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20. Jahrestagung der Deutschen Gesellschaft für Pädiatrische Infektiologie (DGPI)

Deutsche Gesellschaft für Pädiatrische Infektiologie (DGPI)

19.04. - 21.04.2012, Mannheim

Differences of IgG antibody avidity after an acellular pertussis (aP) booster in adolescents with a previous whole cell (wcP) or aP primary vaccination

Meeting Abstract

  • Martina Prelog - University of Wuerzburg, Department of Pediatrics, Würzburg
  • presenting/speaker Giovanni Almanzar - University of Wuerzburg, Department of Pediatrics, Würzburg
  • Nikolaus Rieber - University of Tuebingen, Department of Pediatrics, Tübingen
  • Manuela Zlamy - Medical University Innsbruck, Department of Pediatrics, Innsbruck
  • K.H. Wirsing von König - Institute for Hygiene and Laboratory Medicine, Helios Klinikum, Krefeld, Krefeld
  • Johannes Liese - University of Wuerzburg, Department of Pediatrics, Würzburg

Deutsche Gesellschaft für Pädiatrische Infektiologie. 20. Jahrestagung der Deutschen Gesellschaft für Pädiatrische Infektiologie (DGPI). Mannheim, 19.-21.04.2012. Düsseldorf: German Medical Science GMS Publishing House; 2012. Doc12dgpi56

doi: 10.3205/12dgpi56, urn:nbn:de:0183-12dgpi568

Published: March 22, 2012

© 2012 Prelog et al.
This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License ( You are free: to Share – to copy, distribute and transmit the work, provided the original author and source are credited.



Antibody concentrations alone due not sufficiently differentiate between recent exposure or previous immunization and do not necessarily correlate with protection against pertussis disease.

Therefore, the aim of the study was to assess the IgG antibody avidiy in addition to the concentrations of IgG against pertussis antigens, such as filamentous hemagglutinin (FHA) and pertussis toxin (PT) in a cohort of 78 adolescents before and after a tetanus-diphtheria-pertussis (Tdap) booster vaccination. We defined three groups of individuals who had received either four (4aP; last dose age 18-24 months) or five doses (5aP; last dose age 4-6 years) of acellular pertussis vaccine or four doses of whole cell pertussis (wcP) vaccine (last dose age 18-24 months), previously. The relative avidity index (RAI) was evaluated by an adapted ELISA.

RAI positively correlated with IgG concentrations in all groups (p<0.001). A significant increase of RAI of IgG-anti-PT was found after Tdap booster in all groups (p<0.01). After booster, the RAI of IgG-anti-FHA was signficantly higher in the wcP group (mean: 69%) compared to 5aP (mean: 49%) (p<0.05). Interestingly, before Tdap booster, reverse cumulative distributions of the RAI of IgG-anti-PT showed significantly higher proportions of individuals of the wcP group (38%) which showed low RAI (<30%) compared to the 5aP and 4aP group (8% and 22% of individuals, respectively) (p<0.01), but a similar response after Tdap booster in all groups.

In the case of pertussis vaccines, RAI clearly reveales a difference of antigen-specific IgG responses and the influence of different vaccine preparations and booster intervals. Differences in RAI may be influenced by exposure to Pertussis within the community. Assessment of RAI may help to interpret the quality of IgG antibodies against specific antigens and allows to estimate the long-term affinity maturation after booster vaccinations and, thus, long-term protection against symptomatic disease.