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The purpose of this study is to learn more about the immune response to varicella zoster virus (VZV).
Condition or disease
Drug: Zoster Vaccine Live
Participants 70 years of age or older will receive the FDA-approved shingles vaccine (Zostavax). Blood samples and optional skin biopsies will be obtained before and after vaccination to study the immune responses to shingles vaccination.
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Layout table for eligibility information
Ages Eligible for Study:
70 Years and older (Older Adult)
Sexes Eligible for Study:
Accepts Healthy Volunteers:
70 years of age or older.
History of chickenpox.
Previous vaccination with Zostavax or with the chickenpox vaccine.
History of ever having had shingles.
Been in close contact with a person who had chickenpox or shingles in the past 5 years.
Taking systemic suppressive regular doses of drugs with anti-VZV activity such as acyclovir, famciclovir, or valacyclovir. Episodic use is allowed. For Cohort 1: medication cannot be taken 24 hours prior to or 30 days after receiving Zostavax per CDC recommendations.
Hepatitis C infection or active Hepatitis B infection.
History of a life-threatening allergic reaction (anaphylactic/anaphylactoid reaction) to gelatin, neomycin, or any other component of shingles vaccine. Neomycin allergy manifested as contact dermatitis is not an exclusion.
Has immunosuppression as a result of an underlying illness (e.g. leukemia, lymphoma or other malignant neoplasms) or treatment with immunosuppressive or cytotoxic drugs, or use of anticancer chemotherapy or radiation therapy.
Has long-term use of oral or parenteral steroids (>7 days), or high-dose inhaled steroids (>800 mcg/day of beclomethasone dipropionate or equivalent) within the preceding 6 months (nasal and topical steroids are allowed).
Women of child-bearing potential only: pregnant or planning to become pregnant 3 months post vaccination
Donated blood in the past 8 weeks or planning to donate blood during the study
Weighs less than 110 lbs
Has any condition or medical history that would, in the opinion of the site principal investigator place the subject at an unacceptable risk of injury or render the subject unable to meet the requirements of the protocol.
Additional exclusions for optional skin biopsy:
Has an acute or chronic medical condition that, in the opinion of the investigator, would render biopsies unsafe
History of coagulopathy or taking medication that may cause bleeding (long term aspirin, heparin, coumadin)
History of keloid formation or excessive scarring
History of frequent cellulitis or boils (>3 episodes in past 2 years) requiring antibiotic therapy.
Allergy to lidocaine, silver nitrate, or mupirocin.