Evaluation of a measles vaccine campaign in Ethiopia using oral-fluid antibody surveys

Wondatir Nigatu*, Dhanraj Samuel, Bernard Cohen, Phillippa Cumberland, Eshetu Lemma, David Brown, James Nokes

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

    25 Citations (Scopus)


    We undertook a study to demonstrate the potential contribution of oral-fluid (OF) antibody prevalence surveys in evaluating measles vaccine campaigns. In Asela town, southern Ethiopia, oral fluids were collected from 1928 children aged 9 months to 5 years attending for campaign immunization in December 1999 and 6 months later, from 745 individuals aged 9 months to 19 years, in the same location. Measles antibody status was determined by microimmune measles specific IgG enzyme immunoassay (EIA). Antibody prevalence was estimated at 48% in children attending for vaccination (pre-campaign), and 85% post-campaign in the comparable age group. The estimated reduction in the susceptible proportion was 75%. In older children the proportion antibody negative post-campaign was 28% in 7-9 year olds, and 13% in 10-14 year olds levels of susceptibility which raise concern over continued measles transmission. This is the first evaluation of a measles vaccine campaign based on oral-fluid seroprevalence surveys and it demonstrates the merit of oral-fluid surveys in informing health authorities about vaccination strategy refinement.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)4769-4774
    Number of pages6
    Issue number37
    Publication statusPublished - 2 Sep 2008

    Bibliographical note

    Funding Information:
    We would like to thank the Ministry of Health, Regional Health Bureau, Zonal Health Departments, Assela Health Centre and Kebele Administration Offices for their support in this study. We acknowledge all participants, surveillance teams and medical personnel for their contribution to this work. Ethical clearance was obtained from the National Ethical Committee of the Ethiopian Science and Technology Commission (Ref. RDHE/84-31/2000) and Coventry Research Ethics Committee, UK. A support letter (Ref. QEFAIO/2-7/1745) was obtained from The Council of Regional State of Oromia Health Bureau, Arisi Zonal Health Department responsible for the polio NID and measles campaign. Free and informed consent of the subjects or their legal guardians was obtained. The World Health Organisation Department of Vaccines and Biologicals, financially supported the study (Ref. V21/181/133), with supplementary funding from BASICS, USA, and the British Council (Higher Education LINK), Addis Ababa, Ethiopia.


    • Measles campaign evaluation


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