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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.
Cell ; 2022 Mar 17.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1748149

ABSTRACT

The rapid spread of the SARS-CoV-2 Omicron (B.1.1.529) variant, including in highly vaccinated populations, has raised important questions about the efficacy of current vaccines. In this study, we show that the mRNA-based BNT162b2 vaccine and the adenovirus-vector-based Ad26.COV2.S vaccine provide robust protection against high-dose challenge with the SARS-CoV-2 Omicron variant in cynomolgus macaques. We vaccinated 30 macaques with homologous and heterologous prime-boost regimens with BNT162b2 and Ad26.COV2.S. Following Omicron challenge, vaccinated macaques demonstrated rapid control of virus in bronchoalveolar lavage, and most vaccinated animals also controlled virus in nasal swabs. However, 4 vaccinated animals that had moderate Omicron-neutralizing antibody titers and undetectable Omicron CD8+ T cell responses failed to control virus in the upper respiratory tract. Moreover, virologic control correlated with both antibody and T cell responses. These data suggest that both humoral and cellular immune responses contribute to vaccine protection against a highly mutated SARS-CoV-2 variant.

3.
Med (N Y) ; 3(4): 262-268.e4, 2022 Apr 08.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1747689

ABSTRACT

Background: The severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) Omicron (B.1.1.529) variant has proven to be highly transmissible and has outcompeted the Delta variant in many regions of the world. Early reports have also suggested that Omicron may result in less severe clinical disease in humans. Here, we show that Omicron is less pathogenic than prior SARS-CoV-2 variants in Syrian golden hamsters. Methods: Hamsters were inoculated with either SARS-CoV-2 Omicron or other SARS-CoV-2 variants. Animals were followed for weight loss, and upper and lower respiratory tract tissues were assessed for viral loads and histopathology. Findings: Infection of hamsters with the SARS-CoV-2 WA1/2020, Alpha, Beta, or Delta strains led to 4%-10% weight loss by day 4 and 10%-17% weight loss by day 6. In contrast, infection of hamsters with two different Omicron challenge stocks did not result in any detectable weight loss, even at high challenge doses. Omicron infection led to substantial viral replication in both the upper and lower respiratory tracts but demonstrated lower viral loads in lung parenchyma and reduced pulmonary pathology compared with WA1/2020 infection. Conclusions: These data suggest that the SARS-CoV-2 Omicron variant may result in robust upper respiratory tract infection, but less severe lower respiratory tract clinical disease, compared with prior SARS-CoV-2 variants. Funding: Funding for this study was provided by NIH grant CA260476, the Massachusetts Consortium for Pathogen Readiness, the Ragon Institute, and the Musk Foundation.

4.
Sci Adv ; 8(11): eabl6015, 2022 Mar 18.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1745843

ABSTRACT

Authorized vaccines against SARS-CoV-2 remain less available in low- and middle-income countries due to insufficient supply, high costs, and storage requirements. Global immunity could still benefit from new vaccines using widely available, safe adjuvants, such as alum and protein subunits, suited to low-cost production in existing manufacturing facilities. Here, a clinical-stage vaccine candidate comprising a SARS-CoV-2 receptor binding domain-hepatitis B surface antigen virus-like particle elicited protective immunity in cynomolgus macaques. Titers of neutralizing antibodies (>104) induced by this candidate were above the range of protection for other licensed vaccines in nonhuman primates. Including CpG 1018 did not significantly improve the immunological responses. Vaccinated animals challenged with SARS-CoV-2 showed reduced median viral loads in bronchoalveolar lavage (~3.4 log10) and nasal mucosa (~2.9 log10) versus sham controls. These data support the potential benefit of this design for a low-cost modular vaccine platform for SARS-CoV-2 and other variants of concern or betacoronaviruses.

5.
Med (N Y) ; 3(3): 188-203.e4, 2022 Mar 11.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1740045

ABSTRACT

Background: Human monoclonal antibody (mAb) treatments are promising for COVID-19 prevention or therapy. The pre-exposure prophylactic efficacy of neutralizing antibodies that are engineered with mutations to extend their persistence in human serum and the neutralizing antibody titer in serum required for protection against SARS-CoV-2 infection remain poorly characterized. Methods: The Fc region of two neutralizing mAbs (COV2-2130 and COV2-2381) targeting non-overlapping epitopes on the receptor binding domain of SARS-CoV-2 spike protein was engineered to extend their persistence in humans and reduce interactions with Fc gamma receptors. We assessed protection by individual antibodies or a combination of the two antibodies (designated ADM03820) given prophylactically by an intravenous or intramuscular route in a non-human primate (NHP) model of SARS-CoV-2 infection. Findings: Passive transfer of individual mAbs or ADM03820 conferred virological protection in the NHP respiratory tract in a dose-dependent manner, and ADM03820 potently neutralized SARS-CoV-2 variants of concern in vitro. We defined a protective serum-neutralizing antibody titer and concentration in NHPs for passively transferred human antibodies that acted by direct viral neutralization. Conclusions: In summary, we demonstrate that neutralizing antibodies with extended half-life and lacking Fc-mediated effector functions are efficient for pre-exposure prophylaxis of SARS-CoV-2 infection in NHPs. These results support clinical development of ADM03820 for COVID-19 prevention. Funding: This research was supported by a contract from the JPEO-CBRND (W911QY-20-9-003, 20-05); the Joint Sciences and Technology Office and Joint Program Executive Office (MCDC-16-01-002 JSTO, JPEO); a DARPA grant (HR0011-18-2-0001); an NIH grant (R01 AI157155); and the 2019 Future Insight Prize from Merck KGaA.

6.
PLoS Pathog ; 17(9): e1009701, 2021 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1701737

ABSTRACT

The speed of development, versatility and efficacy of mRNA-based vaccines have been amply demonstrated in the case of SARS-CoV-2. DNA vaccines represent an important alternative since they induce both humoral and cellular immune responses in animal models and in human trials. We tested the immunogenicity and protective efficacy of DNA-based vaccine regimens expressing different prefusion-stabilized Wuhan-Hu-1 SARS-CoV-2 Spike antigens upon intramuscular injection followed by electroporation in rhesus macaques. Different Spike DNA vaccine regimens induced antibodies that potently neutralized SARS-CoV-2 in vitro and elicited robust T cell responses. The antibodies recognized and potently neutralized a panel of different Spike variants including Alpha, Delta, Epsilon, Eta and A.23.1, but to a lesser extent Beta and Gamma. The DNA-only vaccine regimens were compared to a regimen that included co-immunization of Spike DNA and protein in the same anatomical site, the latter of which showed significant higher antibody responses. All vaccine regimens led to control of SARS-CoV-2 intranasal/intratracheal challenge and absence of virus dissemination to the lower respiratory tract. Vaccine-induced binding and neutralizing antibody titers and antibody-dependent cellular phagocytosis inversely correlated with transient virus levels in the nasal mucosa. Importantly, the Spike DNA+Protein co-immunization regimen induced the highest binding and neutralizing antibodies and showed the strongest control against SARS-CoV-2 challenge in rhesus macaques.


Subject(s)
Macaca mulatta , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/immunology , Vaccines, DNA , Animals , COVID-19/immunology , COVID-19/therapy , Cohort Studies , DNA, Viral/immunology , Disease Models, Animal , Female , Immunization, Passive , Leukocytes, Mononuclear/immunology , Mice , RNA, Messenger/analysis , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , T-Lymphocytes/immunology , Vaccines, DNA/administration & dosage , Vaccines, DNA/immunology
7.
Sci Transl Med ; 14(638): eabm4996, 2022 Mar 30.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1705843

ABSTRACT

Ad26.COV2.S has demonstrated durability and clinical efficacy against symptomatic COVID-19 in humans. In this study, we report the correlates of durability of humoral and cellular immune responses in 20 rhesus macaques immunized with single-shot Ad26.COV2.S and the immunogenicity of a booster shot at 8 to 10 months after the initial immunization. Ad26.COV2.S elicited durable binding and neutralizing antibodies as well as memory B cells and long-lived bone marrow plasma cells. Innate immune responses and bone marrow plasma cell responses correlated with durable antibody responses. After Ad26.COV2.S boost immunization, binding and neutralizing antibody responses against multiple SARS-CoV-2 variants increased 31- to 69-fold and 23- to 43-fold, respectively, compared with preboost concentrations. Antigen-specific B cell and T cell responses also increased substantially after the boost immunization. Boosting with a modified Ad26.COV2.S.351 vaccine expressing the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein from the beta variant led to largely comparable responses with slightly higher beta- and omicron-specific humoral immune responses. These data demonstrate that a late boost with Ad26.COV2.S or Ad26.COV2.S.351 resulted in a marked increase in humoral and cellular immune responses that were highly cross-reactive across multiple SARS-CoV-2 variants in rhesus macaques.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Animals , Antibodies, Neutralizing , Antibodies, Viral , COVID-19/prevention & control , COVID-19 Vaccines , Humans , Immunity, Humoral , Macaca mulatta , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus , Vaccination
8.
NPJ Vaccines ; 7(1): 7, 2022 Jan 21.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1641964

ABSTRACT

Second-generation COVID-19 vaccines could contribute to establish protective immunity against SARS-CoV-2 and its emerging variants. We developed COH04S1, a synthetic multiantigen modified vaccinia Ankara-based SARS-CoV-2 vaccine that co-expresses spike and nucleocapsid antigens. Here, we report COH04S1 vaccine efficacy in animal models. We demonstrate that intramuscular or intranasal vaccination of Syrian hamsters with COH04S1 induces robust Th1-biased antigen-specific humoral immunity and cross-neutralizing antibodies (NAb) and protects against weight loss, lower respiratory tract infection, and lung injury following intranasal SARS-CoV-2 challenge. Moreover, we demonstrate that single-dose or two-dose vaccination of non-human primates with COH04S1 induces robust antigen-specific binding antibodies, NAb, and Th1-biased T cells, protects against both upper and lower respiratory tract infection following intranasal/intratracheal SARS-CoV-2 challenge, and triggers potent post-challenge anamnestic antiviral responses. These results demonstrate COH04S1-mediated vaccine protection in animal models through different vaccination routes and dose regimens, complementing ongoing investigation of this multiantigen SARS-CoV-2 vaccine in clinical trials.

9.
NPJ Vaccines ; 7(1): 2, 2022 Jan 10.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1616986

ABSTRACT

SARS-CoV-2 Spike-specific binding and neutralizing antibodies, elicited either by natural infection or vaccination, have emerged as potential correlates of protection. An important question, however, is whether vaccine-elicited antibodies in humans provide direct, functional protection from SARS-CoV-2 infection and disease. In this study, we explored directly the protective efficacy of human antibodies elicited by Ad26.COV2.S vaccination by adoptive transfer studies. IgG from plasma of Ad26.COV2.S vaccinated individuals was purified and transferred into naïve golden Syrian hamster recipients, followed by intra-nasal challenge of the hamsters with SARS-CoV-2. IgG purified from Ad26.COV2.S-vaccinated individuals provided dose-dependent protection in the recipient hamsters from weight loss following challenge. In contrast, IgG purified from placebo recipients provided no protection in this adoptive transfer model. Attenuation of weight loss correlated with binding and neutralizing antibody titers of the passively transferred IgG. This study suggests that Ad26.COV2.S-elicited antibodies in humans are mechanistically involved in protection against SARS-CoV-2.

10.
Frontiers in immunology ; 12, 2021.
Article in English | EuropePMC | ID: covidwho-1610187

ABSTRACT

Infection with the novel coronavirus, SARS-CoV-2, results in pneumonia and other respiratory symptoms as well as pathologies at diverse anatomical sites. An outstanding question is whether these diverse pathologies are due to replication of the virus in these anatomical compartments and how and when the virus reaches those sites. To answer these outstanding questions and study the spatiotemporal dynamics of SARS-CoV-2 infection a method for tracking viral spread in vivo is needed. We developed a novel, fluorescently labeled, antibody-based in vivo probe system using the anti-spike monoclonal antibody CR3022 and demonstrated that it could successfully identify sites of SARS-CoV-2 infection in a rhesus macaque model of COVID-19. Our results showed that the fluorescent signal from our antibody-based probe could differentiate whole lungs of macaques infected for 9 days from those infected for 2 or 3 days. Additionally, the probe signal corroborated the frequency and density of infected cells in individual tissue blocks from infected macaques. These results provide proof of concept for the use of in vivo antibody-based probes to study SARS-CoV-2 infection dynamics in rhesus macaques.

11.
Cell ; 185(1): 113-130.e15, 2022 01 06.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1588150

ABSTRACT

mRNA-1273 vaccine efficacy against SARS-CoV-2 Delta wanes over time; however, there are limited data on the impact of durability of immune responses on protection. Here, we immunized rhesus macaques and assessed immune responses over 1 year in blood and upper and lower airways. Serum neutralizing titers to Delta were 280 and 34 reciprocal ID50 at weeks 6 (peak) and 48 (challenge), respectively. Antibody-binding titers also decreased in bronchoalveolar lavage (BAL). Four days after Delta challenge, the virus was unculturable in BAL, and subgenomic RNA declined by ∼3-log10 compared with control animals. In nasal swabs, sgRNA was reduced by 1-log10, and the virus remained culturable. Anamnestic antibodies (590-fold increased titer) but not T cell responses were detected in BAL by day 4 post-challenge. mRNA-1273-mediated protection in the lungs is durable but delayed and potentially dependent on anamnestic antibody responses. Rapid and sustained protection in upper and lower airways may eventually require a boost.

12.
NPJ Vaccines ; 6(1): 156, 2021 Dec 20.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1585846

ABSTRACT

New generation plasmid DNA vaccines may be a safe, fast and simple emergency vaccine platform for preparedness against emerging viral pathogens. Applying platform optimization strategies, we tested the pre-clinical immunogenicity and protective effect of a candidate DNA plasmid vaccine specific for severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2). The DNA vaccine induced spike-specific binding IgG and neutralizing antibodies in mice, rabbits, and rhesus macaques together with robust Th1 dominant cellular responses in small animals. Intradermal and intramuscular needle-free administration of the DNA vaccine yielded comparable immune responses. In a vaccination-challenge study of rhesus macaques, the vaccine demonstrated protection from viral replication in the lungs following intranasal and intratracheal inoculation with SARS-CoV-2. In conclusion, the candidate plasmid DNA vaccine encoding the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein is immunogenic in different models and confers protection against lung infection in nonhuman primates. Further evaluation of this DNA vaccine candidate in clinical trials is warranted.

13.
Viruses ; 13(12)2021 12 04.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1554793

ABSTRACT

SARS-CoV-2 pathogenesis, vaccine, and therapeutic studies rely on the use of animals challenged with highly pathogenic virus stocks produced in cell cultures. Ideally, these virus stocks should be genetically and functionally similar to the original clinical isolate, retaining wild-type properties to be reliably used in animal model studies. It is well-established that SARS-CoV-2 isolates serially passaged on Vero cell lines accumulate mutations and deletions in the furin cleavage site; however, these can be eliminated when passaged on Calu-3 lung epithelial cell lines, as presented in this study. As numerous stocks of SARS-CoV-2 variants of concern are being grown in cell cultures with the intent for use in animal models, it is essential that propagation methods generate virus stocks that are pathogenic in vivo. Here, we found that the propagation of a B.1.351 SARS-CoV-2 stock on Calu-3 cells eliminated viruses that previously accumulated mutations in the furin cleavage site. Notably, there were alternative variants that accumulated at the same nucleotide positions in virus populations grown on Calu-3 cells at multiple independent facilities. When a Calu-3-derived B.1.351 virus stock was used to infect hamsters, the virus remained pathogenic and the Calu-3-specific variants persisted in the population. These results suggest that Calu-3-derived virus stocks are pathogenic but care should still be taken to evaluate virus stocks for newly arising mutations during propagation.


Subject(s)
SARS-CoV-2/growth & development , Serial Passage/methods , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Animals , COVID-19/virology , Cell Line, Tumor , Chlorocebus aethiops , Cricetinae , Furin/metabolism , Humans , Mutation , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity , Vero Cells
14.
Sci Transl Med ; 13(618): eabj2641, 2021 Nov 03.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1546435

ABSTRACT

Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) variants that result in increased transmissibility and partial evasion of neutralizing antibodies have recently emerged. Whether natural immunity induced by the original SARS-CoV-2 WA1/2020 strain protects against rechallenge with these SARS-CoV-2 variants remains a critical unresolved question. In this study, we show that natural immunity induced by the WA1/2020 strain leads to partial but incomplete protection against the SARS-CoV-2 variants B.1.1.7 (alpha) and B.1.351 (beta) in rhesus macaques. We challenged rhesus macaques with B.1.1.7 and B.1.351 and showed that infection with these variants resulted in high viral replication in the upper and lower respiratory tract. We then infected rhesus macaques with the WA1/2020 strain and rechallenged them on day 35 with the WA1/2020, B.1.1.7, or B.1.351 variants. Natural immunity to WA1/2020 led to robust protection against rechallenge with WA1/2020 but only partial protection against rechallenge with B.1.351. An intermediate degree of protection was observed in rhesus macaques against rechallenge with B.1.1.7. These data demonstrate partial but incomplete protective efficacy of natural immunity induced by WA1/2020 against SARS-CoV-2 variants of concern. Our findings have important implications for both vaccination and public health strategies in the context of emerging SARS-CoV-2 variants of concern.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Animals , Antibodies, Neutralizing , Antibodies, Viral , Humans , Macaca mulatta , Reinfection
15.
Nature ; 601(7893): 410-414, 2022 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1521758

ABSTRACT

The CVnCoV (CureVac) mRNA vaccine for severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2) was recently evaluated in a phase 2b/3 efficacy trial in humans1. CV2CoV is a second-generation mRNA vaccine containing non-modified nucleosides but with optimized non-coding regions and enhanced antigen expression. Here we report the results of a head-to-head comparison of the immunogenicity and protective efficacy of CVnCoV and CV2CoV in non-human primates. We immunized 18 cynomolgus macaques with two doses of 12 µg lipid nanoparticle-formulated CVnCoV or CV2CoV or with sham (n = 6 per group). Compared with CVnCoV, CV2CoV induced substantially higher titres of binding and neutralizing antibodies, memory B cell responses and T cell responses as well as more potent neutralizing antibody responses against SARS-CoV-2 variants, including the Delta variant. Moreover, CV2CoV was found to be comparably immunogenic to the BNT162b2 (Pfizer) vaccine in macaques. Although CVnCoV provided partial protection against SARS-CoV-2 challenge, CV2CoV afforded more robust protection with markedly lower viral loads in the upper and lower respiratory tracts. Binding and neutralizing antibody titres were correlated with protective efficacy. These data demonstrate that optimization of non-coding regions can greatly improve the immunogenicity and protective efficacy of a non-modified mRNA SARS-CoV-2 vaccine in non-human primates.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Vaccines/genetics , COVID-19 Vaccines/immunology , COVID-19/prevention & control , Immunogenicity, Vaccine , Nucleosides/chemistry , Vaccines, Synthetic/genetics , Vaccines, Synthetic/immunology , /immunology , Animals , Antibodies, Neutralizing/immunology , Antibodies, Viral/immunology , COVID-19/immunology , COVID-19/virology , COVID-19 Vaccines/standards , Female , Macaca fascicularis/immunology , Male , Nucleosides/genetics , Respiratory System/immunology , Respiratory System/virology , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , T-Lymphocytes/immunology , Vaccines, Synthetic/standards , Viral Load , /standards
16.
J Virol ; 96(2): e0159921, 2022 01 26.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1494959

ABSTRACT

Live oral vaccines have been explored for their protective efficacy against respiratory viruses, particularly for adenovirus serotypes 4 and 7. The potential of a live oral vaccine against severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), however, remains unclear. In this study, we assessed the immunogenicity of live SARS-CoV-2 delivered to the gastrointestinal tract in rhesus macaques and its protective efficacy against intranasal and intratracheal SARS-CoV-2 challenge. Postpyloric administration of SARS-CoV-2 by esophagogastroduodenoscopy resulted in limited virus replication in the gastrointestinal tract and minimal to no induction of mucosal antibody titers in rectal swabs, nasal swabs, and bronchoalveolar lavage fluid. Low levels of serum neutralizing antibodies were induced and correlated with modestly diminished viral loads in nasal swabs and bronchoalveolar lavage fluid following intranasal and intratracheal SARS-CoV-2 challenge. Overall, our data show that postpyloric inoculation of live SARS-CoV-2 is weakly immunogenic and confers partial protection against respiratory SARS-CoV-2 challenge in rhesus macaques. IMPORTANCE SARS-CoV-2 remains a global threat, despite the rapid deployment but limited coverage of multiple vaccines. Alternative vaccine strategies that have favorable manufacturing timelines, greater ease of distribution, and improved coverage may offer significant public health benefits, especially in resource-limited settings. Live oral vaccines have the potential to address some of these limitations; however, no studies have yet been conducted to assess the immunogenicity and protective efficacy of a live oral vaccine against SARS-CoV-2. Here, we report that oral administration of live SARS-CoV-2 in nonhuman primates may offer prophylactic benefits, but the formulation and route of administration will require further optimization.


Subject(s)
Antibodies, Neutralizing/blood , Antibodies, Viral/blood , COVID-19 Vaccines/administration & dosage , COVID-19/prevention & control , Administration, Oral , Animals , Female , Macaca mulatta , Male
17.
Sci Transl Med ; 13(618): eabj3789, 2021 Nov 03.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1494936

ABSTRACT

Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) variants of concern have emerged and may pose a threat to both the efficacy of vaccines based on the original WA1/2020 strain and the natural immunity induced by infection with earlier SARS-CoV-2 variants. We investigated how mutations in the spike protein of circulating SARS-CoV-2 variants, which have been shown to partially evade neutralizing antibodies, affect natural and vaccine-induced immunity. We adapted a Syrian hamster model of moderate to severe clinical disease for two variant strains of SARS-CoV-2: B.1.1.7 (alpha variant) and B.1.351 (beta variant). We then assessed the protective efficacy conferred by either natural immunity from WA1/2020 infection or by vaccination with a single dose of the adenovirus serotype 26 vaccine, Ad26.COV2.S. Primary infection with the WA1/2020 strain provided potent protection against weight loss and viral replication in lungs after rechallenge with WA1/2020, B.1.1.7, or B.1.351. Ad26.COV2.S induced cross-reactive binding and neutralizing antibodies that were reduced against the B.1.351 strain compared with WA1/2020 but nevertheless still provided robust protection against B.1.351 challenge, as measured by weight loss and pathology scoring in the lungs. Together, these data support hamsters as a preclinical model to study protection against emerging variants of SARS-CoV-2 conferred by prior infection or vaccination.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Animals , COVID-19 Vaccines , Cricetinae , Humans , Vaccination
18.
NPJ Vaccines ; 6(1): 129, 2021 Oct 28.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1493109

ABSTRACT

The emergence of SARS-CoV-2 variants of concern (VOC) requires adequate coverage of vaccine protection. We evaluated whether a SARS-CoV-2 spike ferritin nanoparticle vaccine (SpFN), adjuvanted with the Army Liposomal Formulation QS21 (ALFQ), conferred protection against the Alpha (B.1.1.7), and Beta (B.1.351) VOCs in Syrian golden hamsters. SpFN-ALFQ was administered as either single or double-vaccination (0 and 4 week) regimens, using a high (10 µg) or low (0.2 µg) dose. Animals were intranasally challenged at week 11. Binding antibody responses were comparable between high- and low-dose groups. Neutralizing antibody titers were equivalent against WA1, B.1.1.7, and B.1.351 variants following two high dose vaccinations. Dose-dependent SpFN-ALFQ vaccination protected against SARS-CoV-2-induced disease and viral replication following intranasal B.1.1.7 or B.1.351 challenge, as evidenced by reduced weight loss, lung pathology, and lung and nasal turbinate viral burden. These data support the development of SpFN-ALFQ as a broadly protective, next-generation SARS-CoV-2 vaccine.

19.
Cell Rep Med ; 2(10): 100420, 2021 10 19.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1450242

ABSTRACT

Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), caused by the SARS-CoV-2 virus, has had a dramatic global impact on public health and social and economic infrastructures. Here, we assess the immunogenicity and anamnestic protective efficacy in rhesus macaques of an intradermal (i.d.)-delivered SARS-CoV-2 spike DNA vaccine, INO-4800, currently being evaluated in clinical trials. Vaccination with INO-4800 induced T cell responses and induced spike antigen and RBD binding antibodies with ADCP and ADCD activity. Sera from the animals neutralized both the D614 and G614 SARS-CoV-2 pseudotype viruses. Several months after vaccination, animals were challenged with SARS-CoV-2 resulting in rapid recall of anti-SARS-CoV-2 spike protein T cell and neutralizing antibody responses. These responses were associated with lower viral loads in the lung. These studies support the immune impact of INO-4800 for inducing both humoral and cellular arms of the adaptive immune system, which are likely important for providing durable protection against COVID-19 disease.


Subject(s)
Antibodies, Viral/blood , COVID-19 Vaccines/administration & dosage , COVID-19/prevention & control , Lung/virology , T-Lymphocytes/immunology , Animals , Antibodies, Neutralizing/blood , COVID-19 Vaccines/therapeutic use , Female , Injections, Intradermal , Macaca mulatta , Male , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/metabolism , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/immunology , Vaccines, DNA/administration & dosage , Vaccines, DNA/therapeutic use , Viral Load
20.
PLoS Pathog ; 17(9): e1009701, 2021 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1435628

ABSTRACT

The speed of development, versatility and efficacy of mRNA-based vaccines have been amply demonstrated in the case of SARS-CoV-2. DNA vaccines represent an important alternative since they induce both humoral and cellular immune responses in animal models and in human trials. We tested the immunogenicity and protective efficacy of DNA-based vaccine regimens expressing different prefusion-stabilized Wuhan-Hu-1 SARS-CoV-2 Spike antigens upon intramuscular injection followed by electroporation in rhesus macaques. Different Spike DNA vaccine regimens induced antibodies that potently neutralized SARS-CoV-2 in vitro and elicited robust T cell responses. The antibodies recognized and potently neutralized a panel of different Spike variants including Alpha, Delta, Epsilon, Eta and A.23.1, but to a lesser extent Beta and Gamma. The DNA-only vaccine regimens were compared to a regimen that included co-immunization of Spike DNA and protein in the same anatomical site, the latter of which showed significant higher antibody responses. All vaccine regimens led to control of SARS-CoV-2 intranasal/intratracheal challenge and absence of virus dissemination to the lower respiratory tract. Vaccine-induced binding and neutralizing antibody titers and antibody-dependent cellular phagocytosis inversely correlated with transient virus levels in the nasal mucosa. Importantly, the Spike DNA+Protein co-immunization regimen induced the highest binding and neutralizing antibodies and showed the strongest control against SARS-CoV-2 challenge in rhesus macaques.


Subject(s)
Macaca mulatta , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/immunology , Vaccines, DNA , Animals , COVID-19/immunology , COVID-19/therapy , Cohort Studies , DNA, Viral/immunology , Disease Models, Animal , Female , Immunization, Passive , Leukocytes, Mononuclear/immunology , Mice , RNA, Messenger/analysis , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , T-Lymphocytes/immunology , Vaccines, DNA/administration & dosage , Vaccines, DNA/immunology
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