Adversomics: The emerging field of vaccine adverse event immunogenetics

Gregory A. Poland, Inna G. Ovsyannikova, Robert M. Jacobson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

46 Scopus citations


We believe that adversomics (the immunogenetics and immunogenomics of vaccine adverse events at the individual and population level, respectively) is critical to understanding and preventing serious adverse vaccine-related events, developing the next generation of vaccines, and to improving public confidence in vaccine safety. Significant difficulties in the growth of the field of vaccine immunogenetics include the difficulty of studying large enough numbers of subjects (rare AEs are, by definition, rare), lack of research funding, the complexity and extensive polymorphic nature of immune response genes, statistical issues of multiple comparisons and statistical power, issues of multigenic and other gene interactions such as complementation and epigenetic DNA modifications, and gender, racial, and ethnic differences. Nonetheless, the field of adversomics is growing due to scientific interest in understanding the basis for vaccine reactions, "push" from the growing field of individualized medicine, and consumer demand for safer vaccines. The capability to reproduce statistical associations in independent population-based studies remains essential to assessing the generalization of such studies. Clearly more comprehensive studies are needed to determine if there are associations between genetic variations among individuals and susceptibility to serious adverse events in response to vaccination. These factors combined with technologic ability will lead to a new era in vaccinology and better, safer vaccines.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)431-432
Number of pages2
JournalPediatric Infectious Disease Journal
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 2009

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Microbiology (medical)
  • Infectious Diseases


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