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The gut microbiota and metabolome are associated with diminished COVID-19 vaccine-induced antibody responses in immunosuppressed inflammatory bowel disease patients

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Title: The gut microbiota and metabolome are associated with diminished COVID-19 vaccine-induced antibody responses in immunosuppressed inflammatory bowel disease patients
Authors: Alexander, JL
Mullish, BH
Danckert, NP
Liu, Z
Olbei, ML
Saifuddin, A
Tokizadeh, M
Ibraheim, H
Miguens Blanco, J
Roberts, LA
Bewshea, CM
Nice, R
Lin, S
Prabhudev, H
Sands, C
Horneffer van der Sluis, V
Lewis, M
Sebastian, S
Lees, CW
Teare, JP
Hart, A
Goodhand, J
Kennedy, NA
Korcsmaros, T
Marchesi, JR
Ahmad, T
Powell, N
Item Type: Journal Article
Abstract: Background: Patients with inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) treated with anti-TNF therapy exhibit attenuated humoral immune responses to vaccination against SARS-CoV-2. The gut microbiota and its functional metabolic output, which are perturbed in IBD, play an important role in shaping host immune responses. We explored whether the gut microbiota and metabolome could explain variation in anti-SARS-CoV-2 vaccination responses in immunosuppressed IBD patients. Methods: Faecal and serum samples were prospectively collected from infliximab-treated patients with IBD in the CLARITY-IBD study undergoing vaccination against SARS-CoV-2. Antibody responses were measured following two doses of either ChAdOx1 nCoV-19 or BNT162b2 vaccine. Patients were classified as having responses above or below the geometric mean of the wider CLARITY-IBD cohort. 16S rRNA gene amplicon sequencing, nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy and bile acid profiling with ultra-high-performance liquid chromatography mass spectrometry (UHPLC-MS) were performed on faecal samples. Univariate, multivariable and correlation analyses were performed to determine gut microbial and metabolomic predictors of response to vaccination. Findings: Forty-three infliximab-treated patients with IBD were recruited (30 Crohn's disease, 12 ulcerative colitis, 1 IBD-unclassified; 26 with concomitant thiopurine therapy). Eight patients had evidence of prior SARS-CoV-2 infection. Seventeen patients (39.5%) had a serological response below the geometric mean. Gut microbiota diversity was lower in below average responders (p = 0.037). Bilophila abundance was associated with better serological response, while Streptococcus was associated with poorer response. The faecal metabolome was distinct between above and below average responders (OPLS-DA R2X 0.25, R2Y 0.26, Q2 0.15; CV-ANOVA p = 0.038). Trimethylamine, isobutyrate and omega-muricholic acid were associated with better response, while succinate, phenylalanine, taurolithocholate and taurodeoxycholate were associated with poorer response. Interpretation: Our data suggest that there is an association between the gut microbiota and variable serological response to vaccination against SARS-CoV-2 in immunocompromised patients. Microbial metabolites including trimethylamine may be important in mitigating anti-TNF-induced attenuation of the immune response. Funding: JLA is the recipient of an NIHR Academic Clinical Lectureship (CL-2019-21-502), funded by Imperial College London and The Joyce and Norman Freed Charitable Trust. BHM is the recipient of an NIHR Academic Clinical Lectureship (CL-2019-21-002). The Division of Digestive Diseases at Imperial College London receives financial and infrastructure support from the NIHR Imperial Biomedical Research Centre (BRC) based at Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust and Imperial College London. Metabolomics studies were performed at the MRC-NIHR National Phenome Centre at Imperial College London; this work was supported by the Medical Research Council (MRC), the National Institute of Health Research (NIHR) (grant number MC_PC_12025) and infrastructure support was provided by the NIHR Imperial Biomedical Research Centre (BRC). The NIHR Exeter Clinical Research Facility is a partnership between the University of Exeter Medical School College of Medicine and Health, and Royal Devon and Exeter NHS Foundation Trust. This project is supported by the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) Exeter Clinical Research Facility. The views expressed are those of the authors and not necessarily those of the NIHR or the UK Department of Health and Social Care.
Issue Date: 1-Feb-2023
Date of Acceptance: 16-Dec-2022
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10044/1/101403
DOI: 10.1016/j.ebiom.2022.104430
ISSN: 2352-3964
Publisher: Elsevier
Journal / Book Title: EBioMedicine
Volume: 88
Copyright Statement: © 2022 The Author(s). Published by Elsevier B.V. This is an open access article under the CC BY license (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/).
Publication Status: Published
Article Number: ARTN 104430
Online Publication Date: 2023-01-10
Appears in Collections:Department of Metabolism, Digestion and Reproduction
Department of Surgery and Cancer
Imperial College London COVID-19

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