We examined antibody and memory B cell responses longitudinally for ∼9-10 months after primary 2-dose SARS-CoV-2 mRNA vaccination and 3 months after a 3rd dose. Antibody decay stabilized between 6 and 9 months, and antibody quality continued to improve for at least 9 months after 2-dose vaccination. Spike- and RBD-specific memory B cells remained durable over time, and 40%-50% of RBD-specific memory B cells simultaneously bound the Alpha, Beta, Delta, and Omicron variants. Omicron-binding memory B cells were efficiently reactivated by a 3rd dose of wild-type vaccine and correlated with the corresponding increase in neutralizing antibody titers. In contrast, pre-3rd dose antibody titers inversely correlated with the fold-change of antibody boosting, suggesting that high levels of circulating antibodies may limit the added protection afforded by repeat short interval boosting. These data provide insight into the quantity and quality of mRNA-vaccine-induced immunity over time through 3 or more antigen exposures.
Keywords: COVID-19; Omicron; SARS-CoV-2; antibody; booster; immune memory; mRNA; memory B cell; vaccine; variants of concern.
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