Live viral vectors that express heterologous antigens of the target pathogen are being investigated in the development of novel vaccines against serious infectious agents like HIV and Ebola. As some live recombinant vectored vaccines may be replication-competent, a key challenge is defining the length of time for monitoring potential adverse events following immunization (AEFI) in clinical trials and epidemiologic studies. This time period must be chosen with care and based on considerations of pre-clinical and clinical trials data, biological plausibility and practical feasibility. The available options include: (1) adapting from the current relevant regulatory guidelines; (2) convening a panel of experts to review the evidence from a systematic literature search to narrow down a list of likely potential or known AEFI and establish the optimal risk window(s); and (3) conducting “near real-time“ prospective monitoring for unknown clustering's of AEFI in validated large linked vaccine safety databases using Rapid Cycle Analysis for pre-specified adverse events of special interest (AESI) and Treescan to identify previously unsuspected outcomes. The risk window established by any of these options could be used along with (4) establishing a registry of clinically validated pre-specified AESI to include in case-control studies. Depending on the infrastructure, human resources and databases available in different countries, the appropriate option or combination of options can be determined by regulatory agencies and investigators.

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Keywords Adverse event of special interest (AESI), Adverse events following immunization (AEFI), Duration, Safety, Surveillance, Treescan, Vaccines, Viral vector
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Journal Vaccine
Kochhar, S, Excler, J.-L. (Jean-Louis), Bok, K. (Karin), Gurwith, M. (Marc), McNeil, M.M. (Michael M.), Seligman, S.J. (Stephen J.), … Chen, R.T. (2018). Defining the interval for monitoring potential adverse events following immunization (AEFIs) after receipt of live viral vectored vaccines. Vaccine. doi:10.1016/j.vaccine.2018.08.085