With the Qdenga® dengue vaccine officially launched by pharmaceutical company Takeda Malaysia in Malaysia on 11 June 2024, we manage to get some important answers from Dr Goh Choo Beng about dengue and this vaccine.

Head of Medical Affairs
Takeda India & Southeast Asia
What does it do?

Prevention of dengue caused by any of the 4 dengue serotypes.

The clinical trial of the vaccine found that it can:

  • Prevent 80.2% of symptomatic dengue cases at 12 months after receiving the vaccination.
  • Prevent 90.4% of hospitalizations at 18 months after vaccination.
Who can receive the vaccine?

Qdenga® can be administered to individuals 4 years old and above.

How many doses do I need?

Two doses. The second dose will be given three months after the first dose.

Where can I get it?

Currently it’s available at general practitioner or GP clinics as well as private hospitals.

How much is the vaccine?

The price will be set by the clinic or the hospital, so it’s best to consult them about the price.

How does this vaccine work?

Dr Goh explains that the Qdenga® vaccine has a backbone that is based on the live-attenuated DENV2 serotype of the dengue virus, with recombinant strains expressing surface proteins for DENV1, DENV3 and DENV4.

This way, the vaccine will protect an individual from all 4 dengue serotypes.

Is it safe for individuals that have not contracted dengue before?

Yes. People that have no history of dengue fever as well as people that have had dengue can safely receive the vaccine.

No blood tests are necessary before receiving the vaccine.

What are the side effects?

Short term side effects are common ones associated with vaccination, such as redness and soreness at site of injection. These side effects are mild and temporary.

At the time of writing, there is an ongoing clinical trial that is monitoring and closely following selected individuals that have received the vaccine since about 4.5 years ago. So far, the investigators have found that:

  • The protection afforded by the vaccine persists 4.5 years after receiving the vaccine.
  • There is no long-term serious side effect seen so far.

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