Link to Pubmed [PMID] – 24445198
Am. J. Trop. Med. Hyg. 2014 Mar;90(3):566-73
To evaluate immunity to vaccine-preventable diseases according to nutritional status, a longitudinal study was conducted in Senegalese children ages 1-9 years old. A linear regression analysis predicted that weight for age was positively associated with immunoglobulin G (IgG) response to tetanus toxoid in children born during the rainy season or at the beginning of the dry season. A relationship between village, time of visits, and levels of antibodies to tetanus showed that environmental factors played a role in modulating humoral immunity to tetanus vaccine over time. Moreover, a whole-blood stimulation assay highlighted that the production of interferon-γ (IFN-γ) in response to tetanus toxoid was compromised in stunted children. However, the absence of cytokine modulation in response to Mycobacterium tuberculosis-purified protein derivatives and phytohemagglutinin suggests that the overall ability to produce IFN-γ was preserved in stunted children. Therefore, these results show that nutritional status can specifically alter the efficacy of long-lasting immunity to tetanus.