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Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology
Volume 57, n° 3
pages 442-444 (septembre 2007)
Doi : 10.1016/j.jaad.2007.04.022
accepted : 24 April 2007

Cutaneous responses to vaccinia in individuals with previous smallpox vaccination

Eric L. Simpson, MD a, , Michelle Hercher, BS b, Erika K. Hammarlund, MS c, Matthew W. Lewis, BS c, Mark K. Slifka, PhD c, Jon M. Hanifin, MD a
a From the Department of Dermatology 
b School of Medicine, MS3 
c Vaccine and Gene Therapy Institute, Oregon Health and Science University 

Reprint requests: Eric L. Simpson, MD, Department of Dermatology, Oregon Health and Science University, Center for Health and Healing (CH16D), 3303 SW Bond Ave, Portland, OR 97239-4501.

Portland, Oregon


The durability of immune responses to smallpox vaccine is a subject of considerable debate. We compared cutaneous vaccinia responses in patients vaccinated in the distant past with vaccine-naïve individuals using serial close-up photographs. The previously vaccinated group had a significantly reduced time course and milder cutaneous reactions. Vaccinated individuals appear to maintain clinically detectable immunity against vaccinia for at least 20 years after smallpox vaccination.

The full text of this article is available in PDF format.

 Supported by National Institutes of Health grant AI063675 (Dr Slifka), Oregon National Primate Research Center grant RR00163 (Dr Slifka), and a Career Development Award from the Dermatology Foundation (Dr Simpson).
Conflicts of interest: None declared.

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