Persistence of antibody and T cell responses to the Sinopharm/BBIBP-CorV vaccine in Sri Lankan individuals.
Jeewandara C., Aberathna IS., Pushpakumara PD., Kamaladasa A., Guruge D., Wijesinghe A., Gunasekera B., Tanussiya S., Kuruppu H., Ranasinghe T., Dayarathne S., Dissanayake O., Gamalath N., Ekanayake D., Jayamali J., Jayathilaka D., Dissanayake M., Jayadas TT., Mudunkotuwa A., Somathilake G., Harvie M., Nimasha T., Danasekara S., Wijayamuni R., Schimanski L., Rijal P., Tan TK., Dong T., Townsend A., Ogg GS., Malavige GN.
BACKGROUND: To determine the kinetics and persistence of immune responses following the Sinopharm/BBIBP-CorV, we investigated immune responses in a cohort of Sri Lankan individuals. METHODS: SARS-CoV-2 specific total antibodies were measured in 20-to-39 year (n=61), 40-to-59-year and those >60 years of age (n=22) by ELISA, 12 weeks after the second dose of the vaccine. ACE2 receptor blocking antibodies (ACE2R-Ab), antibodies to the receptor binding domain (RBD) of the ancestral virus (WT) and variants of concern, were measured in a sub cohort. T cell responses and memory B cell responses were assessed by ELISpot assays. RESULTS: 193/203 (95.07%) of individuals had detectable SARS-CoV-2 specific total antibodies, while 67/110 (60.9%) had ACE2R-Ab. 14.3% to 16.7% individuals in the 20 to 39 age groups had detectable antibodies to the RBD of the WT and VOC, while the positivity rates of those >60 years of age was <10%. 14/49 (28.6%) had IFN γ ELISpot responses to overlapping peptides of the spike protein, while memory B cell responses were detected in 9/20 to the S1 recombinant protein. The total antibody levels and ACE2R-Ab declined after 2 to 12 weeks from the second dose, while ex vivo T cell responses remained unchanged. The decline in ACE2R-Ab levels was significant among the 40 to 59 (p=0.0007) and ≥60 (p=0.005) age groups. CONCLUSIONS: Antibody responses declined in all age groups, especially in those >60 years, while T cell responses persisted. The effect of waning of immunity on hospitalization and severe disease should be assessed by long term efficacy studies.