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23-06-2021 | COVID-19 | News

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‘Significant humoral response’ following two COVID-19 vaccine doses in RMD patients

Author: Claire Barnard


medwireNews: Most patients with rheumatic and musculoskeletal diseases (RMDs) mount a humoral immune response following receipt of the second dose of the Pfizer–BioNTech (BNT162b2) vaccine against SARS-CoV-2, say researchers.

Yolanda Braun-Moscovici (Rambam Health Care Campus, Haifa, Israel) and colleagues report that among 264 patients with stable disease who did not have any changes to their immunomodulatory treatment around the time of vaccination, 86% developed a “significant humoral response” against SARS-CoV-2 at 4–6 weeks after their second vaccine dose, with average neutralizing immunoglobulin (Ig)G levels of 6764 AU/mL.

The 37 patients who did not mount an IgG response included 24 of the 47 rituximab-treated patients, three of the eight abatacept-treated patients, and two of the 11 taking mycophenolate mofetil monotherapy. Multivariate analysis demonstrated that longer disease duration and treatment with anti-CD20 therapy, mycophenolate mofetil, or abatacept were significantly associated with having an impaired immune response to vaccination.

Braun-Moscovici and team note that “[o]nly minor side effects were reported” in their study, and there was “no apparent impact” of vaccination on disease activity.

“Our results can provide reassurance to patients with [RMDs] treated with immunomodulatory agents and their physicians, regarding the immunogenicity and short-term safety of mRNA vaccine against SARS-CoV-2 virus,” they write in the Annals of the Rheumatic Diseases.

medwireNews is an independent medical news service provided by Springer Healthcare Ltd. © 2021 Springer Healthcare Ltd, part of the Springer Nature Group

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Ann Rheum Dis 2021; doi:10.1136/annrheumdis-2021-220503