Vaccinations are effective in preventing infections; however, it is unknown if patients with chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) who are treatment naïve (TN) or receiving Bruton tyrosine kinase inhibitors (BTKis) respond to novel adjuvanted vaccines. Understanding the effect of BTKis on humoral immunity is timely because BTKis are widely used and vaccination against COVID-19 is urgently needed. In two open-label, single-arm clinical trials, we measured the effect of BTKis on de novo immune response against recombinant hepatitis B vaccine (HepB-CpG) and recall response against recombinant zoster vaccine (RZV) in CLL patients who were TN or on BTKi. The primary endpoint was serologic response to HepB-CpG (anti-HBs ≥10 mIU/mL) and RZV (≥4-fold increase in anti-glycoprotein E). The response rate to HepB-CpG was lower in patients on BTKi (3.8% [95% CI, 0.7%-18.9%]) than TN patients (28.1% [95% CI, 15.6%-45.4%], P=.017). In contrast, the response rate to RZV did not differ significantly between the BTKi (41.5% [95% CI, 27.8%-56.6%]) and TN cohorts (59.1% [95% CI, 38.7%-76.7%], P=.2). BTKis were associated with a decreased de novo immune response following HepB-CpG, whereas recall immune response following RZV was not significantly affected by BTKi therapy. Trials were registered at as NCT03685708 (Hep-CpG) and NCT03702231 (RZV).
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