A third SARS-CoV-2 spike vaccination improves neutralization of variants-of-concern

Mitch Brinkkemper, Philip J. M. Brouwer, Pauline Maisonnasse, Marloes Grobben, Tom G. Caniels, Meliawati Poniman, Judith A. Burger, Ilja Bontjer, Melissa Oomen, Joey H. Bouhuijs, Cynthia A. van der Linden, Julien Villaudy, Yme U. van der Velden, Kwinten Sliepen, Marit J. van Gils, Roger le Grand, Rogier W. Sanders

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Abstract

The emergence of SARS-CoV-2 variants that are more resistant to antibody-mediated neutralization pose a new hurdle in combating the COVID-19 pandemic. Although vaccines based on the original Wuhan sequence have been shown to be effective at preventing COVID-19, their efficacy is likely to be decreased against more neutralization-resistant variants-of-concern (VOC), in particular, the Beta variant originating in South Africa. We assessed, in mice, rabbits, and non-human primates, whether a third vaccination with experimental Wuhan-based Spike vaccines could alleviate this problem. Our data show that a third immunization improves neutralizing antibody titers against the variants-of-concern, Alpha (B.1.1.7), Beta (B.1.351), Gamma (P.1), and Delta (B.1.617.2). After three vaccinations, the level of neutralization against Beta was similar to the level of neutralization against the original strain after two vaccinations, suggesting that simply providing a third immunization could nullify the reduced activity of current vaccines against VOC.
Original languageEnglish
Article number146
Journalnpj Vaccines
Volume6
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Dec 2021

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