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The pediatric population receives the majority of vaccines globally, yet there is a paucity of studies on the transcriptional response induced by immunization in this special population. In this study, we performed a systems-level analysis of immune responses to the trivalent inactivated influenza vaccine adjuvanted with MF-59 in children (15-24 months old) and in young, healthy adults. We analyzed transcriptional responses elicited by vaccination in peripheral blood, as well as cellular and antibody responses following primary and booster vaccinations. Our analysis revealed that primary vaccination induced a persistent transcriptional signature of innate immunity; booster vaccination induced a transcriptional signature of an enhanced memory-like innate response, which was consistent with enhanced activation of myeloid cells assessed by flow cytometry. Furthermore, we identified a transcriptional signature of type 1 interferon response post-booster vaccination and at baseline that was correlated with the local reactogenicity to vaccination and defined an early signature that correlated with the hemagglutinin antibody titers. These results highlight an adaptive behavior of the innate immune system in evoking a memory-like response to secondary vaccination and define molecular correlates of reactogenicity and immunogenicity in infants.

Original publication




Journal article


NPJ vaccines

Publication Date





Institute for Immunology, Transplantation and Infection, Stanford University, Stanford, CA, USA.