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Vaccine. 2010 Feb 3;28(5):1188-92. doi: 10.1016/j.vaccine.2009.11.036. Epub 2009 Nov 27.

Bordetella pertussis vaccine strains and circulating isolates in Serbia.

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Institute of Virology, Vaccine and Sera Torlak, Belgrade, Serbia.


In Serbia, whole cell pertussis vaccine was introduced in 1957. Current composition of the vaccine has been used since 1985 and contains four autochthonous strains of Bordetella pertussis isolated from 1957 to 1984. To monitor changes in bacterial population, 70 isolates collected from 1953 to 2000 were studied together with the vaccine strains. The methods included serotyping of fimbriae (Fim), genotyping of pertactin (prn) and pertussis toxin S1 subunit (ptxA), and pulsed-field gel electrophoresis analysis. Shift from ptxA2 to ptxA1 has been observed in isolates since the late of 1960s. All isolates from 1980 to 1984 harbored ptxA1. Re-appearance of the ptxA2 allele followed an addition of the two strains harboring ptxA1 in the vaccine in 1985. The allele prn1 was predominant among the Serbian isolates, though prn3 and prn11 have been detected since 1981 and 1984. The allele prn2 was found only in two strains isolated in 2000. Serotype Fim2.3 disappeared before 1980 and serotype Fim2 became predominant since then. The Serbian vaccine strains showed differences in ptxA and prn. The results of this present study indicate that the B. pertussis population in Serbia is different from other vaccinated populations and that this difference may be related to the vaccine used.

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