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1.
Preprint | EuropePMC | ID: ppcovidwho-297075

ABSTRACT

Due to numerous mutations in the spike protein, the SARS-CoV-2 variant of concern Omicron (B.1.1.529) raises serious concerns since it may significantly limit the antibody-mediated neutralization and increase the risk of reinfections. While a rapid increase in the number of cases is being reported worldwide, until now there has been uncertainty about the efficacy of vaccinations and monoclonal antibodies. Our in vitro findings using authentic SARS-CoV-2 variants indicate that in contrast to the currently circulating Delta variant, the neutralization efficacy of vaccine-elicited sera against Omicron was severely reduced highlighting T-cell mediated immunity as essential barrier to prevent severe COVID-19. Since SARS-CoV-2 Omicron was resistant to casirivimab and imdevimab genotyping of SARS-CoV-2 may be needed before initiating mAb treatment. Variant-specific vaccines and mAb agents may be required to treat Omicron and other emerging variants of concern.

2.
J Clin Med ; 10(24)2021 Dec 08.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1554887

ABSTRACT

Testing for Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) by RT-PCR is a vital public health tool in the pandemic. Self-collected samples are increasingly used as an alternative to nasopharyngeal swabs. Several studies suggested that they are sufficiently sensitive to be a useful alternative. However, there are limited data directly comparing several different types of self-collected materials to determine which material is preferable. A total of 102 predominantly symptomatic adults with a confirmed SARS-CoV-2 infection self-collected native saliva, a tongue swab, a mid-turbinate nasal swab, saliva obtained by chewing a cotton pad and gargle lavage, within 48 h of initial diagnosis. Sample collection was unsupervised. Both native saliva and gargling with tap water had high diagnostic sensitivity of 92.8% and 89.1%, respectively. Nasal swabs had a sensitivity of 85.1%, which was not significantly inferior to saliva (p = 0.092), but 16.6% of participants reported they had difficult in self-collection of this sample. A tongue swab and saliva obtained by chewing a cotton pad had a significantly lower sensitivity of 74.2% and 70.2%, respectively. Diagnostic sensitivity was not related to the presence of clinical symptoms or to age. When comparing self-collected specimens from different material, saliva, gargle lavage or mid-turbinate nasal swabs may be considered for most symptomatic patients. However, complementary experiments are required to verify that differences in performance observed among the five sampling modes were not attributed to collection impairment.

3.
J Infect Dis ; 224(7): 1109-1114, 2021 10 13.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1470152

ABSTRACT

Whether monoclonal antibodies are able to neutralize severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) variants of concern has been investigated using pseudoviruses. In this study we show that bamlanivimab, casirivimab, and imdevimab efficiently neutralize authentic SARS-CoV-2, including variant B.1.1.7 (alpha), but variants B.1.351 (beta) and P.2 (zeta) were resistant against bamlanivimab and partially resistant to casirivimab. Whether antibodies are able to neutralize severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) variantshas been investigated using pseudoviruses. We show that authentic SARS-CoV-2 carrying E484K were resistant against bamlanivimab and less susceptible to casirivimab, convalescent and vaccine-elicited sera.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/virology , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Amino Acid Substitution , Antibodies, Monoclonal, Humanized/immunology , Antibodies, Viral/immunology , COVID-19/immunology , Humans , Mutation, Missense , Neutralization Tests
5.
J Clin Med ; 10(10)2021 May 14.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1234752

ABSTRACT

The plaque reduction neutralization test (PRNT) is a preferred method for the detection of functional, SARS-CoV-2 specific neutralizing antibodies from serum samples. Alternatively, surrogate enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays (ELISAs) using ACE2 as the target structure for the detection of neutralization-competent antibodies have been developed. They are capable of high throughput, have a short turnaround time, and can be performed under standard laboratory safety conditions. However, there are very limited data on their clinical performance and how they compare to the PRNT. We evaluated three surrogate immunoassays (GenScript SARS-CoV-2 Surrogate Virus Neutralization Test Kit (GenScript Biotech, Piscataway Township, NJ, USA), the TECO® SARS-CoV-2 Neutralization Antibody Assay (TECOmedical AG, Sissach, Switzerland), and the Leinco COVID-19 ImmunoRank™ Neutralization MICRO-ELISA (Leinco Technologies, Fenton, MO, USA)) and one automated quantitative SARS-CoV-2 Spike protein-based IgG antibody assay (Abbott GmbH, Wiesbaden, Germany) by testing 78 clinical samples, including several follow-up samples of six BNT162b2 (BioNTech/Pfizer, Mainz, Germany/New York, NY, USA) vaccinated individuals. Using the PRNT as a reference method, the overall sensitivity of the examined assays ranged from 93.8 to 100% and specificity ranged from 73.9 to 91.3%. Weighted kappa demonstrated a substantial to almost perfect agreement. The findings of our study allow these assays to be considered when a PRNT is not available. However, the latter still should be the preferred choice. For optimal clinical performance, the cut-off value of the TECO assay should be individually adapted.

6.
Microorganisms ; 9(4)2021 Apr 02.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1167666

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: International travel is a major driver of the introduction and spread of SARS-CoV-2. AIM: To investigate SARS-CoV-2 genetic diversity in the region of a major transport hub in Germany, we characterized the viral sequence diversity of the SARS-CoV-2 variants circulating in Frankfurt am Main, the city with the largest airport in Germany, from the end of October to the end of December 2020. METHODS: In total, we recovered 136 SARS-CoV-2 genomes from nasopharyngeal swab samples. We isolated 104 isolates that were grown in cell culture and RNA from the recovered viruses and subjected them to full-genome sequence analysis. In addition, 32 nasopharyngeal swab samples were directly sequenced. RESULTS AND CONCLUSION: We found 28 different lineages of SARS-CoV-2 circulating during the study period, including the variant of concern B.1.1.7 (Δ69/70, N501Y). Six of the lineages had not previously been observed in Germany. We detected the spike protein (S) deletion Δ69/Δ70 in 15% of all sequences, a four base pair (bp) deletion (in 2.9% of sequences) and a single bp deletion (in 0.7% of sequences) in ORF3a, leading to ORF3a truncations. In four sequences (2.9%), an amino acid deletion at position 210 in S was identified. In a single sample (0.7%), both a 9 bp deletion in ORF1ab and a 7 bp deletion in ORF7a were identified. One sequence in lineage B.1.1.70 had an N501Y substitution while lacking the Δ69/70 in S. The high diversity of sequences observed over two months in Frankfurt am Main highlights the persisting need for continuous SARS-CoV-2 surveillance using full-genome sequencing, particularly in cities with international airport connections.

7.
J Virol Methods ; 291: 114102, 2021 05.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1085514

ABSTRACT

Multiple nucleic acid amplification tests (NATs) are available for the detection of SARS-CoV-2 in clinical specimens, including Laboratory Developed Tests (LDT), commercial high-throughput assays and point-of-care tests. Some assays were just recently released and there is limited data on their clinical performance. We compared the Xpert® Xpress SARS-CoV-2 (Cepheid) and Vivalytic VRI Panel (Schnelltest COVID-19) (Bosch) point-of-care tests with four high-throughput assays and one LDT, the cobas® SARS-CoV-2 test (Roche), the Allplex™ 2019-nCoV Assay (Seegene), the SARS-CoV-2 AMP (Abbott) Kit, the RealStar® SARS-CoV-2 RT-PCR Kit 1.0 (altona) as well as an assay using a SARS-CoV-2 RdRP gene specific primer and probe set. Samples from patients with confirmed SARS-CoV-2 infection, samples from the first and second SARS-CoV-2-PCR External Quality Assessment (EQA) (INSTAND e.V.) and a 10-fold serial dilution of a SARS-CoV-2 cell culture (SARS-CoV-2 Frankfurt 1) supernatant were examined. We determined that the NAT assays examined had a high specificity. Assays using the N gene as target demonstrated the highest sensitivity in the serial dilution panel, while all examined NAT assays showed a comparable sensitivity when testing clinical and EQA samples.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Testing/methods , COVID-19/diagnosis , High-Throughput Screening Assays/methods , Point-of-Care Testing , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , COVID-19 Nucleic Acid Testing/methods , Clinical Laboratory Techniques/methods , Humans , Nucleic Acid Amplification Techniques/methods , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Sensitivity and Specificity
8.
J Clin Med ; 10(2)2021 Jan 17.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1076627

ABSTRACT

Due to globally rising numbers of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) infections, resources for real-time reverse-transcription polymerase chain reaction (rRT-PCR)-based testing have been exhausted. In order to meet the demands of testing and reduce transmission, SARS-CoV-2 antigen-detecting rapid diagnostic tests (Ag-RDTs) are being considered. These tests are fast, inexpensive, and simple to use, but whether they detect potentially infectious cases has not been well studied. We evaluated three lateral flow assays (RIDA®QUICK SARS-CoV-2 Antigen (R-Biopharm), SARS-CoV-2 Rapid Antigen Test (Roche)), and NADAL® COVID-19 Ag Test (Nal von Minden GmbH, Regensburg, Germany) and one microfluidic immunofluorescence assay (SARS-CoV-2 Ag Test (LumiraDx GmbH, Cologne, Germany)) using 100 clinical samples. Diagnostic rRT-PCR and cell culture testing as a marker for infectivity were performed in parallel. The overall Ag-RDT sensitivity for rRT-PCR-positive samples ranged from 24.3% to 50%. However, for samples with a viral load of more than 6 log10 RNA copies/mL (22/100), typically seen in infectious individuals, Ag-RDT positivity was between 81.8% and 100%. Only 51.6% (33/64) of the rRT-PCR-positive samples were infectious in cell culture. In contrast, three Ag-RDTs demonstrated a more significant correlation with cell culture infectivity (61.8-82.4%). Our findings suggest that large-scale SARS-CoV-2 Ag-RDT-based testing can be considered for detecting potentially infective individuals and reducing the virus spread.

9.
J Clin Med ; 10(2)2021 Jan 17.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1031144

ABSTRACT

Due to globally rising numbers of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) infections, resources for real-time reverse-transcription polymerase chain reaction (rRT-PCR)-based testing have been exhausted. In order to meet the demands of testing and reduce transmission, SARS-CoV-2 antigen-detecting rapid diagnostic tests (Ag-RDTs) are being considered. These tests are fast, inexpensive, and simple to use, but whether they detect potentially infectious cases has not been well studied. We evaluated three lateral flow assays (RIDA®QUICK SARS-CoV-2 Antigen (R-Biopharm), SARS-CoV-2 Rapid Antigen Test (Roche)), and NADAL® COVID-19 Ag Test (Nal von Minden GmbH, Regensburg, Germany) and one microfluidic immunofluorescence assay (SARS-CoV-2 Ag Test (LumiraDx GmbH, Cologne, Germany)) using 100 clinical samples. Diagnostic rRT-PCR and cell culture testing as a marker for infectivity were performed in parallel. The overall Ag-RDT sensitivity for rRT-PCR-positive samples ranged from 24.3% to 50%. However, for samples with a viral load of more than 6 log10 RNA copies/mL (22/100), typically seen in infectious individuals, Ag-RDT positivity was between 81.8% and 100%. Only 51.6% (33/64) of the rRT-PCR-positive samples were infectious in cell culture. In contrast, three Ag-RDTs demonstrated a more significant correlation with cell culture infectivity (61.8-82.4%). Our findings suggest that large-scale SARS-CoV-2 Ag-RDT-based testing can be considered for detecting potentially infective individuals and reducing the virus spread.

10.
J Med Virol ; 92(10): 2243-2247, 2020 10.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-935138

ABSTRACT

Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) serological assays are urgently needed for rapid diagnosis, contact tracing, and for epidemiological studies. So far, there is limited data on how commercially available tests perform with real patient samples, and if positive tested samples show neutralizing abilities. Focusing on IgG antibodies, we demonstrate the performance of two enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA) assays (Euroimmun SARS-CoV-2 IgG and Vircell COVID-19 ELISA IgG) in comparison to one lateral flow assay (FaStep COVID-19 IgG/IgM Rapid Test Device) and two in-house developed assays (immunofluorescence assay [IFA] and plaque reduction neutralization test [PRNT]). We tested follow up serum/plasma samples of individuals polymerase chain reaction-diagnosed with COVID-19. Most of the SARS-CoV-2 samples were from individuals with moderate to the severe clinical course, who required an in-patient hospital stay. For all examined assays, the sensitivity ranged from 58.8 to 76.5% for the early phase of infection (days 5-9) and from 93.8% to 100% for the later period (days 10-18).


Subject(s)
Antibodies, Viral/blood , COVID-19/diagnosis , Immunoglobulin G/blood , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Adult , COVID-19/blood , COVID-19/immunology , COVID-19/virology , Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay/standards , Female , Fluorescent Antibody Technique, Indirect/standards , Hospitalization , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Neutralization Tests/standards , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity , Sensitivity and Specificity , Severity of Illness Index , Time Factors
12.
J Clin Virol ; 129: 104480, 2020 08.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-584207

ABSTRACT

Serological SARS-CoV-2 assays are urgently needed for diagnosis, contact tracing and for epidemiological studies. So far, there is limited data on how recently commercially available, high-throughput immunoassays, using different recombinant SARS-CoV-2 antigens, perform with clinical samples. Focusing on IgG and total antibodies, we demonstrate the performance of four automated immunoassays (Abbott Architect™ i2000 (N protein-based)), Roche cobas™ e 411 analyzer (N protein-based, not differentiating between IgA, IgM or IgG antibodies), LIAISON®XL platform (S1 and S2 protein-based), VIRCLIA® automation system (S1 and N protein-based) in comparison to two ELISA assays (Euroimmun SARS-CoV-2 IgG (S1 protein-based) and Virotech SARS-CoV-2 IgG ELISA (N protein-based)) and an in-house developed plaque reduction neutralization test (PRNT). We tested follow up serum/plasma samples of individuals PCR-diagnosed with COVID-19. When calculating the overall sensitivity, in a time frame of 49 days after first PCR-positivity, the PRNT as gold standard, showed the highest sensitivity with 93.3% followed by the dual-target assay for the VIRCLIA® automation system with 89%. The overall sensitivity in the group of N protein-based assays ranged from 66.7 to 77.8% and in the S protein-based-assays from 71.1 to 75.6%. Five follow-up samples of three individuals were only detected in either an S and/or N protein-based assay, indicating an individual different immune response to SARS-CoV-2 and the influence of the used assay in the detection of IgG antibodies. This should be further analysed. The specificity of the examined assays was ≥ 97%. However, because of the low or unknown prevalence of SARS-CoV-2, the examined assays in this study are currently primarily eligible for epidemiological investigations, as they have limited information in individual testing.


Subject(s)
Antibodies, Viral/blood , Betacoronavirus/immunology , Clinical Laboratory Techniques/methods , Coronavirus Infections/diagnosis , High-Throughput Screening Assays/methods , Immunoglobulin G/blood , Pneumonia, Viral/diagnosis , Serologic Tests/methods , Automation, Laboratory/methods , COVID-19 , COVID-19 Testing , Humans , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2 , Sensitivity and Specificity
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