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Report of the First Meeting of the Scientific Working Group on Bacterial Enteric Infections: Microbiology, Epidemiology, Immunology, and Vaccine Development, Geneva, April 1980.
Geneva, Switzerland, WHO, 1980. 17 p.The group developed a five year research plan (1980-84). Topics were given priority based on the following group-established criteria: 1) the extent of the problem to be studied; 2) the chance of its early success given the limited funds available; and 3) the availability of good research workers with an interest in the problem. The epidemiology and microbiology of Vibrio cholerae 01 and Enterotoxigenic Escherichia coli (ETEC) are given first priority for study, as are immunology and vaccine development against cholera and ETEC diarrhoea. The immunology study will involve: 1) identification of protective antigens, 2) tests for antibody measurement and 3) measurement of acquired immunity. Methods of stimulating mucosal immunity are given first priority, as is the testing of existing candidate cholera vaccines such as B-subunit cholera vaccine and living vaccines made from non-toxigenic V. cholerae. Other organisms which will be studied are Campylobaster jejuni (which can account for up to 15% of acute diarrhoea cases in some settings), Salmonella, (including S. typhi), Shigella and Yersinia enterocolitica. Once there is a better understanding of the modes of transmission of the bacterial enteric pathogens, a study of specific cost effective methods of interrupting their transmission through environmental intervention is suggested, with emphasis on modifications in water supply and water usage, defecation practices, and personal and domestic hygiene. Identification of institutions to undertake research, and funding distribution, were also considered.