Diminishing immune responses against variants of concern in dialysis patients four months after SARS-CoV-2 mRNA vaccination

Diminishing immune responses against variants of concern in dialysis patients four months after SARS-CoV-2 mRNA vaccination
Dulovic A, Strengert M, Morillas Ramos G, Becker M, Griesbaum J, Junker D, Lürken K, Beigel A, Wrenger E, Lonnemann G, Cossmann A, Stankov M, Dopfer-Jablonka A, Kaiser P, Traenkle B, Rothbauer U, Krause G, Schneiderhan-Marra N, Behrens G M.N.
medRxiv, https://doi.org/10.1101/2021.08.16.21262115

Patients undergoing chronic hemodialysis were among the first to receive SARS-CoV-2 vaccinations due to their increased risk for severe COVID-19 disease and high case fatality rates. To date, there have been minimal longitudinal studies in hemodialysis patients to ascertain whether protection offered by vaccination is long-lasting. To assess how surrogates for protection changed over time, we examined both the humoral and cellular response in a previously reported cohort of at-risk hemodialysis patients and healthy donors, four months after their second dose of Pfizer BNT162b2. Compared to three weeks post-second vaccination, both cellular and humoral responses against the original SARS-CoV-2 isolate as well as variants of concern were significantly reduced, with some dialyzed individuals having no B- or T-cell response. Our data strongly support the need for a third booster in hemodialysis patients and potentially other at-risk individuals.