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May 10, 1976

Measles Immunity and Revaccination

Author Affiliations

University of Minnesota Health Sciences Center Minneapolis

JAMA. 1976;235(19):2079. doi:10.1001/jama.1976.03260450011005

To the Editor.—  The starting serum dilution for measles hemmaglutination-inhibition (HI) antibody titers in many laboratories has been 1:10. The article on booster measles vaccination by Bass et al (235:31, 1976) provides data confirming our observation that when assessing measles-immune status by the HI method, it is important to test sera beginning at a dilution of 1:2.1 Of 368 persons studied by Bass et al, 89 (24%) had HI titers of 1:2 or 1:4. In our study, 73 (15%) of 479 children had measles HI titers between 1:2 and 1:8. Most, if not all, persons with these low antibody titers are resistant to clinical measles. Therefore, using a 1:10 starting dilution would cause one to seriously overestimate the number of persons susceptible to measles and vaccinate many children who already are immune. As Linnemann points out in his editorial (235:63, 1976), there are cogent reasons not to revaccinate immune