Longitudinal follow-up of the immunity to SARS-CoV-2 in health care workers in Argentina: Persistence of humoral response and neutralizing capacity after Sputnik V vaccination



SARS-CoV-2 vaccine protection has encountered waning of immune response and breakthrough infections. The hybrid immune response generated by the combination of vaccination and infection was shown to offer higher and broader protection. Here, we present a seroprevalence study of anti-SARS-CoV-2 spike/RBD IgG in 1,121 health care workers immunized with Sputnik V and a follow-up of humoral response at 2 and 24 weeks postvaccination (wpv), including neutralizing antibody response (NAT) against ancestral, Gamma, and Delta variants. The first seroprevalence study showed that among 122 individuals with one dose, 90.2% were seropositive versus 99.7% seropositivity among volunteers with the complete two-dose regimen. At 24 wpv, 98.7% of the volunteers remained seropositive, although antibody levels decreased. IgG levels and NAT were higher in individuals that had acquired COVID-19 previous to vaccination than in naive individuals at 2 and 24 wpv. Antibody levels dropped over time in both groups. In contrast, IgG levels and NAT increased after vaccine breakthrough infection. At 2 wpv, 35/40 naive individuals had detectable NAT against SARS-CoV-2 Gamma and 6/40 against Delta. In turn, 8/9 previously infected individuals developed a neutralizing response against SARS-CoV-2 Gamma and 4/9 against Delta variants. NAT against variants followed a trajectory similar to NAT against ancestral SARS-CoV-2, and breakthrough infection led to an increase in NAT and complete seroconversion against variants. In conclusion, Sputnik V-induced humoral response persisted at 6 months postvaccination, and hybrid immunity induced higher levels of anti-S/RBD antibodies and NAT in previously exposed individuals, boosted the response after vaccination, and conferred wider breadth of protection.

Palabras clave

Humoral immune response, Hybrid immunity, SARS-CoV-2, Sputnik V, Vaccination