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Pneumococcal 13-valent conjugate vaccine administration after inferior response to pneumococcal vaccine

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The pneumococcal vaccine, a nonconjugated vaccine, may be used to evaluate the integrity of the humoral immune system. Those patients with an inferior response to a nonconjugated vaccine may be vaccinated with a conjugated vaccine, which elicits both a B- and T-cell response.


We evaluated the immunogenicity of a conjugated vaccine in patients with inferior responses to a nonconjugated vaccine.


This was an institutional review board approved retrospective study that involved 22 patients with suspected specific antibody deficiency who received a nonconjugated vaccine, followed by a conjugated vaccine. Patients with an inferior response had <70% response in pneumococcal serotypes (1.3 μg/mL, with at least a two to fourfold increase), whereas protective responses were those with a >70% response. These patients were subsequently administered a conjugated vaccine at various time intervals (1‐36 months), and titers were evaluated 4‐6 weeks later.


A protective response was found in 6 of 22 patients (average age, 62.2 years) after conjugated vaccine administration. Half of the responders were vaccinated <12 months after nonconjugated vaccine administration. The majority of the nonresponders (n = 16) received a conjugated vaccine <12 months after a nonconjugated vaccine. Of the nonresponders, 10 received a conjugated vaccine <12 months after a nonconjugated vaccine and did not mount a protective response. Other associated immunologic findings included hypogammaglobulinemia (n = 6), low immunoglobulin G1 (IgG1) levels (n = 5), and low IgG2 levels (n = 6).


The majority of the patients with an inferior response to a nonconjugated vaccine also had an inferior response to a conjugated vaccine. Conjugated vaccine administration time did not affect the response rate. Analysis of the data demonstrated that patients with suspected specific antibody deficiency may not benefit from a conjugated vaccine, which suggested a defect that may affect more than pure antibody responses. Also, the majority of patients with IgG2 deficiency mounted an inadequate response to Pneumococcal 13-valent conjugate vaccine.
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Keywords: Pneumococcal vaccine; Prevnar vaccine; conjugate vaccine; immunodeficiency; immunoglobulins; nonconjugate vaccine; polysaccharide vaccine; specific antibody deficiency; vaccine; vaccine titers

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 01 September 2017

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  • Allergy and Asthma Proceedings is a peer reviewed publication dedicated to distributing timely scientific research regarding advancements in the knowledge and practice of allergy, asthma and immunology. Its primary readership consists of allergists and pulmonologists.

    The goal of the Proceedings is to publish articles with a predominantly clinical focus which directly impact quality of care for patients with allergic disease and asthma.

    Featured topics include asthma, rhinitis, sinusitis, food allergies, allergic skin diseases, diagnostic techniques, allergens, and treatment modalities. Published material includes peer-reviewed original research, clinical trials and review articles.

    Articles marked "F" offer free full text for personal noncommercial use only.

    The journal is indexed in Thomson Reuters Web of Science and Science Citation Index Expanded, plus the National Library of Medicine's PubMed service.
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