Microneutralization assay titres correlate with protection against seasonal influenza H1N1 and H3N2 in children

PLoS One. 2015 Jun 24;10(6):e0131531. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0131531. eCollection 2015.


Although the microneutralization (MN) assay has been shown to be more sensitive than the hemagglutination inhibition (HAI) assay for the measurement of humoral immunity against influenza viruses, further evidence relating MN titres to protective efficacy against infection is needed. Serum antibodies against seasonal H1N1 and H3N2 influenza were measured in children and adolescents (n = 656) by MN and hemagglutination inhibition (HAI) assays. Compared to HAI, the MN assay is more sensitive in detecting serum antibodies and estimates of protective effectiveness against PCR-confirmed infection were higher for both subtypes. Given our findings, the MN assay warrants further consideration as a formal tool for the routine evaluation of vaccine-induced antibody responses.

Publication types

  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Alberta
  • Antibodies, Viral / blood*
  • Antibody Formation / immunology
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Hemagglutination Inhibition Tests
  • Hemagglutinin Glycoproteins, Influenza Virus / immunology
  • Humans
  • Immunity, Humoral / immunology
  • Influenza A Virus, H1N1 Subtype*
  • Influenza A Virus, H3N2 Subtype*
  • Influenza Vaccines
  • Influenza, Human / immunology*
  • Manitoba
  • Neutralization Tests
  • Polymerase Chain Reaction
  • Prospective Studies


  • Antibodies, Viral
  • Hemagglutinin Glycoproteins, Influenza Virus
  • Influenza Vaccines
  • hemagglutinin, human influenza A virus