Sex differences in the humoral antibody response to live measles vaccine in young adults

Manfred S. Green, Tamy Shohat, Yehuda Lerman, Dani Cohen, Raphael Slepon, Poriya Duvdevani, Noemi Varsano, Ron Dagan, Ella Mendelson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

78 Scopus citations


Background: Following vaccination of children using high-titre live measles vaccine, excess non-specific mortality was reported, particularly among females. Since vaccination with live measles virus results in a temporary depression of the immune response to other antigens, the female predominance in subsequent non-measles mortality may be due to sex differences in response to live measles vaccines. Methods: In this study, the immunogenicity of standard titre live Sdiwarz strain measles vaccine was examined 2 and 4 weeks post-vaccination in 223 males and 66 female aged 18-20 years in Israel in 1991. Results: Females had higher post-vaccination geometric mean titre (GMT) at all levels of pre-vaccination titres at both 2 and 4 weeks. Furthermore, after controlling for differences in pre-vaccination titres, overall the post-vaccination GMT for females was about 50% higher than for males (P < 0.001). Conclusions: These findings indicate that females exhibit a stronger humoral immune response to measles vaccine. Possible sex differences in immunosuppression following measles vaccination should be explored.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1078-1081
Number of pages4
JournalInternational Journal of Epidemiology
Issue number5
StatePublished - 1 Oct 1994

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Epidemiology


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