Background: Although an isolated anti-hepatitis B virus (HBV) core antibody (anti-HBc) serological profile is frequent in human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)-infected patients, data on HBV vaccination in these patients are scarce.
Methods: A prospective multicenter study was conducted to assess the immunogenicity of HBV vaccination in 54 patients with an isolated anti-HBc profile and undetectable HIV load. They were vaccinated with 1 dose (20 µg) of recombinant HBV vaccine. Those with an anti-HBV surface antibody (anti-HBs) level of <10 mIU/mL 4 weeks after vaccination received 3 additional double doses (40 µg) at weeks 5, 9, and 24.
Results: At week 4, 25 patients (46%) were responders. Only the ratio of CD4(+) T cells to CD8(+) T cells was associated with this response in multivariate analysis (odds ratio for +0.1, 1.32; 95% confidence interval, 1.07-1.63; P = .008). At week 28 and month 18, 58% of these patients (14 of 24) and 50% (10 of 20), respectively, maintained anti-HBs level of ≥10 mIU/mL.Among nonresponding patients at week 4, who received further vaccinations, 89% (24 of 27) and 81% (21 of 26) had an anti-HBs level of ≥10 mIU/mL at week 28 and month 18, respectively. The preS2-specific interferon γ T-cell response increased between week 0 and week 28 in patients who finally responded to reinforced vaccination (P = .03).
Conclusions: All of the patients with an isolated anti-HBc profile who did not have an anti-HBs titer of >100 mIU/mL 4 weeks after a single recall dose of HBV vaccine should be further vaccinated with a reinforced triple double-dose scheme.
Keywords: HBV; HIV; immunology; isolated anti-HBc; vaccination.
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