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1.
ACS measurement science Au ; 2022.
Article in English | EuropePMC | ID: covidwho-1688311

ABSTRACT

Samples of nasopharyngeal swabs (NPS) are commonly used for the detection of SARS-CoV-2 and diagnosis of COVID-19. As an alternative, self-collection of saliva and gargle samples minimizes transmission to healthcare workers and relieves the pressure of resources and healthcare personnel during the pandemic. This study aimed to develop an enhanced method enabling simultaneous viral inactivation and RNA preservation during on-site self-collection of saliva and gargle samples. Our method involves the addition of saliva or gargle samples to a newly formulated viral inactivation and RNA preservation (VIP) buffer, concentration of the viral RNA on magnetic beads, and detection of SARS-CoV-2 using reverse transcription quantitative polymerase chain reaction directly from the magnetic beads. This method has a limit of detection of 25 RNA copies per 200 μL of gargle or saliva sample and 9–111 times higher sensitivity than the viral RNA preparation kit recommended by the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The integrated method was successfully used to analyze more than 200 gargle and saliva samples, including the detection of SARS-CoV-2 in 123 gargle and saliva samples collected daily from two NPS-confirmed positive SARS-CoV-2 patients throughout the course of their infection and recovery. The VIP buffer is stable at room temperature for at least 6 months. SARS-CoV-2 RNA (65 copies/200 μL sample) is stable in the VIP buffer at room temperature for at least 3 weeks. The on-site inactivation of SARS-CoV-2 and preservation of the viral RNA enables self-collection of samples, reduces risks associated with SARS-CoV-2 transmission, and maintains the stability of the target analyte.

2.
Mol Med Rep ; 24(6)2021 12.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1504040

ABSTRACT

The spread of the novel severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS­CoV­2) emerged suddenly at the end of 2019 and the disease came to be known as coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID­19). To date, there is no specific therapy established to treat COVID­19. Identifying effective treatments is urgently required to treat patients and stop the transmission of SARS­CoV­2 in humans. For the present review, >100 publications on therapeutic agents for COVID­19, including in vitro and in vivo animal studies, case reports, retrospective analyses and meta­analyses were retrieved from PubMed and analyzed, and promising therapeutic agents that may be used to combat SARS­CoV­2 infection were highlighted. Since the outbreak of COVID­19, different drugs have been repurposed for its treatment. Existing drugs, including chloroquine (CQ), its derivative hydroxychloroquine (HCQ), remdesivir and nucleoside analogues, monoclonal antibodies, convalescent plasma, Chinese herbal medicine and natural compounds for treating COVID­19 evaluated in experimental and clinical studies were discussed. Although early clinical studies suggested that CQ/HCQ produces antiviral action, later research indicated certain controversy regarding their use for treating COVID­19. The molecular mechanisms of these therapeutic agents against SARS­CoV2 have been investigated, including inhibition of viral interactions with angiotensin­converting enzyme 2 receptors in human cells, viral RNA­dependent RNA polymerase, RNA replication and the packaging of viral particles. Potent therapeutic options were reviewed and future challenges to accelerate the development of novel therapeutic agents to treat and prevent COVID­19 were acknowledged.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/therapy , Adenosine Monophosphate/analogs & derivatives , Adenosine Monophosphate/therapeutic use , Alanine/analogs & derivatives , Alanine/therapeutic use , Animals , Antimalarials/therapeutic use , Antiviral Agents/therapeutic use , COVID-19/diagnosis , Chloroquine/therapeutic use , Drugs, Chinese Herbal/therapeutic use , Humans , Hydroxychloroquine/therapeutic use , Immunization, Passive , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification
3.
Anal Chem ; 93(37): 12808-12816, 2021 09 21.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1402013

ABSTRACT

CRISPR-Cas systems integrated with nucleic acid amplification techniques improve both analytical specificity and sensitivity. We describe here issues and solutions for the successful integration of reverse transcription (RT), recombinase polymerase amplification (RPA), and CRISPR-Cas12a nuclease reactions into a single tube under an isothermal condition (40 °C). Specific detection of a few copies of a viral DNA sequence was achieved in less than 20 min. However, the sensitivity was orders of magnitude lower for the detection of viral RNA due to the slow initiation of RPA when the complementary DNA (cDNA) template remained hybridized to RNA. During the delay of RPA, the crRNA-Cas12a ribonucleoprotein (RNP) gradually lost its activity in the RPA solution, and nonspecific amplification reactions consumed the RPA reagents. We overcame these problems by taking advantage of the endoribonuclease function of RNase H to remove RNA from the RNA-cDNA hybrids and free the cDNA as template for the RPA reaction. As a consequence, we significantly enhanced the overall reaction rate of an integrated assay using RT-RPA and CRISPR-Cas12a for the detection of RNA. We showed successful detection of 200 or more copies of the S gene sequence of SARS-CoV-2 RNA within 5-30 min. We applied our one-tube assay to 46 upper respiratory swab samples for COVID-19 diagnosis, and the results from both fluorescence intensity measurements and end-point visualization were consistent with those of RT-qPCR analysis. The strategy and technique improve the sensitivity and speed of RT-RPA and CRISPR-Cas12a assays, potentially useful for both semi-quantitative and point-of-care analyses of RNA molecules.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Reverse Transcription , COVID-19 Testing , Humans , Nucleic Acid Amplification Techniques , RNA, Viral/genetics , Recombinases/genetics , SARS-CoV-2 , Sensitivity and Specificity , Technology
4.
Anal Chem ; 92(24): 16204-16212, 2020 12 15.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-947511

ABSTRACT

We have developed a single-tube assay for SARS-CoV-2 in patient samples. This assay combined advantages of reverse transcription (RT) loop-mediated isothermal amplification (LAMP) with clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats (CRISPRs) and the CRISPR-associated (Cas) enzyme Cas12a. Our assay is able to detect SARS-CoV-2 in a single tube within 40 min, requiring only a single temperature control (62 °C). The RT-LAMP reagents were added to the sample vial, while CRISPR Cas12a reagents were deposited onto the lid of the vial. After a half-hour RT-LAMP amplification, the tube was inverted and flicked to mix the detection reagents with the amplicon. The sequence-specific recognition of the amplicon by the CRISPR guide RNA and Cas12a enzyme improved specificity. Visible green fluorescence generated by the CRISPR Cas12a system was recorded using a smartphone camera. Analysis of 100 human respiratory swab samples for the N and/or E gene of SARS-CoV-2 produced 100% clinical specificity and no false positive. Analysis of 50 samples that were detected positive using reverse transcription quantitative polymerase chain reaction (RT-qPCR) resulted in an overall clinical sensitivity of 94%. Importantly, this included 20 samples that required 30-39 threshold cycles of RT-qPCR to achieve a positive detection. Integration of the exponential amplification ability of RT-LAMP and the sequence-specific processing by the CRISPR-Cas system into a molecular assay resulted in improvements in both analytical sensitivity and specificity. The single-tube assay is beneficial for future point-of-care applications.


Subject(s)
CRISPR-Cas Systems/genetics , Clustered Regularly Interspaced Short Palindromic Repeats/genetics , Nucleic Acid Amplification Techniques , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Humans , RNA, Viral/genetics , Reverse Transcriptase Polymerase Chain Reaction
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