Comparative study of reactogenicity and immunogenicity of new and established measles, mumps and rubella vaccines in healthy children


Concerns about the association of aseptic meningitis with measles-mumpsrubella (MMR) vaccines containing the Urabe Am 9 strain and the increasing worldwide demand for MMR vaccines, prompted the development of a new mumps vaccine strain (RIT 4385) by SmithKline Beecham Biologicals (SB) as part of a trivalent live attenuated MMR vaccine. The present study assessed the immunogenicity and reactogenicity of two lots of ‘Priorix’* with a widely used and established vaccine M-M-R II (Merck & Co. Inc.) as comparator vaccine. 255 healthy children, 12 to 24 months of age, were enrolled in a single-blind study and randomly allocated to receive a single dose of one of two lots of “Priorix” or M-M-R II vaccine. Vaccinees were followed up for six weeks post-vaccination for solicited and unsolicited symptoms. Immunogenicity was determined in pre- and 60 days post-vaccination sera using commercial immunoassays for measles, mumps and rubella antibodies. There were no significant differences in immune responses between groups for any of the three vaccine components. In initially seronegative subjects, the respective post-vaccination seroconversion rates for ‘Priorix’ lots 1 and 2, and M-M-R II were 100, 100 and 97.6% for measles antibodies, 91.7, 95.1 and 94% for mumps antibodies and 100, 100 and 100% for rubella antibodies, respectively. GMTs for the three groups were 3,076, 3,641 and 3,173 mIU/ml for measles antibodies, 934, 900 and 1,043 U/ml for mumps antibodies, and 86.4, 87.5 and 97.1 IU/ml for rubella antibodies, respectively. The incidence of local symptoms was significantly lower for both ‘Priorix’ lots (17.6 and 15.3% for lots 1 and 2, respectively) than for M-M-R II (37.6%). Fever≧38.1°C during the six-week observation period occurred in approximately 25% of all subjects in all groups with no differences between the groups. No parotid/salivary gland swelling or signs of suspected meningism were reported, and there were no serious adverse events related to vaccination. The new MMR vaccine ‘Priorix’ containing the new RIT 4385 mumps strain was safe and had a significantly improved local tolerability profile over the comparator vaccine, M-M-R II, while eliciting an at least equivalent immune response.

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Usonis, V., Bakasenas, V., Chitour, K. et al. Comparative study of reactogenicity and immunogenicity of new and established measles, mumps and rubella vaccines in healthy children. Infection 26, 222–226 (1998).

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  • Measle
  • Rubella
  • Mumps
  • Aseptic Meningitis
  • Seroconversion Rate