October 2, 2022
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Could Obesity Blunt the Response to the COVID Vaccine? – Consumer Health News


FRIDAY, May 6, 2022 (HealthDay News) – Obesity can complicate the course of COVID-19. Now, a new study says it could also reduce the effectiveness of the covid vaccine.

The researchers also found that the two vaccines used in their study caused significantly different levels of immune responses in obese people. They also found that previous infections had an effect.

“These results provide new information about the antibody response to SARS-CoV-2 vaccines in people with severe obesity and reinforce the importance of prioritizing and increasing vaccination in this vulnerable group,” study co-author Vulcan Demirhan Yumuk said in a press release. From the European Congress on Obesity. Yumuk is a professor at Istanbul University in Turkey.

The study included 124 severely obese adults in Turkey (average age 42 to 63) and 166 normal weight adults (average age 39 to 47). The obese group had a body mass index (BMI) – a measure based on height and weight – over 40.

Participants received two doses of the Pfizer / BioNTech vaccine or the Coronavac vaccine, developed by the Chinese company Synovac.

Four weeks after their second dose, blood samples were collected from participants to measure their antibody levels against coronavirus. Also, their infection history was examined, and 70 people were previously found to be infected with COVID-19.

Among the participants who had no previous infection and who received the Pfizer / BioNTech vaccine, those who were severely obese had three times lower antibody levels than normal weight, the study found.

Antibody levels were 26 times lower in normal-weight people than in those who had no previous infection and who had received the coronavic vaccine, or who were severely obese.

According to the study, those who were previously infected and received Pfizer / BioNTech or CoronaVac had significantly higher levels of antibodies in both obese and normal weight. The results will be presented at this week’s European Congress on Obesity in Maastricht, the Netherlands.

According to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, these results affect the United States, where more than four out of 10 people are obese. More than 9% are severely obese.

“Our study confirms that immune memory induced by previous infections alters the way humans respond to vaccinations and suggests that two doses of Pfizer / BioNTech vaccine may produce significantly more antibodies from CoronaVac in people with severe obesity regardless of their history of infection,” Yum said.

However, Yumuk added, “More research is needed to determine if these higher antibody levels provide greater protection against COVID-19.”

The data and conclusions presented at the meetings should be considered as preliminary until they are published in a peer-reviewed medical journal.

More info

To learn more about the COVID-19 vaccine, visit the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Source: European Congress on Obesity, Press Release, May 5, 2022

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