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High Antibody Response after First COVID-19 mRNA Vaccine Dose in Those Previously Infected

By Christine Judge Journal Watch , NEJM

People with prior COVID-19 infection show high immune response after only one mRNA vaccine dose, according to data published in the New England Journal of Medicine.

Researchers assessed antibody responses in 110 patients — 43 with documented preexisting immunity to SARS-CoV-2 (seropositive) and 67 without preexisting immunity (seronegative) — all of whom had received either the Moderna or Pfizer-BioNTech mRNA vaccine.

In the days following the first mRNA vaccine dose, antibody response was variable and low in the majority of seronegative patients but was uniformly high in the seropositive group. At any given time after the first dose was administered, antibody titers were 10 to 45 times higher in seropositive patients.

After the second vaccine dose, antibody titers increased threefold in the seronegative group but did not increase in the seropositive group.

The authors call for follow-up studies to "show whether these early differences in immune responses are maintained over a prolonged time period."

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