Is Insomnia a Risk Factor for Decreased Influenza Vaccine Response?

Behav Sleep Med. 2017 Jul-Aug;15(4):270-287. doi: 10.1080/15402002.2015.1126596. Epub 2016 Apr 14.


Healthy young adult college students (N = 133) with Insomnia (n = 65) or No Insomnia (n = 68) were compared on influenza serum antibody levels pre- and four weeks postvaccination. Volunteers underwent structured clinical interviews for sleep disorders to ensure insomnia diagnoses, as well as psychiatric interviews, physical examinations, and drug testing to ensure comorbid health problems were not potential confounds. There were significant time (both groups had increases in antibody levels pre- to postvaccination) and group (Insomnia group had lower HI antibody levels overall) main effects, but the time × group interaction was nonsignificant. Exploratory analyses did find significant PSQI x Time (p < .001) and Insomnia Status × Time (p = .002) interaction effects. Results indicate insomnia may be a risk factor for lowered immunity to the influenza virus.

MeSH terms

  • Antibodies, Viral / blood
  • Antibodies, Viral / immunology*
  • Female
  • Healthy Volunteers
  • Humans
  • Influenza Vaccines / immunology*
  • Influenza, Human / immunology*
  • Male
  • Racial Groups
  • Risk Factors
  • Sleep Initiation and Maintenance Disorders / diagnosis
  • Sleep Initiation and Maintenance Disorders / immunology*
  • Students
  • Young Adult


  • Antibodies, Viral
  • Influenza Vaccines