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So far Oliver Plumb has created 134 blog entries.

Biotech company MinervaX announces positive results from Phase 1 GBS vaccine trials

MinervaX, a privately held Danish biotech company, today (5th January) announced positive results from a Phase I trial in 240 healthy adult women with its protein-only GBS vaccine, targeting pregnant women for the prevention of life-threatening infections in newborns. “We are delighted that MinervaX is developing a group B Strep vaccine. Group B Strep is the most common cause of severe infection in newborn babies and of meningitis in babies under 3 months, although most of these infections could be prevented. Despite the UK’s risk-based prevention strategy, the rates of these infections have increased for more than a decade. A safe and effective vaccine is the ‘holy grail’ of GBS prevention and could protect more babies from GBS [...]

By | 2017-01-11T18:39:27+00:00 January 5th, 2017|Latest News|0 Comments

New partnership with HiberGene Diagnostics

Group B Strep Support is delighted to announce a partnership with healthcare company HiberGene Diagnostics to help pregnant women to test for group B Strep – the most common cause of life-threatening infection in newborn babies. One in four pregnant women is unknowingly carrying group B Strep bacteria, which causes meningitis, sepsis or pneumonia in more than 500 newborn babies a year. On average, one newborn baby a week dies from group B Strep infection. Testing for Group B Streptococcus (group B Strep or GBS) is not routinely available through the NHS, unlike countries such as the USA, France, Germany, Poland and many others. HiberGene Diagnostics’ test for GBS is called Strepelle and uses the international ‘gold standard’ Enriched [...]

By | 2017-01-11T18:39:27+00:00 January 5th, 2017|Latest News|0 Comments

Looking back on 2016

As we pause between the Christmas and New Year holidays, it's a great time to take a minute to look back on 2016 and to thank everyone who helped make it such an amazing year. Why Guess? Campaign Parliamentary Launch On 30 November, we were delighted to kick-start our Why Guess ... when you can test? campaign with a parliamentary launch held at Portcullis House, Westminster. A sincere thank you to everyone who has written to their MP about improving awareness and prevention of group B Strep. It really does make a difference. MPs were keen to get involved, and we'll be keeping you updated as the campaign progresses. Earlier in the year, our patron, Sir Nicholas Soames [...]

By | 2017-01-11T18:39:28+00:00 December 30th, 2016|Latest News|0 Comments

Helpline at Christmas

Our Helpline (01444 416176 or [email protected]) is open: Friday, 23rd December - 9:15am to 3.00pm Wednesday, 28th December - 9:15am to 3.00pm Thursday, 29th December - 9.15am to 3.00pm Friday, 30th December - 9.15am to 3.00pm Tuesday, 3rd January - 9.15am to 3.00pm The Helpline is closed on 26-27 December and 2nd January.  

By | 2017-01-11T18:39:28+00:00 December 16th, 2016|Latest News|0 Comments

“Why doesn’t Group B Strep Support pay for ECM tests?”

We are sometimes asked if we provide grants towards part or all of the cost of the private enriched culture medium (ECM) test for group B Strep carriage. This isn't something we do, or are currently planning to do. We thought we'd share how we reached our current position. It’s something we have discussed since the charity’s founding in 1996. The Board of Trustees, along with the charity's Chief Executive and staff, have all had the opportunity to share their views on the issue. Our concerns about using the charity's funds to pay for tests can be broken down into three main areas. Improving care for everyone We believe that as a routine part of antenatal care in the NHS, all pregnant women should be informed about [...]

By | 2016-10-24T19:29:34+00:00 October 14th, 2016|2016, Blog, Latest News|0 Comments

Baby Loss Awareness 9 – 15 October

Baby Loss Awareness Week is dedicated to those who have been touched by the loss of a baby during pregnancy, birth or after birth. During the week of the 9 to 15 October, people are uniting across the UK to show their support for one another. Bereaved parents can commemorate their babies’ all-too-brief lives, knowing that thousands of parents elsewhere in the world will be doing the same.  The week also provides a crucial opportunity for people to talk openly about the sensitive subject of stillbirth and neonatal death and raise awareness of baby loss. Wave of Light - 7pm local time on 15 October Baby Loss Awareness Week finishes each year on October 15 with a global 'Wave of Light' We would like to [...]

By | 2017-01-11T18:39:39+00:00 September 29th, 2016|Latest News|Comments Off on Baby Loss Awareness 9 – 15 October

New possibilities for future prevention of group B Strep infection in babies

New research, published in Clinical & Translational Immunology, suggest that certain a certain type of sugar - oligosaccharides - found in human milk (HMOs or Human Milk Oligosaccharides) may have a role in the prevention and clearance of maternal GBS colonisation during pregnancy. As the authors say: "Once additional studies have been undertaken to validate these results, and definitively identify the HMO(s) involved in protection against GBS disease, a clinical application could be to use HMOs as a potential adjuvant to antibiotics for the treatment of GBS colonisation." Interesting findings indeed (you can read the full research paper here) which could, potentially, be used in the future to reduce GBS infection in babies - but it's a small trial, and more research will be [...]

By | 2016-09-02T08:57:58+00:00 September 1st, 2016|Latest News|0 Comments

Joining a Maternity Services Liaison Committee (MSLC) by Guest Kim Poulton

Group B Strep is the UK’s most common cause of life-threatening infection in newborn babies, and the charity Group B Strep Support is very close to my heart. I found out I carried group B Strep after my daughter was sadly stillborn at full term plus 9 days. My precious daughter, Faith, was stillborn on 23rd October 2015. Within an hour of arriving at the hospital excited to have our fourth and last child to complete our family, I was holding my dead baby in my arms. My pregnancy with Faith had been normal and healthy, and I have three perfectly healthy children. Tests showed I was heavily colonised with group B Strep, as was my urine, placenta, and Faith’s swabs. [...]

By | 2017-01-11T18:39:41+00:00 July 25th, 2016|2016, Latest News|0 Comments

Sir Nicholas Soames – Welcome & introduction

Sir Nicholas Soames MP, Patron of Group B Strep Support, opened the conference by articulating the charity's over-arching objective: "To reduce preventable GBS infection in babies. Save infant lives, prevent disability and prevent pain and suffering. To support and inform families affected with GBS and educated health professionals..." Sir Nicholas called on delegates to listen to the discussions closely and carefully, with an open mind. Click here to read the transcript

By | 2017-01-11T18:39:43+00:00 June 15th, 2016|2015 GBS Conference|0 Comments

Dr Alison Bedford Russell – Overview of neonatal group B Streptococcal (GBS) disease

Dr Alison Bedford Russell described how clinical presentations of group B Strep were different between early-onset and late-onset. For example, group B Strep meningitis was more common in late-onset than early-onset GBS infection, while pneumonia was the reverse. Focal infection (infection in a particular area of the body) was "very,very rare" when it came to early-onset, and less rare for late-onset, for example, septic arthritis. Overall, generalised sepsis was the most common presentation. Dr Bedford Russell highlighted some of the difficulties of identifying early-onset GBS infection and also spoke of an increase in newborns presenting with "hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy" also referred to as HIE, a type of brain damage. The number of deaths as a result of group B Strep infection [...]

By | 2017-01-11T18:39:44+00:00 June 15th, 2016|2015 GBS Conference|0 Comments