Correlation of Binding and Neutralizing Antibodies against SARS-CoV-2 Omicron Variant in Infection-Naïve and Convalescent BNT162b2 Recipients

Jia Fu, Xiaoying Shen, Mark Anderson, Michael Stec, Tia Petratos, Gavin Cloherty, David C. Montefiori, Alan Landay, James N. Moy

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations

Abstract

In vaccine clinical trials, both binding antibody (bAb) levels and neutralization antibody (nAb) titers have been shown to be correlates of SARS-CoV-2 vaccine efficacy. We report a strong correlation bAb and nAb responses against the SARS-CoV-2 Omicron (BA.1) variant in infection-naïve and previously infected (convalescent) individuals after one and two doses of BNT162b2 vaccination. The vaccine-induced bAb levels against Omicron were significantly lower compared to previous variants of concern in both infection-naive and convalescent individuals, with the convalescent individuals showing significantly higher bAb compared to the naïve individuals at all timepoints. The finding that bAb highly correlated with nAb provides evidence for utilizing binding antibody assays as a surrogate for neutralizing antibody assays. Our data also revealed that after full vaccination, a higher percentage of individuals had undetectable Omicron nAb (58.6% in naive individuals, 7.4% in convalescent individuals) compared to the percentage of individuals who had negative Omicron bAb (0% in naive individuals, 0% in convalescent individuals). The discordance between bAb and nAb activities and the high degree of immune escape by Omicron may explain the high frequency of Omicron infections after vaccination.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number1904
JournalVaccines
Volume10
Issue number11
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 2022
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Beta
  • binding antibodies
  • BNT162b2
  • Delta
  • neutralizing antibodies
  • Omicron
  • SARS-CoV-2
  • variants of concern

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology
  • Pharmacology
  • Drug Discovery
  • Infectious Diseases
  • Pharmacology (medical)

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