The weight of obesity on the human immune response to vaccination

Scott D. Painter, Inna G. Ovsyannikova, Gregory A. Poland

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

77 Scopus citations


Despite the high success of protection against several infectious diseases through effective vaccines, some sub-populations have been observed to respond poorly to vaccines, putting them at increased risk for vaccine-preventable diseases. In particular, the limited data concerning the effect of obesity on vaccine immunogenicity and efficacy suggests that obesity is a factor that increases the likelihood of a poor vaccine-induced immune response. Obesity occurs through the deposition of excess lipids into adipose tissue through the production of adipocytes, and is defined as a body-mass index (BMI)≥30kg/m2. The immune system is adversely affected by obesity, and these "immune consequences" raise concern for the lack of vaccine-induced immunity in the obese patient requiring discussion of how this sub-population might be better protected.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)4422-4429
Number of pages8
Issue number36
StatePublished - Aug 26 2015


  • Communicable diseases
  • Immunity
  • Immunization
  • Obesity
  • Vaccination

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Medicine
  • General Immunology and Microbiology
  • General Veterinary
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Infectious Diseases


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