Early immunological responses to the mRNA SARS-CoV-2 vaccine in patients with neuromuscular disorders

Hideyuki Iwayama, Naoko Ishihara, Kohei Kawahara, Yuta Madokoro, Yasuko Togawa, Kanji Muramatsu, Ayuka Murakami, Satoshi Kuru, Toshiyuki Kumagai, Wataru Ohashi, Kengo Nanya, Shinji Hasegawa, Masahisa Katsuno, Akihisa Okumura

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4 Citations (Scopus)


Backgrounds: Intramuscular injection of the SARS-CoV-2 vaccine has raised concerns about its use in patients with neuromuscular disorders (NMDs). We evaluated the response of patients with NMDs to the BNT162b2 vaccine. Methods: Healthy subjects, patients with spinal muscular atrophy (SMA), and patients with Duchenne muscular dystrophy (DMD) were included. All participants received two BNT162b2 doses. SARS-CoV-2 antibody titers at baseline and 2 weeks after each vaccination were compared between groups. Residual muscle volume was evaluated in NMDs group. A questionnaire documented adverse reactions. Results: Eleven patients with NMDs (9 with SMA, 2 with DMD; 7 males; aged 32.7 ± 19.3 years) and 346 healthy subjects (60 males, aged 40.0 ± 12.4 years) were included. Antibody titers (U/mL) were similar between groups (baseline: <0.40 vs. <0.40, first vaccination, 145 ± 258 vs. 103 ± 1192, and second vaccination, 1528 ± 1265 vs. 1429 ± 944; p = 1.000, 0.909, and 0.736, respectively). A negative correlation was found between antibody titers and residual muscle volume but was not significant (Mercuri scale, r = −0.429, p = 0.249; fat infiltration rate, r = −0.194, p = 0.618). The adverse reactions were comparable between groups. Conclusion: The BNT162b2 vaccine is safe and effective in patients with NMDs.

Original languageEnglish
Article number996134
JournalFrontiers in Immunology
Publication statusPublished - 29-09-2022

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology


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