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Vaccine. 1992;10 Suppl 1:S148-51.

Inactivated hepatitis A vaccine: active and passive immunoprophylaxis in chimpanzees.

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Laboratory of Infectious Diseases, National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, Maryland 20892.


Studies of active and passive immunoprophylaxis were carried out in chimpanzees to determine whether a candidate hepatitis A virus (HAV) vaccine could stimulate antibody to HAV (anti-HAV) that was qualitatively similar to anti-HAV stimulated by natural infection. Normal immune globulin (Ig) was prepared from plasma obtained from human volunteers before and after vaccination with the HAV vaccine, and these preparations or commercially prepared Ig were administered to chimpanzees. Protective efficacy was compared to that obtained after vaccination of chimpanzees. As expected, pre-vaccination Ig did not protect chimpanzees against challenge with virulent hepatitis A. In contrast, chimpanzees were protected against hepatitis A by Ig prepared from volunteers who had received hepatitis A vaccine. The protection was qualitatively similar to that afforded by commercial normal Ig containing convalescent anti-HAV. The minimum protective dose of passively acquired anti-HAV was approximately the minimum dose detectable by serological means. This information will be useful in calculating minimum acceptable titres of anti-HAV in normal Ig. Whereas administration of Ig protected chimpanzees against hepatitis A pathology, it did not protect them from infection with HAV. Thus, these chimpanzees were protected by classical passive-active immunoprophylaxis. In contrast, chimpanzees actively immunized with HAV vaccine were apparently protected against both hepatitis A pathology and HAV infection. The mechanism of this complete protection is unknown but may simply represent the higher titre of anti-HAV in the vaccinated chimpanzees, compared to the passively protected animals.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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