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August 1991

Protection Provided by Hepatitis B Vaccine in a Yupik Eskimo Population: Seven-Year Results

Author Affiliations

From the Arctic Investigations Program, Center for Infectious Diseases, Centers for Disease Control, Public Health Service, US Department of Health and Human Services (Drs Wainwright and Parkinson and Mss Bulkow and Harpster) and Alaska Native Medical Center, Indian Health Service, Public Health Service, US Department of Health and Human Services (Dr McMahon), Anchorage, Alaska.

Arch Intern Med. 1991;151(8):1634-1636. doi:10.1001/archinte.1991.00400080118023

The long-term immunogenicity and protection provided by a plasma-derived hepatitis B vaccine (Heptavax B) was determined in a cohort of susceptible persons immunized in 1981. In this study 1581 susceptible persons were immunized with the recommended three-dose regimen of hepatitis B vaccine. After 7 years, 74% of vaccinees retained antibody to hepatitis B surface antigen (anti-HBs) levels of 10 mlU/mL or more. Anti-HBs levels at 7 years varied inversely with age and directly with the level of anti-HBs attained 1 year after the first dose. During the 7 years after the first dose of vaccine, five vaccine responders and three other persons developed antibody to hepatitis B core antigen and their level of anti-HBs increased. None developed detectable hepatitis B surface antigen or clinical hepatitis. This update of an ongoing study continues to suggest that the risk of hepatitis B virus infection to most persons with an initial anti-HBs response to hepatitis B virus vaccine of 10 mlU/mL or greater is low, regardless of the initial antibody level.

(Arch Intern Med. 1991;151:1634-1636)