Journal Articles

Publication Date



PLoS One


INTRODUCTION: Studies indicate that individuals with chronic conditions and specific baseline characteristics may not mount a robust humoral antibody response to SARS-CoV-2 vaccines. In this paper, we used data from the Texas Coronavirus Antibody REsponse Survey (Texas CARES), a longitudinal state-wide seroprevalence program that has enrolled more than 90,000 participants, to evaluate the role of chronic diseases as the potential risk factors of non-response to SARS-CoV-2 vaccines in a large epidemiologic cohort.

METHODS: A participant needed to complete an online survey and a blood draw to test for SARS-CoV-2 circulating plasma antibodies at four-time points spaced at least three months apart. Chronic disease predictors of vaccine non-response are evaluated using logistic regression with non-response as the outcome and each chronic disease + age as the predictors.

RESULTS: As of April 24, 2023, 18,240 participants met the inclusion criteria; 0.58% (N = 105) of these are non-responders. Adjusting for age, our results show that participants with self-reported immunocompromised status, kidney disease, cancer, and "other" non-specified comorbidity were 15.43, 5.11, 2.59, and 3.13 times more likely to fail to mount a complete response to a vaccine, respectively. Furthermore, having two or more chronic diseases doubled the prevalence of non-response.

CONCLUSION: Consistent with smaller targeted studies, a large epidemiologic cohort bears the same conclusion and demonstrates immunocompromised, cancer, kidney disease, and the number of diseases are associated with vaccine non-response. This study suggests that those individuals, with chronic diseases with the potential to affect their immune system response, may need increased doses or repeated doses of COVID-19 vaccines to develop a protective antibody level.


Humans, Male, Female, COVID-19 Vaccines, Middle Aged, COVID-19, Adult, SARS-CoV-2, Antibodies, Viral, Aged, Texas, Chronic Disease, Seroepidemiologic Studies, Young Adult, Risk Factors



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