November 30, 2015
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(Diphtheria and Tetanus Toxoids and Acellular Pertussis Vaccine Adsorbed) Intramuscular Injection


DAPTACEL vaccine is a sterile isotonic suspension of pertussis antigens and diphtheria and tetanus toxoids adsorbed on aluminum phosphate, for intramuscular injection.

Each 0.5 mL dose contains 15 Lf diphtheria toxoid, 5 Lf tetanus toxoid and acellular pertussis antigens [10 mcg detoxified pertussis toxin (PT), 5 mcg filamentous hemagglutinin (FHA), 3 mcg pertactin (PRN), and 5 mcg fimbriae types 2 and 3 (FIM)].

Other ingredients per 0.5 mL dose include 1.5 mg aluminum phosphate (0.33 mg of aluminum) as the adjuvant, ≤ 5 mcg residual formaldehyde, < 50 ng residual glutaraldehyde and 3.3 mg (0.6% v/v) 2-phenoxyethanol (not as a preservative).

The acellular pertussis vaccine components are produced from Bordetellapertussis cultures grown in Stainer-Scholte medium² modified by the addition of casamino acids and dimethyl-beta-cyclodextrin. PT, FHA and PRN are isolated separately from the supernatant culture medium. The FIM components are extracted and co-purified from the bacterial cells. The pertussis antigens are purified by sequential filtration, salt-precipitation, ultrafiltration and chromatography. PT is detoxified with glutaraldehyde. FHA is treated with formaldehyde, and the residual aldehydes are removed by ultrafiltration. The individual antigens are adsorbed separately onto aluminum phosphate.

Corynebacterium diphtheriae is grown in modified Mueller's growth medium.3 After purification by ammonium sulfate fractionation, diphtheria toxin is detoxified with formaldehyde and diafiltered. Clostridium tetani is grown in modified Mueller-Miller casamino acid medium without beef heart infusion.4 Tetanus toxin is detoxified with formaldehyde and purified by ammonium sulfate fractionation and diafiltration. Diphtheria and tetanus toxoids are individually adsorbed onto aluminum phosphate.

The adsorbed diphtheria, tetanus and acellular pertussis components are combined with aluminum phosphate (as adjuvant), 2-phenoxyethanol (not as a preservative) and water for injection.

Both diphtheria and tetanus toxoids induce at least 2 units of antitoxin per mL in the guinea pig potency test. The potency of the acellular pertussis vaccine components is determined by the antibody response of immunized mice to detoxified PT, FHA, PRN and FIM as measured by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA).


2. Stainer DW, Scholte MJ. A simple chemically defined medium for the production of phase I Bordetella pertussis. J Gen Microbiol 1970;63:211-20.

3. Stainer DW. Production of diphtheria toxin. In: Manclark CR, editor. Proceedings of an informal consultation on the World Health Organization requirements for diphtheria, tetanus, pertussis and combined vaccines. United States Public Health Service, Bethesda, MD. DHHS 91-1174. 1991. p. 7-11.

4. Mueller JH, Miller PA. Variable factors influencing the production of tetanus toxin. J Bacteriol 1954;67(3):271-7.

Last reviewed on RxList: 11/13/2015
This monograph has been modified to include the generic and brand name in many instances.

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