Reduced Prevalence of Measles Antibodies in a Cohort of Brazilian Children under 15 Years of Age

Cassia Fernanda Estofolete, Flora de Andrade Gandolfi, Bruno Henrique de Aguiar Milhim, Gislaine Celestino Dutra da Silva, Fernanda Simões Dourado, Bárbara Ferreira dos Santos, Nikos Vasilakis, Maurício Lacerda Nogueira

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Measles is a highly contagious acute febrile disease responsible for sporadic but explosive outbreaks worldwide. Although it was considered eliminated from the Americas, the disease reemerged in 2017. This reemergence was linked to reduced immunization rates. Vaccination, early identification of cases, and blocking of the transmission chain are the most effective tools to combat measles, for which there is not a specific antiviral treatment. In this Brazilian prospective cross-sectional study, we investigated the prevalence of measles antibodies in children, a population vulnerable to significant morbidity and mortality from exposure to infection. Between December 2018 to November 2019, blood samples from 252 children were collected and assessed for the presence of measles-specific IgG antibodies and an overall prevalence of 75.8% was observed. We further stratified the cohort into age subgroups, none of which exhibited antibody presence levels above the herd immunity threshold of 94%. Moreover, the calculated number of secondary cases resulting from a case in any age group ranged from 3 to 4, demonstrating that even with partial vaccination coverage this disease is still concerning and highly transmissible. Despite global warnings about measles and previous efforts to combat the advance of the disease, data on antibody prevalence and vaccination coverage in several countries are still concerning and indicate that significant parts of the population could be affected. Seroprevalence studies like this one are important to highlight actual epidemiological conditions and emphasize the need for additional strategies to encourage immunization and avoid the potential impacts of measles, particularly in children who can be severely affected.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number1570
Issue number10
StatePublished - Oct 2022


  • immunization
  • measles
  • outbreaks
  • seroprevalence

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology
  • Pharmacology
  • Drug Discovery
  • Infectious Diseases
  • Pharmacology (medical)


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