Journal Article

Adult Adenovirus Infections: Loss of Orphaned Vaccines Precipitates Military Respiratory Disease Epidemics

Gregory C. Gray, Pulak R. Goswami, Marietta D. Malasig, Anthony W. Hawksworth, David H. Trump, Margaret A. Ryan and David P. Schnurr

in Clinical Infectious Diseases

Published on behalf of Infectious Diseases Society of America

Volume 31, issue 3, pages 663-670
Published in print September 2000 | ISSN: 1058-4838
Published online September 2000 | e-ISSN: 1537-6591 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1086/313999
Adult Adenovirus Infections: Loss of Orphaned Vaccines Precipitates Military Respiratory Disease Epidemics

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Adenovirus vaccines have greatly reduced military respiratory disease morbidity since the 1970s. However, in 1995, for economic reasons, the sole manufacturer of these vaccines ceased production. A population-based adenovirus surveillance was established among trainees with acute respiratory illness at 4 US military training centers as the last stores of vaccines were depleted. From October 1996 to June 1998, 1814 (53.1%) of 3413 throat cultures for symptomatic trainees (78% men) yielded adenovirus. Adenovirus types 4, 7, 3, and 21 accounted for 57%, 25%, 9%, and 7% of the isolates, respectively. Unvaccinated trainees were much more likely than vaccinated trainees to be positive for types 4 or 7 (odds ratio [OR] = 28.1; 95% CI, 20.2–39.2). Two training centers experienced epidemics of respiratory disease affecting thousands of trainees when vaccines were not available. Until a new manufacturer is identified, the loss of orphaned adenovirus vaccines will result in thousands of additional preventable adenovirus infections.

Journal Article.  5251 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Infectious Diseases ; Immunology ; Public Health and Epidemiology ; Microbiology

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