Maternal immunization with pneumococcal 9-valent conjugate vaccine and early infant otitis media
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A randomized trial of an investigational 9-valent pneumococcal conjugate vaccine (PCV-9) or placebo given to pregnant women during the last trimester to prevent early infant otitis media (OM) was conducted. All infants received Prevnar(R) at 2, 4, 6, and 12 months. Clinic and adverse event records were reviewed to identify OM. Variables significantly related to acute OM by age 6 months (p<0.05) were: vaccine group (9 valent or placebo), sibling history of tympanostomy tubes, upper respiratory infection, and number of clinic visits by 6 months. Infant OM rates were similar between 6 and 12 months (58% and 56%). Results suggested that immunizing pregnant women with PCV-9 increased infants' risk of acute OM in the first 6 months of life, and this correlated with decreased infant antibody responses to their infant Streptococcus pneumoniae vaccine serotypes, but did not influence antibody responses to 3 other serotypes two of which were in maternal vaccine (types 1 and 5) and one was a control (type 7F). Explanations for these results include dampening of infant antibody production by high levels of passively acquired maternal pneumococcal antibodies and/or altered B lymphocyte immune responses in infants exposed to these specific polysaccharide antigens in utero.
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