Comparison of immunogenicity and reactogenicity of inactivated SARS-CoV-2 vaccine (CoronaVac) in previously SARS-CoV-2 infected and uninfected health care workers

Soysal A., Gönüllü E., KARABAYIR N., Alan S., Atıcı S., Yıldız İ., ...More

Human Vaccines and Immunotherapeutics, vol.17, no.11, pp.3876-3880, 2021 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 17 Issue: 11
  • Publication Date: 2021
  • Doi Number: 10.1080/21645515.2021.1953344
  • Journal Name: Human Vaccines and Immunotherapeutics
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus, BIOSIS, EMBASE, MEDLINE
  • Page Numbers: pp.3876-3880
  • Keywords: SARS-coV-2 inactivated virus vaccine, CoronaVac, health care workers, vaccine antibody response, vaccine adverse effects, Turkey
  • Istanbul Medipol University Affiliated: Yes


The effects of inactivated SARS-CoV-2 vaccine (CoronaVac) on previously naturally infected individuals are unknown. This study compared immunogenicity and reactogenicity of CoronaVac in once naturally infected health-care workers (HCWs) and uninfected HCWs. All HCWs were immunized with two doses of CoronaVac (600 U/0.5 ml) intramuscularly at a 28-day interval. Adverse reactions were obtained by web-based questionnaires or telephone calls seven days after each vaccine dose. Detection of antibody levels against the receptor-binding domain (RBD) of SARS-CoV-2 spike protein was done four weeks after the second dose of the vaccine. We enrolled 103 previously naturally infected and 627 uninfected HCWs. The mean time for vaccination after the first nasopharyngeal SARS-CoV-2 positivity was 64 days (range: 15–136 days) in previously naturally infected HCWs. Among the previously naturally infected HCWs, 41 (40%) were asymptomatic, 52 (50%) had mild upper respiratory tract infections, 10 (105) had pneumonia, and only 6 (5%) were hospitalized. Any reported adverse reactions, either from the first dose or the second dose of vaccine administration, did not differ between previously infected and uninfected HCWs. Anti-RBD antibody titers were obtained in 50 (51%) of 103 previously infected HCWs and 142 (23%) of 627 uninfected HCWs. Anti-RBD antibody titers were significantly higher in HCWs with a previous natural infection (median 1220 AU/ml, range: 202–10328 AU/mL) than in uninfected HCWs (median: 913 AU/ml, range: 2.8–15547 AU/mL, p = .032). CoronaVac administration was safe and may elicit higher antibody responses in previously naturally infected individuals.