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Originally Posted by roxyrox View Post
Passive immunity to measles is conferred via the placenta before birth. It generally lasts about 6-9 months. Breastfeeding doesn't actually offer much protection against catching measles. You are right though. Only moms who have had natrual measles can pass on that immunity to their babies. I kinda think we may be "passed the point of no return" on this one though. If we stopped vaccinating against measles now, many more babies < 12 months would catch it, and some would die.
I have heard and read that the passive immunity is from the placenta and that it is from breastfeeding - so I am confused. Do you have any links to passive immunity for measles when the mum had measles as a child? I would love to clear this up for myself.
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by ema-adama View Post
I have heard and read that the passive immunity is from the placenta and that it is from breastfeeding - so I am confused. Do you have any links to passive immunity for measles when the mum had measles as a child? I would love to clear this up for myself.
It's from both, just for measles the main immunity comes from IgG antibodies that cross the placenta before birth. Mothers who have had natural measles seem to pass on higher levels of these antibodies to their babies, providing them with slightly better protection.
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/9178461

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Neutralizing antibody titers of 47 infants whose mothers sustained measles (measles group) and 70 whose mothers were vaccinated (vaccine group) were compared at birth, 4 and 8 months of age. All children had antibodies at birth and 88% at 4 months. At 8 months, 49% had antibodies in the measles group and 15% in the vaccine group (P < 0.001). The geometric mean titers were significantly lower in the vaccine group than in the measles group and the difference corresponded to the antibody loss occurring in only 1.5 months of life. This small difference may reflect past exposure to wild virus of many vaccinated mothers.
http://www.sciencedirect.com/science...443038810a3f9d

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Infant's antibody concentration decreased with age, but for every month of life geometric mean antibody titres for infants born to vaccinated mothers was significantly lower than GMT for infants born to mothers who experienced measles.

These results indicate that the duration of passive measles immunity is related to the maternal source of immunity and support results of previous studies
Some IgA antibodies in colostrum can also provide some protection against measles but only in the first few weeks. Here it says levels dropped to below protective in breastmilk before 2 weeks;http://tropej.oxfordjournals.org/cgi...stract/51/1/45

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Fifty-five colostrum samples from the same mothers and 347 breastmilk samples collected at various periods of breastfeeding also showed that anti-measles IgA had dropped below the protective cut-off within the first 2 weeks of birth.

Breastfeeding does provide passive immunity for lots of things but it's is not going to prevent your 2 or 3yo catching measles!
 

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Breastfeeding immunity works best for pathogens that like to stay in the nose/throst or in the gut, it seems. Viruses that go through a viremic (viremia) stage (where the viruses are replicating in your blood, all throughout your body) are probably going to "escape" the "local, site-specific" immunity that comes from breastfeeding. I don't have a link on this, but it's my strong impression after reading about what breastfeeding does and doesn't work to prevent.
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by roxyrox View Post
Breastfeeding does provide passive immunity for lots of things but it's is not going to prevent your 2 or 3yo catching measles!
Thank you so much for putting this together for me in such a clear way.

Are you aware of any research that has been done on BFing having beneficial effects on a toddlers immune response should they get measles? Can BFing somehow boost the immune response? Or am I being way too hopeful? (one of the main reasons I plan to extend breastfeeding into the toddler years is for the beneficial effects on the immune system - and of course I love BFing)

I am not worried about DS getting measles - but would prefer him to be between 5 - 9 years of age. So, trying to think what I would do if he got it earlier - other than consult a health care practitioner of course.
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by ema-adama View Post
Thank you so much for putting this together for me in such a clear way.

Are you aware of any research that has been done on BFing having beneficial effects on a toddlers immune response should they get measles? Can BFing somehow boost the immune response? Or am I being way too hopeful? (one of the main reasons I plan to extend breastfeeding into the toddler years is for the beneficial effects on the immune system - and of course I love BFing)

I am not worried about DS getting measles - but would prefer him to be between 5 - 9 years of age. So, trying to think what I would do if he got it earlier - other than consult a health care practitioner of course.
I absolutely think a breastfed toddler is in a better position to tackle any disease than a weaned one. Breastfeeding is good for the immune system as a whole. I have never really looked into measles/breastfeeding specifically but I found this;
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/6115170

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The mortality rates among children under 2 years of age with measles, diarrhea, and ALRD were significantly higher (1.5, 3.3, 2.1 times higher) when the children had been weaned than when they were still being breastfed. Older children had lower mortality rates. Superior survival rates in breastfed children were also found in successive 6-month age groupings. Differences in mortality for breastfed vs. weaned is significant for children under 1 year of age (p0.001) and for those aged 12 to 23 months
 
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