Switched memory B cells maintain specific memory independently of serum antibodies: The hepatitis B example

M. Manuela Rosado, Marco Scarsella, Elisabetta Pandolfi, Simona Cascioli, Ezio Giorda, Paola Chionne, Elisabetta Madonne, Francesco Gesualdo, Mariateresa Romano, Clara M. Ausiello, Maria Rapicetta, Alessandro R. Zanetti, Alberto Tozzi, Rita Carsetti

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


The immunogenicity of a vaccine is conventionally measured through the level of serum Abs early after immunization, but to ensure protection specific Abs should be maintained long after primary vaccination. For hepatitis B, protective levels often decline over time, but breakthrough infections do not seem to occur. The aim of this study was to demonstrate whether, after hepatitis B vaccination, B-cell memory persists even when serum Abs decline. We compared the frequency of anti-hepatitis-specific memory B cells that remain in the blood of 99 children five years after priming with Infanrix ®-hexa (GlaxoSmithKline) (n=34) or with Hexavac ® (Sanofi Pasteur MSD) (n=65). These two vaccines differ in their ability to generate protective levels of IgG. Children with serum Abs under the protective level, 6 cells to 28.2 in 10 6 cells, p

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1800-1808
Number of pages9
JournalEuropean Journal of Immunology
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2011



  • B-cell memory
  • Hepatitis B
  • Long-lived plasma cells
  • Serum antibodies
  • Vaccination

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology
  • Immunology and Allergy

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