Persistence of Hepatitis B Immunity Following 3-dose Infant Primary Series in HIV-infected Thai Adolescents and Immunologic Response to Revaccination

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HIV infection may alter immunologic response and the establishment of immune memory to infant hepatitis B virus (HBV) vaccination. This study aimed to determine the need to revaccinate perinatally HIV-infected Thai adolescents.


Cross-sectional serologic tests for HBV, including hepatitis B surface antigen, anti-hepatitis B surface antibody (anti-HBs) and anti-hepatitis B core antibody (anti-HBc), were performed in perinatally HIV-infected adolescents. Adolescents having anti-HBs <100 mIU/mL with negative anti-HBc and immune reconstitution from highly active antiretroviral therapy (HAART) were revaccinated using regular (10 μg) 3-dose schedule given intramuscularly at 0-, 2- and 6-month intervals.


Of 193 adolescents who received 3-dose infant HBV vaccination, 6 were receiving HAART during vaccination, median (interquartile range) current age 14.5 (11.7–16.2) years, 7 (3.6%) had positive anti-HBc (indicating breakthrough infection), of which 4 (2%) had positive hepatitis B surface antigen (indicating chronic infection). Twenty-two (11.4%) adolescents had protective anti-HBs concentration >10 mIU/mL. Of 164 revaccinated adolescents, 142 (86.6%) had HIV viral load <40 copies/mL. Anti-HBs seroconversion rates >10 mIU/mL were 58.0% (94/162) after the first dose and 97.5% (158/162) after the third dose of revaccination. Forty-five (28%) subjects responded to the first dose with anti-HBs antibody ≥100 mIU/mL had a shorter median duration with CD4 count <15% than their counterparts (6.2 vs. 11.1 months; P = 0.049).


Only half of perinatally HIV-infected adolescents were able to elicit anti-HBs response with a single-dose HBV vaccine. Revaccination with 3-dose schedule is required in perinatally HIV-infected adolescents who did not initiate HAART at the time of infant vaccination.

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