Live attenuated varicella vaccine

Annu Rev Microbiol. 1996:50:59-100. doi: 10.1146/annurev.micro.50.1.59.


Varicella-zoster virus (VZV) is a ubiquitous human pathogen that causes varicella, commonly called chicken pox; establishes latency; and reactivates as herpes zoster, referred to as shingles. A live attenuated varicella vaccine, derived from the Oka strain of VZV has clinical efficacy for the prevention of varicella. The vaccine induces persistent immunity to VZV in healthy children and adults. Immunization against VZV also has the potential to lower the risk of reactivation of latent virus. The varicella vaccine may eventually reduce or eliminate herpes zoster, which is a serious problem for elderly and immunocompromised individuals.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Canada / epidemiology
  • Chickenpox / epidemiology
  • Chickenpox / etiology
  • Chickenpox / prevention & control*
  • Chickenpox Vaccine / economics
  • Chickenpox Vaccine / therapeutic use*
  • Child
  • Herpes Zoster / epidemiology
  • Herpes Zoster / etiology
  • Herpes Zoster / prevention & control*
  • Humans
  • United States / epidemiology
  • Vaccination*
  • Vaccines, Attenuated / economics
  • Vaccines, Attenuated / therapeutic use
  • Virus Latency


  • Chickenpox Vaccine
  • Vaccines, Attenuated