Bacille Calmette-Guérin (BCG) vaccine


It is a vaccine against tuberculosis that is prepared from a strain of the attenuated (weakened) live bovine tuberculosis bacillus Mycobacterium tuberculosis. Mycobacterium bovis is from the same family as Mycobacterium tuberculosis and has lost its virulence in humans by being specially cultured in an artificial medium. It was developed in the 1930’s and it remains the only vaccination available against tuberculosis today. It is used because it is effective in reducing the likelihood and severity of TB in infants and young children particularly tuberculous meningitis and miliary disease.

« Back to Glossary Index