Influence of Immune Priming and Egg Adaptation in the Vaccine on Antibody Responses to Circulating A(H1N1)pdm09 Viruses after Influenza Vaccination in Adults

Academic Article


  • Background. Although ferret antisera used in influenza surveillance did not detect antigenic drift of A(H1N1)pdm09 viruses during the 2015-2016 season, low vaccine effectiveness was reported in adults. We investigated the immune basis of low responses to circulating A(H1N1)pdm09 viruses after vaccination. Methods. Prevaccination and postvaccination serum samples collected from 300 adults (aged 18-49 years) in 6 seasons (2010- 2011 to 2015-2016) were analyzed using hemagglutination inhibition assays to evaluate the antibody responses to 13 A(H1N1) viruses circulated from 1977 to 2016. Microneutralization and serum adsorption assays were used to verify the 163K and 223R specificity of antibodies. Results. Individual antibody profiles to A(H1N1) viruses revealed 3 priming patterns: USSR/77, TW/86, or NC/99 priming. More than 20% of adults had reduced titers to cell-propagated circulating 6B.1 and 6B.2 A(H1N1)pdm09 viruses compared with the A/California/07/2009 vaccine virus X-179A. Significantly reduced antibody reactivity to circulating viruses bearing K163Q was observed only in the USSR/77-primed cohort, whereas significantly lower reactivity caused by egg-adapted Q223R change was detected across all 3 cohorts. Conclusion. Both 163K specificity driven by immune priming and 223R specificity from egg-adapted changes in the vaccine contributed to low responses to circulating A(H1N1)pdm09 viruses after vaccination. Our study highlights the need to incorporate human serology in influenza surveillance and vaccine strain selection.
  • Authors

    Published In

    Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Pubmed Id

  • 12296350
  • Author List

  • Liu F; Tzeng WP; Horner L; Kamal RP; Tatum HR; Blanchard EG; Xu X; York I; Tumpey TM; Katz JM
  • Start Page

  • 1571
  • End Page

  • 1581
  • Volume

  • 218
  • Issue

  • 10