No evidence of a link between influenza vaccines and Guillain-Barre syndrome-associated antiganglioside antibodies

David J. Wang, David A. Boltz, Janet McElhaney, Jonathan Mccullers, Richard J. Webby, Robert G. Webster

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

12 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Background Guillain-Barre syndrome (GBS) is a rare autoimmune disease characterized by acute, progressive peripheral neuropathy and is commonly associated with the presence of antiganglioside antibodies. Previously, influenza vaccination was linked with the increased incidence of GBS; however, whether antiganglioside antibodies are subsequently induced remains unresolved. Methods Sera from human subjects vaccinated with seasonal influenza vaccines from the 2007-2008, 2008-2009, or 1976-1977 influenza seasons were screened for the induction of immunity to influenza and the presence of antiganglioside antibodies pre- and post-vaccination. Likewise, sera from mice vaccinated with seasonal influenza vaccines (1988-1989, 2007-2008) or "swine flu" pandemic vaccines (1976, 2009) were assessed in the same manner. Viruses were also screened for cross-reacting ganglioside epitopes. Results Antiganglioside antibodies were found to recognize influenza viruses; this reactivity correlated with virus glycosylation. Antibodies to influenza viruses were detected in human and mouse sera, but the prevalence of antiganglioside antibodies was extremely low. Conclusions Although the correlation between antiganglioside antibody cross-reactivity and glycosylation of viruses suggests the role of shared carbohydrate epitopes, no correlation was observed between hemagglutinin-inhibition titers and the induction of antiganglioside antibodies after influenza vaccination.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)159-166
Number of pages8
JournalInfluenza and other respiratory viruses
Volume6
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - May 1 2012

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Guillain-Barre Syndrome
Influenza Vaccines
Antibodies
Human Influenza
Vaccination
Viruses
Orthomyxoviridae
Glycosylation
Epitopes
Serum
Gangliosides
Hemagglutinins
Peripheral Nervous System Diseases
Pandemics
Rare Diseases
Autoimmune Diseases
Immunity
Swine
Carbohydrates
Incidence

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Epidemiology
  • Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Infectious Diseases

Cite this

No evidence of a link between influenza vaccines and Guillain-Barre syndrome-associated antiganglioside antibodies. / Wang, David J.; Boltz, David A.; McElhaney, Janet; Mccullers, Jonathan; Webby, Richard J.; Webster, Robert G.

In: Influenza and other respiratory viruses, Vol. 6, No. 3, 01.05.2012, p. 159-166.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Wang, David J. ; Boltz, David A. ; McElhaney, Janet ; Mccullers, Jonathan ; Webby, Richard J. ; Webster, Robert G. / No evidence of a link between influenza vaccines and Guillain-Barre syndrome-associated antiganglioside antibodies. In: Influenza and other respiratory viruses. 2012 ; Vol. 6, No. 3. pp. 159-166.
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