of hepatitis B vaccination in adults is suboptimal. The aim of this study was to compare the SPR of a tri-antigenic hepatitis B vaccine (TAV), with a mono-antigenic vaccine (MAV) in adults of all ages. Methods This was a multicentre, double-blind, phase 3, randomised controlled trial (PROTECT) comparing the...
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Chronic otitis media with effusion (OME) has been associated with a shift in microbiome composition and microbial interaction in the upper respiratory tract (URT). While most studies have focused on potential pathogens, this study aimed to find bacteria that could be protective against OME through a case-control microbiome study and characterizatio...
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Host cell DNA methylation analysis in urine provides promising triage markers for women diagnosed with a high-risk (HR) human papillomavirus (HPV) infection. In this study, we have investigated a panel of six host cell methylation markers (GHSR, SST, ZIC1, ASCL1, LHX8, ST6GALNAC5) in cervicovaginal secretions collected within the first part of the...
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The potential of first-void (FV) urine as a non-invasive liquid biopsy for detection of human papillomavirus (HPV) DNA and other biomarkers has been increasingly recognized over the past decade. In this study, we investigated whether the volume of this initial urine stream has an impact on the analytical performance of biomarkers. In parallel, we e...
Preprint
Full-text available
Primary health care providers (PHCPs), especially general practitioners (GPs) are essential to organise health care efficiently. During the COVID-19 pandemic, they also keep the pressure off hospitals. PHCPs are assumed to be at high risk of a COVID-19 infection, as they are exposed to a large portion of the population (usually with less personal p...
Article
Introduction/Background & Aims Enrichment of breast milk (BM) with immunoglobin (Ig)A and IgG, through maternal vaccination, could help young infants combat targeted pathogens. However, evidence on this effect after preterm delivery is lacking. This study investigated the total and anti-pertussis toxin (anti-PT) specific IgA and IgG production in B...
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Background A partnership between the University of Antwerp and the University of Kinshasa implemented the EBOVAC3 clinical trial with an Ebola vaccine regimen administered to health care provider participants in Tshuapa Province, Democratic Republic of the Congo. This randomized controlled trial was part of an Ebola outbreak preparedness initiative...
Article
Background Efficacy of the nine-valent human papillomavirus (9vHPV; HPV types 6/11/16/18/31/33/45/52/58) vaccine was demonstrated in a phase 3 study in women 16–26 years of age. We present a phase 3 immunogenicity and safety study of the 9vHPV vaccine in women 27–45 versus 16–26 years of age. Methods This international, open-label study (NCT031582...
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Summary box ► Rabies, a fully preventable viral encephalitis, still claims at least 59 000 victims per year. Pre- exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) increases the probability of survival in bitten individuals but is hardly available to high- risk groups—like children—in endemic settings. ► The availability of simplified PrEP schedules and new modes of...
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Despite significant progress in reaching some milestones of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, neonatal and early infant morbidity and mortality remain high, and maternal health remains suboptimal in many countries. Novel and improved preventative strategies with the potential to benefit pregnant women and their infants are needed, w...
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In this first serosurvey among psychiatric healthcare providers, only 3.2% of a sample of 431 staff members of a Belgian University Psychiatric Centre, screened 3–17 June 2020, had SARS-CoV-2 immunoglobulin G antibodies, which is considerably lower compared with both the general population and other healthcare workers in Belgium. The low seropreval...
Book
This second fully updated and extended edition of the textbook serves as a highly readable guide on latest developments in vaccine development and vaccination programs in infants, children and adolescents from a European perspective. The first part of the book introduces to general vaccinology, immunization programs and formulation, effects and unw...
Article
Full-text available
In a blinded phase 1 trial (EudraCT 2017-0000908-21; NCT03430349) in Belgium, healthy adults (18 to 50 years) previously immunized exclusively with inactivated polio vaccine were administered a single dose of one of two novel type 2 oral polio vaccines (nOPV2-c1: S2/cre5/S15domV/rec1/hifi3 (N=15); nOPV2-c2: S2/S15domV/CpG40 (N=15)) and isolated for...
Article
Background Changes in serotype distribution have been described after the switch from the 13-valent pneumococcal conjugate vaccine (PCV13) to the 10-valent pneumococcal conjugate vaccine (PCV10) in Belgium. Aim To describe serotype’s invasive disease potential and the detailed evolution of serotype distribution and antimicrobial susceptibility of...
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Background Two novel type 2 oral poliovirus vaccine (OPV2) candidates, novel OPV2-c1 and novel OPV2-c2, designed to be more genetically stable than the licensed Sabin monovalent OPV2, have been developed to respond to ongoing polio outbreaks due to circulating vaccine-derived type 2 polioviruses. Methods We did two randomised studies at two centre...
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Full-text available
Starting from historic reflections, the current SARS-CoV-2 induced COVID-19 pandemic is examined from various perspectives, in terms of what it implies for the implementation of non-pharmaceutical interventions, the modeling and monitoring of the epidemic, the development of early-warning systems, the study of mortality, prevalence estimation, diag...
Article
Although COVID-19 has been spreading throughout Belgium since February, 2020, its spatial dynamics in Belgium remain poorly understood, partly due to the limited testing of suspected cases during the epidemic’s early phase. We analyse data of COVID-19 symptoms, as self-reported in a weekly online survey, which is open to all Belgian citizens. We pr...
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Full-text available
Serological results obtained in a single laboratory from twin-studies on maternal immunisation, in Vietnam and Belgium offer the opportunity to compare antibody kinetics in infants before and after infant vaccination in the presence of vaccine-induced maternal antibodies. Nonlinear mixed-effects models (NLMMs) making use of a hypothesised dynamic e...
Article
Background Despite the universal use of the two-dose trivalent measles-mumps-rubella (MMR) vaccine in the past two decades, outbreaks of these diseases still occur in countries with high vaccine uptake, giving rise to concerns about primary and secondary failure of MMR vaccine components. We aimed to provide seroconversion and waning rate estimates...
Article
Introduction Vaccination of pregnant women protects both women and their newborns against some infectious diseases. Thailand implemented tetanus toxoid (TT) vaccination of pregnant women in 1977, which was replaced by tetanus–diphtheria toxoid (dT) vaccination in 2005. The tetanus–diphtheria–acellular pertussis (Tdap) vaccine has been recommended f...
Article
Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 related disease (COVID-19) is now responsible for one of the most challenging and concerning pandemics. By August 2020, there were almost 20 million confirmed cases worldwide and well over half-million deaths. Since there is still no effective treatment or vaccine, non-pharmaceutical interventions hav...
Preprint
Full-text available
Antigen recognition through the T cell receptor (TCR) αβ heterodimer is one of the primary determinants of the adaptive immune response. Vaccines activate naïve T cells with high specificity to expand and differentiate into memory T cells that allow for a quick and robust T cell response upon exposure to the pathogen or re-exposure to the vaccine a...
Article
Full-text available
The potential of first-void (FV) urine as a non-invasive method to monitor human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccination has been reported, mainly focusing on urine as a sample to assess HPV DNA. Besides HPV DNA, vaccine-induced HPV antibodies originating from cervicovaginal secretions were recently shown to be detectable in FV urine as well. This present...
Article
Full-text available
Background Turkey is an intermediate hepatitis B virus (HBV) endemic country. However, prevalence among Turkish migrants in Belgium is unknown, especially in those born in Belgium with a foreign-born parent, i.e. second-generation migrants (SGM). Aims To evaluate the prevalence of HBV infection and associated risk factors in Turkish first-generati...
Article
Full-text available
Background: This study compares venepuncture versus point-of-care (POC) HBsAg tests on screening cost and linkage to care in prospective outreach screenings in an Asian population in three major cities in Belgium between 10/2014 and 5/2018. Methods: Two community outreach screening programs were organised between 10/2014 and 5/2018. The first sc...
Article
Full-text available
Background The nine-valent human papillomavirus (9vHPV) vaccine protects against infection and disease related to HPV types 6, 11, 16, 18, 31, 33, 45, 52, and 58. The pivotal 36-month Phase III immunogenicity study of 9vHPV vaccine in 9- to 15-year-old girls and boys was extended to assess long-term immunogenicity and effectiveness through approxim...
Preprint
Full-text available
Background In the first weeks of the COVID-19 epidemic in Belgium, a repetitive national serum collection was set up to monitor age-related exposure through emerging SARS-CoV-2 antibodies. First objective was to estimate the baseline seroprevalence and seroincidence using serial survey data that covered the start of a national lock-down period inst...
Article
Recent European studies suggest an emergence of hepatitis E virus (HEV) infection. We evaluated trends in birth cohort‐specific HEV seroprevalence and regional differences in Belgium. HEV IgG seroprevalence was analysed on national serum banks (1579 and 2087 samples for 2006 and 2014 respectively. Hepatitis E virus antigen was tested on positive sa...
Article
Full-text available
Immunization during pregnancy has been recommended in an increasing number of countries. The aim of this strategy is to protect pregnant women and infants from severe infectious disease, morbidity and mortality and is currently limited to tetanus, inactivated influenza, and pertussis-containing vaccines. There have been recent advancements in the d...