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Epidemiology, Biostatistics and Prevention Institute

Zurich SARS-CoV-2 Vaccine Cohort (ZVAC): Development of immunity after SARS-CoV-2 vaccination

SARS-CoV-2 vaccines, along with other public health measures, have been highly efficacious in reducing infections and mortality worldwide. However, with the emergence of several variants of concern with increased transmissibility and immune-evasive properties, the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic continues to be a threat to public health. Further understanding of the development of vaccine-induced immunity, in the presence of booster and additional vaccinations and breakthrough infections, remains necessary.

The Zurich SARS-CoV-2 Vaccine Cohort study was conceived shortly after the roll-out of the first SARS-CoV-2 vaccines in the Canton of Zurich. It is an ongoing population-based longitudinal cohort study of 575 randomly selected individuals presenting for primary SARS-CoV-2 vaccination at the University of Zurich vaccination center, the reference center for the Canton of Zurich. Individuals are assessed in regular intervals up to 3 years after vaccination aiming to evaluate antibody and T cell immune responses, potential breakthrough infections, and health outcomes over time. The objectives of the study are the following:

Primary objectives:

  1. Characterize the presence, dynamics and persistence of antibodies produced in response to the different SARS-CoV-2 vaccines over time.
  2. Assess the presence and durability of SARS-CoV-2 specific T cell responses, as well as antigen specificity and phenotype in response to the different SARS-CoV-2 vaccines over time.

Secondary objectives:

  1. Assess the relationship between antibody and T cell immune responses against SARS-CoV-2 induced by different SARS-CoV-2 vaccines.
  2. Assess the occurrence of new SARS-CoV-2 infection (breakthrough infection) after vaccination and determine its association with SARS-CoV-2 binding and neutralizing antibodies and T cell responses
  3. Evaluate the occurrence and severity of adverse effects among individuals  who received a SARS-CoV-2 vaccine.
  4. Compare the humoral and cellular immune response between individuals with SARS-CoV-2 infection and those who received a SARS-COV-2 vaccine.
  5. Compare the humoral and cellular immune response to different SARS CoV-2 vaccines with immune responses to other common vaccines.

For further information, please contact the study team via e-mail: zhcorona-impfstudie AT

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