Prevention of Perinatal Acquisition of Hepatitis B Virus Carriage Using Vaccine: Preliminary Report of a Randomized, Double-Blind Placebo-Controlled and Comparative Trial
Hepatitis B is a serious disease of global significance. In developing countries, hepatitis B virus (HBV) infection and its sequelae rank among the public health problems of highest priority. Infants born to mothers who are chronic carriers of HBV are at particularly high risk of acquiring infection and becoming chronic HBV carriers. The efficacy of hepatitis B vaccine alone in preventing the transmission of HBV to infants born to HBV carrier mothers was determined in a double-blind placebo-controlled trial. Infants received plasma-derived vaccine at birth, 1 month, and 6 months of age. Of 180 infants born to hepatitis B surface antigen (HBs Ag)-positive mothers, equal numbers received National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease (NIAID) vaccine, Beijing Institute of Vaccine and Serum (BIVS) vaccine, and placebo. The cumulative seroconversion to the vaccines at 1 year of age was 95% and 75%, respectively. Vaccine efficacy as measured by the prevention of HBs Ag-positive events was 88% for the NIAID vaccine and 51% for the BIVS vaccine. Vaccine efficacy was similar among infants born to hepatitis Be antigen-positive mothers. Because of the low efficacy of the BIVS vaccine, an additional group of 28 infants was given vaccine and hepatitis B immune globulin at birth. The resulting efficacy was 83%. The results of this trial indicate that hepatitis B vaccine alone can substantially reduce perinatally acquired HBV infection and the resulting chronic carrier state.
- Received May 31, 1985.
- Accepted July 23, 1985.
- Copyright © 1985 by the American Academy of Pediatrics