Infect Chemother.  2018 Dec;50(4):311-318. 10.3947/ic.2018.50.4.311.

Optimal Timing of Zoster Vaccination After Shingles: A Prospective Study of the Immunogenicity and Safety of Live Zoster Vaccine

  • 1Department of Internal Medicine, Seoul National University College of Medicine, Seoul, Korea.


Zoster vaccination is recommended for people with a history of herpes zoster (HZ), but the most effective timing of vaccine administration after zoster illness is unresolved. This prospective observational study compared the immunogenicity and safety of administering HZ vaccine at 6-12 months and 1-5 years after zoster illness.
Blood samples were collected before the administration of live zoster vaccine and 6 weeks after vaccination. Varicella-zoster virus (VZV) IgG concentrations and T-cell responses were assessed by glycoprotein enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay and interferon-γ enzyme-linked immunospot assay (ELISPOT), respectively.
The baseline geometric mean value (GMV) of VZV IgG was higher in the 6-12 months group than in the 1-5 years group (245.5 IU/mL vs. 125.9 IU/mL; P = 0.021). However, the GMV increased significantly in both groups (P = 0.002 in the 6-12 months group; P <0.001 in the 1-5 years group). The results of the ELISPOT assay were not significant for differences of the GMV between baseline and 6-week post-vaccination groups, while the GMV increased significantly in both groups (P = 0.001 in the 6-12 months group; P <0.001 in the 1-5 years group).
The immunogenicity of zoster vaccine may be similar whether administered 6-12 months, or >1 year after zoster illness. TRIAL REGISTRATION: Identifier: NCT02704572


Zoster vaccine; Herpes zoster; Immunogenicity; Enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay; Enzyme-linked immunospot assay

MeSH Terms

Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay
Enzyme-Linked Immunospot Assay
Herpes Zoster Vaccine*
Herpes Zoster*
Herpesvirus 3, Human
Immunoglobulin G
Observational Study
Prospective Studies*
Herpes Zoster Vaccine
Immunoglobulin G


  • Figure 1 Varicella-zoster virus (VZV) specific immune responses according to zoster vaccine administration timing after zoster illness. The study population was divided into a before 1-year group (6-12 months), 1-3 years group (13-36 months), and >3 years group (>36 months). (A) Bars indicate geometric means and 95% confidence intervals (CI) for titers of enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay against VZV glycoproteins (gpELISA). (B) Bars indicate geometric means and 95% CIs for interferon-γ enzyme-linked immunospot (ELISPOT) counts, measured as spot-forming cells per 106 peripheral blood mononuclear cells. aP <0.01.


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