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medrxiv; 2023.
Preprint in English | medRxiv | ID: ppzbmed-10.1101.2023.11.23.23298957


Unlike genomic data, serological data have not been previously leveraged to evaluate the SARS-CoV-2 variants circulation. In Bolivia, sustained genomic surveillance capacities were lacking especially at the beginning of the pandemic. In 2021 and 2022 we estimated the prevalence of anti-SARS-CoV-2 antibodies in Bolivian blood donors and explored the feasibility of using virus serum neutralization data for variants thought to have circulated to map their circulation across all departments over a year-long follow-up period. Anti-S1 and anti-NCP SARS-CoV-2 IgGs were studied, along with virus neutralization tests for ancestral-D614G, Gamma, Delta, and Omicron BA.1 lineages of SARS-CoV-2. Between 2021 and 2022, the overall prevalence of anti-S1 and anti-NCP antibodies increased reaching values over 90%, demonstrating that a large proportion of the Bolivian population was no longer naive to the virus. Viral neutralization data, analyzed through multiple approaches, revealed the spread of the Gamma variant up to 2021, particularly impacting northern departments. In 2022, Gamma continued to circulate in southernmost departments of the country and the emergence of Omicron BA.1 was detected. These trends align with publicly available genomic data from neighboring countries. Our serological analyses successfully identified both new antigenic groups, such as Omicron BA.1, and individual variants related to previously circulating groups, such as Delta. The study contributes insights into overall population immunity to SARS-CoV-2 and variant-specific immunity levels across different regions of Bolivia. It also emphasizes the potency of seroprevalence studies in informing public health decisions and underscore their value in capturing the initial phases of emerging epidemics when variant diversity is limited, facilitating timely genomic surveillance setup.

medrxiv; 2022.
Preprint in English | medRxiv | ID: ppzbmed-10.1101.2022.07.29.22278190


SUMMARY We conducted a cross-sectional study for SARS-CoV-2 anti-S1 IgG prevalence in French blood donors (n=32605), from May-2020 to January-2021. A mathematical model combined seroprevalence with daily number of hospital admissions to estimate the probability of hospitalization upon infection and determine the number of infections while correcting for antibody decay. There was an overall seroprevalence increase over the study period and we estimate that ∼15% of the French population had been infected by SARS-CoV-2 by January-2021. The infection/hospitalization ratio increased with age, from 0.56% (18-30yo) to 6.75% (61-70yo). Half of the IgG-S1 positive individuals had no detectable antibodies 4 to 5 months after infection. The seroprevalence in group O donors (7.43%) was lower (p=0.003) than in A, B and AB donors (8.90%). We conclude, based on seroprevalence data and mathematical modelling, that the overall immunity in the French population before the vaccination campaign started was too low to achieve herd immunity.

medrxiv; 2020.
Preprint in English | medRxiv | ID: ppzbmed-10.1101.2020.04.18.20071134


Background: The Oise department in France has been heavily affected by COVID-19 in early 2020. Methods: Between 30 March and 4 April 2020, we conducted a retrospective closed cohort study among pupils, their parents and siblings, as well as teachers and non-teaching staff of a high-school located in Oise. Participants completed a questionnaire that covered history of fever and/or respiratory symptoms since 13 January 2020 and had blood tested for the presence of anti-SARS-CoV-2 antibodies. The infection attack rate (IAR) was defined as the proportion of participants with confirmed SARS-CoV-2 infection based on antibody detection. Blood samples from two blood donor centres collected between 23 and 27 March 2020 in the Oise department were also tested for presence of anti-SARS-CoV-2 antibodies. Findings: Of the 661 participants (median age: 37 years), 171 participants had anti-SARS-CoV-2 antibodies. The overall IAR was 25.9% (95% confidence interval (CI) = 22.6-29.4), and the infection fatality rate was 0% (one-sided 97.5% CI = 0-2.1). Nine of the ten participants hospitalised since mid-January were in the infected group, giving a hospitalisation rate of 5.3% (95% CI = 2.4-9.8). Anosmia and ageusia had high positive predictive values for SARS-CoV-2 infection (84.7% and 88.1%, respectively). Smokers had a lower IAR compared to non-smokers (7.2% versus 28.0%, P <0.001). The proportion of infected individuals who had no symptoms during the study period was 17.0% (95% CI = 11.2-23.4). The proportion of donors with anti-SARS-CoV-2 antibodies in two nearby blood banks of the Oise department was 3.0% (95% CI = 1.1-6.4). Interpretation: The relatively low IAR observed in an area where SARS-CoV-2 actively circulated weeks before confinement measures indicates that establishing herd immunity will take time, and that lifting these measures in France will be long and complex.