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1.
Sci Rep ; 12(1): 5856, 2022 Apr 07.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1784021

ABSTRACT

Rapid dissemination of SARS-CoV-2 sequencing data to public repositories has enabled widespread study of viral genomes, but studies of longitudinal specimens from infected persons are relatively limited. Analysis of longitudinal specimens enables understanding of how host immune pressures drive viral evolution in vivo. Here we performed sequencing of 49 longitudinal SARS-CoV-2-positive samples from 20 patients in Washington State collected between March and September of 2020. Viral loads declined over time with an average increase in RT-QPCR cycle threshold of 0.87 per day. We found that there was negligible change in SARS-CoV-2 consensus sequences over time, but identified a number of nonsynonymous variants at low frequencies across the genome. We observed enrichment for a relatively small number of these variants, all of which are now seen in consensus genomes across the globe at low prevalence. In one patient, we saw rapid emergence of various low-level deletion variants at the N-terminal domain of the spike glycoprotein, some of which have previously been shown to be associated with reduced neutralization potency from sera. In a subset of samples that were sequenced using metagenomic methods, differential gene expression analysis showed a downregulation of cytoskeletal genes that was consistent with a loss of ciliated epithelium during infection and recovery. We also identified co-occurrence of bacterial species in samples from multiple hospitalized individuals. These results demonstrate that the intrahost genetic composition of SARS-CoV-2 is dynamic during the course of COVID-19, and highlight the need for continued surveillance and deep sequencing of minor variants.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , COVID-19/genetics , Genome, Viral , Humans , Metagenome , Metagenomics , SARS-CoV-2/genetics
2.
J Infect Dis ; 2022 Jan 29.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1758748

ABSTRACT

Residents and staff of emergency shelters for people experiencing homelessness (PEH) are at high risk of infection with SARS-CoV-2. The importance of shelter-related transmission of SARS-CoV-2 in this population remains unclear. It is also unknown whether there is significant spread of shelter-related viruses into surrounding communities. We analyzed genome sequence data for 28 SARS-CoV-2-positive specimens collected from 8 shelters in King County, Washington between March and October, 2020. We identified at least 12 separate SARS-CoV-2 introduction events into these 8 shelters and estimated that 57% (16 out of 28) of the examined cases of SARS-CoV-2 infection were the result of intra-shelter transmission. However, we identified just a few SARS-CoV-2 specimens from Washington that were possible descendants of shelter viruses. Our data suggest that SARS-CoV-2 spread in shelters is common, but we did not observe evidence of wide-spread transmission of shelter-related viruses into the general population.

3.
Open Forum Infect Dis ; 8(11): ofab464, 2021 Nov.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1528169

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: We aimed to evaluate a testing program to facilitate control of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) transmission at a large university and measure spread in the university community using viral genome sequencing. METHODS: Our prospective longitudinal study used remote contactless enrollment, daily mobile symptom and exposure tracking, and self-swab sample collection. Individuals were tested if the participant was exposed to a known SARS-CoV-2-infected person, developed new symptoms, or reported high-risk behavior (such as attending an indoor gathering without masking or social distancing), if a member of a group experiencing an outbreak, or at enrollment. Study participants included students, staff, and faculty at an urban public university during the Autumn quarter of 2020. RESULTS: We enrolled 16 476 individuals, performed 29 783 SARS-CoV-2 tests, and detected 236 infections. Seventy-five percent of positive cases reported at least 1 of the following: symptoms (60.8%), exposure (34.7%), or high-risk behaviors (21.5%). Greek community affiliation was the strongest risk factor for testing positive, and molecular epidemiology results suggest that specific large gatherings were responsible for several outbreaks. CONCLUSIONS: A testing program focused on individuals with symptoms and unvaccinated persons who participate in large campus gatherings may be effective as part of a comprehensive university-wide mitigation strategy to control the spread of SARS-CoV-2.

4.
J Infect Dis ; 223(2): 197-205, 2021 02 03.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1060937

ABSTRACT

Most individuals infected with severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) develop neutralizing antibodies that target the viral spike protein. In this study, we quantified how levels of these antibodies change in the months after SARS-CoV-2 infection by examining longitudinal samples collected approximately 30-152 days after symptom onset from a prospective cohort of 32 recovered individuals with asymptomatic, mild, or moderate-severe disease. Neutralizing antibody titers declined an average of about 4-fold from 1 to 4 months after symptom onset. This decline in neutralizing antibody titers was accompanied by a decline in total antibodies capable of binding the viral spike protein or its receptor-binding domain. Importantly, our data are consistent with the expected early immune response to viral infection, where an initial peak in antibody levels is followed by a decline to a lower plateau. Additional studies of long-lived B cells and antibody titers over longer time frames are necessary to determine the durability of immunity to SARS-CoV-2.


Subject(s)
Antibodies, Neutralizing/immunology , Antibodies, Viral/immunology , COVID-19/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Adult , Aged , Antibodies, Neutralizing/blood , Antibodies, Viral/blood , COVID-19/blood , COVID-19/virology , Female , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Prospective Studies , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/immunology , Time Factors , Young Adult
5.
J Clin Microbiol ; 58(6)2020 05 26.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-42093

ABSTRACT

Nearly 400,000 people worldwide are known to have been infected with severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) beginning in December 2019. The virus has now spread to over 168 countries including the United States, where the first cluster of cases was observed in the Seattle metropolitan area in Washington. Given the rapid increase in the number of cases in many localities, the availability of accurate, high-throughput SARS-CoV-2 testing is vital to efforts to manage the current public health crisis. In the course of optimizing SARS-CoV-2 testing performed by the University of Washington Clinical Virology Lab (UW Virology Lab), we evaluated assays using seven different primer-probe sets and one assay kit. We found that the most sensitive assays were those that used the E-gene primer-probe set described by Corman et al. (V. M. Corman, O. Landt, M. Kaiser, R. Molenkamp, et al., Euro Surveill 25:2000045, 2020, https://doi.org/10.2807/1560-7917.ES.2020.25.3.2000045) and the N2 set developed by the CDC (Division of Viral Diseases, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 2020, https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/downloads/rt-pcr-panel-primer-probes.pdf). All assays tested were found to be highly specific for SARS-CoV-2, with no cross-reactivity with other respiratory viruses observed in our analyses regardless of the primer-probe set or kit used. These results will provide valuable information to other clinical laboratories who are actively developing SARS-CoV-2 testing protocols at a time when increased testing capacity is urgently needed worldwide.


Subject(s)
Betacoronavirus/genetics , Clinical Laboratory Techniques/methods , Coronavirus Infections/diagnosis , Pneumonia, Viral/diagnosis , Betacoronavirus/isolation & purification , COVID-19 , COVID-19 Testing , Genome, Viral , Humans , Pandemics , RNA, Viral/analysis , SARS-CoV-2
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