Immunological Response to the Influenza Vaccine

Emiliano Hernandez, Julia Wellham, Neha John-Henderson, Laura L. Johns, Agnieszka Rynda-Apple, Department of Microbiology and Immunology, Department of Psychology Montana State University, Bozeman, MT 59718

This project focuses on determining how social hierarchy influences the body’s response to the annual influenza vaccine. A group of sixty students who received the influenza vaccine in 2017 participated in the study. A survey was administered to measure how students viewed their social standing. Blood samples were taken at timepoints zero (prior to receiving the vaccine), one month, and three months. Additional surveys were completed by the students at the one month and three-month timepoints to judge their overall health. The relationship of interest in this study was that between the immunity induced by the seasonal influenza vaccine and the participants’ perceived social standing. Researching this component of influenza immunity offers a more holistic approach to future influenza prevention and treatment. The scope and pathogenesis of influenza infection may be further elucidated by drawing on factors (e.g. perceived social standing) that may influence immunity to influenza virus. The goal of the project is to begin preliminary research on how one’s social hierarchy might impact the efficacy of the seasonal influenza vaccine. This was determined by measuring antibody titers (immunoglobulin G) of serum samples with ELISA (enzyme linked immunosorbent assay). In addition, hemagglutination inhibition assays (HAI) were performed on serum samples to obtain HI (hemagglutination inhibition) titers. Immunoglobulin G (IgG) antibodies specific to each of three influenza strains (based off the three inactivated strains within the trivalent 2017-2018 vaccine) was targeted with ELISA and each component of the trivalent vaccine was tested with HAI. Data collected thus far display a variety of trends. For ELISA, the most recurrent trend is a low antibody titer at time zero and a sudden increase in seroconversion at one month and three months. Correlating immunity with survey responses is under progress. 


Additional Abstract Information

Presenters: Emiliano Hernández, Julia Wellham

Institution: Montana State University Bozeman

Type: Poster

Subject: Biology

Status: Approved

Time and Location

Session: Poster 2
Date/Time: Mon 3:00pm-4:00pm
Session Number: 2625