Humoral serological response to the BNT162b2 vaccine is abrogated in lymphoma patients within the first 12 months following treatment with anti-CD2O antibodies

Ronit Gurion, Uri Rozovski, Gilad Itchaki, Anat Gafter-Gvili, Chiya Leibovitch, Pia Raanani, Haim Ben-Zvi, Moran Szwarcwort, Mor Taylor-Abigadol, Eldad J. Dann, Nurit Horesh, Tsofia Inbar, Inna Tzoran, Noa Lavi, Riva Fineman, Shimrit Ringelstein-Harlev, Netanel A. Horowitz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Patients with lymphoma, especially those treated with anti-CD20 monoclonal antibodies, suffer high COVID-19-associated morbidity and mortality. The goal of this study was to assess the ability of lymphoma patients to generate a sufficient humoral response after two injections of BNT162b2 Pfizer vaccine and to identify factors influencing the response. Antibody titers were measured with the SARS-CoV-2 IgG II Quant (Abbott©) assay in blood samples drawn from lymphoma patients 4±2 weeks after the second dose of vaccine. The cutoff for a positive response was set at 50 AU/mL. Positive serological responses were observed in 51% of the 162 patients enrolled in this cross-sectional study. In a multivariate analysis, an interval of <12 months between the last anti-CD20 monoclonal antibody dose and the second vaccine dose (odds ratio=31.3 [95% confidence interval: 8.4-116.9], P<0.001) and presence of active lymphoma (odds ratio=4.2 (95% confidence interval: 2.1-8.2), P=0.006) were identified as negative response predictors. The rate of seropositivity increased from 3% in patients vaccinated within 45 days after the last monoclonal antibody administration to 80% in patients vaccinated >1 year after this therapy. The latter percentage was equal to that of patients never exposed to monoclonal antibodies. In conclusion, lymphoma patients, especially those recently treated with antiCD20 monoclonal antibodies, fail to develop sufficient humoral response to BNT162b2 vaccine. While a serological response is not the only predictor of immunity, its low level could make this population more vulnerable to COVID-19, which implies the need for a different vaccination schedule for such patients.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)715-4720
Number of pages4006
JournalHaematologica
Volume107
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 2022

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