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Viruses ; 14(4)2022 03 27.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1834922


The western mesoregion of the state of Santa Catarina (SC), Southern Brazil, was heavily affected as a whole by the COVID-19 pandemic in early 2021. This study aimed to evaluate the dynamics of the SARS-CoV-2 virus spreading patterns in the SC state from March 2020 to April 2021 using genomic surveillance. During this period, there were 23 distinct variants, including Beta and Gamma, among which the Gamma and related lineages were predominant in the second pandemic wave within SC. A regionalization of P.1-like-II in the Western SC region was observed, concomitant to the increase in cases, mortality, and the case fatality rate (CFR) index. This is the first evidence of the regionalization of the SARS-CoV-2 transmission in SC and it highlights the importance of tracking the variants, dispersion, and impact of SARS-CoV-2 on the public health systems.

COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Brazil/epidemiology , COVID-19/epidemiology , Humans , Mutation , Pandemics , Phylogeny , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics
PLoS One ; 16(2): e0246544, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1063222


To minimize sample dilution effect on SARS-CoV-2 pool testing, we assessed analytical and diagnostic performance of a new methodology, namely swab pooling. In this method, swabs are pooled at the time of collection, as opposed to pooling of equal volumes from individually collected samples. Paired analysis of pooled and individual samples from 613 patients revealed 94 positive individuals. Having individual testing as reference, no false-positives or false-negatives were observed for swab pooling. In additional 18,922 patients screened with swab pooling (1,344 pools), mean Cq differences between individual and pool samples ranged from 0.1 (Cr.I. -0.98 to 1.17) to 2.09 (Cr.I. 1.24 to 2.94). Overall, 19,535 asymptomatic patients were screened using 4,400 RT-qPCR assays. This corresponds to an increase of 4.4 times in laboratory capacity and a reduction of 77% in required tests. Therefore, swab pooling represents a major alternative for reliable and large-scale screening of SARS-CoV-2 in low prevalence populations.

COVID-19 Nucleic Acid Testing/methods , COVID-19/diagnosis , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Specimen Handling/methods , COVID-19/virology , Humans , Mass Screening/methods , Nasopharynx/virology , RNA, Viral/analysis , RNA, Viral/genetics , Retrospective Studies , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification