Maternal pneumococcal capsular IgG antibodies and transplacental transfer are low in South Asian HIV-infected mother-infant pairs

Citation: Gupta A, Mathad JS, Yang WT, Singh HK, Gupte N, Mave V, Bharadwaj R, Zaman K,Roy E, Bollinger RC, Bhosale R, Steinhoff MC. Maternal pneumococcal capsular IgG antibodies and transplacental transfer are low in South Asian HIV-infected mother-infant pairs. Vaccine. 2014 Mar 14;32(13):1466-72. doi: 10.1016/j.vaccine.2014.01.033. Epub 2014 Jan 30. PMID: 24486350. PMCID: PMC3975143.

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Our understanding of the mother-to-child transfer of serotype-specific pneumococcal antibodies is limited in non-immunized, HIV-positive women.


We compared geometric mean antibody concentrations (GMCs), geometric mean transplacental cord:maternal ratios (GMRs) and proportions of samples with protective antibody concentration (≥0.35μg/ml) to serotypes 1, 4, 5, 6B, 9V, 14, 18C, 19F, 23F between 74 HIV-infected and 98 HIV-uninfected mother-infant pairs who had not received pneumococcal immunization in South Asia. Multivariable analysis was performed to assess the influence of HIV on protective antibody concentrations.


HIV-infected mothers and their infants exhibited lower GMCs and GMRs than their uninfected counterparts. This was significant for all serotypes except maternal GMC to serotype 1 and GMR for serotype 6B. In multivariate analysis, HIV was significantly associated with reduced odds of having protective pneumococcal IgG levels; 56-73% reduction for 3 maternal serotypes (4, 5, 23F) and 62-90% reduction for all cord samples except serotype 6B.


Maternal HIV infection is associated with lower levels of maternal pneumococcal antibodies and disproportionately lower cord antibodies, relative to maternal antibodies, suggesting that HIV infection compromises transplacental transfer. Reassessment of maternal and/or infant pneumococcal immunization strategies is needed in HIV-infected women and their infants.

Vaccine. 2014 Mar 14;32(13):1466-72. doi:10.1016/j.vaccine.2014.01.033. Epub 2014 Jan 30. PubMed PMID: 24486350; PubMed Central PMCID: PMC3975143.



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