Persistence of yellow fever vaccine-induced antibodies after solid organ transplantation

Am J Transplant. 2013 Sep;13(9):2458-61. doi: 10.1111/ajt.12338. Epub 2013 Jul 8.


Immunization using live attenuated vaccines represents a contra-indication after solid organ transplantation (SOT): consequently, transplant candidates planning to travel in countries where yellow fever is endemic should be vaccinated prior to transplantation. The persistence of yellow fever vaccine-induced antibodies after transplantation has not been studied yet. We measured yellow-fever neutralizing antibodies in 53 SOT recipients vaccinated prior to transplantation (including 29 kidney recipients and 18 liver recipients). All but one (98%) had protective titers of antibodies after a median duration of 3 years (min.: 0.8, max.: 21) after transplantation. The median antibody level was 40 U/L (interquartile range: 40-80). For the 46 patients with a known or estimated date of vaccination, yellow-fever antibodies were still detectable after a median time of 13 years (range: 2-32 years) post-immunization. Our data suggest there is long-term persistence of antibodies to yellow fever in SOT recipients who have been vaccinated prior to transplantation.

Keywords: Antibody persistence; immunization; solid organ transplantation; yellow-fever vaccine.

MeSH terms

  • Antibodies, Viral / analysis*
  • Humans
  • Kidney Transplantation*
  • Liver Transplantation*
  • Prospective Studies
  • Transplantation Immunology*
  • Yellow Fever Vaccine / immunology*


  • Antibodies, Viral
  • Yellow Fever Vaccine