Longitudinal studies are needed to evaluate the SARS-CoV-2 mRNA vaccine antibody response under real-world conditions. This longitudinal study investigated the quantity and quality of SARS-CoV-2 antibody response in 846 specimens from 350 patients, comparing BNT162b2-vaccinated individuals (19 previously diagnosed with COVID-19, termed RecoVax; and 49 never diagnosed, termed NaiveVax) with 122 hospitalized unvaccinated (HospNoVax) and 160 outpatient unvaccinated (OutPtNoVax) COVID-19 patients. NaiveVax experienced delay in generating SARS-CoV-2 total antibodies (TAb) and surrogate neutralizing antibodies (SNAb) after the first vaccine dose (D1) but rapid increase in antibody levels after the second dose (D2). However, these never reached RecoVax’s robust levels. In fact, NaiveVax TAb and SNAb levels decreased 4 weeks after D2. For the most part, RecoVax TAb persisted, after reaching maximal levels 2 weeks after D2, but SNAb decreased significantly about 6 months after D1. Although NaiveVax avidity lagged behind that of RecoVax for most of the follow-up periods, NaiveVax did reach similar avidity by about 6 months after D1. These data suggest that 1 vaccine dose elicits maximal antibody response in RecoVax and may be sufficient. Also, despite decreasing levels in TAb and SNAb over time, long-term avidity may be a measure worth evaluating and possibly correlating to vaccine efficacy.
Sabrina E. Racine-Brzostek, Jim K. Yee, Ashley Sukhu, Yuqing Qiu, Sophie Rand, Paul D. Barone, Ying Hao, He S. Yang, Qing H. Meng, Fred S. Apple, Yuanyuan Shi, Amy Chadburn, Encouse Golden, Silvia C. Formenti, Melissa M. Cushing, Zhen Zhao