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Topics in Antiviral Medicine ; 29(1):210-211, 2021.
Article in English | EMBASE | ID: covidwho-1250023


Background: The relationship between nasopharyngeal (NP) SARS-CoV-2 RNA, demographics and symptom characteristics in non-hospitalized persons with COVID-19 is not well described. Methods: ACTIV-2 is a phase 2/3 adaptive platform trial testing antivirals for SARS-CoV-2 in symptomatic non-hospitalized adults. We analyzed associations between NP quantitative SARS-CoV-2 RNA (Abbott m2000sp/rt) and COVID-19 symptomatology in 284 participants with both a NP swab and symptom diary prior to study intervention. The diary included 13 targeted symptoms and questions about overall severity of COVID-19 symptoms, each scored as none, mild, moderate, or severe (and very severe for overall severity) and general physical health (scored as poor, fair, good, very good, excellent). Wilcoxon tests were used to compare NP RNA levels between pre-defined groups. Spearman correlations, Jonchkeere-Terpstra trend tests, and linear regressions evaluated associations between symptom measures and NP RNA. Results: Participants were 49% female, 82% white, 9% black, and 27% Latinx. Median age was 46 years and 50% met the protocol definition of higher risk for COVID-19 progression (age ≥55 years and/or protocol-defined comorbidities);32% reported moderate and 5% severe symptoms. Median (Q1, Q3) time from onset of symptoms to NP swab/symptom assessment was 6 (4, 8) days. NP RNA was above the lower limit of quantification in 85%;median (Q1, Q3) was 5.4 (3.5, 6.8) log10 copies/mL. Higher RNA levels were associated with shorter symptom duration (median 6.5 vs 4.7 log10 copies/mL for ≤5 vs >5 days) but not total symptom score (Figure). Controlling for symptom duration, higher NP RNA levels were associated with better general physical health (p=0.02) and more severe body/muscle pain (p=0.04). No associations were observed with symptom severity (sum of scores or overall severity) or any other symptoms. There was no association between NP RNA and age or risk category for COVID-19 progression. Conclusion: In symptomatic outpatients, NP SARS-CoV-2 RNA levels were higher in persons with more recent symptom onset, but were not associated with symptom severity or risk for disease progression. The range of viral RNA shedding was remarkably similar across the range of symptom severity, suggesting symptom severity may not correlate with transmission risk or the potential to respond to antiviral therapy. Outpatient trials aimed at evaluating antiviral activity of new agents should focus enrollment on participants with recent onset of symptoms. (Figure Presented).