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iScience ; : 106937, 2023.
Article in English | ScienceDirect | ID: covidwho-2324945


Summary T cell responses precede antibody and may provide early control of infection. We analysed the clonal basis of this rapid response following SARS-COV-2 infection. We applied T cell receptor (TCR) sequencing to define the trajectories of individual T cell clones immediately. In SARS-COV-2 PCR+ individuals, a wave of TCRs strongly but transiently expand, frequently peaking the same week as the first positive PCR test. These expanding TCR CDR3s were enriched for sequences functionally annotated as SARS-COV-2 specific. Epitopes recognized by the expanding TCRs were highly conserved between SARS-COV-2 strains, but not with circulating human coronaviruses. Many expanding CDR3s were present at high frequency in pre-pandemic repertoires. Early response TCRs specific for lymphocytic choriomeningitis virus epitopes were also found at high frequency in the pre-infection naïve repertoire. High frequency naïve precursors may allow the T cell response to respond rapidly during the crucial early phases of acute viral infection.

EBioMedicine ; 85: 104293, 2022 Nov.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2116538


BACKGROUND: The majority of those infected by ancestral Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) during the UK first wave (starting March 2020) did not require hospitalisation. Most had a short-lived mild or asymptomatic infection, while others had symptoms that persisted for weeks or months. We hypothesized that the plasma proteome at the time of first infection would reflect differences in the inflammatory response that linked to symptom severity and duration. METHODS: We performed a nested longitudinal case-control study and targeted analysis of the plasma proteome of 156 healthcare workers (HCW) with and without lab confirmed SARS-CoV-2 infection. Targeted proteomic multiple-reaction monitoring analysis of 91 pre-selected proteins was undertaken in uninfected healthcare workers at baseline, and in infected healthcare workers serially, from 1 week prior to 6 weeks after their first confirmed SARS-CoV-2 infection. Symptom severity and antibody responses were also tracked. Questionnaires at 6 and 12 months collected data on persistent symptoms. FINDINGS: Within this cohort (median age 39 years, interquartile range 30-47 years), 54 healthcare workers (44% male) had PCR or antibody confirmed infection, with the remaining 102 (38% male) serving as uninfected controls. Following the first confirmed SARS-CoV-2 infection, perturbation of the plasma proteome persisted for up to 6 weeks, tracking symptom severity and antibody responses. Differentially abundant proteins were mostly coordinated around lipid, atherosclerosis and cholesterol metabolism pathways, complement and coagulation cascades, autophagy, and lysosomal function. The proteomic profile at the time of seroconversion associated with persistent symptoms out to 12 months. Data are available via ProteomeXchange with identifier PXD036590. INTERPRETATION: Our findings show that non-severe SARS-CoV-2 infection perturbs the plasma proteome for at least 6 weeks. The plasma proteomic signature at the time of seroconversion has the potential to identify which individuals are more likely to suffer from persistent symptoms related to SARS-CoV-2 infection. FUNDING INFORMATION: The COVIDsortium is supported by funding donated by individuals, charitable Trusts, and corporations including Goldman Sachs, Citadel and Citadel Securities, The Guy Foundation, GW Pharmaceuticals, Kusuma Trust, and Jagclif Charitable Trust, and enabled by Barts Charity with support from University College London Hospitals (UCLH) Charity. This work was additionally supported by the Translational Mass Spectrometry Research Group and the Biomedical Research Center (BRC) at Great Ormond Street Hospital.

COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Adult , Female , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Case-Control Studies , Proteome , Proteomics
EBioMedicine ; 65: 103259, 2021 Mar.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1116568


BACKGROUND: SARS-CoV-2 serology is used to identify prior infection at individual and at population level. Extended longitudinal studies with multi-timepoint sampling to evaluate dynamic changes in antibody levels are required to identify the time horizon in which these applications of serology are valid, and to explore the longevity of protective humoral immunity. METHODS: Healthcare workers were recruited to a prospective cohort study from the first SARS-CoV-2 epidemic peak in London, undergoing weekly symptom screen, viral PCR and blood sampling over 16-21 weeks. Serological analysis (n =12,990) was performed using semi-quantitative Euroimmun IgG to viral spike S1 domain and Roche total antibody to viral nucleocapsid protein (NP) assays. Comparisons were made to pseudovirus neutralizing antibody measurements. FINDINGS: A total of 157/729 (21.5%) participants developed positive SARS-CoV-2 serology by one or other assay, of whom 31.0% were asymptomatic and there were no deaths. Peak Euroimmun anti-S1 and Roche anti-NP measurements correlated (r = 0.57, p<0.0001) but only anti-S1 measurements correlated with near-contemporary pseudovirus neutralising antibody titres (measured at 16-18 weeks, r = 0.57, p<0.0001). By 21 weeks' follow-up, 31/143 (21.7%) anti-S1 and 6/150 (4.0%) anti-NP measurements reverted to negative. Mathematical modelling revealed faster clearance of anti-S1 compared to anti-NP (median half-life of 2.5 weeks versus 4.0 weeks), earlier transition to lower levels of antibody production (median of 8 versus 13 weeks), and greater reductions in relative antibody production rate after the transition (median of 35% versus 50%). INTERPRETATION: Mild SARS-CoV-2 infection is associated with heterogeneous serological responses in Euroimmun anti-S1 and Roche anti-NP assays. Anti-S1 responses showed faster rates of clearance, more rapid transition from high to low level production rate and greater reduction in production rate after this transition. In mild infection, anti-S1 serology alone may underestimate incident infections. The mechanisms that underpin faster clearance and lower rates of sustained anti-S1 production may impact on the longevity of humoral immunity. FUNDING: Charitable donations via Barts Charity, Wellcome Trust, NIHR.

Antibodies, Neutralizing/blood , Antibodies, Viral/blood , COVID-19/blood , Coronavirus Nucleocapsid Proteins/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/immunology , Antibodies, Neutralizing/immunology , Antibodies, Viral/immunology , COVID-19/diagnosis , Health Personnel/statistics & numerical data , Humans , Immunoglobulin A/blood , Immunoglobulin G/blood , Phosphoproteins/immunology , Protein Domains/immunology