The result raises questions about the relationship between the level of protection and the antibody. They have the same approach to safety production and have a similar set of ingredients. Clinical trial data shows that they have very similar efficiencies - both are in the 95% range.
So an article was published yesterday showing that these two antibodies are surprising, as the antibody levels caused by Moderna are more than double those received by Pfizer/BioNTech. Shooting Although it doesn't matter if you don't draw too many conclusions from a study, the study was so large that the results are likely to be reliable. If so, the results serve as a warning that we do not want to exceed our expectations based on relatively crude antibody measurements.
It was very easy for a Belgian medical center to vaccinate its staff and ask for volunteers who would like to give a blood sample. Samples were taken before vaccination and six to 10 weeks afterward, and the level of SARS-CoV-2-specific antibody levels was tested at both sites. About 700 participants received the Moderna vaccine, while about 950 received the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine.
With the available data, the researchers simply compared anti-spike antibody levels in different groups. What was found was that people who had been infected before vaccination had a much higher response than the other participants, with more than five times the amount of antibodies after vaccination.
But the most noticeable surprise was that Moderna's vaccine had a stronger reaction than the Pfizer/BioNTech version. In terms of antibody units per milliliter of blood sample, the difference was between 8336 and 14444, with a confidence interval that was not close to overlap. In other words, there is a statistically significant difference in a large enough sample that it is unlikely to be random. One is that while the medical center was likely able to properly stock and prescribe vaccines, it was at the end of a complex production and distribution network, and something likely happened before one of the vaccines arrived. clinic. Simple repetition can quickly solve this problem. Spike proteins are just a subset of so-called neutralizing antibodies, which clump together and disrupt the protein's ability to interact with cells and enter the virus genome. Neutralization of antibodies is difficult to measure, so most studies do what they do.
But it is technically possible that despite the difference in total antibodies, both vaccines produce similar levels of neutralizing antibodies - something else the study could correlate with levels of protection. Vaccines are generally consistent, as protection appears to be associated with neutralizing antibody levels. Excessive focus on antibody levels in our decisions. Currently, the argument for the need for reinforcers is based in part on the fact that antibody levels decline over time, even if these normal outcomes are changes from the response to an active infection and the functional immune memory of that infection. The enhanced efficacy depends in part on the fact that it restores high levels of antibodies - even if that is exactly what should happen when immune memory cells are activated by re-exposure to the spike protein.
As new as these findings are, these results should be treated with caution, as we do not fully understand how these changes at the antibody level relate to protection.
JAMA, 2021. DOI: 10.1001/jama. 2021.15125 (about DOIs).
RNA vaccines seem to produce very different levels of antibodies
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