Safety and immunogenicity of two freeze-dried Vero cell rabies vaccines for human use in post-exposure prophylaxis.
To provide basis for human rabies vaccination in China, the safety and immunogenicity of two freeze-dried Vero cell rabies vaccines for human use were assessed. A total of 250 volunteers were enrolled and divided into two groups: volunteers in Group A (n=200) were vaccinated five doses of Speeda Vero cell rabies vaccine manufactured by Liaoning Chengda Biotechnology Co. Ltd. on day 0, 3, 7, 14, 28 after exposure. Volunteers in Group B (n=50) were treated with Verorab Vero cell rabies vaccine manufactured by Sanofi Pasteur on the same schedule. The local and systematic adverse reactions were observed. Serum neutralizing antibody levels of 80 individuals in Group A and 50 individuals in Group B were tested with RFFIT on day 7, 14, 45, 180, 360 after the first dose. The seroconversion rates in Groups A and B were 40.3% and 37.0% on day 7 after the first dose, 95.5% and 97.7% on day 14, 100% and 100% on day 45, 100% and 100% on day 180, 89.1% and 89.5% on day 360 respectively, indicating no significant differences between the two groups. And no significant differences were found between the neutralizing antibody geometric mean titers (GMTs) of the two groups on day 7, 14, 45, 180 and 360 after the first dose, with the GMTs of day 14, 45, 180 and 360 all higher than 0.5IU/ml. Antibody levels of the two groups peaked around 2 weeks after the full vaccination program, followed by a 55% decrease up to day 180 and another 76% decrease up to day 360. Both groups experienced occasions of transient fever, rash, edema, and scleroma after vaccination. Neither group had any severe adverse reactions. It was concluded that both vaccines showed satisfactory safety and immunogenicity. Booster vaccination is recommended following another exposure after six months since the full vaccination program.