Story at a glance

  • A front line health care worker was given the first dose of Moderna’s COVID-19 vaccine three weeks before giving birth.
  • Doctors detected COVID-19 antibodies from the vaccine in the newborn’s cord blood after birth.
  • Researchers said further studies need to be done to determine how maternal coronavirus vaccinations may provide some protection for infants from the virus.

The first known case of a baby born with COVID-19 antibodies after the mother received a vaccine several weeks before giving birth has been reported in Palm Beach County, Fla. 

Two pediatricians based in Boca Raton, Fla., detailed the findings in a pre-print case report this month which has yet to be peer-reviewed. 


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The doctors say a front line health care worker who was 36 weeks pregnant received her first dose of the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine in January. 

She gave birth to a healthy baby girl three weeks later and researchers obtained a blood sample from the baby’s cord to look for antibodies to determine if they were passed from the mom to the baby, something that occurs with other vaccines given during pregnancy as well. Researches note the woman received the second dose after giving birth in accordance with the 28-day vaccination timeline. 

“We report the first known case of an infant with SARS-CoV-2 IgG antibodies detectable in cord blood after maternal vaccination,” the researchers concluded in their report. 

“This is one small case in what will be thousands and thousands of babies born to mothers who have been vaccinated [over] the next several months,” Chad Rudnick, a doctor involved in the research, told WPBF

Researchers said further studies need to be done to determine how maternal coronavirus vaccinations may provide some protection for infants from the virus.

“We urge other investigators to create pregnancy and breastfeeding registries as well as conduct efficacy and safety studies of the COVID-19 vaccines in pregnant and breastfeeding woman (sic) and their offspring,” the report said.


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Published on Mar 16, 2021