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1.
J Infect Public Health ; 15(6): 685-688, 2022 May 13.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1945692

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Rheumatic diseases patients receiving Rituximab had severe COVID-19 disease. Although they had impaired humoral immune responses following COVID-19 vaccine, they had preserved cellular immune responses. Waning of COVID-19 antibody responses was observed within six months post vaccination among immunocompromised patients. Recent reports showed fatal outcome of breakthrough SARS-CoV-2 infections among vaccinated high-risk rheumatic diseases patients receiving Rituximab. SAR-CoV-2 serological tests were not performed. OBJECTIVE: Evaluation of COVID-19 vaccine humoral responses and breakthrough infections among low risk fully vaccinated rheumatic patients during the Delta Variant Era. METHODS: A case series of 19 fully vaccinated patients with rheumatic diseases were followed to determine post vaccine SARS-CoV-2 neutralizing antibody titers and to monitor the development of breakthrough infections up to eight months post vaccine at our tertiary care center in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia from 1st April until 30th November 2021. RESULTS: The mean age of patients was 49 years old. 10% of patients were receiving Rituximab. 73% of patients had positive SARS-CoV-2 serological testing post second vaccine. Two mild breakthrough COVID-19 infections were diagnosed six months post second dose of vaccine. Patients were less than 65 years, did not receive Rituximab, did not have interstitial lung diseases and had positive post vaccine serological testing. CONCLUSIONS: We demonstrated high SARS-CoV-2 neutralizing antibodies seroprevalence and self-limiting breakthrough infections in low risk rheumatic diseases patients during the Delta Era. Future studies are needed to study the outcome of rheumatic diseases patients in the Era of Omicron in view of viral immune escape responses.

2.
Diagnostics (Basel) ; 12(4)2022 Mar 28.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1887179

ABSTRACT

Background: The global pandemic coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 has a healthcare, social and economic burden. To limit the spread of the virus, the World Health Organization (WHO) urgently called for extensive screening of suspected individuals; thus, a quick, simple, and sensitive diagnostic assay is always in need. Methods: We applied reverse transcription-loop-mediated isothermal amplification (RT-LAMP) for the detection of SARS-CoV-2. The RT-LAMP method was optimized by evaluating two fluorescence amplification mixes and several reaction times, and results were compared to the standard real-time RT-PCR (rtRT-PCR). The assay was validated using 200 nasopharyngeal swabs collected in viral transport media (62 positive for SARS-CoV-2, and 138 negative for SARS-CoV-2 detected by the rtRT-PCR method). The samples were diluted 1:4 in diethylpyrocarbonate (DEPC)-treated water, utilized for RT-LAMP using different singleplex and multiplex sets of LAMP primers (N gene, S gene, and orf1ab gene), and incubated at 65 °C using real-time PCR 7500. Results: Our direct detection with the RT-LAMP protocol showed 100% concordance (sensitivity and specificity) with the standard protocol used for the detection of SARS-CoV-2 nucleic acid. Conclusions: In this study, we set up a rapid, simple, and sensitive RT-LAMP assay for the detection of SARS-CoV-2 in clinical samples. The assay is suitable for point of care detection in public hospitals, medical centers in rural areas, and in transportation hubs.

3.
J Infect Public Health ; 15(6): 628-630, 2022 Apr 28.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1873160

ABSTRACT

In the era of SARS-CoV-2 variants and COVID-19 vaccination, the duration of infectious viral shedding and isolation in post vaccine breakthrough infections is challenging and depends on disease severity. The current study described a case of SARS-CoV-2 Delta variant pneumonia requiring hospitalization. The patient received two doses of BNT162b2 COVID-19 vaccines, and he had positive SARS-CoV-2 viral cultures 12 days post symptom onset. The time between the second dose of vaccine and the breakthrough infection was 6 months. While immunosuppression is a known risk factor for prolonged infectious viral shedding, age and time between vaccination and breakthrough infection are important risk factors that warrant further studies.

4.
Saudi Pharm J ; 30(7): 979-1002, 2022 Jul.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1867429

ABSTRACT

Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2) is a more severe strain of coronavirus (CoV) that was first emerged in China in 2019. Available antiviral drugs could be repurposed and natural compounds with antiviral activity could be safer and cheaper source of medicine for SARS-CoV-2. 78 natural antiviral compounds database was identified from literature and virtual screening technique was applied to identify potential 3-chymotrypsin-like protease (3CLpro) inhibitors. Molecular docking studies were conducted to analyze the main protease (3CLpro) and inhibitors interactions with key residues of active site of target protein (PDB ID: 6LU7), active site constitute the part of active domain I and II of 3CLpro. 10 compounds with highest dock score were subjected to calculate ADMET parameters to figure out drug-likeness. Molecular dynamic (MD) simulation of the selected lead was performed by Amber simulation package to understand the conformational changes in docked complex. MD simulations analysis (RMSD, RMSF, Rg, BF, HBs, and SASA plots) of lead bounded with 3CLpro, hence revealed the important structural turns and twists during MD simulations from 0 to 100 ns. MM-PBSA/GBSA methods has also been applied for the estimation binding free energy (BFE) of the selected lead-complex. The present study has identified lead compound "Forsythoside A" an active extract of Forsythia suspense as SARS-CoV-2 3CLpro inhibitor that can block the viral replication and translation. Structural analysis of target protein and lead compound performed in this study could contribute to the development of potential drug against SARS-CoV-2 infection.

5.
Journal of infection and public health ; 2022.
Article in English | EuropePMC | ID: covidwho-1842616

ABSTRACT

Background Rheumatic diseases patients receiving Rituximab had severe COVID-19 disease. Although they had impaired humoral immune responses following COVID-19 vaccine, they had preserved cellular immune responses. Waning of COVID-19 antibody responses was observed within six months post vaccination among immunocompromised patients. Recent reports showed fatal outcome of breakthrough SARS-CoV-2 infections among vaccinated high-risk rheumatic diseases patients receiving Rituximab. SAR-CoV-2 serological tests were not performed. Objective Evaluation of COVID-19 vaccine humoral responses and breakthrough infections among low risk fully vaccinated rheumatic patients during the Delta Variant Era. Methods A case series of 19 fully vaccinated patients with rheumatic diseases were followed to determine post vaccine SARS-CoV-2 neutralizing antibody titers and to monitor the development of breakthrough infections up to eight months post vaccine at our tertiary care center in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia from 1st April until 30th November 2021. Results The mean age of patients was 49 years old. 10% of patients were receiving Rituximab. 73% of patients had positive SARS-CoV-2 serological testing post second vaccine. Two mild breakthrough COVID-19 infections were diagnosed six months post second dose of vaccine. Patients were less than 65 years, did not receive Rituximab, did not have interstitial lung diseases and had positive post vaccine serological testing. Conclusions We demonstrated high SARS-CoV-2 neutralizing antibodies seroprevalence and self-limiting breakthrough infections in low risk rheumatic diseases patients during the Delta Era. Future studies are needed to study the outcome of rheumatic diseases patients in the Era of Omicron in view of viral immune escape responses.

6.
Sci Rep ; 12(1): 7005, 2022 04 29.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1830097

ABSTRACT

Camels gained attention since the discovery of MERS-CoV as intermediary hosts for potentially epidemic zoonotic viruses. DcHEV is a novel zoonotic pathogen associated with camel contact. This study aimed to genetically characterize DcHEV in domestic and imported camels in Saudi Arabia. DcHEV was detected by RT-PCR in serum samples, PCR-positive samples were subjected to sequencing and phylogenetic analyses. DcHEV was detected in 1.77% of samples with higher positivity in domestic DCs. All positive imported dromedaries were from Sudan with age declining prevalence. Domestic DcHEV sequences clustered with sequences from Kenya, Somalia, and UAE while imported sequences clustered with one DcHEV isolate from UAE and both sequences clustered away from isolates reported from Pakistan. Full-genome sequences showed 24 amino acid difference with reference sequences. Our results confirm the detection of DcHEV in domestic and imported DCs. Further investigations are needed in human and camel populations to identify DcHEV potential zoonosis threat.


Subject(s)
Coronavirus Infections , Hepatitis E virus , Animals , Camelus , Coronavirus Infections/epidemiology , Coronavirus Infections/veterinary , Genetic Variation , Hepatitis E virus/genetics , Phylogeny , Saudi Arabia/epidemiology
7.
Comput Biol Chem ; 98: 107645, 2022 Jun.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1693749

ABSTRACT

In this paper, a compartmental mathematical model has been utilized to gain a better insight about the future dynamics of COVID-19. The total human population is divided into eight various compartments including susceptible, exposed, pre-asymptomatic, asymptomatic, symptomatic, quarantined, hospitalized and recovered or removed individuals. The problem was modeled in terms of highly nonlinear coupled system of classical order ordinary differential equations (ODEs) which was further generalized with the Atangana-Balaeanu (ABC) fractional derivative in Caputo sense with nonlocal kernel. Furthermore, some theoretical analyses have been done such as boundedness, positivity, existence and uniqueness of the considered. Disease-free and endemic equilibrium points were also assessed. The basic reproduction was calculated through next generation technique. Due to high risk of infection, in the present study, we have considered the reported cases from three continents namely Americas, Europe, and south-east Asia. The reported cases were considered between 1st May 2021 and 31st July 2021 and on the basis of this data, the spread of infection is predicted for the next 200 days. The graphical solution of the considered nonlinear fractional model was obtained via numerical scheme by implementing the MATLAB software. Based on the fitted values of parameters, the basic reproduction number ℜ0 for the case of America, Asia and Europe were calculated as ℜ0≈2.92819, ℜ0≈2.87970 and ℜ0≈2.23507 respectively. It is also observed that the spread of infection in America is comparatively high followed by Asia and Europe. Moreover, the effect of fractional parameter is shown on the dynamics of spread of infection among different classes. Additionally, the effect of quarantined and treatment of infected individuals is also shown graphically. From the present analysis it is observed that awareness of being quarantine and proper treatment can reduce the infection rate dramatically and a minimal variation in quarantine and treatment rates of infected individuals can lead us to decrease the rate of infection.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Quarantine , Asia , Basic Reproduction Number , COVID-19/epidemiology , Hospitalization , Humans
8.
Curr Opin Pulm Med ; 28(3): 192-198, 2022 05 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1662145

ABSTRACT

PURPOSE OF REVIEW: Mass gathering (MG) religious events provide ideal conditions for transmission and globalization of respiratory tract infections (RTIs). We review recent literature on COVID-19 and other RTIs at recurring international annual MG religious and sporting events. RECENT FINDINGS: Due to the COVID-19 pandemic organizers of MG religious and sporting events introduced risk-based infection control measures that limited transmission of RTIs. The 2020 and 2021 Hajj were conducted with limited numbers of pilgrims compared to the annual millions of pilgrims. The Tokyo 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games were cancelled and held in 2021. The success of the COVID-19 countermeasures at the 2021 Hajj and 2021 Tokyo Olympics was based on implementing good public health and social measures alongside a comprehensive testing strategy. SUMMARY: MG events are associated with transmission of a range of bacterial and viral RTIs. Introducing risk based a multitude of public health interventions can reduce transmission of SARS-CoV-2 and other RTIs.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Respiratory Tract Infections , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/prevention & control , Humans , Islam , Pandemics/prevention & control , Respiratory Tract Infections/epidemiology , Respiratory Tract Infections/prevention & control , SARS-CoV-2 , Travel
9.
Pharmaceuticals (Basel) ; 14(12)2021 Nov 24.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1542704

ABSTRACT

Without effective antivirals, the COVID-19 pandemic will likely continue to substantially affect public health. Medicinal plants and phytochemicals are attractive therapeutic options, particularly those targeting viral proteins essential for replication cycle. Herein, a total 179 phytochemicals of licorice (Glycyrrhiza glabra) were screened and scrutinized against the SARS-CoV-2 main protease (Mpro) with considerable binding affinities in the range of -9.831 to -2.710 kcal/mol. The top 10 compounds with the best docking scores, licuraside, glucoliquiritin apioside, 7,3'-Dihydroxy-5'-methoxyisoflavone, licuroside, kanzonol R, neoisoliquiritin, licochalcone-A, formononetin, isomucronulatol, and licoricone, were redocked using AutoDock Vina, yielding -8.7 to -7.3 kcal/mol binding energy against Glycyrrhizin (-8.0 kcal/mol) as a reference ligand. Four compounds, licuraside, glucoliquiritin apioside, 7,3'-Dihydroxy-5'-methoxyisoflavone, and licuroside, with glycyrrhizin (reference ligand) were considered for the 100 ns MD simulation and post-simulation analysis which support the stability of docked bioactive compounds with viral protein. In vitro studies demonstrated robust anti-SARS-CoV-2 activity of licorice and glycyrrhizin under different treatment protocols (simulations treatment with viral infection, post-infection treatment, and pre-treatment), suggesting multiple mechanisms for action. Although both compounds inhibited SARS-CoV-2 replication, the half-maximal inhibitory concentration (IC50) of glycyrrhizin was substantially lower than licorice. This study supports proceeding with in vivo experimentation and clinical trials and highlights licorice and glycyrrhizin as potential therapeutics for COVID-19.

10.
Saudi Med J ; 42(7): 742-749, 2021 Jul.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1513260

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVES: To identify the prevalence of COVID-19 antibodies among operating room and critical care staff. METHODS: In this cross-sectional study, we recruited 319 Healthcare workers employed in the operation theater and intensive care unit of King Abdulaziz University Hospital (KAUH), a tertiary teaching hospital in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia between August 9, 2020 and November 2, 2020. All participants completed a 20-item questionnaire on demographic data and COVID-19 risk factors and provided blood samples. Antibody testing was performed using an in-house enzyme immunoassay and microneutralization test. RESULTS: Of the 319 participants, 39 had detectable COVID-19 antibodies. Five of them had never experienced any symptoms suggestive of COVID-19, and only 19 were previously diagnosed with COVID-19. The odds of developing COVID-19 or having corresponding antibodies increased if participants experienced COVID-19 symptoms (odds ratio [OR], 3.1; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.2-7.5) or reported contact with an infected family member (OR, 5.3; 95% CI, 2.5-11.2). Disease acquisition was not associated with employment in the ICU and involvement in the intubation of or close contact with COVID-19 patients. Of the 19 previously diagnosed participants, 6 did not possess any detectable COVID-19 antibodies. CONCLUSIONS: Healthcare workers may have undiagnosed COVID-19, and those previously infected may not have long-lasting immunity. Therefore, hospitals must continue to uphold strict infection control during the COVID-19 pandemic.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Serological Testing/statistics & numerical data , COVID-19/diagnosis , Health Personnel , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Adult , Antibodies, Neutralizing/blood , Antibodies, Viral/blood , COVID-19/epidemiology , Critical Care , Cross-Sectional Studies , Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay , Female , Hospitals, Teaching , Humans , Infectious Disease Transmission, Patient-to-Professional , Male , Middle Aged , Operating Rooms , Pandemics , Prevalence , Reverse Transcriptase Polymerase Chain Reaction , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Saudi Arabia/epidemiology
11.
Int J Infect Dis ; 108: 112-115, 2021 Jul.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1351691

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Immunocompromised patients with coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) have prolonged infectious viral shedding for more than 20 days. A test-based approach is suggested for de-isolation of these patients. METHODS: The strategy was evaluated by comparing severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) viral load (cycle threshold (Ct) values) and viral culture at the time of hospital discharge in a series of 13 COVID-19 patients: six immunocompetent and seven immunocompromised (five solid organ transplant patients, one lymphoma patient, and one hepatocellular carcinoma patient). RESULTS: Three of the 13 (23%) patients had positive viral cultures: one patient with lymphoma (on day 16) and two immunocompetent patients (on day 7 and day 11). Eighty percent of the patients had negative viral cultures and had a mean Ct value of 20.5. None of the solid organ transplant recipients had positive viral cultures. CONCLUSIONS: The mean Ct value for negative viral cultures was 20.5 in this case series of immunocompromised patients. Unlike those with hematological malignancies, none of the solid organ transplant patients had positive viral cultures. Adopting the test-based approach for all immunocompromised patients may lead to prolonged quarantine. Large-scale studies in disease-specific populations are needed to determine whether a test-based approach versus a symptom-based approach or a combination is applicable for the de-isolation of various immunocompromised patients.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Humans , Immunocompromised Host , Quarantine , Virus Shedding
12.
Vox Sang ; 116(6): 673-681, 2021 Jul.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1319364

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVES: During the ongoing pandemic of COVID-19, SARS-CoV-2 RNA was detected in plasma and platelet products from asymptomatic blood donors, raising concerns about potential risk of transfusion transmission, also in the context of the current therapeutic approach utilizing plasma from convalescent donors. The objective of this study was to assess the efficacy of amotosalen/UVA light treatment to inactivate SARS-CoV-2 in human plasma to reduce the risk of potential transmission through blood transfusion. METHODS: Pools of three whole-blood-derived human plasma units (630-650 ml) were inoculated with a clinical SARS-CoV-2 isolate. Spiked units were treated with amotosalen/UVA light (INTERCEPT Blood System™) to inactivate SARS-CoV-2. Infectious titres and genomic viral load were assessed by plaque assay and real-time quantitative PCR. Inactivated samples were subject to three successive passages on permissive tissue culture to exclude the presence of replication-competent viral particles. RESULTS: Inactivation of infectious viral particles in spiked plasma units below the limit of detection was achieved by amotosalen/UVA light treatment with a mean log reduction of >3·32 ± 0·2. Passaging of inactivated samples on permissive tissue showed no viral replication even after 9 days of incubation and three passages, confirming complete inactivation. The treatment also inhibited NAT detection by nucleic acid modification with a mean log reduction of 2·92 ± 0·87 PFU genomic equivalents. CONCLUSION: Amotosalen/UVA light treatment of SARS-CoV-2 spiked human plasma units efficiently and completely inactivated >3·32 ± 0·2 log of SARS-CoV-2 infectivity, showing that such treatment could minimize the risk of transfusion-related SARS-CoV-2 transmission.


Subject(s)
Furocoumarins/pharmacology , Plasma/virology , SARS-CoV-2/drug effects , SARS-CoV-2/radiation effects , Ultraviolet Therapy , Virus Inactivation , COVID-19/prevention & control , COVID-19/transmission , Humans , Transfusion Reaction/prevention & control , Treatment Outcome
13.
Int J Infect Dis ; 110: 267-271, 2021 Sep.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1313161

ABSTRACT

Immunocompromised patients who have a severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) infection pose many clinical and public health challenges. We describe the case of a hematopoietic stem cell transplantation patient with lymphoma who had a protracted illness requiring three consecutive hospital admissions. Whole genome sequencing confirmed two different SARS-CoV-2 clades. Clinical management issues and the unanswered questions arising from this case are discussed.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Hematopoietic Stem Cell Transplantation , Humans , Reinfection , SARS-CoV-2 , Virus Shedding
14.
Diagnostics (Basel) ; 11(6)2021 May 30.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1256438

ABSTRACT

The unusual cases of pneumonia outbreak were reported from Wuhan city in late December 2019. Serological testing provides a powerful tool for the identification of prior infection and for epidemiological studies. Pseudotype virus neutralization assays are widely used for many viruses and applications in the fields of serology. The accuracy of pseudotype neutralizing assay allows for its use in low biosafety lab and provides a safe and effective alternative to the use of wild-type viruses. In this study, we evaluated the performance of this assay compared to the standard microneutralization assay as a reference. The lentiviral pseudotype particles were generated harboring the Spike gene of SARS-CoV-2. The generated pseudotype particles assay was used to evaluate the activity of neutralizing antibodies in 300 human serum samples from a COVID-19 sero-epidemiological study. Testing of these samples resulted in 55 positive samples and 245 negative samples by pseudotype viral particles assay while microneutralization assay resulted in 64 positive and 236 negative by MN assay. Compared to the MN, the pseudotyped viral particles assay showed a sensitivity of 85.94% and a specificity of 100%. Based on the data generated from this study, the pseudotype-based neutralization assay showed a reliable performance for the detection of neutralizing antibodies against SARS-CoV-2 and can be used safely and efficiently as a diagnostic tool in a biosafety level 2 laboratory.

15.
Diagnostics (Basel) ; 11(5)2021 May 02.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1223965

ABSTRACT

A few months ago, the availability of a reliable and cost-effective testing capacity for COVID-19 was a concern for many countries. With the emergence and circulation of new SARS-CoV-2 variants, another layer of challenge can be added for COVID-19 testing at both molecular and serological levels. This is particularly important for the available tests principally designed to target the S gene/protein where multiple mutations have been reported. Herein, the SARS-CoV-2 NP recombinant protein was utilized to develop a simple and reliable COVID-19 NP human IgG ELISA. The optimized protocol was validated against a micro-neutralization (MN) assay, in-house S-based ELISA, and commercial chemiluminescence immunoassay (CLIA). The developed assay provides 100% sensitivity, 98.9% specificity, 98.9% agreement, and high overall accuracy with an area under curve equal to 0.9998 ± 0.0002 with a 95% confidence interval of 0.99 to 1.00. The optical density values of positive samples significantly correlated with their corresponding MN titers. The assay specifically detects IgG antibodies to the SARS-CoV-2 NP protein and does not cross-detect IgG to the viral S protein. Moreover, it does not cross-react with antibodies related to other coronaviruses (e.g., the Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus or human coronavirus HKU1). The availability of this reliable COVID-19 NP IgG ELISA protocol is highly valuable for its diagnostic and epidemiological applications.

16.
Emerg Infect Dis ; 27(5)2021 05.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1200875

ABSTRACT

Understanding the immune response to Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) is crucial for disease prevention and vaccine development. We studied the antibody responses in 48 human MERS-CoV infection survivors who had variable disease severity in Saudi Arabia. MERS-CoV-specific neutralizing antibodies were detected for 6 years postinfection.


Subject(s)
Coronavirus Infections , Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus , Animals , Antibody Formation , Camelus , Coronavirus Infections/epidemiology , Humans , Saudi Arabia/epidemiology
17.
Pathogens ; 10(3)2021 Mar 08.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1143550

ABSTRACT

The aim of our study was to define the spectrum of viral infections in pilgrims with acute respiratory tract illnesses presenting to healthcare facilities around the holy places in Makkah, Saudi Arabia during the 2019 Hajj pilgrimage. During the five days of Hajj, a total of 185 pilgrims were enrolled in the study. Nasopharyngeal swabs (NPSs) of 126/185 patients (68.11%) tested positive for one or more respiratory viruses by PCR. Among the 126 pilgrims whose NPS were PCR positive: (a) there were 93/126 (74%) with a single virus infection, (b) 33/126 (26%) with coinfection with more than one virus (up to four viruses): of these, 25/33 cases had coinfection with two viruses; 6/33 were infected with three viruses, while the remaining 2/33 patients had infection with four viruses. Human rhinovirus (HRV) was the most common detected viruses with 53 cases (42.06%), followed by 27 (21.43%) cases of influenza A (H1N1), and 23 (18.25%) cases of influenza A other than H1N1. Twenty-five cases of CoV-229E (19.84%) were detected more than other coronavirus members (5 CoV-OC43 (3.97%), 4 CoV-HKU1 (3.17%), and 1 CoV-NL63 (0.79%)). PIV-3 was detected in 8 cases (6.35%). A single case (0.79%) of PIV-1 and PIV-4 were found. HMPV represented 5 (3.97%), RSV and influenza B 4 (3.17%) for each, and Parechovirus 1 (0.79%). Enterovirus, Bocavirus, and M. pneumoniae were not detected. Whether identification of viral nucleic acid represents nasopharyngeal carriage or specific causal etiology of RTI remains to be defined. Large controlled cohort studies (pre-Hajj, during Hajj, and post-Hajj) are required to define the carriage rates and the specific etiology and causal roles of specific individual viruses or combination of viruses in the pathogenesis of respiratory tract infections in pilgrims participating in the annual Hajj. Studies of the specific microbial etiology of respiratory track infections (RTIs) at mass gathering religious events remain a priority, especially in light of the novel SARS-CoV-2 pandemic.

18.
J King Saud Univ Sci ; 33(3): 101366, 2021 May.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1080393

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVE: The new coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) is a major health problem worldwide. The surveillance of seropositive individuals serves as an indicator to the extent of infection spread and provides an estimation of herd immunity status among population. Reports from different countries investigated this issue among healthcare workers (HCWs) who are "at risk" and "sources of risk" for COVID-19. This study aims to investigate the seroprevalence of COVID-19 among HCWs in one of the COVID-19 referral centers in Makkah, Saudi Arabia using three different serological methods. METHODS: In-house developed enzyme-linked immunoassay (ELISA), commercially available electro-chemiluminescence immunoassay (ECLIA), and microneutralization (MN) assay were utilized to determine the seroprevalence rate among the study population. 204 HCWs participated in the study. Both physicians and nurses working in the COVID-19 and non COVID-19 areas were included. Twelve out of 204 were confirmed cases of COVID-19 with variable disease severity. Samples from recovered HCWs were collected four weeks post diagnosis. RESULTS: The overall seroprevalence rate was 6.3% (13 out of 204) using the in-house ELISA and MN assay and it was 5.8% (12 out of 204) using the commercial ECLIA. Among HCWs undiagnosed with COVID-19, the seroprevalence was 2% (4 out 192). Notably, neutralizing antibodies were not detected in 3 (25%) out 12 confirmed cases of COVID-19. CONCLUSIONS: Our study, similar to the recent national multi-center study, showed a low seroprevalence of SARS-Cov-2 antibodies among HCWs. Concordance of results between the commercial electro-chemiluminescence immunoassay (ECLIA), in-house ELISA and MN assay was observed. The in-house ELISA is a promising tool for the serological diagnosis of SARS-CoV-2 infection. However, seroprevalence studies may underestimate the extent of COVID-19 infection as some cases with mild disease did not have detectable antibody responses.

19.
Curr Pharm Des ; 27(32): 3490-3500, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1024456

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: The unusual pneumonia outbreak that originated in the city of Wuhan, China in December 2019 was found to be caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), or COVID-19. METHODS: In this work, we have performed an in silico design and prediction of potential siRNAs based on genetic diversity and recombination patterns, targeting various genes of SARS-CoV-2 for antiviral therapeutics. We performed extensive sequence analysis to analyze the genetic diversity and phylogenetic relationships, and to identify the possible source of virus reservoirs and recombination patterns, and the evolution of the virus as well as we designed the siRNAs which can be used as antivirals against SARS-CoV-2. RESULTS: The sequence analysis and phylogenetic relationships indicated high sequence identity and closed clusters with many types of coronavirus. In our analysis, the full-genome of SARS-CoV-2 showed the highest sequence (nucleotide) identity with SARS-bat-ZC45 (87.7%). The overall sequence identity ranged from 74.3% to 87.7% with selected SARS viruses. The recombination analysis indicated the bat SARS virus is a potential recombinant and serves as a major and minor parent. We have predicted 442 siRNAs and finally selected only 19 functional, and potential siRNAs. CONCLUSION: The siRNAs were predicted and selected based on their greater potency and specificity. The predicted siRNAs need to be validated experimentally for their effective binding and antiviral activity.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , Computer Simulation , Humans , Phylogeny , RNA, Small Interfering/genetics
20.
Healthcare (Basel) ; 9(1)2021 Jan 05.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1011456

ABSTRACT

In response to the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), Saudi Arabia have imposed timely restrictions to minimize the infection spread, lower the risk for vulnerable groups, and reduce the pressure on healthcare services. The effectiveness of these measures has not been assessed comprehensively and, thereby, remains uncertain. Besides monitoring the number of COVID-19 cases diagnosed by molecular assays, the seroprevalence can serve as an indicator for the incidence rate among the general population. This study aimed to evaluate seroprevalence status of all healthy blood donors who attended one of the main largest hospital located in the western region of Saudi Arabia from 1 January to 31 May 2020. The study period covered two months prior to reporting the first COVID-19 case in the country on 2 March 2020. Importantly, it covered the period when "lock-down type" measures have been enforced. Samples were subjected to in-house enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA), chemiluminescence immunoassay (CLIA), and microneutralization (MN). The sero statuses of all samples were confirmed negative, demonstrating the lack of antibodies to severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) among blood donors during COVID-19 lockdown period. This study supports the hypothesis that COVID-19 restrictions have potential for limiting the extent of the infection.

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