You are here

Prevention of COVID-19: BCG vaccine

COVID-19 research

Prevention of COVID-19: BCG vaccine

Professor Nigel Curtis is leading an international randomised controlled trial, known as the BRACE trial, to determine the effectiveness of Bacille Calmette-Guérin (BCG) vaccine in reducing incidence and severity of COVID-19 in healthcare workers. In addition to its specific effect against tuberculosis, the BCG vaccine has additional effects on the immune system that protect against a wide range of other infections. It does this by inducing a process termed “trained immunity”. It is anticipated that the BCG vaccine might therefore reduce viraemia following SARS-CoV-2 exposure resulting in less severe COVID-19 and faster recovery. Over $10 million has been raised to enable the team to reach over 6,825 healthcare workers across Australia, Spain, the Netherlands, Brazil, Chile, the United States and the United Kingdom.

Webinar

Trials and tribulations: challenges conducting the BRACE trial during a pandemic.



In this webinar, we heard from Prof Nigel Curtis, the Chief Principal Investigator of the BRACE trial of BCG vaccination to reduce the impact of COVID-19, about the challenges of running the BRACE trial during a pandemic.

The BRACE trial is an international randomised controlled trial to determine the effectiveness of BCG vaccination in reducing incidence and severity of COVID-19 in healthcare workers. The trial has been in progress for over 12 months, and has reached over 6,000 healthcare workers across Australia, Spain, the Netherlands, Brazil, Chile, the United States and the United Kingdom. A trial of this size has come with its own set of challenges throughout the pandemic. Please enjoy this webinar to hear about these challenges, and how they were overcome. 

Research

The BRACE Trial: BCG vaccination to reduce the impact of COVID-19 in healthcare workers

Professor Nigel Curtis has been leading the BRACE trial since early 2020 in response to the global pandemic. The trial has ceased recruiting, after acquiring 6825 participants internationally. As the pandemic has evolved, so too has the BRACE trial, now involving countries outside Australia including Spain, the Netherlands, Brazil, Chile, the United States and the United Kingdom. This study aims to understand if BCG vaccination can reduce the severity of COVID-19 disease, and investigate its role in the evolving pandemic. This work has also incorporated two new aims to extend the collaborations and resources utilised in this trial. These new aims focus on whether the BCG vaccine improves the body’s response SARS-CoV-2 vaccines in health care workers; and the effect of vaccination in relation to different variants of SARS-CoV-2.

Associated Resources
Associated Campus Papers