Literature review of the epidemiology of influenza B disease in 15 countries in the Asia-Pacific region

Lance Jennings, Qiu Sue Huang, Ian Barr, Ping Ing Lee, Woo Joo Kim, Philippe Buchy, Melvin Sanicas, Bruce A. Mungall, Jing Chen

    Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

    57 Citations (Scopus)


    Influenza control strategies focus on the use of trivalent influenza vaccines containing two influenza A virus subtypes and one of the two circulating influenza type B lineages (Yamagata or Victoria). Mismatches between the vaccine B lineage and the circulating lineage have been regularly documented in many countries, including those in the Asia-Pacific region. We conducted a literature review with the aim of understanding the relative circulation of influenza B viruses in Asia-Pacific countries. PubMed and Western Pacific Region Index Medicus were searched for relevant articles on influenza type B published since 1990 in English language for 15 Asia-Pacific countries. Gray literature was also accessed. From 4834 articles identified, 121 full-text articles were analyzed. Influenza was reported as an important cause of morbidity in the Asia-Pacific region, affecting all age groups. In all 15 countries, influenza B was identified and associated with between 0% and 92% of laboratory-confirmed influenza cases in any one season/year. Influenza type B appeared to cause more illness in children aged between 1 and 10 years than in other age groups. Epidemiological data for the two circulating influenza type B lineages remain limited in several countries in the Asia-Pacific, although the co-circulation of both lineages was seen in countries where strain surveillance data were available. Mismatches between circulating B lineages and vaccine strains were observed in all countries with available data. The data suggest that a shift from trivalent to quadrivalent seasonal influenza vaccines could provide additional benefits by providing broader protection.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)383-411
    Number of pages29
    JournalInfluenza and other Respiratory Viruses
    Issue number3
    Publication statusPublished - 2018 May

    Bibliographical note

    Funding Information:
    GlaxoSmithKline Biologicals SA was the funding source and was involved in design and conduct of the study; management, analysis, and interpretation of the data; preparation, review, and approval of the manuscript and decision to submit the manuscript for publication. Pallas was involved in the design of the study and conducted the literature review. GlaxoSmithKline Biologicals SA funded all costs associated with the development and the publishing of the present manuscript. The corresponding author had full access to the data and was responsible for submission of the publication. The Melbourne WHO Collaborating Centre for Reference and Research on Influenza is supported by the Australian Government Department of Health.

    Funding Information:
    The authors thank Marleen Buijssen and Eveline M. Bunge (Pallas Health research and consultancy, on behalf of GSK) for technical support in conducting the literature search. The authors thank Business & Decision Life Sciences platform for editorial assistance and manuscript coordination on behalf of GSK. Jesse Quigley Jones (GSK) and Jonathan Ghesqui?re (Business & Decision Life Sciences) coordinated manuscript development and editorial support. The authors also thank Jo Wolter (independent, on behalf of GSK) for providing medical writing support.

    Publisher Copyright:
    © 2017 The Authors. Influenza and Other Respiratory Viruses Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd.


    • Asia-Pacific
    • epidemiology
    • influenza B
    • literature review
    • seasonality
    • vaccine mismatch

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Epidemiology
    • Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine
    • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
    • Infectious Diseases


    Dive into the research topics of 'Literature review of the epidemiology of influenza B disease in 15 countries in the Asia-Pacific region'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

    Cite this