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Preprint in English | medRxiv | ID: ppmedrxiv-21261116


BackgroundThere is an urgent need for fair and equitable access to safe and effective vaccines to end the COVID-19 pandemic. Shortages in reagents and vaccines are a major challenge, as well as limited knowledge on dose response relationship with mRNA COVID-19 vaccines. We explored intradermal fractional dose administration of a mRNA SARS-CoV-2/COVID-19 vaccine as a potential dose-sparing strategy. MethodsWe conducted a proof-of-concept, dose-escalation, open-label, randomised-controlled vaccine trial (IDSCOVA) in healthy adults aged 18-30 years. To test initial safety, ten participants received 10 {micro}g mRNA-1273 vaccine through intradermal injection at day 1 and 29. Following a favourable safety review, thirty participants were 1:1 randomised to receive 20 {micro}g mRNA-1273 either intradermally or intramuscularly. The primary endpoint was tolerability and safety. The secondary endpoint was seroconversion and specific IgG concentration against SARS-CoV-2 spike S1 and Receptor Binding Domain (RBD) after the second dose at day 43. We compared results to two historical cohorts of non-hospitalised COVID-19 patients and vaccinated individuals. FindingsThirty-eight of forty included participants (median age 25 years) completed the study. There were no serious adverse events. Self-reported local adverse reactions after intradermal delivery were mild, both in the 10 {micro}g and the 20 {micro}g group. In the higher dose group, systemic adverse reactions were more common, but still well tolerated. All 38 participants mounted substantially higher IgG-anti-S1 and IgG-anti-RBD concentrations at day 43 than COVID-19 controls. At day 43, anti-S1 (95% CI) was 1,696 (1,309-2,198) BAU/mL for the 10 {micro}g intradermal group, 1,406 (953{middle dot}5-2,074) BAU/mL for the 20 {micro}g intramuscular group and 2,057 (1,421-2,975) BAU/mL for the 20 {micro}g intradermal group. Anti-S1 was 107{middle dot}2 (63-182{middle dot}2) BAU/mL for the convalescent plasma control group and 1,558 (547{middle dot}8-4,433) BAU/mL for the individuals vaccinated with 100 {micro}g mRNA-1273. InterpretationIntradermal administration of 10 {micro}g and 20 {micro}g mRNA-1273 vaccine was well tolerated and safe, and resulted in a robust antibody response. Intradermal vaccination has the potential to be deployed for vaccine dose-sparing. FundingThe trial was supported by crowdfunding (Wake Up to Corona).

Preprint in English | medRxiv | ID: ppmedrxiv-21251712


BackgroundRapid and accurate detection of SARS-CoV-2 infected individuals is crucial for taking timely measures and minimizing the risk of further SARS-CoV-2 spread. We aimed to assess the accuracy of exhaled breath analysis by electronic nose (eNose) for the discrimination between individuals with and without a SARS-CoV-2 infection. MethodsThis was a prospective real-world study of individuals presenting to public test facility for SARS-CoV-2 detection by molecular amplification tests (TMA or RT-PCR). After sampling of a combined throat/nasopharyngeal swab, breath profiles were obtained using a cloud-connected eNose. Data-analysis involved advanced signal processing and statistics based on independent t-tests followed by linear discriminant and ROC analysis. Data from the training set were tested in a validation, a replication and an asymptomatic set. FindingsFor the analysis 4510 individuals were available. In the training set (35 individuals with; 869 without SARS-CoV-2), the eNose sensors were combined into a composite biomarker with a ROC-AUC of 0.947 (CI:0.928-0.967). These results were confirmed in the validation set (0.957; CI:0.942-0.971, n=904) and externally validated in the replication set (0.937; CI:0.926-0.947, n=1948) and the asymptomatic set (0.909; CI:0.879-0.938, n=754). Selecting a cut-off value of 0.30 in the training set resulted in a sensitivity/specificity of 100/78, >99/84, 98/82% in the validation, replication and asymptomatic set, respectively. InterpretationeNose represents a quick and non-invasive method to reliably rule out SARS-CoV-2 infection in public health test facilities and can be used as a screening test to define who needs an additional confirmation test. FundingMinistry of Health, Welfare and Sport Research in contextO_ST_ABSEvidence before this studyC_ST_ABSElectronic nose technology is an emerging diagnostic tool for diagnosis and phenotyping of a wide variety of diseases, including inflammatory respiratory diseases, lung cancer, and infections. As of Feb 13, 2021, our search of PubMed using keywords "COVID-19" OR "SARS-CoV-2" AND "eNose" OR "electronic nose" OR "exhaled breath analysis" yielded 4 articles (1-4) that have assessed test characteristics of electronic nose to diagnose COVID-19. In these small studies the obtained signals using sensor-based technologies, two-dimensional gas chromatography and time-of-flight mass spectrometry, or proton transfer reaction time-of-flight mass spectrometry, provided adequate discrimination between patients with and without COVID-19. Added value of this studyWe prospectively studied the accuracy of exhaled breath analysis by electronic nose (eNose) to diagnose or rule out a SARS-CoV-2 infection in individuals with and without symptoms presenting to a public test facility. In the training set with 904 individuals, the eNose sensors were combined into a composite biomarker with a ROC-AUC of 0.948. In three independent validation cohorts of 3606 individuals in total, eNose was able to reliably rule out SARS-CoV-2 infection in 70-75% of individuals, with a sensitivity ranging between 98-100%, and a specificity between 78-84%. No association was found between cycle thresholds values, as semi-quantitative measure of viral load, and eNose variables. Implications of all the available evidenceThe available findings, including those from our study, support the use of eNose technology to distinguish between individuals with and without a SARS-CoV-2 infection with high accuracy. Exhaled breath analysis by eNose represents a quick and non-invasive method to reliably rule out a SARS-CoV-2 infection in public health test facilities. The results can be made available within seconds and can therefore be used as screening instrument. The eNose can reliably rule out a SARS-CoV-2 infection, eliminating the need for additional time-consuming, stressful, and expensive diagnostic tests in the majority of individuals.