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Infect Immun. 1983 Jun;40(3):1092-5.

Secretory immunological response after intranasal inactivated influenza A virus vaccinations: evidence for immunoglobulin A memory.


An intranasal, inactivated trivalent influenza A vaccine containing 7 micrograms of A/Bangkok/1/79 (H3N2) hemagglutinin was administered to 20 children aged 1 to 6 years to assess the local and systemic immune responses to antigen delivered to the respiratory tract. Six children without prior influenza virus infection exhibited no local immune response and manifested only a minimal systemic response to the intranasal vaccine. In contrast, five individuals who were previously infected with a live attenuated influenza A H3N2 virus vaccine, although having no residual secretory antibody at the time of challenge, promptly developed a local antibody response to intranasal, inactivated antigen. Therefore, the live influenza A virus vaccine had induced memory in the local immunoglobulin A (IgA) immune system. The third group of nine children had previously been infected with wild-type H3N2 influenza virus. A majority of these children had residual local and systemic antibody at the time of challenge but they demonstrated some boosting of local IgA antibody with administration of intranasal inactivated vaccine. The competence of the secretory IgA immune system in young children in mounting primary and secondary responses to influenza antigens has important implications for approaches to prevention of influenzal illness.

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