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1.
Res Pract Thromb Haemost ; 5(8): e12630, 2021 Dec.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1588882

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Vaccination is the leading approach in combatting the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) pandemic. ChAdOx1 nCoV-19 vaccination (ChAdOx1) has been linked to a higher frequency of rare thrombosis and thromboembolism. This study aimed to explore markers related to the blood coagulation system activation and inflammation, before and after ChAdOx1 vaccination. PATIENTS AND METHODS: An observational cohort study including 40 health care workers. Whole blood samples were collected before, and either 1 or 2 days after vaccination. Activated coagulation factors in complex with their natural inhibitors were determined by custom ELISAs, including thrombin:antithrombin (T:AT), kallikrein:C1-esterase-inhibitor (PKa:C1Inh), factor(F)IXa:AT, FXa:AT, FXIaAT, FXIa:alpha-1-antitrypsin (α1AT), FXIa:C1inh, and FVIIa:AT. Plasma concentrations of interleukin (IL)-6 and IL-18 were quantified via ELISA. Analyses were performed using Wilcoxon signed-rank test. RESULTS: Levels of FVIIa:AT decreased with a median (IQR) of 707 (549-1028) pg/ml versus 598 (471-996) pg/ml, p = 0.01; and levels of IL-6 increased, 4.0 (1.9-6.8) pg/ml versus 6.9 (3.6-12.2) pg/ml, p = 0.02, after vaccination. No changes were observed in T:AT, PKa:C1Inh, FIXa:AT, FXa:AT, FXIaAT, FXIa:α1AT, FXIa:C1inh, and IL-18. CONCLUSION: ChAdOx1 leads to an inflammatory response with increased levels of IL-6. We did not observe activation of the blood coagulation system 1-2 days following vaccination.

2.
2021.
Preprint in English | Other preprints | ID: ppcovidwho-294504

ABSTRACT

Background SARS-CoV-2 human-to-animal transmission can lead to the establishment of novel reservoirs and the evolution of new variants with the potential to start new outbreaks in humans. Aim We tested Norway rats inhabiting the sewer system of Antwerp, Belgium, for the presence of SARS-CoV-2 following a local COVID-19 epidemic peak. In addition, we discuss the use and interpretation of SARS-CoV-2 serological tests on non-human samples. Methods Between November and December 2020, Norway rat oral swabs, feces and tissues from the sewer system of Antwerp were collected to be tested by RT-qPCR for the presence of SARS-CoV-2. Serum samples were screened for the presence of anti-SARS-CoV-2 IgG antibodies using a Luminex microsphere immunoassay (MIA). Samples considered positive were then checked for neutralizing antibodies using a conventional viral neutralization test (cVNT). Results The serum of 35 rats was tested by MIA showing 3 potentially positive sera that were later shown to be negative by cVNT. All tissue samples of 39 rats analyzed tested negative for SARS-CoV-2 RNA. Conclusion This is the first study that evaluates SARS-CoV-2 infection in urban rats. We can conclude that the sample of 39 rats had never been infected with SARS-CoV-2. We show that diagnostic serology tests can give misleading results when applied on non-human samples. SARS-CoV-2 monitoring activities should continue due to the emergence of new variants prone to infect Muridae rodents.

3.
Clin Exp Med ; 22(3): 465-476, 2022 Aug.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1427285

ABSTRACT

Conflicting data about inflammatory bowel disease [IBD] and immunosuppressants are risk factors for severe COVID-19 confuse patients and healthcare providers. Clinical reports with longer follow-up are lacking. A retrospective search was performed for severe COVID-19 (hospital admission and/or mortality) one year after the SARS-CoV-2 outbreak in an IBD cohort from one of the most affected Dutch regions. Cohort characteristics were explored by value-based healthcare data, including immunotherapy. COVID-19 cases were detected by ICD-10 codes and further examined for IBD determinants (including medication) and COVID-19 characteristics (intensive care admission, respiratory support, treatment, mortality). The national mortality register was consulted, ensuring detection of patients that died without admission. Results were compared with regional and national general population registries. The IBD cohort consisted of 1453 patients (51% Crohn's disease, 54% women, 39.9% using immunotherapy), including children. Biologics use increased during the study. Eight cases (0.55%) had severe COVID-19: seven were hospitalized (0.48%, 95% confidence interval [CI] 0.21-1.04), and two died (0.14%, CI 0.002-0.55). Six patients had comorbidity, one used immunotherapy, and four had no medication. Both deceased patients were older than 80 years, had severe comorbidity, but used no immunotherapy. Hospitalization occurred significantly more in the IBD cohort than regionally (0.18%, CI 0.17-0.19, p = 0.015), but not significantly more than nationally (0.28%, CI 0.279-0.284). Mortality was equal in IBD patients, regionally (0.11%, CI 0.10-0.12) and nationally (0.13%, CI 0.125-0.128). Neither IBD nor immunosuppressants are associated with increased risks of severe COVID-19 in an observational study with one-year follow-up.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Inflammatory Bowel Diseases , COVID-19/epidemiology , Child , Cohort Studies , Female , Humans , Immunologic Factors/therapeutic use , Immunosuppressive Agents/adverse effects , Inflammatory Bowel Diseases/drug therapy , Inflammatory Bowel Diseases/epidemiology , Male , Retrospective Studies , SARS-CoV-2
4.
Transbound Emerg Dis ; 2021 Jul 05.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1295139

ABSTRACT

SARS-CoV-2 human-to-animal transmission can lead to the establishment of novel reservoirs and the evolution of new variants with the potential to start new outbreaks in humans. We tested Norway rats inhabiting the sewer system of Antwerp, Belgium, for the presence of SARS-CoV-2 following a local COVID-19 epidemic peak. In addition, we discuss the use and interpretation of SARS-CoV-2 serological tests on non-human samples. Between November and December 2020, Norway rat oral swabs, faeces and tissues from the sewer system of Antwerp were collected to be tested by RT-qPCR for the presence of SARS-CoV-2. Serum samples were screened for the presence of anti-SARS-CoV-2 IgG antibodies using a Luminex microsphere immunoassay (MIA). Samples considered positive were then checked for neutralizing antibodies using a conventional viral neutralization test (cVNT). The serum of 35 rats was tested by MIA showing three potentially positive sera that were later negative by cVNT. All tissue samples of 39 rats analysed tested negative for SARS-CoV-2 RNA. This is the first study that evaluates SARS-CoV-2 infection in urban rats. We can conclude that the sample of rats analysed had never been infected with SARS-CoV-2. However, monitoring activities should continue due to the emergence of new variants prone to infect Muridae rodents.

5.
Sci Total Environ ; 789: 148043, 2021 May 26.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1243225

ABSTRACT

Wastewater-based epidemiology of SARS-CoV-2 could play a role in monitoring the spread of the virus in the population and controlling possible outbreaks. However, sensitive sample preparation and detection methods are necessary to detect trace levels of SARS-CoV-2 RNA in influent wastewater (IWW). Unlike predecessors, method optimization of a SARS-CoV-2 RNA concentration and detection procedure was performed with IWW samples with high viral SARS-CoV-2 RNA loads. This is of importance since the SARS-CoV-2 genome in IWW might have already been subject to in-sewer degradation into smaller genome fragments or might be present in a different form (e.g. cell debris, …). Centricon Plus-70 (100 kDa) centrifugal filter devices resulted in the lowest and most reproducible Ct-values for SARS-CoV-2 RNA. Lowering the molecular weight cut-off did not improve our limit of detection and quantification (approximately 100 copies/µL for all genes). Quantitative polymerase chain reaction (qPCR) was employed for the amplification of the N1, N2, N3 and E-gene fragments. This is one of the first studies to apply digital polymerase chain reaction (dPCR) for the detection of SARS-CoV-2 RNA in IWW. dPCR showed high variability at low concentration levels (100 copies/µL), indicating that variability in bioanalytical methods for wastewater-based epidemiology of SARS-CoV-2 might be substantial. dPCR results in IWW were in line with the results found with qPCR. On average, the N2-gene fragment showed high in-sample stability in IWW for 10 days of storage at 4 °C. Between-sample variability was substantial due to the low native concentrations in IWW. Additionally, the E-gene fragment proved to be less stable compared to the N2-gene fragment and showed higher variability. Freezing the IWW samples resulted in a 10-fold decay of loads of the N2- and E-gene fragment in IWW.

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