Hepatitis B vaccine study reveals link between age and inflammation

Every patient responds to vaccines differently as they age, but new research from Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine in Cleveland shows biomarkers of inflammation may help identify which patients will respond to the hepatitis B vaccine.

"We have known for some time that vaccine response changes with age, but we have not been clear on the mechanism nor the important role of inflammation," said Rafick-Pierre Sékaly, PhD, one of the researchers.

The researchers from Case Western and Merck Research Laboratories studied hepatitis B virus-naïve older adults who received three vaccines, including one against hepatitis B vaccine. They discovered a correlation between heightened expression of genes that supplement B-cell responses, higher memory B-cell frequencies and stronger responses to the hepatitis B vaccine. They also identified a link between higher levels of inflammatory response transcripts, increased frequencies of pro-inflammatory innate cells and a weaker response to the vaccine.

By examining the gene expression of immune inflammatory pathways, the researchers have gotten one step closer to developing models to inform age-related vaccination schedules as well as treatments that might improve the effectiveness of vaccines, such as anti-inflammatory drugs.

To learn more about the study findings, click here.

 

 

More articles on vaccines:
Chickenpox, shingles vaccine may cause eye inflammation, study finds
Bacterial 'superglue' being used to help discover new vaccines faster
UMass Medical School conducts research on vaccine to end the flu

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