Older adults with well-controlled type 2 diabetes who receive the influenza vaccine showed a similar antibody response to that of healthy age-matched controls, according to research in BMJ Open Diabetes Research & Care.
Janet E. McElhaney, MD, of the Advanced Medical Research Institute of Canada, and colleagues analyzed data from 102 adults with type 2 diabetes aged 65 years or older and 119 healthy adults aged 65 years or older (mean age for both groups, 75 years). In the type 2 diabetes group, adults were assigned metformin (n = 68), sulfonylurea (n = 10) or repaglinide (n = 24). All participants underwent influenza vaccination between 2010 and 2012, receiving the standard dose of the seasonal, trivalent, split-virus vaccine. Researchers collected blood samples from all participants before vaccination and again 28 days after vaccination, and used hemagglutination inhibition (HIA) assays to measure the immunogenicity of the influenza vaccine. All participants completed a grip strength test and 6-minute walk test to assess physical activity and clinical frailty score.
Researchers found that the HIA ratio on day 28 did not differ between the cohorts.
“It is of note that the analysis of seroconversion rates, considered to be a protective antibody response to vaccination, showed an equally low number of strong (true) responders in the healthy and [type 2 diabetes] groups with no significant different between the two,” the researchers wrote.
Researchers also found that, in the healthy adult group, HIA ratio was negatively associated with HDL and the Physical Activity Scale for the Elderly (PASE) and positively associated with white cell count. In the type 2 diabetes group, HIA was negatively associated with LDL, glucose, waist circumference and PASE.
“This suggests that the control of [type 2 diabetes], such as glucose and the metabolic-related parameters, positively influence the response to influenza vaccination,” the researchers wrote. “These results ultimately suggest that better diabetic control and less frailty may prevent hyporesponsiveness.” – by Regina Schaffer
The researchers report no relevant financial disclosures.