Study: Waning vaccine efficacy may be reason for mumps resurgence

The U.S. has seen a major resurgence in mumps cases over the last 10 years, which may be due to declining vaccine efficacy, according to a study published in Science Translational Medicine.

For the study, researchers analyzed data from six different studies on mumps vaccine efficacy. They estimated protection against the mumps drops 27 years after vaccination, on average. Researchers used a mathematical model of mumps transmission to confirm the role of waning vaccine immunity in the re-emergence of mumps cases.

"Outbreaks from 2006 to the present among young adults, and outbreaks in the late 1980s and early 1990s among adolescents, aligned with peaks in mumps susceptibility of these age groups predicted to be due to loss of vaccine-derived protection," researchers wrote in the study.

They recommended routine use of a third mumps vaccine dose at age 18 as one potential strategy to prevent mumps re-emergence. 

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