Arsenic and Immune Response to Influenza Vaccination in Pregnant Women and Newborns
DESCRIPTION: There is a fundamental gap in understanding of whether arsenic, a known developmental toxicant, alters maternal immune responses to vaccination and whether exposure to arsenic during pregnancy impairs the transfer of maternal vaccine-induced antibody to the newborn. Moreover, factors known to affect arsenic metabolism and toxicity outcomes, particularly micronutrients critical in one-carbon metabolism, have not been evaluated in studies of arsenic immunotoxicity and vaccine-induced protection in mothers and their newborns. Continued existence of this gap represents an important problem because, until it is filled, optimal points for intervention to prevent arsenic-related immunotoxicity and morbidity during pregnancy and early life will not be known. Our objective is to investigate how maternal arsenic exposure and one-carbon metabolism micronutrient deficiencies alter maternal and newborn influenza antibody titer and avidity, respiratory morbidity, and measures of systemic immune function following maternal influenza vaccination. Our hypothesis is that maternal arsenic exposure and one-carbon metabolism micronutrient deficiencies can alter maternal and newborn influenza antibody titer and avidity, respiratory morbidity, and systemic immune function following influenza vaccination during pregnancy.