Effect of Previous-Season Influenza Vaccination on Serologic Response in Children During 3 Seasons, 2013-2014 Through 2015-2016

The effects of repeated influenza vaccination in children are not well understood. In this study, we evaluated previous vaccination effects on antibody response after vaccination with trivalent inactivated influenza vaccine (IIV) or quadrivalent live-attenuated influenza vaccine (LAIV) among school-aged children (5-17 years) across 3 seasons.

Children were enrolled in the fall of 2013, 2014, and 2015. The participants received IIV or LAIV according to parent preference (2013-2014) or our randomization scheme (2014-2015). All study children received IIV in 2015-2016. Hemagglutination-inhibition assays measured antibody response to egg-grown vaccine strains from prevaccination and postvaccination serum samples. Geometric mean titers (GMTs) and increases in GMTs from before to after vaccination (geometric mean fold rise [GMFR]) were estimated from repeated-measures linear mixed models.

We enrolled 161 children in 2013-2014, 128 in 2014-2015, and 126 in 2015-2016. Among the IIV recipients, responses to the influenza A(H1N1)pdm09 and B vaccine strains were lowest among children who had received a previous-season IIV. The GMFRs for strains A(H1N1)pdm09 and B were 1.5 to 2.3 for previous-season IIV and 4.3 to 12.9 for previous-season LAIV or no previous vaccine. GMFRs were lower for strain A(H3N2), and differences according to previous-season vaccination history were smaller and not significant in most seasons. Most children had a post-IIV vaccination titer of ≥40 for vaccine strains in all seasons, regardless of previous-season vaccination history. Little to no increase in antibody levels was observed after vaccination with LAIV.

Serologic response to vaccination was greatest for IIV, but previous-season vaccination modified IIV response to A(H1N1)pdm09 and B. Influenza A(H3N2) responses were low in all groups, and LAIV generated minimal serologic response against all strains.