SARS-CoV-2 induced Coronavirus Disease 19 (COVD-19), a highly transmissible and potentially lethal illness, became a global pandemic in early 2020. Several vaccinations against this virus have been developed, including 2 novel mRNA vaccines. Patients with multiple sclerosis (pwMS) were frequently treated with DMTs, which have anti-inflammatory characteristics and control adaptive immunity, to minimize recurrence rates and limit disability buildup. The effect of DMTs on the efficacy of SARS-CoV-2 vaccination and the eventual requirement for booster doses was a significant clinical issue. Following SARS-CoV-2 vaccination, researchers assessed the titers of anti-SARS-CoV-2 neutralizing antibodies (nAbs) in pwMS. For a study, the researchers sought to determine the humoral immune response in people with MS after receiving SARS-CoV-2 vaccination and to see how disease-modifying therapies (DMT) affected the vaccination response. At the Ohio State University (OSU) MS Center, researchers conducted prospective longitudinal research in people with MS. Before and after the delivery of the SARS-CoV-2 vaccine, longitudinal serum samples were acquired using pwMS. In these samples, a unique pseudotyped-lentivirus-based virus neutralization test was used to look for nAbs against SARS-CoV-2 spike protein. Healthy controls were OSU health care workers (HCWs). In addition, 52 of the 83 agreed patients had their post-vaccination serum samples examined. Although pwMS did not have significantly different nAb titers than HCWs, 21% (n=11) of patients did not have detectable nAb titers post-vaccination (NT50 40), including 9 patients on B-cell depleting treatments, 1 patient on sphingosine 1-phosphate modulator, and 1 patient on no DMT. PwMS on B-cell depleting treatments had 7-fold lower nAb titers than patients not on DMT, but those on fumarates or beta-interferon had no significant difference from patients not on DMT. Certain DMTs, most notably B-cell depleting medications, may reduce the humoral immune response to the SARS-CoV-2 vaccine. More research was being done to see how booster vaccines affect nAb levels.


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