Neutralization of SARS-CoV-2 lineage B.1.1.7 pseudovirus by BNT162b2 vaccine-elicited human sera.

Science
A. MuikUgur Sahin

Abstract

Recently, a new severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) lineage called B.1.1.7 (variant of concern: VOC 202012/01), which is reported to spread more efficiently and faster than other strains, emerged in the United Kingdom. This variant has an unusually large number of mutations, with 10 amino acid changes in the spike (S) protein, raising concerns that its recognition by neutralizing antibodies may be affected. In this study, we tested SARS-CoV-2-S pseudoviruses bearing either the Wuhan reference strain or the B.1.1.7 lineage spike protein with sera of 40 participants who were vaccinated in a previously reported trial with the messenger RNA-based COVID-19 vaccine BNT162b2. The immune sera had slightly reduced but overall largely preserved neutralizing titers against the B.1.1.7 lineage pseudovirus. These data indicate that the B.1.1.7 lineage will not escape BNT162b2-mediated protection.

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