Rotavirus Gastroenteritis Infection Among Children Vaccinated and Unvaccinated With Rotavirus Vaccine in Southern China: A Population-Based Assessment.


To evaluate the association of the Lanzhou lamb rotavirus vaccination with RV-GE among children in southern China.

This study provides evidence of the population health benefits of the Lanzhou lamb rotavirus vaccination in preventing RV-GE among children in China younger than 4 years, including herd effects.

This cross-sectional, ecological study was set in Guangzhou, China. Participants were infants possibly vaccinated (aged 2 months to 3 years) and the children ineligible for vaccination (aged ≥4 years). The study was conducted from May 1, 2007, to April 30, 2016, and the data analysis was conducted in July 2016.

Annual median age at onset of RV-GE and seasonal distribution of incidence. Cases of RV-GE in Guangzhou, China, diagnosed from May 1, 2007, to April 30, 2016, and reported to the National Information System for Disease Control and Prevention were examined. Poisson regression models were fitted among 32 452 children younger than 4 years and among 450 children who had been ineligible for vaccination, while controlling for secular trends, socioeconomic status, and meteorological factors. Logistic regression was used to assess the indirect effects provided by the vaccinated infants from 2009 to 2011 on unvaccinated infants aged 2 to 35 months based on a separate case-control data set.

Since 2000, the Lanzhou lamb rotavirus vaccine has been exclusively licensed in China for voluntary rotavirus gastroenteritis (RV-GE) prevention.

During 9 seasons, 119 705 patients with gastroenteritis were reported; 33 407 were confirmed for RV-GE (21 202 [63.5%] male, 32 022 [95.8%] aged <4 years, and 31 306 [93.8%] residing in urban districts). The median age at onset for all patients with RV-GE increased from 11 months during the 2007 season to 15 months during the 2015 season, and the onset, peak, and cessation of incidence were delayed. When citywide vaccination coverage in the prior 12 months was classified into high and low groups (≥8.36% vs <8.36%), the incidence rate ratio for the high coverage group decreased by 32.4% among children younger than 4 years (incidence rate ratio, 0.676; 95% CI, 0.659-0.693; P < .001). Among the children ineligible for vaccination, the incidence rate ratio in higher coverage periods was 0.790 (95% CI, 0.351-0.915; P < .001) compared with the lower coverage. Compared with districts with 14% or less vaccination coverage, the adjusted odds ratio for RV-GE among unvaccinated children younger than 3 years was 0.85 (95% CI, 0.73-0.99; P = .03) for districts with 15% to 19% of coverage, and 0.79 (95% CI, 0.67-0.93; P = .004) for districts with more than 20% of coverage.

MIDAS Network Members

Sen Pei

Associate Research Scientist
Columbia University