Natural immunity to hemophilus influenza type b in children, south of Iran: need for vaccination.
ABSTRACT Hemophilus influenza type b (Hib) infection has a high morbidity and mortality rate especially in children less than 5 years of age. The incidence of Hib disease in Iran is not known and Hib vaccine is not included in the National Immunization Program. The aim of the present study was to investigate the level of antibody to Hib of children five years or younger living in Jahrom, Iran. Three hundred eighty six children 5 years or younger were selected by random sampling method. A blood samples were taken from those children. Anti-Hib IgG antibody (anti-PRP) level was determined in the serum by using anti-Hemophilus influenza IgG EIA kit (IBL, Germany). An anti-PRP antibody levels of 0.15 microg mL(-1) and over were accepted as the natural immunity. The mean concentration of Hib antibody was 0.94 +/- 0.480 microg mL(-1). Natural immunity was determined in three hundred and twenty six (84.5%) of the children. The proportion of natural immunity was increased from 64.9% among children = 12 month old to 95.2% in children aged 49-60 month (p < 0.001). The exposure rate of children with Hib was higher than expected, even in children who were just a few months old. Present data revealed need to be introducing Hib conjugate vaccine in the National Immunization Programs.