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Hepat Mon. 2011 Oct;11(10):816-20. doi: 10.5812/kowsar.1735143X.751.

Efficacy of HBV vaccination in various stages of chronic kidney disease: is earlier better?

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Public Relations, Tehran University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, IR Iran.



Despite improvement in hepatitis B infection prevention through national vaccination programs, implementation of compulsory and thorough blood donor screening, and reduction of transfusion numbers due to erythropoietin administration,hepatitis B remains a major concern in hemodialysis (HD) centers [1]. Compared to aresponse rate of over 90% in the normal population, only 50 to 60% of those with endstage renal disease (ESRD) achieve protective antibody levels following immunization against hepatitis B [2][3]. Various strategies have been developed to overcome the low seroconversion rate in ESRD patients, including co-administering zinc, gamma-interferon,thymopentin, interleukin-2, and levamisole as immunostimulants or adjuvants [3][4],changing the injection mode (intradermal versus intramuscular), or doubling the vaccine dose [5].


Previous studies demonstrated that renal failure patients benefit from HBV vaccination; however, not all studies have demonstrated this. Therefore, we compared the rates of seroconversion (hepatitis B surface antibody [HBsAb] titer > 10 IU/mL) in patients at various stages of chronic kidney disease (CKD) (estimated glomerular filtration rate [eGFR] < 60 mL/min/1.73 m2) who received HBV vaccination.


A total of 167 patients in 3 different stages of CKD were vaccinated against HBV. Each patient received the vaccine according to a standardized vaccination schedule consisting of 40 μg of the recombinant vaccine "Engerix" at 0, 1, and 6 months.Eight to 12 weeks after the last dose of vaccination, anti-HBsAb levels were measured.


Mean age and eGFR were 57.4 ± 16.5 years and 26.7 ± 14.7 mL/min/1.73 m2, respectively.The overall seroconversion rate was 78%. Although a significant correlation between HBsAb titer and eGFR (r = 0.265, P = 0.001) was observed, in the multivariate analysis using age, CKD stage, diabetes mellitus, and gender as independent variables,the degree of renal function did not significantly contribute to seroconversion. In contrast,higher age (> 60 years) showed a significant negative correlation to seroconversion (odds ratio = 0.22; P = 0.004). CONCLOUSIONS: CKD patients of advanced age should be vaccinated against HBV. Although higher eGFR was not associated with improved seroconversion, the persistence of seroconversion was not evaluated; future studies should be conducted to develop recommendations for earlier or later vaccination.

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