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Hepatitis B virus vaccine and chronic kidney disease. The advances



Hepatitis B is an important agent of liver disease in patients with chronic kidney disease and chronic HBV infection promotes the development of CKD in the adult general population. Patients with CKD have a suboptimal response to various vaccines, and it remains unclear how we boost the immune response of CKD patients to HB vaccine.

Study aims and design

We performed a narrative review to assess the mechanisms of lower immunogenicity of HBV vaccine in CKD population; multiple approaches to improve the response rate of CKD patients to HBV vaccine have been reported. This is a very important topic for nephrologists who often serve as primary case providers for patients with CKD.


The recommended vaccine schedule for CKD patients including those on maintenance dialysis is based on recombinant vaccine, four doses (month 0,1,2, and 6; 40mcg each) by intramuscular route (deltoid muscle). According to RCTs or observational studies, some recombinant vaccines with adjuvants (i.e., HBV-AS02 and HBV-AS04) look promising. HBV-AS04 showed to give better seroprotection rates and durable immune response over extended follow-ups compared with licensed HBV vaccine in CKD patients. The seroprotection rate was 95% (97/102) and 82% (202/248) in pre-dialysis and dialysis patients, respectively, one month after completing vaccine schedule with HBV-AS04. HBV-AS02 was superior to licensed vaccine in terms of seroprotection rate, 76.9% vs. 37.6%.


We suggest adjuvanted recombinant (HBV-AS04) vaccine (0,1,2 and 3 months; 20 mcg each dose) and post vaccination testing of anti-HBs antibody after vaccination. Booster doses to patients whose anti-HBs titers fall below the seroprotection level (<10IU/mL) during the follow-up are appropriate. The patho-physiologic mechanisms responsible for the poor immunogenicity of HBV vaccine in CKD patients are under active investigation.

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