Background: With the emergence of pandemic influenza A (pH1N1) in 2009, children and youth infected with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) were vulnerable because of immunologic impairment and the greater virulence of this infection in young persons.
Methods: A multicenter study of the immunogenicity of 3 licensed influenza A (H1N1) monovalent vaccines (1 live attenuated and 2 inactivated) was conducted in children and youth with perinatal HIV infection, most of whom were receiving ≥3 antiretroviral drugs, had CD4% ≥15, and plasma HIV RNA levels <400 copies/mL. Serum hemagglutinin inhibition assay (HAI) antibody levels were measured and correlated with baseline demographic and clinical variables.
Results: One hundred forty-nine subjects were enrolled at 26 sites in the United States and Puerto Rico. Over 40% had baseline HAI titers ≥40. For subjects aged 6 months to <10 years, 79% and 68%, respectively, achieved a ≥40- and ≥4-fold rise in HAI titers after the second dose of vaccine. Three weeks after a single immunization with an inactivated vaccine, similar immunogenicity results were achieved in youth aged 10-24 years. With multivariable analysis, only Hispanic ethnicity and CD4% ≥15 were associated with achieving both HAI titer ≥40- and ≥4-fold rise in titer.
Conclusions: Although licensed pH1N1 vaccines produced HAI titers that were considered to be protective in the majority of HIV-infected children and youth, the proportion with titers ≥40- and ≥4-fold rise in titer was lower than expected for children without HIV infection. Vaccine immunogenicity was lower in HIV-infected children and youth with evidence of immune suppression.
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