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Safety of the yellow fever vaccine in people living with HIV: a longitudinal study exploring post-vaccination viremia and hematological and liver kinetics.

BACKGROUND: Safety data on the yellow fever vaccine 17DD in People Living with HIV (PLWH) are limited. This study explored the occurrence of post-vaccination 17DD viremia and the kinetics of hematological and liver laboratorial parameters in PLWH and HIV-uninfected participants [HIV(-) controls].

METHODS: We conducted a secondary analysis of a longitudinal interventional trial (NCT03132311) study that enrolled PLWH and HIV(-) controls to receive a single 17DD dose and were followed at 5, 30 and 365 days after vaccination in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. 17DD viremia (obtained throughreal-time PCR and plaque forming units' assays), hematological (neutrophils, lymphocytes and platelets counts) and liver enzymes (ALT and AST) results were assessed at baseline and Days 5 and 30 post-vaccination. Logistic regression models explored factors associated with the odds of having positive 17DD viremia. Linear regression models explored variables associated with hematological and liver enzymes results at Day 5.

RESULTS: A total of 202 PLWH with CD4 ≥ 200 cells/µL and 68 HIV(-) controls were included in the analyses. 17DD viremia was found in 20.0 % of the participants and was twice more frequent in PLWH than in HIV(-) controls (22.8% vs. 11.8 %, p-value < 0.001). Neutrophils, lymphocytes and platelets counts dropped at Day 5 and returned to baseline values at Day 30. 17DD viremia was associated with lower nadir of lymphocytes and platelets at Day 5. ALT levels did not increase post-vaccination and were not associated with 17DD viremia.

CONCLUSIONS: 17DD was safe and well-tolerated in PLWH with CD4 ≥ 200 cells/µL. Post-vaccination viremia was more frequent in PLWH than in controls. Transient and self-limited decreases in lymphocytes and neutrophils occurred early after vaccination. 17DD viremia was associated with lower lymphocytes and platelets nadir after vaccination. We did not observe elevations in ALT after 17DD vaccination.

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