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Antibodies to group B streptococci in neonates and infants

Authors
  • Berg, S.1
  • Kasvi, S.2
  • Trollfors, B.3
  • Pilichowska-Paszkiet, J.4
  • Fattom, A.5
  • Tessin, I.1
  • Lagergård, T.4
  • 1 Department of Paediatrics, Mölndal Hospital, S-431 80 Mölndal, Sweden, E-mail: [email protected], Tel.: +46 31 37 40 00, Fax: +46 31 84 30 10, SE
  • 2 Department of Paediatrics, Borås Hospital, Sweden, SE
  • 3 Department of Paediatrics, Östra Hospital, Sweden, SE
  • 4 Department of Microbiology and Immunology, Göteborg University, Sweden, SE
  • 5 North American Biologicals Inc., Rockville, Maryland, USA, US
Type
Published Article
Journal
European Journal of Pediatrics
Publisher
Springer-Verlag
Publication Date
Feb 01, 1998
Volume
157
Issue
3
Pages
221–224
Identifiers
DOI: 10.1007/s004310050799
Source
Springer Nature
Keywords
License
Yellow

Abstract

Invasive group B streptococcal (GBS) infections are common in neonates but are rare after the 1st month of life. It is not known why GBS infections have this age distribution which differs from that of invasive infections caused by other encapsulated bacteria. The aim of this study was to test the possibility that serum antibodies against the GBS capsular polysaccharides (CPS) are acquired during the first months of life thereby preventing infections after the neonatal period. Cord sera were collected from 321 healthy term newborns. A second blood sample was collected at 2, 4, 8, 13 or 26 weeks of age. IgG CPS antibodies (measured by ELISA) against serotypes Ia, II and III were present in 98%–100% of all cord sera and decreased continuously during the first 6 months of life. No IgM antibodies against serotype III CPS were present in cord sera. Only 16%–17% of the children acquired IgM antibodies against serotype III CPS at 3 and 6 months of age. Conclusion Early acquisition of IgG or IgM antibodies against CPS of the most common GBS serotypes was not demonstrated and cannot explain the rare occurrence of invasive GBS infections in children after the 1st month of life.

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