Would you be interested in participating in a whooping cough protection study?

Study exploring whooping cough protection in children and adults (BERT Study)

The Oxford Vaccine Group is conducting a research study to learn more about vaccines that can prevent pertussis infection. Pertussis infection, also known as whooping cough, affects the lungs and airways and can cause severe illness in young infants and prolonged respiratory symptoms in older children and adults. Pertussis vaccines are already given to all babies in the UK as well as to pre-school children and women in pregnancy.

Why are we doing this study?

The level of protection against pertussis infection gradually falls with increasing time after being given a vaccine. There are many questions about how long protection lasts and about the immune response to further booster doses of vaccine given at different ages. This study will provide information to answer some of these questions.

What happens in this study?

– We are looking to enrol healthy children aged 7- 15 years old and adults aged 20-34 and 60-70 years old who are registered with a GP in the Thames Valley area.

– All participants would receive a whooping cough vaccine at their first visit.

– Children would have a total of 4 visits with 4 blood tests whereas adults would have 5 visits with 5 blood tests over a 12 month period.

– Child visits would take place at home or a nearby location whereas adult visits would take place at the Centre for Clinical Vaccinology and Tropical Medicine (CCVTM) at the Churchill Hospital.

– Local anaesthetic skin cream would be used for children to reduce any discomfort from blood sampling.

– All participants would have 24 hour telephone access to a study doctor should there be any concerns following vaccinations.

– Taking part in this research study is completely voluntary.


All adult participants are reimbursed for their time, travel and the inconvenience of blood samples, and would receive £45 per visit. Participants will receive a maximum of £225 if they remain in the study for the entire period and attend all study visits.

Date required



Oxford Vaccine Group, University of Oxford


Tel: 01865 611400
Email: info@ovg.ox.ac.uk

Clinical Trial Registration Details

ClinicalTrials.gov – registration pending as still under review