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Toxicology. 1992;73(1):117-25.

Role of aluminium in skin reactions after diphtheria-tetanus-pertussis-poliomyelitis vaccination: an experimental study in rabbits.

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Laboratoire de Toxicologie et d'Hygiène Industrielle, Faculté de Pharmacie, Centre Hospitalier Régional Universitaire, Nantes, France.


The occurrence of subcutaneous nodules at the injection site is one of the complications of diphtheria-tetanus-pertussis-poliomyelitis vaccination, but the causes and mechanisms involved are still poorly understood. An experimental study in the New Zealand rabbit enabled us to determine the frequency of occurrence of these nodules, how long they persist and the histopathologic features of the cells involved. Aluminium (Al) assays by electrothermal atomic absorption spectrometry allowed us to study concentrations both in nodules and the organism (serum, normal skin). The results show an absence of Al diffusion outside nodules, a correlation between infiltrate intensity and Al concentration in nodules and modifications in the histological constituents of nodule cells. The histological picture indicates a foreign body reaction to Al. All these data underscore the role of Al in the formation of early postvaccinal nodules at the injection site.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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