Immunogenicity and Immune Memory after a Pneumococcal Polysaccharide Vaccine Booster in a High-Risk Population Primed with 10-Valent or 13-Valent Pneumococcal Conjugate Vaccine: A Randomized Controlled Trial in Papua New Guinean Children

Vaccines (Basel). 2019 Feb 4;7(1):17. doi: 10.3390/vaccines7010017.


We investigated the immunogenicity, seroprotection rates and persistence of immune memory in young children at high risk of pneumococcal disease in Papua New Guinea (PNG). Children were primed with 10-valent (PCV10) or 13-valent pneumococcal conjugate vaccines (PCV13) at 1, 2 and 3 months of age and randomized at 9 months to receive PPV (PCV10/PPV-vaccinated, n = 51; PCV13/PPV-vaccinated, n = 52) or no PPV (PCV10/PPV-naive, n = 57; PCV13/PPV-naive, n = 48). All children received a micro-dose of PPV at 23 months of age to study the capacity to respond to a pneumococcal challenge. PPV vaccination resulted in significantly increased IgG responses (1.4 to 10.5-fold change) at 10 months of age for all PPV-serotypes tested. Both PPV-vaccinated and PPV-naive children responded to the 23-month challenge and post-challenge seroprotection rates (IgG ≥ 0.35 μg/mL) were similar in the two groups (80⁻100% for 12 of 14 tested vaccine serotypes). These findings show that PPV is immunogenic in 9-month-old children at high risk of pneumococcal infections and does not affect the capacity to produce protective immune responses. Priming with currently available PCVs followed by a PPV booster in later infancy could offer improved protection to young children at high risk of severe pneumococcal infections caused by a broad range of serotypes.