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Conjugate vaccines against Haemophilus influenzae type b (Hib) may modify Hib pharyngeal colonization. Hib colonization was compared in 371 infants and their families. In Oxfordshire, infants received PRP-T (polyribosylribitol phosphate conjugated to tetanus toxoid) and in Buckinghamshire they did not (controls). Infants were followed at 6, 9, and 12 months of age. Also, 6 unvaccinated Hib carriers were vaccinated and followed for 6 weeks. Hib acquisition was lower in vaccinees than controls (P < .01). During surveillance, 1.5% of vaccinees and 6.3% of controls carried Hib (P = .04). Among those with family Hib exposure, the carriage rates were 8.7% and 38.5% (P = .07), respectively. Hiv carriage rates were lower among vaccinees' unvaccinated siblings. Giving conjugate vaccine to a child carrying Hib did not rapidly terminate carriage. Thus, a primary means by which herd immunity to Hib is induced in a vaccinated population may be through reduction or delay in the initial acquisition of Hib.


Journal article


J Infect Dis

Publication Date





93 - 98


Bacterial Capsules, Carrier State, Case-Control Studies, Cohort Studies, Family Health, Female, Haemophilus Infections, Haemophilus Vaccines, Haemophilus influenzae, Humans, Infant, Male, Mothers, Nuclear Family, Pharynx, Surveys and Questionnaires, Tetanus Toxoid, Vaccination, Vaccines, Conjugate