Whooping cough, or pertussis, is a respiratory infection that can cause coughing fits. Pertussis, also referred to as whooping cough, is a highly contagious respiratory disease. It is brought on by the germs Bordetella pertussis. Pertussis is understood for unmanageable, fierce coughing that commonly makes it hard to breathe. After fits of many coughings, someone with pertussis usually needs to take deep breaths, which lead to a whooping sound. Pertussis most generally impacts infants and young children and can be deadly, specifically in children less than 1 year of age. With the resurgence in pertussis recently, in 2012, U.S. rates got to a 50-year high of 48,000 reported cases, there continues to be a solid demand for research to support the development of efficient and new prevention measures. Over the years, and continuing into today, NIAID has played a vital role in developing and executing the pertussis research schedule, especially in recognizing the infection process and evaluating vaccines and vaccine routines.
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