Objectives: Definition of the optimal pneumococcal vaccine strategy in HIV-infected adults is still under evaluation. We aimed to compare immunogenicity and safety of the 13-valent pneumococcal conjugate vaccine (PCV13) versus the 23-valent polysaccharide vaccine (PPSV23) in HIV-infected adults. Methods: We performed a pilot, prospective controlled study enrolling HIV-infected pneumococcal vaccine-naïve outpatients, aged 18-65 years with CD4 counts 200 cells/μL. Eligible subjects were recruited into two parallel groups: group 1 (n = 50) received two doses of PCV13 eight weeks apart, and group 2 (n = 50) received one dose of PPSV23, as part of their standard of care. Anti-pneumococcal capsular polysaccharide immunoglobulin G concentrations were quantified by ELISA at baseline, 8, 24 and 48 weeks. Clinical and viro-immunological follow-up was performed at the same time points. Unvaccinated, agematched HIV-negative adults (n = 100) were also enrolled as baseline controls. Results: Pre-vaccination specific IgG titers for each pneumococcal antigen did not differ between study groups but they were constantly lower than those from the HIV-negative controls. After immunization, significant increases in IgG titers were observed in both study groups at each time point compared to baseline, but response to serotype 3 was blunted in group 1. Antibody titers for each antigen did not differ between study groups at week 48. Overall, the proportion of subjects achieving seroprotection and seroconversion to all serotypes was comparable between groups. A marked decrease in IgG levels over time was observed with both vaccines. No relevant adverse reactions were reported in either group. Conclusions: In this population with favorable immune profile, no relevant differences were observed in immunogenicity between PCV13 and PPSV23. Both vaccines were safe and well tolerated. Trial Registration: ClinicalTrials.gov NCT02123433.
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