Flu Vaccine and Gender Differences

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Story Updated: Dec 27, 2013

Is testosterone the reason?

Does the flu shot work better in women than in men? The answer, according to a new study, may be yes!

Researchers measured immune responses in 53 women and 34 men after they received their seasonal flu vaccination.

The women produced a higher immune response in reaction to the vaccine.

Testing was then done using different influenza strains and differences in gender-related immune responses were highest for the H3N2 strain. The researchers say the gender differences are possibly due to a set of genes that may be regulated by testosterone.

Men with the highest testosterone levels had the weakest antibody responses to the flu vaccine.

The CDC recommends that everyone who is at least 6 months of age should get a seasonal flu vaccine.

I'm Dr. Cindy Haines of HealthDay TV with news from today that can lead to healthy tomorrows.

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