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1.
Int J Infect Dis ; 2022 Jul 13.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1972117

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVES: . SARS-CoV-2 Omicron variants BA.1 and BA.2 seem to show reduced clinical severity compared to earlier variants. Therefore, we aimed to assess and classify the cause of hospitalization for COVID-19 patients identified with these Omicron variants within our hospital. METHODS: . A retrospective analysis was performed on all patients identified with the SARS-CoV-2 Omicron variant between 23 December 2021 and 27 February 2022. Patients with a positive SARS-CoV-2 PCR upon clinical admission or during clinical admission were classified in four categories: 1) primary COVID-19, 2) admission-contributing COVID-19, 3) incidental COVID-19, 4) undetermined COVID-19. RESULTS: . We classified 172 COVID-19 Omicron patient admissions; including 151 adult and 21 pediatric patients. Of the adult patients, 45% were primary COVID-19 cases, 21% were admission-contributing, 31% were incidental, and 3% were undetermined. Of the pediatric patients, 19% were primary COVID-19 cases, 29% were admission-contributing, 38% were incidental, and 14% were undetermined. CONCLUSIONS: . In the evolving landscape of COVID-19, numbers of hospitalized COVID-19 patients should be interpreted with caution. The different patient categories should be taken into account in public health policy decision-making and when informing the general public.

2.
Clin Infect Dis ; 2022 Jul 23.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1961004

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: In the general population, illness after infection with the SARS-CoV-2 Omicron variant is less severe compared with previous variants. Data on the disease burden of Omicron in immunocompromised patients are lacking. We investigated the clinical characteristics and outcome of a cohort of immunocompromised patients with COVID-19 caused by Omicron. METHODS: Solid organ transplant recipients, patients on anti-CD20 therapy, and allogenic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation recipients on immunosuppressive therapy infected with the Omicron variant, were included. Patients were contacted regularly until symptom resolution. Clinical characteristics of consenting patients were collected through their electronic patient files. To identify possible risk factors for hospitalization, a univariate logistic analysis was performed. RESULTS: A total of 114 consecutive immunocompromised patients were enrolled. Eighty-nine percent had previously received three mRNA vaccinations. While only one patient died, 23 (20%) required hospital admission for a median of 11 days. A low SARS-CoV-2 IgG antibody response (<300 BAU/mL) at diagnosis, higher age, being a lung transplant recipient, more comorbidities and a higher frailty were associated with hospital admission (all p < 0.01). At the end of follow-up, 25% had still not fully recovered. Of the 23 hospitalized patients, 70% had a negative and 92% a low IgG (<300 BAU/mL) antibody response at admission. Sotrovimab was administered to 17 of them, of which one died. CONCLUSIONS: While the mortality in immunocompromised patients infected with Omicron was low, hospital admission was frequent and the duration of symptoms often prolonged. Besides vaccination, other interventions are needed to limit the morbidity from COVID-19 in immunocompromised patients.

3.
Sci Immunol ; : eabq4450, 2022 Jun 23.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1901912

ABSTRACT

The emergence and rapid spread of SARS-CoV-2 variants may impact vaccine efficacy significantly. The Omicron variant termed BA.2, which differs substantially from BA.1 based on genetic sequence, is currently replacing BA.1 in several countries, but its antigenic characteristics have not yet been assessed. Here, we used antigenic cartography to quantify and visualize antigenic differences between early SARS-CoV-2 variants (614G, Alpha, Beta, Gamma, Zeta, Delta and Mu) using hamster antisera obtained after primary infection. We first verified that the choice of the cell line for the neutralization assay did not affect the topology of the map substantially. Antigenic maps generated using pseudotyped SARS-CoV-2 on the widely used VeroE6 cell line and the human airway cell line Calu-3 generated similar maps. Maps made using authentic SARS-CoV-2 on Calu-3 cells also closely resembled those generated with pseudotyped viruses. The antigenic maps revealed a central cluster of SARS-CoV-2 variants, which grouped based on mutual spike mutations. Whereas these early variants are antigenically similar, clustering relatively close to each other in antigenic space, Omicron BA.1 and BA.2 have evolved as two distinct antigenic outliers. Our data show that BA.1 and BA.2 both escape vaccine-induced antibody responses as a result of different antigenic characteristics. Thus, antigenic cartography could be used to assess antigenic properties of future SARS-CoV-2 variants of concern that emerge and to decide on the composition of novel spike-based (booster) vaccines.

4.
EuropePMC; 2022.
Preprint in English | EuropePMC | ID: ppcovidwho-335269

ABSTRACT

Background In fall 2020 when schools in the Netherlands operated under a limited set of COVID-19 measures, we conducted outbreaks studies in four secondary schools to gain insight in the level of school transmission and the role of SARS-CoV-2 transmission via air and surfaces. Methods Outbreak studies were performed between 11 November and 15 December 2020 when the wild-type variant of SARS-CoV-2 was dominant. Clusters of SARS-CoV-2 infections within schools were identified through a prospective school surveillance study. All school contacts of cluster cases, irrespective of symptoms, were invited for PCR testing twice within 48 hrs and 4-7 days later. Combined NTS and saliva samples were collected at each time point along with data on recent exposure and symptoms. Surface and active air samples were collected in the school environment. All samples were PCR-tested and sequenced when possible. Results Out of 263 sampled school contacts, 24 tested SARS-CoV-2 positive (secondary attack rate 9.1%), of which 62% remained asymptomatic and 42% had a weakly positive test result. Phylogenetic analysis on 12 subjects from 2 schools indicated a cluster of 8 and 2 secondary cases, respectively, but also other distinct strains within outbreaks. Of 51 collected air and 53 surface samples, none were SARS-CoV-2 positive. Conclusion Our study confirmed within school SARS-CoV-2 transmission and substantial silent circulation, but also multiple introductions in some cases. Absence of air or surface contamination suggests environmental contamination is not widespread during school outbreaks.

5.
EuropePMC; 2022.
Preprint in English | EuropePMC | ID: ppcovidwho-335179

ABSTRACT

Background In the general population, illness after infection with the SARS-CoV-2 Omicron variant is less severe compared with previous variants. Data on the disease burden of Omicron in immunocompromised patients are lacking. We investigated the clinical characteristics and outcome of a cohort of immunocompromised patients with COVID-19 caused by Omicron. Methods Solid organ transplant recipients, patients on anti-CD20 therapy, and allogenic hematopoietic stem cell transplantation recipients on immunosuppressive therapy infected with the Omicron variant, were included. Patients were contacted regularly until symptom resolution. Clinical characteristics of consenting patients were collected through their electronic patient files. To identify possible risk factors for hospitalization, a univariate logistic analysis was performed. Results A total of 114 consecutive immunocompromised patients were enrolled. Eighty-nine percent had previously received three mRNA vaccinations. While only one patient died, 23 (20%) required hospital admission for a median of 11 days. A low SARS-CoV-2 IgG antibody response (<300 BAU/mL) at diagnosis, higher age, being a lung transplant recipient, more comorbidities and a higher frailty were associated with hospital admission (all p<0.01). At the end of follow-up, 25% had still not fully recovered. Of the 23 hospitalized patients, 70% had a negative and 92% a low IgG (<300 BAU/mL) antibody response at admission. Sotrovimab was administered to 17 of them, of which one died. Conclusions While the mortality in immunocompromised patients infected with Omicron was low, hospital admission was frequent and the duration of symptoms often prolonged. Besides vaccination, other interventions are needed to limit the morbidity from COVID-19 in immunocompromised patients. Summary COVID-19-associated morbidity and mortality in immunocompromised patients is unknown for the SARS-CoV-2 Omicron variant. This prospective registry, demonstrated low COVID-19-associated mortality in these vulnerable patients. However, morbidity remained substantial. Other interventions to abate COVID-19 severity are needed.

6.
EuropePMC; 2022.
Preprint in English | EuropePMC | ID: ppcovidwho-334156

ABSTRACT

SARS-CoV-2 Omicron variants BA.1 and BA.2 seem to show reduced clinical severity. We classified 172 COVID-19 Omicron patient admissions. 66.2% of patients were admitted with primary or admission-contributing COVID-19. We therefore must be careful to base healthcare and public health decisions on the total number of hospitalized COVID-19 patients alone.

7.
EuropePMC; 2022.
Preprint in English | EuropePMC | ID: ppcovidwho-331749

ABSTRACT

Background Performances of rapid antigen diagnostic tests (Ag-RDTs) with nasal self-sampling, and oropharyngeal plus nasal (OP-N) self-sampling, in the Omicron period are unknown. Methods Prospective diagnostic accuracy study among 6,497 symptomatic individuals aged >16 years presenting for SARS-CoV-2 testing at three test-sites. Participants were sampled for RT-PCR (reference test) and received one Ag-RDT to perform unsupervised with either nasal self-sampling (during the emergence of Omicron, and after Omicron share was >90%, phase-1) or with OP-N self-sampling (in a subsequent phase-2;Omicron share >99%). The evaluated tests were Acon Flowflex (Flowflex;phase-1 only), MP Biomedicals (MPBio), and Siemens-Healthineers Clinitest (Clinitest). Findings During phase-1, 45% of Flowflex, 29% of MPBio, and 35% of Clinitest participants were confirmatory testers (previously tested positive by a self-test at own initiative). Overall sensitivities with nasal self-sampling were 79.0% (95% CI: 74.7-82.8%) for Flowflex, 69.9% (65.1-74.4%) for MPBio, and 70.2% (65.6-74.5%) for Clinitest. Sensitivities were substantially higher in confirmatory testers (93.6%, 83.6%, and 85.7%, respectively) than in those who tested for other reasons (52.4%, 51.5%, and 49.5%, respectively). Sensitivities decreased by 6.1 (p=0.16 by Chi-square test), 7.0 (p=0.60), and 12.8 (p=0.025) percentage points, respectively, when transitioning from 29% to >95% Omicron. During phase-2, 53% of MPBio, and 44% of Clinitest participants were confirmatory testers. Overall sensitivities with OP-N self-sampling were 83.0% (78.8%-86.7%) for MPBio and 77.3% (72.9%-81.2%) for Clinitest. Comparing OP-N to nasal sampling, sensitivities were slightly higher in confirmatory testers (87.4% and 86.1%, respectively), and substantially higher in those testing for other reasons (69.3% and 59.9%, respectively). Interpretatio Sensitivities of three Ag-RDTs with nasal self-sampling decreased during Omicron emergence but was only statistically significant for Clinitest. Sensitivities were substantially influenced by the proportion of confirmatory testers. Addition of oropharyngeal to nasal self-sampling improved sensitivities of MPBio and Clinitest. Funding Dutch Ministry of Health, Welfare, and Sport. Research into context Evidence before this study SARS-CoV-2 rapid antigen diagnostic tests (Ag-RDTs) require no or minimal equipment, provide a result within 15-30 minutes, and can be used in a range of settings including for self-testing at home. Self-testing may potentially lower the threshold to testing and allows individuals to obtain a test result quickly and at their own convenience, which could support the early detection of infectious cases and reduce community transmission. Real world evidence on the performance of unsupervised nasal and oropharyngeal plus nasal (OP-N) self-sampling in the Omicron variant period is needed to accurately inform end-users and policymakers. Therefore, we conducted a large prospective diagnostic accuracy study of three commercially available Ag-RDTs with self-sampling (the Acon Flowflex test, the MP Biomedicals test, and the Siemens-Healthineers Clinitest) during and after the emergence of Omicron using RT-PCR as the reference standard. Our aims were to evaluate whether the accuracies of Ag-RDTs with nasal self-sampling changed over time with the emergence of Omicron;and to determine whether addition of oropharyngeal to nasal self-sampling with the same swab yielded higher diagnostic accuracies. What this study adds The large comprehensive study was conducted in almost 6,500 participants with symptoms when presenting for routine SARS-CoV-2 testing at three public health service COVID-19 test-sites in the Netherlands. During the study, conducted between 21 December 2021 and 10 February 2022, the percentage of the Omicron variant in samples from the national SARS-CoV-2 pathogen surveillance increased from 29% in the first week to 99% in the last week of the study. The perio during which the Omicron variant was dominant was divided into a nasal sampling phase (phase-1;Omicron present in >90% of surveillance samples) and an OP-N sampling phase (phase-2;Omicron share was >99%). In phase-1, 45% of Flowflex, 29% of MPBio, and 35% of Clinitest participants visited the test-site because of a positive self-test (confirmatory testers). Overall sensitivities with nasal self-sampling were 79.0% (95% CI: 74.7-82.8%) for the Flowflex, 69.9% (65.1-74.4%) for the MPBio, and 70.2% (65.6-74.5%) for the Clinitest Ag-RDT. Sensitivities were 94%, 84%, and 86%, respectively, for confirmatory testers, and 52%, 52%, and 50%, respectively, for those who had other reasons for getting tested. Sensitivities were 87.0% (79.7-92.4%), 83.1% (72.9-90.7%), and 80.0% (51.9-95.7%), respectively, in the first week, and decreased by 6.1 (p=0.16 by Chi-square test), 7.0 (p=0.60), and 12.8 (p=0.025) percentage points in the final week of the study. In Phase-2, 53% of MPBio and 44% of Clinitest participants were confirmatory testers. Overall sensitivities with OP-N self-sampling were 83.0% (78.8%-86.7%) for MPBio and 77.3% (72.9%-81.2%) for Clinitest. When comparing OP-N to nasal sampling, sensitivities were slightly higher in confirmatory testers (87.4% and 86.1%, respectively), and substantially higher in those testing for other reasons (69.3% and 59.9%). Implications of all the available evidence The sensitivities of three commercially available Ag-RDTs performed with nasal self-sampling decreased during the emergence of Omicron, but this trend was only statistically significant for Clinitest. Addition of oropharyngeal to nasal self-sampling improved the sensitivity of the MPBio and Clinitest, most notably in individuals who visited the test-site for other reasons than to confirm a positive self-test. Based on these findings, the manufacturers of MPBio and Clinitest may consider extending their instructions for use to include combined oropharyngeal and nasal sampling, and other manufacturers may consider evaluating this as well.

8.
Euro Surveill ; 27(8)2022 02.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1714940

ABSTRACT

BackgroundSARS-CoV-2 RT-PCR assays are more sensitive than rapid antigen detection assays (RDT) and can detect viral RNA even after an individual is no longer infectious. RDT can reduce the time to test and the results might better correlate with infectiousness.AimWe assessed the ability of five RDT to identify infectious COVID-19 cases and systematically recorded the turnaround time of RT-PCR testing.MethodsSensitivity of RDT was determined using a serially diluted SARS-CoV-2 stock with known viral RNA concentration. The probability of detecting infectious virus at a given viral load was calculated using logistic regression of viral RNA concentration and matched culture results of 78 specimens from randomly selected non-hospitalised cases. The probability of each RDT to detect infectious cases was calculated as the sum of the projected probabilities for viral isolation success for every viral RNA load found at the time of diagnosis in 1,739 confirmed non-hospitalised COVID-19 cases.ResultsThe distribution of quantification cycle values and estimated RNA loads for patients reporting to drive-through testing was skewed to high RNA loads. With the most sensitive RDT (Abbott and SD Biosensor), 97.30% (range: 88.65-99.77) of infectious individuals would be detected. This decreased to 92.73% (range: 60.30-99.77) for Coris BioConcept and GenBody, and 75.53% (range: 17.55-99.77) for RapiGEN. Only 32.9% of RT-PCR results were available on the same day as specimen collection.ConclusionThe most sensitive RDT detected infectious COVID-19 cases with high sensitivity and may considerably improve containment through more rapid isolation and contact tracing.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Antigens, Viral/analysis , COVID-19/diagnosis , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19 Testing , Humans , Netherlands/epidemiology , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Sensitivity and Specificity
9.
EuropePMC; 2022.
Preprint in English | EuropePMC | ID: ppcovidwho-329413

ABSTRACT

The emergence and rapid spread of SARS-CoV-2 variants may impact vaccine efficacy significantly 1 . The Omicron variant termed BA.2, which differs genetically substantially from BA.1, is currently replacing BA.1 in several countries, but its antigenic characteristics have not yet been assessed 2,3 . Here, we used antigenic cartography to quantify and visualize antigenic differences between SARS-CoV-2 variants using hamster sera obtained after primary infection. Whereas early variants are antigenically similar, clustering relatively close to each other in antigenic space, Omicron BA.1 and BA.2 have evolved as two distinct antigenic outliers. Our data show that BA.1 and BA.2 both escape (vaccine-induced) antibody responses as a result of different antigenic characteristics. Close monitoring of the antigenic changes of SARS-CoV-2 using antigenic cartography can be helpful in the selection of future vaccine strains.

10.
BMC Med ; 20(1): 97, 2022 02 24.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1700066

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Rapid antigen diagnostic tests (Ag-RDTs) are the most widely used point-of-care tests for detecting SARS-CoV-2 infection. Since the accuracy may have altered by changes in SARS-CoV-2 epidemiology, indications for testing, sampling and testing procedures, and roll-out of COVID-19 vaccination, we evaluated the performance of three prevailing SARS-CoV-2 Ag-RDTs. METHODS: In this cross-sectional study, we consecutively enrolled individuals aged >16 years presenting for SARS-CoV-2 testing at three Dutch public health service COVID-19 test sites. In the first phase, participants underwent either BD-Veritor System (Becton Dickinson), PanBio (Abbott), or SD-Biosensor (Roche Diagnostics) testing with routine sampling procedures. In a subsequent phase, participants underwent SD-Biosensor testing with a less invasive sampling method (combined oropharyngeal-nasal [OP-N] swab). Diagnostic accuracies were assessed against molecular testing. RESULTS: Six thousand nine hundred fifty-five of 7005 participants (99%) with results from both an Ag-RDT and a molecular reference test were analysed. SARS-CoV-2 prevalence and overall sensitivities were 13% (188/1441) and 69% (129/188, 95% CI 62-75) for BD-Veritor, 8% (173/2056) and 69% (119/173, 61-76) for PanBio, and 12% (215/1769) and 74% (160/215, 68-80) for SD-Biosensor with routine sampling and 10% (164/1689) and 75% (123/164, 68-81) for SD-Biosensor with OP-N sampling. In those symptomatic or asymptomatic at sampling, sensitivities were 72-83% and 54-56%, respectively. Above a viral load cut-off (≥5.2 log10 SARS-CoV-2 E-gene copies/mL), sensitivities were 86% (125/146, 79-91) for BD-Veritor, 89% (108/121, 82-94) for PanBio, and 88% (160/182, 82-92) for SD-Biosensor with routine sampling and 84% (118/141, 77-89) with OP-N sampling. Specificities were >99% for all tests in most analyses. Sixty-one per cent of false-negative Ag-RDT participants returned for testing within 14 days (median: 3 days, interquartile range 3) of whom 90% tested positive. CONCLUSIONS: Overall sensitivities of three SARS-CoV-2 Ag-RDTs were 69-75%, increasing to ≥86% above a viral load cut-off. The decreased sensitivity among asymptomatic participants and high positivity rate during follow-up in false-negative Ag-RDT participants emphasise the need for education of the public about the importance of re-testing after an initial negative Ag-RDT should symptoms develop. For SD-Biosensor, the diagnostic accuracy with OP-N and deep nasopharyngeal sampling was similar; adopting the more convenient sampling method might reduce the threshold for professional testing.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Adolescent , Antigens, Viral/analysis , COVID-19 Testing , COVID-19 Vaccines , Cross-Sectional Studies , Humans , SARS-CoV-2 , Sensitivity and Specificity
11.
PLoS One ; 16(12): e0260894, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1623649

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Performance of the SD Biosensor saliva antigen rapid test was evaluated at a large designated testing site in non-hospitalized patients, with or without symptoms. METHOD: All eligible people over 18 years of age presenting for a booked appointment at the designated SARS-CoV-2 testing site were approached for inclusion and enrolled following verbal informed consent. One nasopharyngeal swab was taken to carry out the default antigen rapid test from which the results were reported back to the patient and one saliva sample was self-taken according to verbal instruction on site. This was used for the saliva antigen rapid test, the RT-PCR and for virus culture. Sensitivity of the saliva antigen rapid test was analyzed in two ways: i, compared to saliva RT-PCR; and ii, compared to virus culture of the saliva samples. Study participants were also asked to fill in a short questionnaire stating age, sex, date of symptom onset. Recommended time of ≥30mins since last meal, drink or cigarette if applicable was also recorded. The study was carried out in February-March 2021 for 4 weeks. RESULTS: We could include 789 people with complete records and results. Compared to saliva RT-PCR, overall sensitivity and specificity of the saliva antigen rapid test was 66.1% and 99.6% which increased to 88.6% with Ct ≤30 cutoff. Analysis by days post onset did not result in higher sensitivities because the large majority of people were in the very early phase of disease ie <3 days post onset. When breaking down the data for symptomatic and asymptomatic individuals, sensitivity ranged from 69.2% to 50% respectively, however the total number of RT-PCR positive asymptomatic participants was very low (n = 5). Importantly, almost all culture positive samples were detected by the rapid test. CONCLUSION: Overall, the potential benefits of saliva antigen rapid test, could outweigh the lower sensitivity compared to nasopharyngeal antigen rapid test in a comprehensive testing strategy, especially for home/self-testing and in vulnerable populations like elderly, disabled or children where in intrusive testing is either not possible or causes unnecessary stress.


Subject(s)
Biosensing Techniques/methods , COVID-19 Serological Testing/methods , Saliva/virology , Adolescent , Adult , Aged , COVID-19/diagnosis , COVID-19/etiology , Carrier State/virology , Female , Hospitalization , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Nasopharynx/virology , Sensitivity and Specificity , Young Adult
12.
EuropePMC; 2021.
Preprint in English | EuropePMC | ID: ppcovidwho-296971

ABSTRACT

Background SARS-CoV-2 self-tests may lower the threshold of testing and produce a result quickly. This could support the early detection of infectious cases and reduce further community transmission. However, the diagnostic accuracy of (unsupervised) self-testing with rapid antigen diagnostic tests (Ag-RDTs) is mostly unknown. We therefore conducted a large-scale head-to-head comparison of the diagnostic accuracy of a self-performed SARS-CoV-2 saliva and nasal Ag-RDT, each compared to a molecular reference test, in the general population in the Netherlands. Methods In this cross-sectional study we consecutively included individuals aged 16 years and older presenting for SARS-CoV-2 testing at three Dutch public health service test sites irrespective of their indication for testing, vaccination status, and symptomatology. Participants were sampled for molecular testing at the test site and received two self-tests (the Hangzhou AllTest saliva self-test and the SD Biosensor nasal self-test by Roche Diagnostics) to perform at home within a few hours without knowledge of their molecular test result. Information on presence and type of symptoms, user experiences, and results of both self-tests were collected via an online questionnaire. For each self-test, sensitivity, specificity, positive and negative predictive values were determined with molecular testing as reference standard. Findings The SARS-CoV-2 molecular reference test positivity rate was 6.5% in the 2,819 participants. Overall sensitivities with 95% confidence intervals were 46.7% (85/182;39.3%-54.2%) for the saliva Ag-RDT, and 68.9% (124/180;61.6%-75.6%) for the nasal Ag-RDT. With a viral load cut-off (≥5.2 log10 SARS-CoV-2 E-gene copies/mL) as a proxy of infectiousness, sensitivities increased to 54.9% (78/142;46.4%-63.3%) for the saliva Ag-RDT and 83.9% (120/143;76.9%-89.5%) for the nasal Ag-RDT. For the nasal Ag-RDT, sensitivities were 78.5% [71.1%-84.8%] and 22.6% [9.6%-41.1%] in those with and without symptoms at the time of sampling, which increased to 90.4% (113/125;83.8%-94.9%) and 38.9% (7/18;17.3%-64.3%) after applying the viral load cut-off. In those with and without prior confirmed SARS-CoV-2, sensitivities were 36.8% [19/372;16.3%-61.6%] and 72.7% [161/2437;65.1%-79.4%] for the nasal Ag-RDT, which increased to 100% (7/7;59.0%-100%) and 83.1% (113/126;75.7%-89.0%) after applying the viral load cut-off. The diagnostic accuracy of the nasal Ag-RDT did not differ by COVID-19 vaccination status, sex, and age. Specificities were >99%, positive predictive values >70% and negative predictive values >95%, for the saliva Ag-RDT, and >99%, >90%, and >95% for the nasal Ag-RDT, respectively, in most analyses. Interpreting the results was considered (very) easy for both self-tests. Interpretation The Hangzhou AllTest self-performed saliva Ag-RDT is not reliable for SARS-CoV-2 infection detection overall nor in the studied subgroups. The SD Biosensor self-performed nasal Ag-RDT had high sensitivity in individuals with symptoms and in those without a prior SARS-CoV-2 infection. The overall accuracy in individuals with symptoms was comparable to that found in previous studies with professional sampling for this Ag-RDT. The extremely low sensitivity of the nasal Ag-RDT in asymptomatic individuals and in individuals who had had a prior SARS-CoV-2 infection is an important finding and warrants further investigation. Funding Dutch Ministry of Health, Welfare, and Sport.

13.
J Virol Methods ; 300: 114397, 2022 Feb.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1540816

ABSTRACT

Here we describe a SARS-CoV-2 variant with diminished amplification of the ORF ORF1ab target in the Cobas® dual-target SARS-CoV-2 assay resulting in a discrepancy of Ct-values (Ct-value 20.7 for the E-gene and Ct-value 30.2 for ORF1ab). Five unique nucleotide mutations were identified in ORF1ab: C11450A (nsp10) C14178T (RdRp), G15006T (RdRp), G18394T (Hel), and G20995T (Hel). This case highlights the importance of surveillance of genomic regions used in molecular diagnostics and the importance of the public release of target regions used to update commercial and in-house developed SARS-CoV-2 PCR tests. This work underpins the importance of using dual-targets in molecular diagnostic assays to limit the change of false-negative results due to primer and/or probe mismatches.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Diagnostic Tests, Routine , Humans , RNA, Viral , Reverse Transcriptase Polymerase Chain Reaction , Sensitivity and Specificity
14.
EuropePMC; 2021.
Preprint in English | EuropePMC | ID: ppcovidwho-293154

ABSTRACT

Objective: To assess the diagnostic accuracy of three rapid antigen tests (Ag-RDTs) for detecting SARS-CoV-2 infection in the general population. Design Cross-sectional study with follow-up using pseudonymised record linkage. Setting Three Dutch public health service COVID-19 test sites. Participants Consecutively included individuals aged 16 years and older presenting for SARS-CoV-2 testing. Main outcome measures Sensitivity, specificity, positive and negative predictive values of BD-Veritortm System (Becton Dickinson), PanBio (Abbott), and SD-Biosensor (Roche Diagnostics), applying routinely used sampling methods (combined oropharyngeal and nasal [OP-N] or nasopharyngeal [NP] swab), with molecular testing as reference standard. For SDBiosensor, the diagnostic accuracy with OP-N sampling was also assessed. A viral load cutoff (≥5.2 log10 SARS-CoV-2 E-gene copies/mL) served as a proxy of infectiousness. Results SARS-CoV-2 prevalence and overall sensitivities with 95% confidence intervals were 188/1441 (13.0%) and 129/188 (68.6% [61.5%-75.2%]) for BD-Veritor, 173/2056 (8.4%) and 119/173 (68.8% [61.3%-75.6%]) for PanBio, and 215/1769 (12.2%) and 160/215 (74.4% [68.0%-80.1%]) for SD-Biosensor with routine sampling, and 164/1689 (9.7%) and 123/164 (75.0% [67.7%-81.4%]) for SD-Biosensor with OP-N sampling. In those symptomatic or asymptomatic at sampling, sensitivities were 72.2%-83.4% and 54.0%-55.9%, respectively. With a viral load cut-off, sensitivities were 125/146 (85.6% [78.9%-90.9%]) for BD-Veritor, 108/121 (89.3% [82.3%-94.2%]) for PanBio, 160/182 (87.9% [82.3%-92.3%]) for SD-Biosensor with routine sampling, and 118/141 (83.7% [76.5%-89.4%]) with OP-N sampling. Specificities were >99%, and positive and negative predictive values >95%, for all tests in most analyses. 61.3% of false negative Ag-RDT participants returned for testing within 14 days (median of 3 days, interquartile range 3) of whom 90.3% tested positive. Conclusions The overall sensitivities of the three Ag-RDTs were 68.6%-75.0%, increasing to at least 85.6% after the viral load cut-off was applied. For SD-Biosensor, the diagnostic accuracy with OP-N and NP sampling was comparable. Over 55% of false negative Ag-RDT participants tested positive during follow-up.

15.
Euro Surveill ; 26(40)2021 10.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1463432

ABSTRACT

We evaluated routine testing with SARS-CoV-2 Delta variant-specific RT-PCR in regional hospital laboratories in addition to centralised national genomic surveillance in the Netherlands during June and July 2021. The increase of the Delta variant detected by RT-PCR correlated well with data from genomic surveillance and was available ca 2 weeks earlier. This rapid identification of the relative abundance and increase of SARS-CoV-2 variants of concern may have important benefits for implementation of local public health measures.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/virology , Genomics , Humans , Netherlands/epidemiology , Polymerase Chain Reaction , RNA, Viral/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/genetics
17.
Sci Total Environ ; 799: 149456, 2021 Dec 10.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1347821

ABSTRACT

Wastewater surveillance has shown to be a valuable and efficient tool to obtain information about the trends of COVID-19 in the community. Since the recent emergence of new variants, associated with increased transmissibility and/or antibody escape (variants of concern), there is an urgent need for methods that enable specific and timely detection and quantification of the occurrence of these variants in the community. In this study, we demonstrate the use of RT-ddPCR on wastewater samples for specific detection of mutation N501Y. This assay enabled simultaneous enumeration of lineage B.1.351 (containing the 501Y mutation) and Wild Type (WT, containing 501N) SARS-CoV-2 RNA. Detection of N501Y was possible in samples with mixtures of WT with low proportions of B.1.351 (0.5%) and could accurately determine the proportion of N501Y and WT in mixtures of SARS-CoV-2 RNA. The application to raw sewage samples from the cities of Amsterdam and Utrecht demonstrated that this method can be applied to wastewater samples. The emergence of N501Y in Amsterdam and Utrecht wastewater aligned with the emergence of B.1.1.7 as causative agent of COVID-19 in the Netherlands, indicating that RT-ddPCR of wastewater samples can be used to monitor the emergence of the N501Y mutation in the community. It also indicates that RT-ddPCR could be used for sensitive and accurate monitoring of current (like K417N, K417T, E484K, L452R) or future mutations present in SARS-CoV-2 variants of concern. Monitoring these mutations can be used to obtain insight in the introduction and spread of VOC and support public health decision-making regarding measures to limit viral spread or allocation of testing or vaccination.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Humans , Mutation , RNA, Viral , Reverse Transcriptase Polymerase Chain Reaction , Waste Water
18.
BMJ ; 374: n1676, 2021 Jul 27.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1329048

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVE: To assess the diagnostic test accuracy of two rapid antigen tests in asymptomatic and presymptomatic close contacts of people with SARS-CoV-2 infection on day 5 after exposure. DESIGN: Prospective cross sectional study. SETTING: Four public health service covid-19 test sites in the Netherlands. PARTICIPANTS: 4274 consecutively included close contacts (identified through test-and-trace programme or contact tracing app) aged 16 years or older and asymptomatic for covid-19 when requesting a test. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Sensitivity, specificity, and positive and negative predictive values of Veritor System (Beckton Dickinson) and Biosensor (Roche Diagnostics) rapid antigen tests, with reverse-transcriptase polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) testing as reference standard. The viral load cut-off above which 95% of people with a positive RT-PCR test result were virus culture positive was used as a proxy of infectiousness. RESULTS: Of 2678 participants tested with Veritor, 233 (8.7%) had a RT-PCR confirmed SARS-CoV-2 infection of whom 149 were also detected by the rapid antigen test (sensitivity 63.9%, 95% confidence interval 57.4% to 70.1%). Of 1596 participants tested with Biosensor, 132 (8.3%) had a RT-PCR confirmed SARS-CoV-2 infection of whom 83 were detected by the rapid antigen test (sensitivity 62.9%, 54.0% to 71.1%). In those who were still asymptomatic at the time of sampling, sensitivity was 58.7% (51.1% to 66.0%) for Veritor (n=2317) and 59.4% (49.2% to 69.1%) for Biosensor (n=1414), and in those who developed symptoms were 84.2% (68.7% to 94.0%; n=219) for Veritor and 73.3% (54.1% to 87.7%; n=158) for Biosensor. When a viral load cut-off was applied for infectiouness (≥5.2 log10 SARS-CoV-2 E gene copies/mL), the overall sensitivity was 90.1% (84.2% to 94.4%) for Veritor and 86.8% (78.1% to 93.0%) for Biosensor, and 88.1% (80.5% to 93.5%) for Veritor and 85.1% (74.3% to 92.6%) for Biosensor, among those who remained asymptomatic throughout. Specificities were >99%, and positive and negative predictive values were >90% and >95%, for both rapid antigen tests in all analyses. CONCLUSIONS: The sensitivities of both rapid antigen tests in asymptomatic and presymptomatic close contacts tested on day 5 onwards after close contact with an index case were more than 60%, increasing to more than 85% after a viral load cut-off was applied as a proxy for infectiousness.

19.
mSphere ; 6(3): e0031121, 2021 06 30.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1247323

ABSTRACT

COVID-19 is associated with a wide range of extrarespiratory complications, of which the pathogenesis is currently not fully understood. However, both systemic spread and systemic inflammatory responses are thought to contribute to the systemic pathogenesis. In this study, we determined the temporal kinetics of viral RNA in serum (RNAemia) and the associated inflammatory cytokines and chemokines during the course of COVID-19 in hospitalized patients. We show that RNAemia can be detected in 90% of the patients who develop critical disease, compared to 50% of the patients who develop moderate or severe disease. Furthermore, RNAemia lasts longer in patients who develop critical disease. Elevated levels of interleukin-10 (IL-10) and MCP-1-but not IL-6-are associated with viral load in serum, whereas higher levels of IL-6 in serum were associated with the development of critical disease. In conclusion, RNAemia is common in hospitalized patients, with the highest frequency and duration in patients who develop critical disease. The fact that several cytokines or chemokines are directly associated with the presence of viral RNA in the circulation suggests that the development of RNAemia is an important factor in the systemic pathogenesis of COVID-19. IMPORTANCE Severe COVID-19 can be considered a systemic disease as many extrarespiratory complications occur. However, the systemic pathogenesis is poorly understood. Here, we show that the presence of viral RNA in the blood (RNAemia) occurs more frequently in patients who develop critical disease, compared to patients with moderate or severe disease. In addition, RNAemia is associated with increased levels of inflammatory cytokines and chemokines, like MCP-1 and IL-10, in serum during the course of disease. This suggests that extrarespiratory spread of SARS-CoV-2 contributes to systemic inflammatory responses, which are an important factor in the systemic pathogenesis of COVID-19.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/immunology , Cytokines/blood , RNA, Viral/blood , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , COVID-19/etiology , COVID-19/virology , Hospitalization , Humans , Kinetics , Severity of Illness Index
20.
Sci Immunol ; 6(59)2021 05 25.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1243688

ABSTRACT

The emergence of SARS-CoV-2 variants harboring mutations in the spike (S) protein has raised concern about potential immune escape. Here, we studied humoral and cellular immune responses to wild type SARS-CoV-2 and the B.1.1.7 and B.1.351 variants of concern in a cohort of 121 BNT162b2 mRNA-vaccinated health care workers (HCW). Twenty-three HCW recovered from mild COVID-19 disease and exhibited a recall response with high levels of SARS-CoV-2-specific functional antibodies and virus-specific T cells after a single vaccination. Specific immune responses were also detected in seronegative HCW after one vaccination, but a second dose was required to reach high levels of functional antibodies and cellular immune responses in all individuals. Vaccination-induced antibodies cross-neutralized the variants B.1.1.7 and B.1.351, but the neutralizing capacity and Fc-mediated functionality against B.1.351 was consistently 2- to 4-fold lower than to the homologous virus. In addition, peripheral blood mononuclear cells were stimulated with peptide pools spanning the mutated S regions of B.1.1.7 and B.1.351 to detect cross-reactivity of SARS-CoV-2-specific T cells with variants. Importantly, we observed no differences in CD4+ T-cell activation in response to variant antigens, indicating that the B.1.1.7 and B.1.351 S proteins do not escape T-cell-mediated immunity elicited by the wild type S protein. In conclusion, this study shows that some variants can partially escape humoral immunity induced by SARS-CoV-2 infection or BNT162b2 vaccination, but S-specific CD4+ T-cell activation is not affected by the mutations in the B.1.1.7 and B.1.351 variants.


Subject(s)
Antibodies, Viral/immunology , CD4-Positive T-Lymphocytes/immunology , CD8-Positive T-Lymphocytes/immunology , COVID-19/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/immunology , COVID-19 Vaccines/immunology , Cell Line , Cross Reactions/immunology , Humans , Immunologic Memory/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Vaccination
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