Arch Dis Child 98:429-433 doi:10.1136/archdischild-2012-302153
  • Original article

UK vaccination schedule: persistence of immunity to hepatitis B in children vaccinated after perinatal exposure

Open Access
  1. Matthew D Snape1,5
  1. 1Oxford Vaccine Group, Department of Paediatrics, University of Oxford, Oxford, UK
  2. 2Centre for Statistics in Medicine, University of Oxford, Oxford, UK
  3. 3Thames Valley Health Protection Unit, Centre for Radiation, Chemical and Environmental Hazards, Chilton, UK
  4. 4Department of Paediatrics, Birmingham Heartlands Hospital, Birmingham, UK
  5. 5NIHR Oxford Biomedical Research Centre, Oxford, UK
  1. Correspondence to Dr Tom Yates, Oxford Vaccine Group, Centre for Clinical Vaccinology and Tropical Medicine (CCVTM), Churchill Hospital, Old Road, Headington, Oxford OX3 7LE, UK; t.yates{at}
  • Received 11 April 2012
  • Revised 24 January 2013
  • Accepted 28 January 2013
  • Published Online First 9 March 2013


Objective To assess persistence of immunity to hepatitis B (HBV) in primary school children vaccinated following perinatal exposure.

Design Serological survey.

Setting Five UK sites (Berkshire East, Birmingham, Buckinghamshire, Milton Keynes and Oxfordshire).

Participants Children from 3 years 4 months to 10 years of age (mean age 6.2 years), vaccinated against HBV from birth following perinatal exposure.

Interventions A single booster dose of the paediatric formulation of a recombinant HBV vaccine.

Main outcome measures Titres of antibody against hepatitis B Surface Antigen (anti-HBs) measured immediately before and 21–35 days after the HBV vaccine booster.

Results Prebooster anti-HBs titres were >10 mIU/ml in 84.6% of children (n=26; 95% CI 65.1 to 95.6%). All children (n=25, 95% CI 86.3 to 100%) had titres >100 mIU/ml after the booster.

Conclusions This study of antibody persistence among UK children born to hepatitis B infected women, immunised with a 3-dose infant schedule with a toddler booster suggests sustained immunity through early childhood. These data should prompt further studies to address the need for a preschool booster.

Trial registration Eudract Number 2008-004785-98.

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