Maintenance of neutralizing antibodies over ten months in convalescent SARS-CoV-2 afflicted patients

Sissy Therese Sonnleitner*, Martina Prelog, Bianca Jansen, Chantal Rodgarkia-Dara, Sarah Gietl, Carmen Maria Schönegger, Stephan Koblmüller, Christian Sturmbauer, Wilfried Posch, Giovanni Almanzar, Hanna Jury, Tom Loney, Alexander Tichy, Norbert Nowotny, Gernot Walder

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Citations (Scopus)


Knowledge of the level and duration of protective immunity against SARS-CoV-2 after primary infection is of crucial importance for preventive approaches. Currently, there is a lack of evidence on the persistence of specific antibodies. We investigated the generation and maintenance of neutralizing antibodies of convalescent SARS-CoV-2-afflicted patients over a ten-month period post-primary infection using an immunofluorescence assay, a commercial chemiluminescent immunoassay and an in-house enzyme-linked neutralization assay. We present the successful application of an improved version of the plaque-reduction neutralization assay which can be analysed optometrically to simplify data interpretation. Based on the results of the enzyme-linked neutralization assay, neutralizing antibodies were maintained in 77.4% of convalescent individuals without relevant decay over ten months. Furthermore, a positive correlation between severity of infection and antibody titre was observed. In conclusion, SARS-CoV-2-afflicted individuals have been proven to be able to develop and maintain neutralizing antibodies over a period of ten months after primary infection. Findings suggest long-lasting presumably protective humoral immune responses after wild-type infection.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1596-1605
Number of pages10
JournalTransboundary and Emerging Diseases
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - May 2022


  • IgG antibodies
  • SARS-CoV-2
  • immunity
  • neutralization test
  • persistence

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Microbiology(all)
  • veterinary(all)


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