Combined vaccination of Haemophilus influenzae type b conjugate and diphtheria-tetanus-pertussis containing acellular pertussis

Lancet. 1999 Dec 11;354(9195):2063-8. doi: 10.1016/S0140-6736(99)04377-9.


After the introduction of effective Haemophilus influenzae type b (Hib) conjugate vaccines, clinical practice has driven the development of combination vaccines comprising Hib conjugates with the infant diphtheria-tetanus-pertussis (DTP) vaccines. However, when such combinations contain an acellular pertussis component (Pa), the antibody response to Hib is lower than that with separate injections and doubts have been raised about their efficacy. We believe that such concerns are unwarranted, since the serological correlates of efficacy previously applied for Hib polysaccharide vaccines seem inappropriate for Hib conjugates. Furthermore, our own studies have shown that the lower antibody responses are not associated with impaired function of the antibodies induced, nor, and possibly more importantly, with the induction of immune memory against Hib. Therefore, with the proviso that careful clinical surveillance of Hib disease is maintained, we encourage the introduction of DTPa-Hib combinations to facilitate the inclusion of Hib into the already crowded childhood immunisation schedule.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Bacterial Capsules
  • Diphtheria-Tetanus-Pertussis Vaccine / administration & dosage*
  • Diphtheria-Tetanus-Pertussis Vaccine / adverse effects
  • Diphtheria-Tetanus-Pertussis Vaccine / immunology
  • Female
  • Haemophilus Vaccines / administration & dosage*
  • Haemophilus Vaccines / adverse effects
  • Haemophilus Vaccines / immunology
  • Humans
  • Immunization Schedule
  • Immunization, Secondary
  • Immunologic Memory / immunology
  • Infant
  • Male
  • Polysaccharides, Bacterial / administration & dosage*
  • Polysaccharides, Bacterial / adverse effects
  • Polysaccharides, Bacterial / immunology
  • Vaccines, Combined / administration & dosage*
  • Vaccines, Combined / adverse effects
  • Vaccines, Combined / immunology
  • Vaccines, Conjugate / administration & dosage*
  • Vaccines, Conjugate / adverse effects
  • Vaccines, Conjugate / immunology


  • Diphtheria-Tetanus-Pertussis Vaccine
  • Haemophilus Vaccines
  • Haemophilus influenzae type b polysaccharide vaccine
  • Polysaccharides, Bacterial
  • Vaccines, Combined
  • Vaccines, Conjugate