© 2015 Elsevier Ltd. Background and objectives: Pertussis is currently an emerging public health concern in some countries with high vaccination coverage. It is expected that maternal pertussis immunization could provide newborn protection. We compared pertussis toxin antibody (anti-PT) levels in women during pregnancy (pre- and post-vaccination) with respect to levels in the newborn at delivery in women vaccinated during pregnancy. We also estimated anti-PT titers at primary infant vaccination. Methods: Observational study of pregnant women vaccinated with Tdap (≥20 weeks gestation) and their newborns between May 2012 and August 2013. Anti-PT levels were determined by ELISA in maternal (pre- and post-vaccination) and newborn blood. Results: Pre-vaccination, post-vaccination maternal and newborn samples were available in 132 subjects. Mean maternal age was 34.2 (SD 4.3) years. Median weeks of gestation at vaccination were 27.2 (Q1-Q3 21.7-30.8). Anti-PT (≥10. IU/ml) levels were found in 37.1% of maternal pre-vaccination samples (geometric mean titer (GMT) 7.9. IU/ml (95% CI 6.8-9.2)), 90.2% of post-vaccination samples (GMT 31.1. IU/ml (95% CI 26.6-36.3)) and 94.7% of newborns (GMT 37.8. IU/ml (95% CI 32.3-44.1)). The Lin concordance index between post-vaccination maternal and newborn samples was 0.8 (95% CI 0.8-0.9). Transplacental transfer ratio was 146.6%. At two months of age, 66% of newborns had estimated anti-PT levels ≥10. IU/ml. Conclusions: There was a high correlation between anti-PT levels in mothers and newborns, with higher levels in newborns, which should be sufficient to provide protection against pertussis during the first months of life. Vaccination of pregnant women seems to be an immunogenic strategy to protect newborns until primary infant immunization.
- Antibody transfer
- Neonatal pertussis