Humoral immune response after different SARS-CoV-2 vaccination regimens
After the first vaccination, the prevalence of IgG directed against the (trimeric) SARS-CoV-2 S-protein and its receptor binding domain (RBD) varied from 55-95% (AZD1222) to 100% (BNT162b2), depending on the vaccine regimen and the SARS-CoV-2 antigen used. The booster vaccination resulted in 100% seroconversion and the occurrence of highly avid IgG, which is directed against the S-protein subunit 1 and the RBD, as well as VNA against VOC B.1.1.7, while anti-NP IgGs were not detected. The results of the three anti-SARS-CoV-2 IgG tests showed an excellent correlation to the VNA titres against this VOC. The agreement of cVNT and sVNT results was good. However, the sVNT seems to overestimate non- and weak B.1.1.7-neutralising titres. The anti-SARS-CoV-2 IgG concentrations and the B.1.1.7-neutralising titres were significantly higher after heterologous vaccination compared to the homologous AZD1222 scheme. If VOC B.1.617.2 was used as antigen, significantly lower VNA titres were measured in the cVNT, and three (33.3%) vector vaccine recipients had a VNA titre < 1:10.
Heterologous SARS-CoV-2 vaccination leads to a strong antibody response with anti-SARS-CoV-2 IgG concentrations and VNA titres at a level comparable to that of a homologous BNT162b2 vaccination scheme. Irrespective of the chosen immunisation regime, highly avid IgG antibodies can be detected just 2 weeks after the second vaccine dose indicating the development of a robust humoral immunity. The reduction in the VNA titre against VOC B.1.617.2 observed in the subgroup of 26 individuals is remarkable and confirms the immune escape of the delta variant.