Serotype distribution of invasive Streptococcus pneumoniae in Canada after the introduction of the 13-valent pneumococcal conjugate vaccine, 2010-2012

Walter H.B. Demczuk, Irene Martin, Averil Griffith, Brigitte Lefebvre, Allison McGeer, Marguerite Lovgren, Gregory J. Tyrrell, Shalini Desai, Lindsey Sherrard, Heather Adam, Matthew Gilmour, George G. Zhanel

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The introduction of the 7-valent pneumococcal vaccine (PCV7) in Canada was very effective in reducing invasive pneumo-coccal disease (IPD) in children; however, increases of non-PCV7 serotypes have subsequently offset some of these reductions. A 13-valent pneumococcal vaccine (PCV13) targeting additional serotypes was implemented between 2010 and 2011, and in 2012 changes in the incidence of disease and the distribution of IPD serotypes began to emerge. The incidence of IPD in children <5 years of age declined from 18.0 to 14.2 cases per 100 000 population between 2010 and 2012; however, the incidence in ages ≥5 years remained relatively unchanged over the 3-year period, at about 9.7 cases per 100 000 population. From 2010 to 2012, PCV13 serotypes declined significantly from 66% (224/339) to 41% (101/244, p < 0.001) in children <5 years of age, and from 54% (1262/2360) to 43% (1006/2353, p < 0.001) in children ≥5 years of age. Serotypes 19A, 7F, 3, and 22F were the most common serotypes in 2012, with 19A decreasing from 19% (521/2727) to 14% (364/2620, p < 0.001), 7F decreasing from 14% (389/2727) to 12% (323/2620, p = 0.04), and 22F increasing from 7% (185/2727) to 11% (279/2620, p < 0.001) since 2010. Serotype 3 increased from 7% (23/339) to 10% (24/244) in <5-year-olds (p = 0.22) over the 3-year period. The highest rates of antimicrobial resistance were observed with clarithromycin (23%), penicillin using meningitis breakpoints (12%), clindamycin (8%), and trimethoprim-sulfamethoxazole (6%). Shifts in the distribution of IPD serotypes and reductions in the incidence of disease suggest that current immunization programs in Canada are effective in reducing the burden of IPD in children. While we acknowledge the limited data on the effectiveness of the PCV13 vaccine, to our knowledge, this study represents one of the first descriptions of the potential impact of the PCV13 vaccine in the Canadian population. Continued surveillance will be important to recognize replacement serotypes, to determine the extent of herd immunity effects in nonpaediatric populations, and to assess the overall effectiveness of PCV13 in reducing IPD in Canada.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)778-788
Number of pages11
JournalCanadian Journal of Microbiology
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2013


  • Invasive pneumococcal disease
  • Pcv13
  • Serotype
  • Streptococcus pneumoniae
  • Surveillance

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