Varicella zoster virus DNA at inoculation sites and in saliva after Zostavax immunization.
J Infect Dis. 2011 Jun 1 ;203(11):1542-5. PMID: 21592982
Duane L Pierson
Analysis of 36 individuals over age 60 years who were immunized with Zostavax revealed varicella zoster virus (VZV) DNA in swabs of skin inoculation sites obtained immediately after immunization in 18 (50%) of 36 subjects (copy number per nanogram of total DNA, 28 to 2.1× 10(6)) and in saliva collected over 28 days in 21 (58%) of 36 subjects (copy number, 20 to 248). Genotypic analysis of DNA extracted from 9 random saliva samples identified vaccine virus in all instances. In some immunized individuals over age 60, vaccine virus DNA is shed in saliva up to 4 weeks.