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Vaccine. 1992;10(4):221-5.

Immune response to split-product influenza vaccine in preterm and full-term young children.

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Department of Pediatrics, University of Colorado School of Medicine, Denver.


Humoral and cellular immune responses to two doses of influenza antigens were measured in children 6-48 months of age. These vaccinees comprised a previously unimmunized cohort of 18 healthy full-term children and 15 sick preterm children with bronchopulmonary dysplasia and an additional 30 ex-preterm children who were reimmunized. Half of the reimmunized cohort were recovered from bronchopulmonary dysplasia and half had active bronchopulmonary dysplasia. Antibody response was measured by haemagglutination inhibition (HI) and ELISA, and cellular immunity was measured by enumerating memory T cells. Six weeks after immunization, ELISA antibody levels were significantly higher in previously unimmunized full-term vaccinees than in previously unimmunized sick preterm infants (p less than 0.002). No difference was found between sick and recovered reimmunized children. By HI testing greater than 90% of children in both cohorts developed titres greater than or equal to 1:32, and these were generally maintained for at least 20 weeks. T-cell proliferative responses to influenza antigen were greater in the full-term children than in the preterm children (p less than 0.02), irrespective of state of health or prior immunization status. Split-product vaccine was immunogenic in all the cohorts studied; however, factors such as prematurity, health status and previous influenza immunization played important roles in the magnitude of some responses.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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