Multiple randomized, controlled clinical trials have yielded discordant results regarding the efficacy of convalescent plasma in outpatients, with some showing an approximately 2-fold reduction in risk and others showing no effect. We quantified binding and neutralizing antibody levels in 492 of the 511 participants from the Clinical Trial of COVID-19 Convalescent Plasma in Outpatients (C3PO) of a single unit of COVID-19 convalescent plasma (CCP) versus saline infusion. In a subset of 70 participants, peripheral blood mononuclear cells were obtained to define the evolution of B and T cell responses through day 30. Binding and neutralizing antibody responses were approximately 2-fold higher 1 hour after infusion in recipients of CCP compared with saline plus multivitamin, but levels achieved by the native immune system by day 15 were almost 10-fold higher than those seen immediately after CCP administration. Infusion of CCP did not block generation of the host antibody response or skew B or T cell phenotype or maturation. Activated CD4+ and CD8+ T cells were associated with more severe disease outcome. These data show that CCP leads to a measurable boost in anti–SARS-CoV-2 antibodies but that the boost is modest and may not be sufficient to alter disease course.
John F. McDyer, Mahzad Azimpouran, Valerie L. Durkalski-Mauldin, Robert G. Clevenger, Sharon D. Yeatts, Xutao Deng, William Barsan, Robert Silbergleit, Nahed El Kassar, Iulia Popescu, Dimiter Dimitrov, Wei Li, Emily J. Lyons, Sophia C. Lieber, Mars Stone, Frederick K. Korley, Clifton W. Callaway, Larry J. Dumont, Philip J. Norris, for the SIREN-C3PO Investigators