Multi-Centre Observational Study of Transplacental Transmission of Influenza Antibodies following Vaccination with AS03A-Adjuvanted H1N1 2009 Vaccine

Richard Puleston*, George Bugg, Katja Hoschler, Justin Konje, James Thornton, Iain Stephenson, Puja Myles, Joanne Enstone, Glenda Augustine, Yvette Davis, Maria Zambon, Karl Nicholson, Jonathan Nguyen-Van-Tam

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Citations (Scopus)


Introduction: Illness and death from influenza increase during pregnancy. In the United Kingdom pregnant women were targeted in a national programme for vaccination during the H1N1 2009-10 pandemic. Methods: In this study, pregnant women were recruited in labour from November 9, 2009 to March 10, 2010. Pandemic vaccination status was determined. Venous cord blood collected at delivery was evaluated for transplacental transfer of antibodies by measurement of haemagglutination inhibition and microneutralization titres. Results: Samples were collected from 77 vaccinated and 27 unvaccinated women. Seroprotection (HI titre ≥1:40) was detected in 58 (75.3%, 95% CI 64.2-84.4) cord blood samples from vaccinated women and 5 (18.5%, 95% CI 6.3-38.1) from unvaccinated women (P<0.0001). There was evidence of transplacental seroprotection 8 days after maternal immunization (77.9%, 95 CI 66.2-87.1), maintained in most cases for at least 16 weeks. Discussion: Immunization of pregnant women with AS03A-adjuvanted vaccine is followed by transplacental transfer of passive immunity at titres consistent with clinical protection in three-quarters of new-born infants. The findings support national and international pandemic H1N1 2009 recommendations for immunization during pregnancy.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere47448
JournalPLoS ONE
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 29 Jan 2013

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Richard Puleston has received funding from Sanofi Pasteur to attend two influenza-related meetings. He will also be providing UNPAID consultancy advice to Novartis. Richard Puleston, Jonathan Nguyen Van Tam, Iain Stephenson and Karl Nicholson have received funding from GlaxoSmithKline to support virus isolation studies as a subsidiary (ongoing) component of this study. Joanne Enstone has received a one-off consultancy fee from GlaxoSmithKline and funding to attend an educational meeting from Sanofi Pasteur. Iain Stephenson has received funding to attend international scientific meetings (Novartis Vaccines), lecture and consultancy fees (Novartis, GSK and Baxter) and research funding from several pharmaceutical companies including Novartis Vaccines, GSK, Baxter Vaccines and Hoffman-La Roche. Maria Zambon and Katja Hoschler have been investigators of clinical trials sponsored by Novartis, Baxter, Sanofi Pasteur, and CSL Australia Ltd. Katja Hoschler has been sponsored by Sanofi Pasteur to take part and speak at one international meeting. Karl Nicholson has been an ad hoc consultant to GlaxoSmithKline, Merck, Sanofi Pasteur, and Novartis. He has received funding to speak at meetings organised by Novartis, Baxter, Berna Biotech, Esteves, and the European Scientific Working Group on Influenza, and H5 vaccines from Novartis to support an MRC-funded research project, and H1N1 vaccines from Baxter AG and GlaxoSmithKline to support an National Institute for Health Research-funded research project. Jonathan Nguyen Van Tam has received funding to attend influenza-related meetings, ad-hoc lecture and consultancy fees and research funding from several influenza antiviral drug and vaccine manufacturers (including both GlaxoSmithKline and Baxter AG), and is a former employee of SmithKline Beecham PLC (now GlaxoSmithKline), Roche Products Ltd, and Sanofi Pasteur MSD. The other authors have for themselves declared that no competing interests exist. This does not alter the authors' adherence to all the PLOS ONE policies on sharing data and materials.


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