Originally Posted by carmel23
no but there is research demonstrating that the mother's antibodies can be found in cord blood (so there is some evidence of what part of the mother's immune system effects baby before birth):http://www.jci.org/articles/view/29466?search
In this study they could measure the flu antibodies in the cord blood of the infants post birth.
I am not sure why this study is relevant as it is looking at the anitbodies present in cord blood, and it is not looking at whether these antibodies are protective. The study is essentially using vaccination as a 'safe' way to study adaptive immunity of the fetus. It does not support the theory that present antibodies equal a superior immune response in newborns or infants.
Antibodies are not the only factor when it comes to immunity. People are assuming that antibodies are the important factor when it comes to predicting immunity. Which they are not.
I am not aware of a study that looks at vaccinated pregnant women passing on antibodies through cord blood and this being found to significantly reduce the incidence of Influenza in the newborn. I am guessing here, but I would think breastfeeding a newborn with colostrum and exclusively breastfeeding for the first months of life would offer a far superior protection than a vaccine during pregnancy. Humoral Immunity is not the be all and end all when it comes to predicting who succumbs to disease and who does not. Innate Immunity has a very important role to play. Breastmilk plays that role by essentially providing an 'innate immune system' to the newborn and exclusively breastfed child.
It is interesting to read that only 43.8% (39 of 89) of the vaccinated pregnant women developed antibodies to the vaccine. This makes me think that the number of pregnant women who actually respond to the flu vaccine is rather small. This study is not trying to establish the efficacy of the flu vaccine in pregnant women, but it is interesting to read that 56.2% did not respond adequately.. And only 38.6% of the cord blood samples had antibodies (27 of 70).
ETA: the pregnant women in the study had to be healthy, and not have (a) history of cardiovascular, neurological, and other systemic disorders; (b) major complications during pregnancy or history of major complications during previous pregnancy; (c) history of recent HIV, HBV, and other systemic infection. So, the statistics represent a healthy pregnant population, not the general pregnant population. It would be interesting to know what inclusion of unhealthy pregnant women would do to the statistics.