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1.
Front Immunol ; 12: 750386, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1515534

ABSTRACT

Antibodies targeting Receptor Binding Domain (RBD) of SARS-CoV-2 have been suggested to account for the majority of neutralizing activity in COVID-19 convalescent sera and several neutralizing antibodies (nAbs) have been isolated, characterized and proposed as emergency therapeutics in the form of monoclonal antibodies (mAbs). However, SARS-CoV-2 variants are rapidly spreading worldwide from the sites of initial identification. The variants of concern (VOC) B.1.1.7 (Alpha), B.1.351 (Beta), P.1 (Gamma) and B.1.167.2 (Delta) showed mutations in the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein potentially able to cause escape from nAb responses with a consequent reduction of efficacy of vaccines and mAbs-based therapy. We produced the recombinant RBD (rRBD) of SARS-CoV-2 spike glycoprotein from the Wuhan-Hu 1 reference sequence in a mammalian system, for mice immunization to isolate new mAbs with neutralizing activity. Here we describe four mAbs that were able to bind the rRBD in Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay and the transmembrane full-length spike protein expressed in HEK293T cells by flow cytometry assay. Moreover, the mAbs recognized the RBD in supernatants of SARS-CoV-2 infected VERO E6 cells by Western Blot under non-reducing condition or in supernatants of cells infected with lentivirus pseudotyped for spike protein, by immunoprecipitation assay. Three out of four mAbs lost their binding efficiency to completely N-deglycosylated rRBD and none was able to bind the same recombinant protein expressed in Escherichia coli, suggesting that the epitopes recognized by three mAbs are generated by the conformational structure of the glycosylated native protein. Of particular relevance, three mAbs were able to inhibit Wuhan SARS-CoV-2 infection of VERO E6 cells in a plaque-reduction neutralization test and the Wuhan SARS-CoV-2 as well as the Alpha, Beta, Gamma and Delta VOC in a pseudoviruses-based neutralization test. These mAbs represent important additional tools for diagnosis and therapy of COVID-19 and may contribute to the understanding of the functional structure of SARS-CoV-2 RBD.


Subject(s)
Antibodies, Monoclonal/pharmacology , Antibodies, Neutralizing/pharmacology , Antibodies, Viral/pharmacology , Epitopes/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/drug effects , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/immunology , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/genetics , Animals , Binding Sites, Antibody/immunology , COVID-19/drug therapy , Cell Line, Tumor , Chlorocebus aethiops , Female , Glycosylation , HEK293 Cells , Humans , Mice, Inbred BALB C , Neutralization Tests , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Vero Cells
2.
Blood Transfus ; 2021 May 27.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1249632

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: We investigated the presence of anti-SARS-CoV-2 antibodies in Italian plasma pools and intravenous immunoglobulins sent to our Institute (Italian National Institute of Health - Istituto Superiore di Sanità) in the context of the Official Control Authority Batch Release. The plasma pools were made up from donations collected in several different Italian regions from May 2017 to October 2020, i.e. in the pre-pandemic and pandemic periods. MATERIALS AND METHODS: All plasma pools were initially tested for the qualitative detection of anti-SARS-CoV-2 antibodies against the nucleocapsid protein using the Roche Elecsys® Anti-SARS-CoV-2 test kit. Plasma pools positive for these antibodies were further tested using the Roche Elecsys® Anti-SARS-CoV-2 S test kit for the quantitative detection of antibodies against SARS-CoV-2 spike receptor binding domain. All plasma pools showing reactivity to these antibodies were tested undiluted for the presence of SARS-CoV-2 RNA using the Grifols Procleix SARS-CoV-2 transcription-mediated amplification assay. Intravenous immunoglobulins were tested using both test kits to determine the presence of anti-SARS-CoV-2 antibodies. RESULTS: All plasma pools made up from donations collected in the pre-pandemic period were negative for anti-SARS-CoV-2 antibodies against the nucleocapsid protein. Of the plasma pools made up from donations collected from December 2018 to March 2020, only 1 pool out of 68 (1.4%), that was made up from donations from the Lombardy region, was reactive for these antibodies. Interestingly, 105 out of 174 (60.3%) of the plasma pools made up from donations collected from November 2018 to October 2020 showed the presence of these antibodies. All plasma pools positive for these antibodies were tested for antibodies against SARS-CoV-2 spike receptor binding domain and were confirmed positive. DISCUSSION: None of these plasma pools tested were reactive for SARS-CoV-2 RNA. In the case of intravenous immunoglobulins, 20 out of 25 (80%) batches showed the presence of both anti-SARS-CoV-2 antibodies, reflecting the concentration in the plasma pools used for their production.

4.
J Am Med Inform Assoc ; 27(11): 1721-1726, 2020 11 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1024117

ABSTRACT

Global pandemics call for large and diverse healthcare data to study various risk factors, treatment options, and disease progression patterns. Despite the enormous efforts of many large data consortium initiatives, scientific community still lacks a secure and privacy-preserving infrastructure to support auditable data sharing and facilitate automated and legally compliant federated analysis on an international scale. Existing health informatics systems do not incorporate the latest progress in modern security and federated machine learning algorithms, which are poised to offer solutions. An international group of passionate researchers came together with a joint mission to solve the problem with our finest models and tools. The SCOR Consortium has developed a ready-to-deploy secure infrastructure using world-class privacy and security technologies to reconcile the privacy/utility conflicts. We hope our effort will make a change and accelerate research in future pandemics with broad and diverse samples on an international scale.


Subject(s)
Biomedical Research , Computer Security , Coronavirus Infections , Information Dissemination , Pandemics , Pneumonia, Viral , Privacy , COVID-19 , Humans , Information Dissemination/ethics , Internationality , Machine Learning
5.
Ital J Pediatr ; 46(1): 132, 2020 Sep 15.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-762367

ABSTRACT

Facial masks may be one of the most cost-effective strategies to prevent the diffusion of COVID 19 infection. Nevertheless, fake news are spreading, alerting parents on dangerous side effects in children, such as hypercapnia, hypoxia, gut dysbiosis and immune system weakness. Aim of the Italian Pediatric Society statement is to face misconception towards the use of face masks and to spread scientific trustable information.


Subject(s)
Betacoronavirus , Consensus , Coronavirus Infections/transmission , Disease Transmission, Infectious/prevention & control , Infection Control/organization & administration , Masks/supply & distribution , Pneumonia, Viral/transmission , COVID-19 , Child , Coronavirus Infections/epidemiology , Equipment Design , Humans , Masks/standards , Pandemics , Pneumonia, Viral/epidemiology , SARS-CoV-2
6.
Nutr Metab Cardiovasc Dis ; 30(11): 1914-1919, 2020 10 30.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-680582

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND AND AIMS: Despite anticoagulation, usually with heparin, mortality for thromboembolic events in COVID-19 remains high. Clinical efficacy of heparin is due to its interaction with antithrombin (AT) that may be decreased in COVID-19. Therefore, we correlated AT levels with outcomes of COVID-19. METHODS AND RESULTS: We recruited 49 consecutive patients hospitalized for COVID-19. AT levels were significantly lower in 16 non-survivors than in 33 survivors (72.2 ± 23.4 versus 94.6 ± 19.5%; p = 0.0010). A multivariate Cox regression analysis showed that low AT (levels below 80%) was a predictor of mortality (HR:3.97; 95%CI:1.38 to 11.43; p = 0.0103). BMI was the only variable that showed a significant difference between patients with low and those with normal AT levels (32.9 ± 7.9 versus 27.5 ± 5.9%; p = 0.0104). AT levels were significantly lower in obese patients than in subjects with normal weight or overweight (77.9 ± 26.9 versus 91.4 ± 26.9 versus 91.4 ± 17.1%; p = 0.025). An inverse correlation between AT levels and BMI was documented (r:-0.33; p = 0.0179). CONCLUSIONS: Our data first suggest that AT is strongly associated with mortality in COVID-19. In addition, AT may be the link between obesity and a poorer prognosis in patients with COVID-19. Other studies should confirm whether AT may become a prognostic marker and a therapeutic target in COVID-19.


Subject(s)
Antithrombins/blood , Betacoronavirus , Coronavirus Infections/mortality , Obesity/blood , Pneumonia, Viral/mortality , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , Body Mass Index , COVID-19 , Coronavirus Infections/blood , Female , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Obesity/complications , Pandemics , Pneumonia, Viral/blood , Proportional Hazards Models , Retrospective Studies , SARS-CoV-2 , Troponin/blood
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