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Gut ; 2022 Jul 28.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1962335


OBJECTIVE: Antitumour necrosis factor (TNF) drugs impair serological responses following SARS-CoV-2 vaccination. We sought to assess if a third dose of a messenger RNA (mRNA)-based vaccine substantially boosted anti-SARS-CoV-2 antibody responses and protective immunity in infliximab-treated patients with IBD. DESIGN: Third dose vaccine induced anti-SARS-CoV-2 spike (anti-S) receptor-binding domain (RBD) antibody responses, breakthrough SARS-CoV-2 infection, reinfection and persistent oropharyngeal carriage in patients with IBD treated with infliximab were compared with a reference cohort treated with vedolizumab from the impaCt of bioLogic therApy on saRs-cov-2 Infection and immuniTY (CLARITY) IBD study. RESULTS: Geometric mean (SD) anti-S RBD antibody concentrations increased in both groups following a third dose of an mRNA-based vaccine. However, concentrations were lower in patients treated with infliximab than vedolizumab, irrespective of whether their first two primary vaccine doses were ChAdOx1 nCoV-19 (1856 U/mL (5.2) vs 10 728 U/mL (3.1), p<0.0001) or BNT162b2 vaccines (2164 U/mL (4.1) vs 15 116 U/mL (3.4), p<0.0001). However, no differences in anti-S RBD antibody concentrations were seen following third and fourth doses of an mRNA-based vaccine, irrespective of the combination of primary vaccinations received. Post-third dose, anti-S RBD antibody half-life estimates were shorter in infliximab-treated than vedolizumab-treated patients (37.0 days (95% CI 35.6 to 38.6) vs 52.0 days (95% CI 49.0 to 55.4), p<0.0001).Compared with vedolizumab-treated, infliximab-treated patients were more likely to experience SARS-CoV-2 breakthrough infection (HR 2.23 (95% CI 1.46 to 3.38), p=0.00018) and reinfection (HR 2.10 (95% CI 1.31 to 3.35), p=0.0019), but this effect was uncoupled from third vaccine dose anti-S RBD antibody concentrations. Reinfection occurred predominantly during the Omicron wave and were predicted by SARS-CoV-2 antinucleocapsid concentrations after the initial infection. We did not observe persistent oropharyngeal carriage of SARS-CoV-2. Hospitalisations and deaths were uncommon in both groups. CONCLUSIONS: Following a third dose of an mRNA-based vaccine, infliximab was associated with attenuated serological responses and more SARS-CoV-2 breakthrough infection and reinfection which were not predicted by the magnitude of anti-S RBD responses, indicative of vaccine escape by the Omicron variant. TRIAL REGISTRATION NUMBER: ISRCTN45176516.

Int J Infect Dis ; 116: 418-425, 2022 Mar.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1565571


OBJECTIVES: This study aimed to evaluate the associations between COVID-19 severity and active viral load, and to characterize the dynamics of active SARS-CoV-2 clearance in a series of archival samples taken from patients in the first wave of COVID-19 infection in the South West of the UK. METHODS: Subgenomic RNA (sgRNA) and E-gene genomic sequences were measured in a retrospective collection of PCR-confirmed SARS-CoV-2-positive samples from 176 individuals, and related to disease severity. Viral clearance dynamics were then assessed in relation to symptom onset and last positive test. RESULTS: Whilst E-gene sgRNAs declined before E-gene genomic sequences, some individuals retained sgRNA positivity for up to 68 days. 13% of sgRNA-positive cases still exhibited clinically relevant levels of virus after 10 days, with no clinical features previously associated with prolonged viral clearance times. CONCLUSIONS: Our results suggest that potentially active virus can sometimes persist beyond a 10-day period, and could pose a potential risk of onward transmission. Where this would pose a serious public health threat, additional mitigation strategies may be necessary to reduce the risk of secondary cases in vulnerable settings.

COVID-19 , RNA, Viral , Humans , RNA, Viral/genetics , Retrospective Studies , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Viral Load
J Infect ; 81(3): 427-434, 2020 Sep.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-628179


BACKGROUND: Significant nosocomial transmission of SARS-CoV-2 has been demonstrated. Understanding the prevalence of SARS-CoV-2 carriage amongst HCWs at work is necessary to inform the development of HCW screening programmes to control nosocomial spread. METHODS: Cross-sectional 'snapshot' survey from April-May 2020; HCWs recruited from six UK hospitals. Participants self-completed a health questionnaire and underwent a combined viral nose and throat swab, tested by Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) for SARS-CoV-2 with viral culture on majority of positive samples. FINDINGS: Point prevalence of SARS-CoV-2 carriage across the sites was 2.0% (23/1152 participants), median cycle threshold value 35.70 (IQR:32.42-37.57). 17 were previously symptomatic, two currently symptomatic (isolated anosmia and sore throat); the remainder declared no prior or current symptoms. Symptoms in the past month were associated with threefold increased odds of testing positive (aOR 3.46, 95%CI 1.38-8.67; p = 0.008). SARS-CoV-2 virus was isolated from only one (5%) of nineteen cultured samples. A large proportion (39%) of participants reported symptoms in the past month. INTERPRETATION: The point-prevalence is similar to previous estimates for HCWs in April 2020, though a magnitude higher than in the general population. Based upon interpretation of symptom history and testing results including viral culture, the majority of those testing positive were unlikely to be infectious at time of sampling. Development of screening programmes must balance the potential to identify additional cases based upon likely prevalence, expanding the symptoms list to encourage HCW testing, with resource implications and risks of excluding those unlikely to be infectious with positive tests. FUNDING: Public Health England.

Betacoronavirus , Coronavirus Infections/epidemiology , Disease Transmission, Infectious/statistics & numerical data , Health Personnel/statistics & numerical data , Pneumonia, Viral/epidemiology , Adult , Aged , COVID-19 , Coronavirus Infections/diagnosis , Coronavirus Infections/transmission , Cross-Sectional Studies , England , Female , Humans , Male , Medical Staff, Hospital/statistics & numerical data , Middle Aged , Pandemics , Pneumonia, Viral/diagnosis , Pneumonia, Viral/transmission , Prospective Studies , RNA, Viral , Real-Time Polymerase Chain Reaction , SARS-CoV-2 , Surveys and Questionnaires , Young Adult