Antibody response in elderly vaccinated four times with an mRNA anti-COVID-19 vaccine

Alexander Rouvinski*, Ahuva Friedman, Saveliy Kirillov, Jordan Hannink Attal, Sujata Kumari, Jamal Fahoum, Reuven Wiener, Sophie Magen, Yevgeni Plotkin, Daniel Chemtob, Herve Bercovier

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations

Abstract

The humoral response after the fourth dose of a mRNA vaccine against COVID-19 has not been adequately described in elderly recipients, particularly those not exposed previously to SARS-CoV-2. Serum anti-RBD IgG levels (Abbott SARS-CoV-2 IgG II Quant assay) and neutralizing capacities (spike SARS-CoV-2 pseudovirus Wuhan and Omicron BA.1 variant) were measured after the third and fourth doses of a COVID-19 mRNA vaccine among 46 elderly residents (median age 85 years [IQR 81; 89]) of an assisted living facility. Among participants never infected by SARS-CoV-2, the mean serum IgG levels against RBD (2025 BAU/ml), 99 days after the fourth vaccine, was as high as 76 days after the third vaccine (1987 BAU/ml), and significantly higher (p = 0.030) when the latter were corrected for elapsed time. Neutralizing antibody levels against the historical Wuhan strain were significantly higher (Mean 1046 vs 1573; p = 0.002) and broader (against Omicron) (Mean 170 vs 375; p = 0.018), following the fourth vaccine. The six individuals with an Omicron breakthrough infection mounted strong immune responses for anti-RBD and neutralizing antibodies against the Omicron variant indicating that the fourth vaccine dose did not prevent a specific adaptation of the immune response. These findings point out the value of continued vaccine boosting in the elderly population.

Original languageAmerican English
Article number14165
JournalScientific Reports
Volume13
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - 29 Aug 2023

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© 2023, Springer Nature Limited.

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