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Trivalent inactivated influenza vaccine effective against influenza A(H3N2) variant viruses in children during the 2014/15 season, Japan

20 Oct 2016

The 2014/15 influenza season in Japan was characterised by predominant influenza A(H3N2) activity; 99% of influenza A viruses detected were A(H3N2). Subclade 3C.2a viruses were the major epidemic A(H3N2) viruses, and were genetically distinct from A/New York/39/2012(H3N2) of 2014/15 vaccine strain in Japan, which was classified as clade 3C.1. We assessed vaccine effectiveness (VE) of inactivated influenza vaccine (IIV) in children aged 6 months to 15 years by test-negative case-control design based on influenza rapid diagnostic test. Between November 2014 and March 2015, a total of 3,752 children were enrolled: 1,633 tested positive for influenza A and 42 for influenza B, and 2,077 tested negative. Adjusted VE was 38% (95% confidence intervals (CI): 28 to 46) against influenza virus infection overall, 37% (95% CI: 27 to 45) against influenza A, and 47% (95% CI: -2 to 73) against influenza B. However, IIV was not statistically significantly effective against influenza A in infants aged 6 to 11 months or adolescents aged 13 to 15 years. VE in preventing hospitalisation for influenza A infection was 55% (95% CI: 42 to 64). Trivalent IIV that included A/New York/39/2012(H3N2) was effective against drifted influenza A(H3N2) virus, although vaccine mismatch resulted in low VE.

Click here to view the full article which appeared in Eurosurveillance