Humoral, T-cell and B-cell immune responses to seasonal influenza vaccine in solid organ transplant recipients receiving anti-T cell therapies

Delphine Héquet*, Manuel Pascual, Sarah Lartey, Rishi D. Pathirana, Geir Bredholt, Katja Hoschler, Roger Hullin, Pascal Meylan, Rebecca J. Cox, Oriol Manuel

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Citations (Scopus)


Background: We analyzed the impact of the anti-T-cell agents basiliximab and antithymocyte globulins (ATG) on antibody and cell-mediated immune responses after influenza vaccination in solid-organ transplant recipients. Methods: 71 kidney and heart transplant recipients (basiliximab [n = 43] and ATG [n = 28]) received the trivalent influenza vaccine. Antibody responses were measured at baseline and 6 weeks post-vaccination by hemagglutination inhibition assay; T-cell responses were measured by IFN-γ ELISpot assays and intracellular cytokine staining (ICS); and influenza-specific memory B-cell (MBC) responses were evaluated using ELISpot. Results: Median time of vaccination from transplantation was 29 months (IQR 8-73). Post-vaccination seroconversion rates were 26.8% for H1N1, 34.1% for H3N2 and 4.9% for influenza B in the basiliximab group and 35.7% for H1N1, 42.9% for H3N2 and 14.3% for influenza B in the ATG group (p = 0.44, p = 0.61, and p = 0.21, respectively). The number of influenza-specific IFN-γ-producing cells increased significantly after vaccination (from 35 to 67.5 SFC/106 PBMC, p = 0.0007), but no differences between treatment groups were observed (p = 0.88). Median number of IgG-MBC did not increase after vaccination (H1N1, p = 0.94; H3N2 p = 0.34; B, p = 0.79), irrespective of the type of anti-T-cell therapy. Conclusions: After influenza vaccination, a significant increase in antibody and T-cell immune responses but not in MBC responses was observed in transplant recipients. Immune responses were not significantly different between groups that received basiliximab or ATG.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3576-3583
Number of pages8
Issue number31
Publication statusPublished - 30 Jun 2016

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was partially funded by an unrestricted grant from Roche.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2016 Elsevier Ltd.


  • Biological agents
  • Immunogenicity
  • Induction
  • Prevention
  • Viral infection


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