Objective. To compare the safety and immunogenicity of a variety of acellular (AC) and whole-cell (WC) pertussis vaccines combined with diphtheria and tetanus toxoids.
Methods. Standard enrollment and reaction forms were used at five sites, and serologic evaluation was performed at a single site. Nine AC (Massachusetts Public Health Laboratories, Biocine Sclavo recombinant pertussis toxoid [PT], Connaught/BIKEN, Lederle three-component, Biocine Sclavo recombinant three-component, SmithKline Beecham three-component, Porton three-component, Takeda-Wyeth, and Connaught multicomponent), and three WC (Connaught Laboratoties, Lederle Laboratories, and Massachusetts Public Health Laboratories) were studied. All AC contained varying concentrations of PT; some vaccines also contamed filamentous hemagglutinin (FHA), pertactin, and/or agglutinogens.
Results. Two hundred forty children, aged 16 to 21 months and 4 to 6 years, were enrolled at five sites. Significantly less fever, redness, swelling, pain, limp, and use of pain medication were noted following AC compared with WC. Significant increases in antibody to PT were seen following all vaccines. Significant rises in FHA antibody were seen following all WC and the seven AC that contained FHA. Postbooster PT antibody levels were similar among the AC groups, regardless of the amount of PT administered (between 3.5 and 25 µg per dose). The dose of FHA did not affect PT antibody response. Infants primed with WC who were boosted with a monocomponent PT vaccine did not manifest a significant antibody response to FHA.
Conclusion. The rate of adverse reactions was not a function of the number of antigens or the antigen quantity in the acellular vaccines, and antibody responses following AC were similar or better than antibody responses following WC. These results support the further evaluation of these vaccines in a larger National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases-sponsored study in infants.
- Received December 11, 1993.
- Accepted May 25, 1993.
- Copyright © 1994 by the American Academy of Pediatrics