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Jpn J Infect Dis. 2002 Aug;55(4):112-6.

Duration of immunity after smallpox vaccination: a study on vaccination policy against smallpox bioterrorism in Japan.

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Agency for Cooperation in International Health, Kumamoto 862-0901, Japan.


The success of global smallpox eradication in 1980 led all the nations of the world to discontinue smallpox vaccination. To date, however, the threat of deliberate release of smallpox virus has led health authorities to reconsider smallpox vaccination and at the same time, to urge to evaluate duration of the immunity of the population vaccinated before 1980. Although available data is scarce and incomplete, the study suggests that protective immunity lasts longer in a good percentage of vaccinees, although the real percentage and duration are not known. Accordingly, how to establish a national vaccination policy for preparedness in Japan and elsewhere was discussed. The study is intended to cause interest and debate among the medical and public health community.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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