Cutting Edge: T Cell Responses to B.1.1.529 (Omicron) SARS-CoV-2 Variant Induced by COVID-19 Infection and/or mRNA Vaccination Are Largely Preserved

Mladen Jergović, Christopher P. Coplen, Jennifer L. Uhrlaub, Shawn C. Beitel, Jefferey L. Burgess, Karen Lutrick, Katherine D. Ellingson, Makiko Watanabe, Janko Nikolich-Žugich

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Several studies have demonstrated that the SARS-CoV-2 variant-of-concern B.1.1.529 (Omicron) exhibits a high degree of escape from Ab neutralization. Therefore, it is critical to determine how well the second line of adaptive immunity, T cell memory, performs against Omicron. To this purpose, we analyzed a human cohort (n = 327 subjects) of two- or three-dose mRNA vaccine recipients and COVID-19 postinfection subjects. We report that T cell responses against Omicron were largely preserved. IFN-γ-producing T cell responses remained equivalent to the response against the ancestral strain (WA1/2020), with some (∼20%) loss in IL-2 single or IL-2+IFN-γ+ polyfunctional responses. Three-dose vaccinated participants had similar responses to Omicron relative to post-COVID-19 participants and exhibited responses significantly higher than those receiving two mRNA vaccine doses. These results provide further evidence that a three-dose vaccine regimen benefits the induction of optimal functional T cell immune memory.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2461-2465
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of immunology (Baltimore, Md. : 1950)
Volume208
Issue number11
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 1 2022

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology

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