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Abstract Background RTS,S/AS01, the leading malaria vaccine has been recommended by the WHO for widespread immunization of children at risk. RTS,S/AS01-induced anti-CSP IgG antibodies are associated with the vaccine efficacy. Here, the long-term kinetics of RTS,S/AS01-induced antibodies was investigated. Methods 150 participants were randomly selected from the 447 children who participated in the RTS,S/AS01 phase IIb clinical trial in 2007 from Kilifi-Kenya. Cumulatively, the retrospective follow-up period was 93 months with annual plasma samples collection. The levels of anti-CSP IgM, total IgG, IgG1, IgG2, IgG3, and IgG4 antibodies were then determined using an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay. Results RTS,S/AS01 induced high levels of anti-CSP IgG antibodies which exhibited a rapid waning over 6.5 months post-vaccination, followed by a slower decay over the subsequent years. RTS,S/AS01-induced anti-CSP IgG antibodies remained elevated above the control group levels throughout the 7 years follow-up period. The anti-CSP IgG antibodies were mostly IgG1, IgG3, IgG2, and to a lesser extent IgG4. IgG2 predominated in later timepoints. RTS,S/AS01 also induced high levels of anti-CSP IgM antibodies which increased above the control group levels by month 3. The controls exhibited increasing levels of the anti-CSP IgM antibodies which caught up with the RTS,S/AS01 vaccinees levels by month 21. In contrast, there were no measurable anti-CSP IgG antibodies among the controls. Conclusion RTS,S/AS01-induced anti-CSP IgG antibodies kinetics are consistent with long-lived but waning vaccine efficacy. Natural exposure induces anti-CSP IgM antibodies in children, which increases with age, but does not induce substantial levels of anti-CSP IgG antibodies.

Original publication

DOI

10.1186/s12936-021-03961-2

Type

Journal

Malaria Journal

Publisher

Springer Science and Business Media LLC

Publication Date

12/2021

Volume

20