Background: Infants with history of prematurity (<37 weeks gestation) and low birth weight (LBW, <2500 g) are at high risk of infection due to functional immaturity of normal physical and immunological defense mechanisms. Despite current recommendations that infants with history of prematurity/LBW should receive routine immunization according to the same schedule and chronological age as full-term infants, immunization is often delayed.
Methods: Here we summarize 10 clinical studies and 15 years of post-marketing safety surveillance of GSK's hexavalent vaccine (DTPa-HBV-IPV/Hib), a combined diphtheria-tetanus-acellular-pertussis-hepatitis-B-inactivated-poliovirus-Haemophilus influenzae-type-b (Hib) conjugate vaccine, when administered alone, or co-administered with pneumococcal conjugate, rotavirus, and meningococcal vaccines and respiratory syncytial virus IgG to infants with history of prematurity/LBW in clinical trials.
Results: At least 92.5% of infants with history of prematurity/LBW as young as 24 weeks gestation in clinical studies were seropositive to all vaccine antigens after 3-dose primary vaccination with GSK's hexavalent DTPa-HBV-IPV/Hib vaccine, with robust immune responses to booster vaccination. Seropositivity rates and antibody concentrations to hepatitis B and Hib appeared lower in infants with history of prematurity/LBW than term infants. Between 13-30% of medically stable infants with history of prematurity developed apnea after vaccination with GSK's hexavalent DTPa-HBV-IPV/Hib vaccine; usually after dose 1. The occurrence of post-immunization cardiorespiratory events appears to be influenced by the severity of any underlying neonatal condition. Most cardiorespiratory events resolve spontaneously or require minimal intervention. GSK's hexavalent DTPa-HBV-IPV/Hib vaccine was well tolerated in co-administration regimens.
Conclusion: GSK's hexavalent DTPa-HBV-IPV/Hib vaccine alone or co-administered with other pediatric vaccines has a clinically acceptable safety and immunogenicity profile when used in infants with history of prematurity/LBW for primary and booster vaccination. Additional studies are needed in very premature and very LBW infants. However, currently available data support using GSK's hexavalent DTPa-HBV-IPV/Hib vaccine to immunize infants with history of prematurity/LBW according to chronological age.
Keywords: DTPa-HBV-IPV/Hib; Hexavalent vaccine; Premature; Preterm; Primary vaccination.
Copyright © 2018 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd.. All rights reserved.