Background & Aims: The long-term immunogenicity of anti-SARS-CoV-2 vaccines in liver transplant (LT) recipients is unknown. We aimed to assess the long-term antibody response of the Pfizer-BioNTech® BNT162b2 vaccine in LT recipients compared to controls. Methods: LT recipients underwent anti-SARS-CoV-2 anti-receptor-binding domain protein IgG (anti-RBD) and anti-nucleocapsid protein IgG antibody (anti-N) measurements at the first and 1, 4 and 6 months after the second vaccination dose. Results: One hundred forty-three LT recipients and 58 controls were enrolled. At baseline, 131/143 (91.6%) LT recipients tested anti-N negative (COVID-19 naïve), and 12/143 (8.4%) tested positive (COVID-19 recovered) compared to negative controls. Among COVID-19 naïve, 22.1% were anti-RBD positives 1 month after the first vaccine dose, while 66.4%, 77%, and 78.8% were 1, 4 and 6 months following the second vaccine dose. In contrast, 100% of controls were positive at 4 months (p <0.001). The median anti-RBD titer 4 months after the second vaccine dose was significantly lower (32 U/ml) in COVID-19 naïve than in controls (852 U/ml, p <0.0001). A higher daily dose of mycophenolate mofetil (MMF) (p <0.001), higher frequency of ascites (p = 0.012), and lower serum leukocyte count (p = 0.016) were independent predictors of anti-RBD negativity at 6 months. All COVID-19 recovered patients tested positive for anti-RBD at each time point. The median antibody titer was similar in those taking MMF (9,400 U/ml, 11,925 UI/ml, 13,305 UI/ml, and 10,095 UI/ml) or not taking MMF (13,950 UI/ml, 9,575 UI/ml, 3,500 UI/ml, 2,835 UI/ml, p = NS) 3 weeks after the first and 1, 4 and 6 months after the second vaccine dose, respectively. Conclusions: In COVID-19-naïve LT recipients, the immunogenicity of anti-SARS-CoV-2 vaccination was significantly lower than that in controls. MMF was the main determinant of vaccination failure in SARS-CoV-2-naïve patients. Lay summary: The immunogenicity of anti-SARS-CoV-2 vaccination in liver transplant recipients is currently unknown. Herein, we show that liver transplant recipients who have not previously had COVID-19 are less likely to mount effective antibody responses to vaccination than a control population. The main determinant of vaccination failure was the use of the immunosuppressive drug mycophenolate mofetil.

Past COVID-19 and immunosuppressive regimens affect the long-term response to anti-SARS-CoV-2 vaccination in liver transplant recipients

Toniutto P.;Cussigh A.;Curcio F.;Grillone L.
2022

Abstract

Background & Aims: The long-term immunogenicity of anti-SARS-CoV-2 vaccines in liver transplant (LT) recipients is unknown. We aimed to assess the long-term antibody response of the Pfizer-BioNTech® BNT162b2 vaccine in LT recipients compared to controls. Methods: LT recipients underwent anti-SARS-CoV-2 anti-receptor-binding domain protein IgG (anti-RBD) and anti-nucleocapsid protein IgG antibody (anti-N) measurements at the first and 1, 4 and 6 months after the second vaccination dose. Results: One hundred forty-three LT recipients and 58 controls were enrolled. At baseline, 131/143 (91.6%) LT recipients tested anti-N negative (COVID-19 naïve), and 12/143 (8.4%) tested positive (COVID-19 recovered) compared to negative controls. Among COVID-19 naïve, 22.1% were anti-RBD positives 1 month after the first vaccine dose, while 66.4%, 77%, and 78.8% were 1, 4 and 6 months following the second vaccine dose. In contrast, 100% of controls were positive at 4 months (p <0.001). The median anti-RBD titer 4 months after the second vaccine dose was significantly lower (32 U/ml) in COVID-19 naïve than in controls (852 U/ml, p <0.0001). A higher daily dose of mycophenolate mofetil (MMF) (p <0.001), higher frequency of ascites (p = 0.012), and lower serum leukocyte count (p = 0.016) were independent predictors of anti-RBD negativity at 6 months. All COVID-19 recovered patients tested positive for anti-RBD at each time point. The median antibody titer was similar in those taking MMF (9,400 U/ml, 11,925 UI/ml, 13,305 UI/ml, and 10,095 UI/ml) or not taking MMF (13,950 UI/ml, 9,575 UI/ml, 3,500 UI/ml, 2,835 UI/ml, p = NS) 3 weeks after the first and 1, 4 and 6 months after the second vaccine dose, respectively. Conclusions: In COVID-19-naïve LT recipients, the immunogenicity of anti-SARS-CoV-2 vaccination was significantly lower than that in controls. MMF was the main determinant of vaccination failure in SARS-CoV-2-naïve patients. Lay summary: The immunogenicity of anti-SARS-CoV-2 vaccination in liver transplant recipients is currently unknown. Herein, we show that liver transplant recipients who have not previously had COVID-19 are less likely to mount effective antibody responses to vaccination than a control population. The main determinant of vaccination failure was the use of the immunosuppressive drug mycophenolate mofetil.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11390/1223914
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