Background: Live-attenuated influenza vaccine (LAIV) prevents more cases of influenza in immune-competent children than the trivalent inactivated vaccine (TIV). We compared the antibody responses to LAIV or TIV in HIV-infected children.
Methods: Blood and saliva obtained at enrollment, 4 and 24 weeks postimmunization from 243 HIV-infected children randomly assigned to TIV or LAIV were analyzed.
Results: Both vaccines increased the anti-influenza neutralizing antibodies at 4 and 24 weeks postimmunization. At 4 weeks postimmunization, TIV recipients had 2-fold to 3-fold higher neutralizing antibody titers than LAIV recipients, but the proportions of subjects with protective titers (≥ 1:40) were similar between treatment groups (96%-100% for influenza A and 81%-88% for influenza B). Both vaccines increased salivary homotypic IgG antibodies, but not IgA antibodies. Both vaccines also increased serum heterosubtypic antibodies. Among HIV-specific characteristics, the baseline viral load correlated best with the antibody responses to either vaccine. We used LAIV-virus shedding as a surrogate of influenza infection. Influenza-specific humoral and mucosal antibody levels were significantly higher in nonshedders than in shedders.
Conclusions: LAIV and TIV generated homotypic and heterosubtypic humoral and mucosal antibody responses in HIV-infected children. High titers of humoral or mucosal antibodies correlated with protection against viral shedding.