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Perceptions of Vaccine Risks and Effectiveness Among ASU Students

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The development of safe and effective vaccines has been one of the greatest public achievements of the 20th century. However, there is still considerable public debate about the relative health costs and benefits of vaccines, and the information and misinformation

The development of safe and effective vaccines has been one of the greatest public achievements of the 20th century. However, there is still considerable public debate about the relative health costs and benefits of vaccines, and the information and misinformation spread through these debates can have a direct impact on vaccination and whether or not herd immunity will continue in the United States for different diseases. To understand perceptions of vaccine risks and effectiveness among young adults in the U.S., this study describes Arizona State University students' perceptions of the harms and benefits of vaccines. A preliminary free list (n=30) identified what vaccines ASU college students were most likely to recall spontaneously. The six vaccines most commonly mentioned by ASU students were: influenza (flu), chickenpox, HPV, polio, MMR, and smallpox. Using these top six vaccines, we then developed a second survey about the knowledge and perceptions of each of these vaccines and vaccines as a whole. We found that students generally perceived vaccines as safe and important to their health, but they maintained an overall lack of understanding of how vaccines work and what they protect against. While this study is only a preliminary investigation into the perceptions of ASU college students on six commonly mentioned vaccines, this could lead to investigations on how to educate and promote the usage of vaccines to college students.

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2017-12

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Display of Domain III from Dengue 2 Envelope Protein on HBsAg Virus-like Particles Vectored by Measles Virus

Description

Dengue virus infects millions of people every year. Yet there is still no vaccine available to prevent it. Here we use a neutralizing epitope determinant on the dengue envelope (E) protein as an immunogen to be vectored by a measles

Dengue virus infects millions of people every year. Yet there is still no vaccine available to prevent it. Here we use a neutralizing epitope determinant on the dengue envelope (E) protein as an immunogen to be vectored by a measles virus (MV) vaccine. However the domain III (DIII) of the dengue 2 E protein is too small to be immunogenic by itself. In order for it to be displayed on a larger particle, it was inserted into the amino terminus of small hepatitis B surface antigen (HBsAg, S) coding sequence. To generate the recombinant MV vector and verify the efficiency of this concept, a reverse genetics system was used where the MV vectors express one or two additional transcription units to direct the assembly of hybrid HBsAg particles. Two types of recombinant measles virus were produced: pB(+)MVvac2(DIII-S,S)P and pB(+)MVvac2(DIII-S)N. Virus recovered from pB(+)MVvac2(DIII-S,S)P was viable. An ELISA assay was performed to demonstrate the expression and secretion of HBsAg. Supernatant from MVvac2(DIII-S,S)P infected cells confirmed that hybrid HBsAg-domain III particles with a density similar to traditional HBsAg particles were released. Characteristics of the subviral particle have been analyzed for the successful incorporation of domain III. The replication fitness of the recombinant MV was evaluated using multi-step growth kinetics and showed reduced replication fitness when compared to the parental strain MVvac2. This demonstrates that viral replication is hindered by the addition of the two inserts into MV genome. Further analysis of MVvac2(DIII-S)N is needed to justify immune response studies in a small animal model using both of the generated recombinant vectors.

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Date Created
2014-05

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Parental intentions to immunize children against influenza: a randomized trial of EPPM-based immunization messaging

Description

Background: This study examines how pro-vaccine flu messages, guided by the Extended Parallel Process Model (EPPM), affect parents’ intentions to vaccinate their children.

Methods: Parents of children six months to five years old (N = 975) were randomly exposed to one

Background: This study examines how pro-vaccine flu messages, guided by the Extended Parallel Process Model (EPPM), affect parents’ intentions to vaccinate their children.

Methods: Parents of children six months to five years old (N = 975) were randomly exposed to one of four high-threat/high-efficacy messages (narrative, statistical, combined, control) and completed a follow-up survey. Differences between message conditions were assessed with one-way ANOVAs, and binary logistic regressions were used to show how constructs predicted intentions.

Results: There were no significant differences in the ANOVA results at p = .05 for EPPM variables or risk EPPM variables. There was a significant difference between message conditions for perceived manipulation (p = 0.026), authority, (p = 0.024), character (p = 0.037), attention (p < .000), and emotion (p < .000). The EPPM model and perceptions of message model (positively), and the risk EPPM model and fear control model (negatively), predicted intentions to vaccinate. Significant predictor variables in each model at p < .05 were severity (aOR = 1.83), response efficacy (aOR = 4.33), risk susceptibility (aOR = 0.53), risk fear (aOR = 0.74), issue derogation (aOR = 0.63), perceived manipulation (aOR = 0.64), character (aOR = 2.00), and personal relevance (aOR = 1.88). In a multivariate model of the significant predictors, only response efficacy significantly predicted intentions to vaccinate (aOR = 3.43). Compared to the control, none of the experimental messages significantly predicted intentions to vaccinate. The narrative and combined conditions significantly predicted intentions to search online (aOR = 2.37), and the combined condition significantly predicted intentions to talk to family/friends (aOR = 2.66).

Conclusions: The EPPM may not be effective in context of a two-way threat. Additional constructs that may be useful in the EPPM model are perceptions of the message and fear control variables. One-shot flu vaccine messages will be unlikely to directly influence vaccination rates; however they may increase information-seeking behavior. The impact of seeking more information on vaccination uptake requires further research. Flu vaccine messages should be presented in combined form. Future studies should focus on strategies to increase perceptions of the effectiveness of the flu vaccine.

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2015