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1.
Elife ; 112022 09 22.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2040360

ABSTRACT

Background: The COVID-19 situation in Brazil is complex due to large differences in the shape and size of regional epidemics. Understanding these patterns is crucial to understand future outbreaks of SARS-CoV-2 or other respiratory pathogens in the country. Methods: We tested 97,950 blood donation samples for IgG antibodies from March 2020 to March 2021 in 8 of Brazil's most populous cities. Residential postal codes were used to obtain representative samples. Weekly age- and sex-specific seroprevalence were estimated by correcting the crude seroprevalence by test sensitivity, specificity, and antibody waning. Results: The inferred attack rate of SARS-CoV-2 in December 2020, before the Gamma variant of concern (VOC) was dominant, ranged from 19.3% (95% credible interval [CrI] 17.5-21.2%) in Curitiba to 75.0% (95% CrI 70.8-80.3%) in Manaus. Seroprevalence was consistently smaller in women and donors older than 55 years. The age-specific infection fatality rate (IFR) differed between cities and consistently increased with age. The infection hospitalisation rate increased significantly during the Gamma-dominated second wave in Manaus, suggesting increased morbidity of the Gamma VOC compared to previous variants circulating in Manaus. The higher disease penetrance associated with the health system's collapse increased the overall IFR by a minimum factor of 2.91 (95% CrI 2.43-3.53). Conclusions: These results highlight the utility of blood donor serosurveillance to track epidemic maturity and demonstrate demographic and spatial heterogeneity in SARS-CoV-2 spread. Funding: This work was supported by Itaú Unibanco 'Todos pela Saude' program; FAPESP (grants 18/14389-0, 2019/21585-0); Wellcome Trust and Royal Society Sir Henry Dale Fellowship 204311/Z/16/Z; the Gates Foundation (INV- 034540 and INV-034652); REDS-IV-P (grant HHSN268201100007I); the UK Medical Research Council (MR/S0195/1, MR/V038109/1); CAPES; CNPq (304714/2018-6); Fundação Faculdade de Medicina; Programa Inova Fiocruz-CE/Funcap - Edital 01/2020 Number: FIO-0167-00065.01.00/20 SPU N°06531047/2020; JBS - Fazer o bem faz bem.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Antibodies, Viral , Blood Donors , Brazil/epidemiology , COVID-19/epidemiology , Cross-Sectional Studies , Female , Humans , Immunoglobulin G , Male , SARS-CoV-2 , Seroepidemiologic Studies
2.
PLoS Negl Trop Dis ; 16(7): e0010580, 2022 07.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1938408

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: The epidemiology of childhood SARS-CoV-2 infection and COVID-19-related illness remains little studied in high-transmission tropical settings, partly due to the less severe clinical manifestations typically developed by children and the limited availability of diagnostic tests. To address this knowledge gap, we investigate the prevalence and predictors of SARS-CoV-2 infection (either symptomatic or not) and disease in 5 years-old Amazonian children. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: We retrospectively estimated SARS-CoV-2 attack rates and the proportion of infections leading to COVID-19-related illness among 660 participants in a population-based birth cohort study in the Juruá Valley, Amazonian Brazil. Children were physically examined, tested for SARS-CoV-2 IgG and IgM antibodies, and had a comprehensive health questionnaire administered during a follow-up visit at the age of 5 years carried out in January or June-July 2021. We found serological evidence of past SARS-CoV-2 infection in 297 (45.0%; 95% confidence interval [CI], 41.2-48.9%) of 660 cohort participants, but only 15 (5.1%; 95% CI, 2.9-8.2%) seropositive children had a prior medical diagnosis of COVID-19 reported by their mothers or guardians. The period prevalence of clinically apparent COVID-19, defined as the presence of specific antibodies plus one or more clinical symptoms suggestive of COVID-19 (cough, shortness of breath, and loss of taste or smell) reported by their mothers or guardians since the pandemic onset, was estimated at 7.3% (95% CI, 5.4-9.5%). Importantly, children from the poorest households and those with less educated mothers were significantly more likely to be seropositive, after controlling for potential confounders by mixed-effects multiple Poisson regression analysis. Likewise, the period prevalence of COVID-19 was 1.8-fold (95%, CI 1.2-2.6-fold) higher among cohort participants exposed to food insecurity and 3.0-fold (95% CI, 2.8-3.5-fold) higher among those born to non-White mothers. Finally, children exposed to household and family contacts who had COVID-19 were at an increased risk of being SARS-CoV-2 seropositive and-even more markedly-of having had clinically apparent COVID-19 by the age of 5 years. CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: Childhood SARS-CoV-2 infection and COVID-19-associated illness are substantially underdiagnosed and underreported in the Amazon. Children in the most socioeconomically vulnerable households are disproportionately affected by SARS-CoV-2 infection and disease.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , COVID-19/diagnosis , COVID-19/epidemiology , Child , Child, Preschool , Cohort Studies , Food Insecurity , Humans , Poverty , Retrospective Studies
4.
Nat Med ; 28(7): 1476-1485, 2022 07.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1830084

ABSTRACT

The severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) Gamma variant of concern has spread rapidly across Brazil since late 2020, causing substantial infection and death waves. Here we used individual-level patient records after hospitalization with suspected or confirmed coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) between 20 January 2020 and 26 July 2021 to document temporary, sweeping shocks in hospital fatality rates that followed the spread of Gamma across 14 state capitals, during which typically more than half of hospitalized patients aged 70 years and older died. We show that such extensive shocks in COVID-19 in-hospital fatality rates also existed before the detection of Gamma. Using a Bayesian fatality rate model, we found that the geographic and temporal fluctuations in Brazil's COVID-19 in-hospital fatality rates were primarily associated with geographic inequities and shortages in healthcare capacity. We estimate that approximately half of the COVID-19 deaths in hospitals in the 14 cities could have been avoided without pre-pandemic geographic inequities and without pandemic healthcare pressure. Our results suggest that investments in healthcare resources, healthcare optimization and pandemic preparedness are critical to minimize population-wide mortality and morbidity caused by highly transmissible and deadly pathogens such as SARS-CoV-2, especially in low- and middle-income countries.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , Bayes Theorem , Brazil/epidemiology , COVID-19/epidemiology , Hospitals , Humans , SARS-CoV-2
5.
BMC Infect Dis ; 22(1): 127, 2022 Feb 05.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1690956

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: The city of Manaus, north Brazil, was stricken by a second epidemic wave of SARS-CoV-2 despite high seroprevalence estimates, coinciding with the emergence of the Gamma (P.1) variant. Reinfections were postulated as a partial explanation for the second surge. However, accurate calculation of reinfection rates is difficult when stringent criteria as two time-separated RT-PCR tests and/or genome sequencing are required. To estimate the proportion of reinfections caused by Gamma during the second wave in Manaus and the protection conferred by previous infection, we identified anti-SARS-CoV-2 antibody boosting in repeat blood donors as a mean to infer reinfection. METHODS: We tested serial blood samples from unvaccinated repeat blood donors in Manaus for the presence of anti-SARS-CoV-2 IgG antibodies using two assays that display waning in early convalescence, enabling the detection of reinfection-induced boosting. Donors were required to have three or more donations, being at least one during each epidemic wave. We propose a strict serological definition of reinfection (reactivity boosting following waning like a V-shaped curve in both assays or three spaced boostings), probable (two separate boosting events) and possible (reinfection detected by only one assay) reinfections. The serial samples were used to divide donors into six groups defined based on the inferred sequence of infection and reinfection with non-Gamma and Gamma variants. RESULTS: From 3655 repeat blood donors, 238 met all inclusion criteria, and 223 had enough residual sample volume to perform both serological assays. We found 13.6% (95% CI 7.0-24.5%) of all presumed Gamma infections that were observed in 2021 were reinfections. If we also include cases of probable or possible reinfections, these percentages increase respectively to 22.7% (95% CI 14.3-34.2%) and 39.3% (95% CI 29.5-50.0%). Previous infection conferred a protection against reinfection of 85.3% (95% CI 71.3-92.7%), decreasing to respectively 72.5% (95% CI 54.7-83.6%) and 39.5% (95% CI 14.1-57.8%) if probable and possible reinfections are included. CONCLUSIONS: Reinfection by Gamma is common and may play a significant role in epidemics where Gamma is prevalent, highlighting the continued threat variants of concern pose even to settings previously hit by substantial epidemics.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Blood Donors , Brazil/epidemiology , Humans , Reinfection , Seroepidemiologic Studies
6.
Emerg Infect Dis ; 28(3): 709-712, 2022 03.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1596439

ABSTRACT

The severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) Gamma variant has been hypothesized to cause more severe illness than previous variants, especially in children. Successive SARS-CoV-2 IgG serosurveys in the Brazilian Amazon showed that age-specific attack rates and proportions of symptomatic SARS-CoV-2 infections were similar before and after Gamma variant emergence.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Antibodies, Viral , Brazil/epidemiology , Child , Humans
7.
J Oral Microbiol ; 13(1): 1858002, 2020 Dec 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1573905

ABSTRACT

Background: SARS-CoV-2 quickly spreads in the worldwide population, imposing social restrictions to control the infection, being the massive testing another essential strategy to break the chain of transmission. Aim: To compare the performance of at-home self-collected samples - saliva and combined nasal-oropharyngeal swabs (NOP) - for SARS-CoV-2 detection in a telemedicine platform for COVID-19 surveillance. Material and methods: We analyzed 201 patients who met the criteria of suspected COVID-19. NOP sampling was combined (nostrils and oropharynx) and saliva collected using a cotton pad device. Detection of SARS-COV-2 was performed by using the Altona RealStar® SARS-CoV-2 RT-PCR Kit 1.0.  Results: There was an overall significant agreement (κ coefficient value of 0.58) between saliva and NOP. Considering results in either sample, 70 patients positive for SARS-CoV-2 were identified, with 52/70 being positive in NOP and 55/70 in saliva. This corresponds to sensitivities of 74.2% (95% CI; 63.7% to 83.1%) for NOP and 78.6% (95% CI; 67.6% to 86.6%) for saliva. Conclusion: Our data show the feasibility of using at-home self-collected samples (especially saliva), as an adequate alternative for SARS-CoV-2 detection. This new approach of testing can be useful to develop strategies for COVID-19 surveillance and for guiding public health decisions.

8.
BMJ Glob Health ; 6(4)2021 04.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1476465

ABSTRACT

INTRODUCTION: Little evidence exists on the differential health effects of COVID-19 on disadvantaged population groups. Here we characterise the differential risk of hospitalisation and death in São Paulo state, Brazil, and show how vulnerability to COVID-19 is shaped by socioeconomic inequalities. METHODS: We conducted a cross-sectional study using hospitalised severe acute respiratory infections notified from March to August 2020 in the Sistema de Monitoramento Inteligente de São Paulo database. We examined the risk of hospitalisation and death by race and socioeconomic status using multiple data sets for individual-level and spatiotemporal analyses. We explained these inequalities according to differences in daily mobility from mobile phone data, teleworking behaviour and comorbidities. RESULTS: Throughout the study period, patients living in the 40% poorest areas were more likely to die when compared with patients living in the 5% wealthiest areas (OR: 1.60, 95% CI 1.48 to 1.74) and were more likely to be hospitalised between April and July 2020 (OR: 1.08, 95% CI 1.04 to 1.12). Black and Pardo individuals were more likely to be hospitalised when compared with White individuals (OR: 1.41, 95% CI 1.37 to 1.46; OR: 1.26, 95% CI 1.23 to 1.28, respectively), and were more likely to die (OR: 1.13, 95% CI 1.07 to 1.19; 1.07, 95% CI 1.04 to 1.10, respectively) between April and July 2020. Once hospitalised, patients treated in public hospitals were more likely to die than patients in private hospitals (OR: 1.40%, 95% CI 1.34% to 1.46%). Black individuals and those with low education attainment were more likely to have one or more comorbidities, respectively (OR: 1.29, 95% CI 1.19 to 1.39; 1.36, 95% CI 1.27 to 1.45). CONCLUSIONS: Low-income and Black and Pardo communities are more likely to die with COVID-19. This is associated with differential access to quality healthcare, ability to self-isolate and the higher prevalence of comorbidities.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/ethnology , COVID-19/mortality , Hospital Mortality/ethnology , Pneumonia, Viral , Poverty Areas , Residence Characteristics/statistics & numerical data , Adult , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , Brazil/epidemiology , Cross-Sectional Studies , Female , Health Status Disparities , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Pandemics , Pneumonia, Viral/epidemiology , SARS-CoV-2 , Seroepidemiologic Studies , Socioeconomic Factors
9.
10.
J Med Virol ; 93(9): 5603-5607, 2021 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1363670

ABSTRACT

It has been estimated that individuals with COVID-19 can shed replication-competent virus up to a maximum of 20 days after initiation of symptoms. The majority of studies that addressed this situation involved hospitalized individuals and those with severe disease. Studies to address the possible presence of SARS-CoV-2 during the different phases of COVID-19 disease in mildly infected individuals, and utilization of viral culture techniques to identify replication-competent viruses, have been limited. This report describes two patients with mild forms of the disease who shed replication-competent virus for 24 and 37 days, respectively, after symptom onset.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/immunology , COVID-19/virology , SARS-CoV-2/growth & development , Virus Cultivation , Animals , Chlorocebus aethiops , Female , Humans , Middle Aged , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity , Vero Cells/ultrastructure , Vero Cells/virology , Viral Load , Virus Shedding
12.
Science ; 371(6526): 288-292, 2021 01 15.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-965798

ABSTRACT

Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) spread rapidly in Manaus, the capital of Amazonas state in northern Brazil. The attack rate there is an estimate of the final size of the largely unmitigated epidemic that occurred in Manaus. We use a convenience sample of blood donors to show that by June 2020, 1 month after the epidemic peak in Manaus, 44% of the population had detectable immunoglobulin G (IgG) antibodies. Correcting for cases without a detectable antibody response and for antibody waning, we estimate a 66% attack rate in June, rising to 76% in October. This is higher than in São Paulo, in southeastern Brazil, where the estimated attack rate in October was 29%. These results confirm that when poorly controlled, COVID-19 can infect a large proportion of the population, causing high mortality.


Subject(s)
Antibodies, Viral/blood , COVID-19/epidemiology , Epidemics , Immunoglobulin G/blood , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Adolescent , Adult , Aged , Blood Donors , Brazil/epidemiology , COVID-19/blood , COVID-19/mortality , Epidemiological Monitoring , Female , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Seroepidemiologic Studies , Young Adult
13.
Science ; 369(6508): 1255-1260, 2020 09 04.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-675945

ABSTRACT

Brazil currently has one of the fastest-growing severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) epidemics in the world. Because of limited available data, assessments of the impact of nonpharmaceutical interventions (NPIs) on this virus spread remain challenging. Using a mobility-driven transmission model, we show that NPIs reduced the reproduction number from >3 to 1 to 1.6 in São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro. Sequencing of 427 new genomes and analysis of a geographically representative genomic dataset identified >100 international virus introductions in Brazil. We estimate that most (76%) of the Brazilian strains fell in three clades that were introduced from Europe between 22 February and 11 March 2020. During the early epidemic phase, we found that SARS-CoV-2 spread mostly locally and within state borders. After this period, despite sharp decreases in air travel, we estimated multiple exportations from large urban centers that coincided with a 25% increase in average traveled distances in national flights. This study sheds new light on the epidemic transmission and evolutionary trajectories of SARS-CoV-2 lineages in Brazil and provides evidence that current interventions remain insufficient to keep virus transmission under control in this country.


Subject(s)
Betacoronavirus/genetics , Coronavirus Infections/epidemiology , Coronavirus Infections/transmission , Pneumonia, Viral/epidemiology , Pneumonia, Viral/transmission , Basic Reproduction Number , Bayes Theorem , Betacoronavirus/classification , Brazil/epidemiology , COVID-19 , COVID-19 Testing , Cities/epidemiology , Clinical Laboratory Techniques , Coronavirus Infections/diagnosis , Coronavirus Infections/prevention & control , Coronavirus Infections/virology , Europe , Evolution, Molecular , Genome, Viral , Humans , Models, Genetic , Models, Statistical , Pandemics/prevention & control , Phylogeny , Phylogeography , Pneumonia, Viral/prevention & control , Pneumonia, Viral/virology , SARS-CoV-2 , Spatio-Temporal Analysis , Travel , Urban Population
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