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1.
PLOS Biology ; 20(5):e3001609-e3001609, 2022.
Article in English | PMC | ID: covidwho-1822243

ABSTRACT

Despite the rapid creation of Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) vaccines, the precise correlates of immunity against severe Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) are still unknown. Neutralizing antibodies represent a robust surrogate of protection in early Phase III studies, but vaccines provide protection prior to the evolution of neutralization, vaccines provide protection against variants that evade neutralization, and vaccines continue to provide protection against disease severity in the setting of waning neutralizing titers. Thus, in this study, using an Ad26.CoV2.S dose-down approach in nonhuman primates (NHPs), the role of neutralization, Fc effector function, and T-cell immunity were collectively probed against infection as well as against viral control. While dosing-down minimally impacted neutralizing and binding antibody titers, Fc receptor binding and functional antibody levels were induced in a highly dose-dependent manner. Neutralizing antibody and Fc receptor binding titers, but minimally T cells, were linked to the prevention of transmission. Conversely, Fc receptor binding/function and T cells were linked to antiviral control, with a minimal role for neutralization. These data point to dichotomous roles of neutralization and T-cell function in protection against transmission and disease severity and a continuous role for Fc effector function as a correlate of immunity key to halting and controlling SARS-CoV-2 and emerging variants.

2.
mBio ; : e0214121, 2022 Jan 25.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1650754

ABSTRACT

As public health guidelines throughout the world have relaxed in response to vaccination campaigns against SARS-CoV-2, it is likely that SARS-CoV-2 will remain endemic, fueled by the rise of more infectious SARS-CoV-2 variants. Moreover, in the setting of waning natural and vaccine immunity, reinfections have emerged across the globe, even among previously infected and vaccinated individuals. As such, the ability to detect reexposure to and reinfection by SARS-CoV-2 is a key component for global protection against this virus and, more importantly, against the potential emergence of vaccine escape mutations. Accordingly, there is a strong and continued need for the development and deployment of simple methods to detect emerging hot spots of reinfection to inform targeted pandemic response and containment, including targeted and specific deployment of vaccine booster campaigns. In this study, we identify simple, rapid immune biomarkers of reinfection in rhesus macaques, including IgG3 antibody levels against nucleocapsid and FcγR2A receptor binding activity of anti-RBD antibodies, that are recapitulated in human reinfection cases. As such, this cross-species analysis underscores the potential utility of simple antibody titers and function as price-effective and scalable markers of reinfection to provide increased resolution and resilience against new outbreaks. IMPORTANCE As public health and social distancing guidelines loosen in the setting of waning global natural and vaccine immunity, a deeper understanding of the immunological response to reexposure and reinfection to this highly contagious pathogen is necessary to maintain public health. Viral sequencing analysis provides a robust but unrealistic means to monitor reinfection globally. The identification of scalable pathogen-specific biomarkers of reexposure and reinfection, however, could significantly accelerate our capacity to monitor the spread of the virus through naive and experienced hosts, providing key insights into mechanisms of disease attenuation. Using a nonhuman primate model of controlled SARS-CoV-2 reexposure, we deeply probed the humoral immune response following rechallenge with various doses of viral inocula. We identified virus-specific humoral biomarkers of reinfection, with significant increases in antibody titer and function upon rechallenge across a range of humoral features, including IgG1 to the receptor binding domain of the spike protein of SARS-CoV-2 (RBD), IgG3 to the nucleocapsid protein (N), and FcγR2A receptor binding to anti-RBD antibodies. These features not only differentiated primary infection from reexposure and reinfection in monkeys but also were recapitulated in a sequencing-confirmed reinfection patient and in a cohort of putatively reinfected humans that evolved a PCR-positive test in spite of preexisting seropositivity. As such, this cross-species analysis using a controlled primate model and human cohorts reveals increases in antibody titers as promising cross-validated serological markers of reinfection and reexposure.

3.
Med (N Y) ; 2(12): 1327-1341.e4, 2021 Dec 10.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1568933

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Although vaccines effectively prevent coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) in healthy individuals, they appear to be less immunogenic in individuals with chronic inflammatory disease (CID) or receiving chronic immunosuppression therapy. METHODS: Here we assessed a cohort of 77 individuals with CID treated as monotherapy with chronic immunosuppressive drugs for antibody responses in serum against historical and variant severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) viruses after immunization with the BNT162b2 mRNA vaccine. FINDINGS: Longitudinal analysis showed the greatest reductions in neutralizing antibodies and Fc effector function capacity in individuals treated with tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-α) inhibitors (TNFi), and this pattern appeared to be worse against the B.1.617.2 delta virus. Within 5 months of vaccination, serum neutralizing titers of all TNFi-treated individuals tested fell below the presumed threshold correlate for antibody-mediated protection. However, TNFi-treated individuals receiving a third mRNA vaccine dose boosted their serum neutralizing antibody titers by more than 16-fold. CONCLUSIONS: Vaccine boosting or administration of long-acting prophylaxis (e.g., monoclonal antibodies) will likely be required to prevent SARS-CoV-2 infection in this susceptible population. FUNDING: This study was supported by grants and contracts from the NIH (R01 AI157155, R01AI151178, and HHSN75N93019C00074; NIAID Centers of Excellence for Influenza Research and Response (CEIRR) contracts HHSN272201400008C and 75N93021C00014; and Collaborative Influenza Vaccine Innovation Centers [CIVIC] contract 75N93019C00051).


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Antibodies, Viral , COVID-19/drug therapy , COVID-19 Vaccines/therapeutic use , Hepatitis Delta Virus , Humans , RNA, Messenger/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus , Tumor Necrosis Factor-alpha , Vaccines, Synthetic
4.
Viruses ; 13(11)2021 11 06.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1502534

ABSTRACT

Obesity is a key correlate of severe SARS-CoV-2 outcomes while the role of obesity on risk of SARS-CoV-2 infection, symptom phenotype, and immune response remain poorly defined. We examined data from a prospective SARS-CoV-2 cohort study to address these questions. Serostatus, body mass index, demographics, comorbidities, and prior COVID-19 compatible symptoms were assessed at baseline and serostatus and symptoms monthly thereafter. SARS-CoV-2 immunoassays included an IgG ELISA targeting the spike RBD, multiarray Luminex targeting 20 viral antigens, pseudovirus neutralization, and T cell ELISPOT assays. Our results from a large prospective SARS-CoV-2 cohort study indicate symptom phenotype is strongly influenced by obesity among younger but not older age groups; we did not identify evidence to suggest obese individuals are at higher risk of SARS-CoV-2 infection; and remarkably homogenous immune activity across BMI categories suggests immune protection across these groups may be similar.


Subject(s)
Antibodies, Viral/blood , COVID-19/complications , COVID-19/immunology , Obesity/complications , Obesity/immunology , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/immunology , Adolescent , Adult , Age Factors , Body Mass Index , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/physiopathology , Female , Humans , Immunoglobulin G/blood , Male , Middle Aged , Risk Factors , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Young Adult
5.
Sci Immunol ; 6(64): eabj2901, 2021 Oct 15.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1470496

ABSTRACT

The introduction of vaccines has inspired hope in the battle against SARS-CoV-2. However, the emergence of viral variants, in the absence of potent antivirals, has left the world struggling with the uncertain nature of this disease. Antibodies currently represent the strongest correlate of immunity against SARS-CoV-2, thus we profiled the earliest humoral signatures in a large cohort of acutely ill (survivors and nonsurvivors) and mild or asymptomatic individuals with COVID-19. Although a SARS-CoV-2­specific immune response evolved rapidly in survivors of COVID-19, nonsurvivors exhibited blunted and delayed humoral immune evolution, particularly with respect to S2-specific antibodies. Given the conservation of S2 across ß-coronaviruses, we found that the early development of SARS-CoV-2­specific immunity occurred in tandem with preexisting common ß-coronavirus OC43 humoral immunity in survivors, which was also selectively expanded in individuals that develop a paucisymptomatic infection. These data point to the importance of cross-coronavirus immunity as a correlate of protection against COVID-19.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/immunology , Cross Reactions , Immunity, Humoral , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Adolescent , Cohort Studies , Coronavirus OC43, Human/immunology , Disease Progression , Humans , Immunoglobulin Class Switching , Receptors, Fc/immunology , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/immunology , Survivors , Young Adult
6.
Cell Rep Med ; 2(9): 100405, 2021 09 21.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1377862

ABSTRACT

Recently approved vaccines have shown remarkable efficacy in limiting SARS-CoV-2-associated disease. However, with the variety of vaccines, immunization strategies, and waning antibody titers, defining the correlates of immunity across a spectrum of antibody titers is urgently required. Thus, we profiled the humoral immune response in a cohort of non-human primates immunized with a recombinant SARS-CoV-2 spike glycoprotein (NVX-CoV2373) at two doses, administered as a single- or two-dose regimen. Both antigen dose and boosting significantly altered neutralization titers and Fc-effector profiles, driving unique vaccine-induced antibody fingerprints. Combined differences in antibody effector functions and neutralization were associated with distinct levels of protection in the upper and lower respiratory tract. Moreover, NVX-CoV2373 elicited antibodies that functionally targeted emerging SARS-CoV-2 variants. Collectively, the data presented here suggest that a single dose may prevent disease via combined Fc/Fab functions but that two doses may be essential to block further transmission of SARS-CoV-2 and emerging variants.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Vaccines/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Saponins/immunology , Animals , Antibodies, Neutralizing/drug effects , Antibodies, Neutralizing/immunology , Antibodies, Viral/immunology , COVID-19/immunology , COVID-19/virology , Dose-Response Relationship, Immunologic , Female , Immunity, Humoral/immunology , Immunogenicity, Vaccine , Immunoglobulin Fab Fragments/immunology , Immunoglobulin Fc Fragments/immunology , Macaca mulatta , Male , Nanoparticles , Primates/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus , Vaccination
7.
Sci Transl Med ; 13(607)2021 08 18.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1329034

ABSTRACT

Adjuvanted soluble protein vaccines have been used extensively in humans for protection against various viral infections based on their robust induction of antibody responses. Here, soluble prefusion-stabilized spike protein trimers (preS dTM) from severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) were formulated with the adjuvant AS03 and administered twice to nonhuman primates (NHPs). Binding and functional neutralization assays and systems serology revealed that the vaccinated NHP developed AS03-dependent multifunctional humoral responses that targeted distinct domains of the spike protein and bound to a variety of Fc receptors mediating immune cell effector functions in vitro. The neutralizing 50% inhibitory concentration titers for pseudovirus and live SARS-CoV-2 were higher than titers for a panel of human convalescent serum samples. NHPs were challenged intranasally and intratracheally with a high dose (3 × 106 plaque forming units) of SARS-CoV-2 (USA-WA1/2020 isolate). Two days after challenge, vaccinated NHPs showed rapid control of viral replication in both the upper and lower airways. Vaccinated NHPs also had increased spike protein-specific immunoglobulin G (IgG) antibody responses in the lung as early as 2 days after challenge. Moreover, passive transfer of vaccine-induced IgG to hamsters mediated protection from subsequent SARS-CoV-2 challenge. These data show that antibodies induced by the AS03-adjuvanted preS dTM vaccine were sufficient to mediate protection against SARS-CoV-2 in NHPs and that rapid anamnestic antibody responses in the lung may be a key mechanism for protection.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus , Animals , Antibodies, Neutralizing , Antibodies, Viral , COVID-19/therapy , Cricetinae , Immunization, Passive , Lung , Primates , SARS-CoV-2 , Vaccination
8.
Cell Rep ; 36(4): 109452, 2021 07 27.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1306891

ABSTRACT

SARS-CoV-2 variants that attenuate antibody neutralization could jeopardize vaccine efficacy. We recently reported the protective activity of an intranasally administered spike protein-based chimpanzee adenovirus-vectored vaccine (ChAd-SARS-CoV-2-S) in animals, which has advanced to human trials. Here, we assessed its durability, dose response, and cross-protective activity in mice. A single intranasal dose of ChAd-SARS-CoV-2-S induced durably high neutralizing and Fc effector antibody responses in serum and S-specific IgG and IgA secreting long-lived plasma cells in the bone marrow. Protection against a historical SARS-CoV-2 strain was observed across a 100-fold vaccine dose range and over a 200-day period. At 6 weeks or 9 months after vaccination, serum antibodies neutralized SARS-CoV-2 strains with B.1.351, B.1.1.28, and B.1.617.1 spike proteins and conferred almost complete protection in the upper and lower respiratory tracts after challenge with variant viruses. Thus, in mice, intranasal immunization with ChAd-SARS-CoV-2-S provides durable protection against historical and emerging SARS-CoV-2 strains.


Subject(s)
Antibodies, Neutralizing/pharmacology , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/immunology , Viral Vaccines/pharmacology , Administration, Intranasal/methods , Animals , Antibodies, Neutralizing/immunology , Antibodies, Viral/immunology , Antibodies, Viral/pharmacology , Mice , Vaccination/methods , Viral Vaccines/immunology
9.
Nature ; 594(7862): 253-258, 2021 06.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1192479

ABSTRACT

The development of a portfolio of COVID-19 vaccines to vaccinate the global population remains an urgent public health imperative1. Here we demonstrate the capacity of a subunit vaccine, comprising the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein receptor-binding domain displayed on an I53-50 protein nanoparticle scaffold (hereafter designated RBD-NP), to stimulate robust and durable neutralizing-antibody responses and protection against SARS-CoV-2 in rhesus macaques. We evaluated five adjuvants including Essai O/W 1849101, a squalene-in-water emulsion; AS03, an α-tocopherol-containing oil-in-water emulsion; AS37, a Toll-like receptor 7 (TLR7) agonist adsorbed to alum; CpG1018-alum, a TLR9 agonist formulated in alum; and alum. RBD-NP immunization with AS03, CpG1018-alum, AS37 or alum induced substantial neutralizing-antibody and CD4 T cell responses, and conferred protection against SARS-CoV-2 infection in the pharynges, nares and bronchoalveolar lavage. The neutralizing-antibody response to live virus was maintained up to 180 days after vaccination with RBD-NP in AS03 (RBD-NP-AS03), and correlated with protection from infection. RBD-NP immunization cross-neutralized the B.1.1.7 SARS-CoV-2 variant efficiently but showed a reduced response against the B.1.351 variant. RBD-NP-AS03 produced a 4.5-fold reduction in neutralization of B.1.351 whereas the group immunized with RBD-NP-AS37 produced a 16-fold reduction in neutralization of B.1.351, suggesting differences in the breadth of the neutralizing-antibody response induced by these adjuvants. Furthermore, RBD-NP-AS03 was as immunogenic as a prefusion-stabilized spike immunogen (HexaPro) with AS03 adjuvant. These data highlight the efficacy of the adjuvanted RBD-NP vaccine in promoting protective immunity against SARS-CoV-2 and have led to phase I/II clinical trials of this vaccine (NCT04742738 and NCT04750343).


Subject(s)
Adjuvants, Immunologic , Antibodies, Neutralizing/immunology , COVID-19 Vaccines/immunology , COVID-19/immunology , COVID-19/prevention & control , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Vaccines, Subunit/immunology , Alum Compounds , Animals , Antibodies, Viral/immunology , CD4-Positive T-Lymphocytes/cytology , CD4-Positive T-Lymphocytes/immunology , COVID-19/virology , Clinical Trials, Phase I as Topic , Clinical Trials, Phase II as Topic , Disease Models, Animal , Immunity, Cellular , Immunity, Humoral , Macaca mulatta/immunology , Male , Oligodeoxyribonucleotides , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/chemistry , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/immunology , Squalene
10.
Nat Commun ; 12(1): 1018, 2021 02 15.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1085426

ABSTRACT

Antibodies serve as biomarkers of infection, but if sustained can confer long-term immunity. Yet, for most clinically approved vaccines, binding antibody titers only serve as a surrogate of protection. Instead, the ability of vaccine induced antibodies to neutralize or mediate Fc-effector functions is mechanistically linked to protection. While evidence has begun to point to persisting antibody responses among SARS-CoV-2 infected individuals, cases of re-infection have begun to emerge, calling the protective nature of humoral immunity against this highly infectious pathogen into question. Using a community-based surveillance study, we aimed to define the relationship between titers and functional antibody activity to SARS-CoV-2 over time. Here we report significant heterogeneity, but limited decay, across antibody titers amongst 120 identified seroconverters, most of whom had asymptomatic infection. Notably, neutralization, Fc-function, and SARS-CoV-2 specific T cell responses were only observed in subjects that elicited RBD-specific antibody titers above a threshold. The findings point to a switch-like relationship between observed antibody titer and function, where a distinct threshold of activity-defined by the level of antibodies-is required to elicit vigorous humoral and cellular response. This response activity level may be essential for durable protection, potentially explaining why re-infections occur with SARS-CoV-2 and other common coronaviruses.


Subject(s)
Antibodies, Viral/immunology , COVID-19/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Adolescent , Adult , Aged , Antibodies, Neutralizing/blood , Antibodies, Neutralizing/immunology , Antibodies, Viral/blood , COVID-19/blood , Female , Humans , Immunity, Humoral/immunology , Immunoglobulin G/immunology , Male , Middle Aged , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/immunology , T-Lymphocytes/immunology , Viral Vaccines/immunology , Young Adult
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