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1.
Relph, Katharine A.; Russell, Clark D.; Fairfield, Cameron J.; Turtle, Lance, de Silva, Thushan I.; Siggins, Matthew K.; Drake, Thomas M.; Thwaites, Ryan S.; Abrams, Simon, Moore, Shona C.; Hardwick, Hayley E.; Oosthuyzen, Wilna, Harrison, Ewen M.; Docherty, Annemarie B.; Openshaw, Peter J. M.; Baillie, J. Kenneth, Semple, Malcolm G.; Ho, Antonia, Baillie, J. Kenneth, Semple, Malcolm G.; Openshaw, Peter J. M.; Carson, Gail, Alex, Beatrice, Bach, Benjamin, Barclay, Wendy S.; Bogaert, Debby, Chand, Meera, Cooke, Graham S.; Docherty, Annemarie B.; Dunning, Jake, Filipe, Ana da Silva, Fletcher, Tom, Green, Christopher A.; Harrison, Ewen M.; Hiscox, Julian A.; Ho, Antonia Ying Wai, Horby, Peter W.; Ijaz, Samreen, Khoo, Saye, Klenerman, Paul, Law, Andrew, Lim, Wei Shen, Mentzer, Alexander J.; Merson, Laura, Meynert, Alison M.; Noursadeghi, Mahdad, Moore, Shona C.; Palmarini, Massimo, Paxton, William A.; Pollakis, Georgios, Price, Nicholas, Rambaut, Andrew, Robertson, David L.; Russell, Clark D.; Sancho-Shimizu, Vanessa, Scott, Janet T.; de Silva, Thushan, Sigfrid, Louise, Solomon, Tom, Sriskandan, Shiranee, Stuart, David, Summers, Charlotte, Tedder, Richard S.; Thomson, Emma C.; Roger Thompson, A. A.; Thwaites, Ryan S.; Turtle, Lance C. W.; Gupta, Rishi K.; Zambon, Maria, Hardwick, Hayley, Donohue, Chloe, Lyons, Ruth, Griffiths, Fiona, Oosthuyzen, Wilna, Norman, Lisa, Pius, Riinu, Drake, Thomas M.; Fairfield, Cameron J.; Knight, Stephen R.; McLean, Kenneth A.; Murphy, Derek, Shaw, Catherine A.; Dalton, Jo, Girvan, Michelle, Saviciute, Egle, Roberts, Stephanie, Harrison, Janet, Marsh, Laura, Connor, Marie, Halpin, Sophie, Jackson, Clare, Gamble, Carrol, Leeming, Gary, Law, Andrew, Wham, Murray, Clohisey, Sara, Hendry, Ross, Scott-Brown, James, Greenhalf, William, Shaw, Victoria, McDonald, Sara, Keating, Seán, Ahmed, Katie A.; Armstrong, Jane A.; Ashworth, Milton, Asiimwe, Innocent G.; Bakshi, Siddharth, Barlow, Samantha L.; Booth, Laura, Brennan, Benjamin, Bullock, Katie, Catterall, Benjamin W. A.; Clark, Jordan J.; Clarke, Emily A.; Cole, Sarah, Cooper, Louise, Cox, Helen, Davis, Christopher, Dincarslan, Oslem, Dunn, Chris, Dyer, Philip, Elliott, Angela, Evans, Anthony, Finch, Lorna, Fisher, Lewis W. S.; Foster, Terry, Garcia-Dorival, Isabel, Greenhalf, William, Gunning, Philip, Hartley, Catherine, Jensen, Rebecca L.; Jones, Christopher B.; Jones, Trevor R.; Khandaker, Shadia, King, Katharine, Kiy, Robyn T.; Koukorava, Chrysa, Lake, Annette, Lant, Suzannah, Latawiec, Diane, Lavelle-Langham, Lara, Lefteri, Daniella, Lett, Lauren, Livoti, Lucia A.; Mancini, Maria, McDonald, Sarah, McEvoy, Laurence, McLauchlan, John, Metelmann, Soeren, Miah, Nahida S.; Middleton, Joanna, Mitchell, Joyce, Moore, Shona C.; Murphy, Ellen G.; Penrice-Randal, Rebekah, Pilgrim, Jack, Prince, Tessa, Reynolds, Will, Matthew Ridley, P.; Sales, Debby, Shaw, Victoria E.; Shears, Rebecca K.; Small, Benjamin, Subramaniam, Krishanthi S.; Szemiel, Agnieska, Taggart, Aislynn, Tanianis-Hughes, Jolanta, Thomas, Jordan, Trochu, Erwan, van Tonder, Libby, Wilcock, Eve, Eunice Zhang, J.; Flaherty, Lisa, Maziere, Nicole, Cass, Emily, Doce Carracedo, Alejandra, Carlucci, Nicola, Holmes, Anthony, Massey, Hannah, Murphy, Lee, Wrobel, Nicola, McCafferty, Sarah, Morrice, Kirstie, MacLean, Alan, Adeniji, Kayode, Agranoff, Daniel, Agwuh, Ken, Ail, Dhiraj, Aldera, Erin L.; Alegria, Ana, Angus, Brian, Ashish, Abdul, Atkinson, Dougal, Bari, Shahedal, Barlow, Gavin, Barnass, Stella, Barrett, Nicholas, Bassford, Christopher, Basude, Sneha, Baxter, David, Beadsworth, Michael, Bernatoniene, Jolanta, Berridge, John, Best, Nicola, Bothma, Pieter, Chadwick, David, Brittain-Long, Robin, Bulteel, Naomi, Burden, Tom, Burtenshaw, Andrew, Caruth, Vikki, Chadwick, David, Chambler, Duncan, Chee, Nigel, Child, Jenny, Chukkambotla, Srikanth, Clark, Tom, Collini, Paul, Cosgrove, Catherine, Cupitt, Jason, Cutino-Moguel, Maria-Teresa, Dark, Paul, Dawson, Chris, Dervisevic, Samir, Donnison, Phil, Douthwaite, Sam, DuRand, Ingrid, Dushianthan, Ahilanadan, Dyer, Tristan, Evans, Cariad, Eziefula, Chi, Fegan, Christopher, Finn, Adam, Fullerton, Duncan, Garg, Sanjeev, Garg, Sanjeev, Garg, Atul, Gkrania-Klotsas, Effrossyni, Godden, Jo, Goldsmith, Arthur, Graham, Clive, Hardy, Elaine, Hartshorn, Stuart, Harvey, Daniel, Havalda, Peter, Hawcutt, Daniel B.; Hobrok, Maria, Hodgson, Luke, Hormis, Anil, Jacobs, Michael, Jain, Susan, Jennings, Paul, Kaliappan, Agilan, Kasipandian, Vidya, Kegg, Stephen, Kelsey, Michael, Kendall, Jason, Kerrison, Caroline, Kerslake, Ian, Koch, Oliver, Koduri, Gouri, Koshy, George, Laha, Shondipon, Laird, Steven, Larkin, Susan, Leiner, Tamas, Lillie, Patrick, Limb, James, Linnett, Vanessa, Little, Jeff, Lyttle, Mark, MacMahon, Michael, MacNaughton, Emily, Mankregod, Ravish, Masson, Huw, Matovu, Elijah, McCullough, Katherine, McEwen, Ruth, Meda, Manjula, Mills, Gary, Minton, Jane, Mirfenderesky, Mariyam, Mohandas, Kavya, Mok, Quen, Moon, James, Moore, Elinoor, Morgan, Patrick, Morris, Craig, Mortimore, Katherine, Moses, Samuel, Mpenge, Mbiye, Mulla, Rohinton, Murphy, Michael, Nagel, Megan, Nagarajan, Thapas, Nelson, Mark, O’Shea, Matthew K.; Otahal, Igor, Ostermann, Marlies, Pais, Mark, Panchatsharam, Selva, Papakonstantinou, Danai, Paraiso, Hassan, Patel, Brij, Pattison, Natalie, Pepperell, Justin, Peters, Mark, Phull, Mandeep, Pintus, Stefania, Pooni, Jagtur Singh, Post, Frank, Price, David, Prout, Rachel, Rae, Nikolas, Reschreiter, Henrik, Reynolds, Tim, Richardson, Neil, Roberts, Mark, Roberts, Devender, Rose, Alistair, Rousseau, Guy, Ryan, Brendan, Saluja, Taranprit, Shah, Aarti, Shanmuga, Prad, Sharma, Anil, Shawcross, Anna, Sizer, Jeremy, Shankar-Hari, Manu, Smith, Richard, Snelson, Catherine, Spittle, Nick, Staines, Nikki, Stambach, Tom, Stewart, Richard, Subudhi, Pradeep, Szakmany, Tamas, Tatham, Kate, Thomas, Jo, Thompson, Chris, Thompson, Robert, Tridente, Ascanio, Tupper-Carey, Darell, Twagira, Mary, Ustianowski, Andrew, Vallotton, Nick, Vincent-Smith, Lisa, Visuvanathan, Shico, Vuylsteke, Alan, Waddy, Sam, Wake, Rachel, Walden, Andrew, Welters, Ingeborg, Whitehouse, Tony, Whittaker, Paul, Whittington, Ashley, Papineni, Padmasayee, Wijesinghe, Meme, Williams, Martin, Wilson, Lawrence, Cole, Sarah, Winchester, Stephen, Wiselka, Martin, Wolverson, Adam, Wootton, Daniel G.; Workman, Andrew, Yates, Bryan, Young, Peter.
Open Forum Infectious Diseases ; 9(5), 2022.
Article in English | PMC | ID: covidwho-1821760

ABSTRACT

Admission procalcitonin measurements and microbiology results were available for 1040 hospitalized adults with coronavirus disease 2019 (from 48 902 included in the International Severe Acute Respiratory and Emerging Infections Consortium World Health Organization Clinical Characterisation Protocol UK study). Although procalcitonin was higher in bacterial coinfection, this was neither clinically significant (median [IQR], 0.33 [0.11–1.70] ng/mL vs 0.24 [0.10–0.90] ng/mL) nor diagnostically useful (area under the receiver operating characteristic curve, 0.56 [95% confidence interval, .51–.60]).

2.
Mol Biol Evol ; 39(4)2022 Apr 11.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1758789

ABSTRACT

Among the 30 nonsynonymous nucleotide substitutions in the Omicron S-gene are 13 that have only rarely been seen in other SARS-CoV-2 sequences. These mutations cluster within three functionally important regions of the S-gene at sites that will likely impact (1) interactions between subunits of the Spike trimer and the predisposition of subunits to shift from down to up configurations, (2) interactions of Spike with ACE2 receptors, and (3) the priming of Spike for membrane fusion. We show here that, based on both the rarity of these 13 mutations in intrapatient sequencing reads and patterns of selection at the codon sites where the mutations occur in SARS-CoV-2 and related sarbecoviruses, prior to the emergence of Omicron the mutations would have been predicted to decrease the fitness of any virus within which they occurred. We further propose that the mutations in each of the three clusters therefore cooperatively interact to both mitigate their individual fitness costs, and, in combination with other mutations, adaptively alter the function of Spike. Given the evident epidemic growth advantages of Omicron overall previously known SARS-CoV-2 lineages, it is crucial to determine both how such complex and highly adaptive mutation constellations were assembled within the Omicron S-gene, and why, despite unprecedented global genomic surveillance efforts, the early stages of this assembly process went completely undetected.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus , COVID-19/genetics , Humans , Mutation , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics
3.
Genome Biol Evol ; 14(2)2022 02 04.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1684680

ABSTRACT

The lack of an identifiable intermediate host species for the proximal animal ancestor of SARS-CoV-2, and the large geographical distance between Wuhan and where the closest evolutionary related coronaviruses circulating in horseshoe bats (members of the Sarbecovirus subgenus) have been identified, is fueling speculation on the natural origins of SARS-CoV-2. We performed a comprehensive phylogenetic study on SARS-CoV-2 and all the related bat and pangolin sarbecoviruses sampled so far. Determining the likely recombination events reveals a highly reticulate evolutionary history within this group of coronaviruses. Distribution of the inferred recombination events is nonrandom with evidence that Spike, the main target for humoral immunity, is beside a recombination hotspot likely driving antigenic shift events in the ancestry of bat sarbecoviruses. Coupled with the geographic ranges of their hosts and the sampling locations, across southern China, and into Southeast Asia, we confirm that horseshoe bats, Rhinolophus, are the likely reservoir species for the SARS-CoV-2 progenitor. By tracing the recombinant sequence patterns, we conclude that there has been relatively recent geographic movement and cocirculation of these viruses' ancestors, extending across their bat host ranges in China and Southeast Asia over the last 100 years. We confirm that a direct proximal ancestor to SARS-CoV-2 has not yet been sampled, since the closest known relatives collected in Yunnan shared a common ancestor with SARS-CoV-2 approximately 40 years ago. Our analysis highlights the need for dramatically more wildlife sampling to: 1) pinpoint the exact origins of SARS-CoV-2's animal progenitor, 2) the intermediate species that facilitated transmission from bats to humans (if there is one), and 3) survey the extent of the diversity in the related sarbecoviruses' phylogeny that present high risk for future spillovers.


Subject(s)
Chiroptera/virology , Coronavirus/genetics , Pangolins/virology , Phylogeny , Recombination, Genetic , Animals , Humans , Phylogeography
4.
PLoS Pathog ; 17(12): e1010022, 2021 12.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1546978

ABSTRACT

Vaccines are proving to be highly effective in controlling hospitalisation and deaths associated with SARS-CoV-2 infection but the emergence of viral variants with novel antigenic profiles threatens to diminish their efficacy. Assessment of the ability of sera from vaccine recipients to neutralise SARS-CoV-2 variants will inform the success of strategies for minimising COVID19 cases and the design of effective antigenic formulations. Here, we examine the sensitivity of variants of concern (VOCs) representative of the B.1.617.1 and B.1.617.2 (first associated with infections in India) and B.1.351 (first associated with infection in South Africa) lineages of SARS-CoV-2 to neutralisation by sera from individuals vaccinated with the BNT162b2 (Pfizer/BioNTech) and ChAdOx1 (Oxford/AstraZeneca) vaccines. Across all vaccinated individuals, the spike glycoproteins from B.1.617.1 and B.1.617.2 conferred reductions in neutralisation of 4.31 and 5.11-fold respectively. The reduction seen with the B.1.617.2 lineage approached that conferred by the glycoprotein from B.1.351 (South African) variant (6.29-fold reduction) that is known to be associated with reduced vaccine efficacy. Neutralising antibody titres elicited by vaccination with two doses of BNT162b2 were significantly higher than those elicited by vaccination with two doses of ChAdOx1. Fold decreases in the magnitude of neutralisation titre following two doses of BNT162b2, conferred reductions in titre of 7.77, 11.30 and 9.56-fold respectively to B.1.617.1, B.1.617.2 and B.1.351 pseudoviruses, the reduction in neutralisation of the delta variant B.1.617.2 surpassing that of B.1.351. Fold changes in those vaccinated with two doses of ChAdOx1 were 0.69, 4.01 and 1.48 respectively. The accumulation of mutations in these VOCs, and others, demonstrate the quantifiable risk of antigenic drift and subsequent reduction in vaccine efficacy. Accordingly, booster vaccines based on updated variants are likely to be required over time to prevent productive infection. This study also suggests that two dose regimes of vaccine are required for maximal BNT162b2 and ChAdOx1-induced immunity.


Subject(s)
Antibodies, Neutralizing/immunology , Antibodies, Viral/immunology , COVID-19 , Immunization, Secondary , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , /immunology , /immunology , COVID-19/immunology , COVID-19/mortality , COVID-19/prevention & control , HEK293 Cells , Humans
5.
Science ; 374(6567): eabj3624, 2021 Oct 29.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1440797

ABSTRACT

Inherited genetic factors can influence the severity of COVID-19, but the molecular explanation underpinning a genetic association is often unclear. Intracellular antiviral defenses can inhibit the replication of viruses and reduce disease severity. To better understand the antiviral defenses relevant to COVID-19, we used interferon-stimulated gene (ISG) expression screening to reveal that 2'-5'-oligoadenylate synthetase 1 (OAS1), through ribonuclease L, potently inhibits severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2). We show that a common splice-acceptor single-nucleotide polymorphism (Rs10774671) governs whether patients express prenylated OAS1 isoforms that are membrane-associated and sense-specific regions of SARS-CoV-2 RNAs or if they only express cytosolic, nonprenylated OAS1 that does not efficiently detect SARS-CoV-2. In hospitalized patients, expression of prenylated OAS1 was associated with protection from severe COVID-19, suggesting that this antiviral defense is a major component of a protective antiviral response.


Subject(s)
2',5'-Oligoadenylate Synthetase/genetics , 2',5'-Oligoadenylate Synthetase/metabolism , COVID-19/genetics , COVID-19/physiopathology , RNA, Double-Stranded/metabolism , RNA, Viral/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2/physiology , 5' Untranslated Regions , A549 Cells , Animals , COVID-19/enzymology , COVID-19/immunology , Chiroptera/genetics , Chiroptera/virology , Coronaviridae/enzymology , Coronaviridae/genetics , Coronaviridae/physiology , Endoribonucleases/metabolism , Humans , Interferons/immunology , Isoenzymes/genetics , Isoenzymes/metabolism , Phosphoric Diester Hydrolases/genetics , Phosphoric Diester Hydrolases/metabolism , Polymorphism, Single Nucleotide , Protein Prenylation , RNA, Double-Stranded/chemistry , RNA, Double-Stranded/genetics , RNA, Viral/chemistry , RNA, Viral/genetics , Retroelements , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Severity of Illness Index , Virus Replication
6.
Virus Evol ; 7(2): veab067, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1412092

ABSTRACT

Defining the unique properties of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) protein sequences has potential to explain the range of Coronavirus Disease 2019 severity. To achieve this we compared proteins encoded by all Sarbecoviruses using profile Hidden Markov Model similarities to identify protein features unique to SARS-CoV-2. Consistent with previous reports, a small set of bat- and pangolin-derived Sarbecoviruses show the greatest similarity to SARS-CoV-2 but are unlikely to be the direct source of SARS-CoV-2. Three proteins (nsp3, spike, and orf9) showed regions differing between the bat Sarbecoviruses and SARS-CoV-2 and indicate virus protein features that might have evolved to support human infection and/or transmission. Spike analysis identified all regions of the protein that have tolerated change and revealed that the current SARS-CoV-2 variants of concern have sampled only a fraction (∼31 per cent) of the possible spike domain changes which have occurred historically in Sarbecovirus evolution. This result emphasises the evolvability of these coronaviruses and the potential for further change in virus replication and transmission properties over the coming years.

7.
Cell ; 184(20): 5189-5200.e7, 2021 09 30.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1401295

ABSTRACT

The independent emergence late in 2020 of the B.1.1.7, B.1.351, and P.1 lineages of SARS-CoV-2 prompted renewed concerns about the evolutionary capacity of this virus to overcome public health interventions and rising population immunity. Here, by examining patterns of synonymous and non-synonymous mutations that have accumulated in SARS-CoV-2 genomes since the pandemic began, we find that the emergence of these three "501Y lineages" coincided with a major global shift in the selective forces acting on various SARS-CoV-2 genes. Following their emergence, the adaptive evolution of 501Y lineage viruses has involved repeated selectively favored convergent mutations at 35 genome sites, mutations we refer to as the 501Y meta-signature. The ongoing convergence of viruses in many other lineages on this meta-signature suggests that it includes multiple mutation combinations capable of promoting the persistence of diverse SARS-CoV-2 lineages in the face of mounting host immune recognition.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/epidemiology , Evolution, Molecular , Mutation , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Amino Acid Sequence/genetics , COVID-19/immunology , COVID-19/transmission , COVID-19/virology , Codon/genetics , Genes, Viral , Genetic Drift , Host Adaptation/genetics , Humans , Immune Evasion , Phylogeny , Public Health
8.
Cell ; 184(20): 5179-5188.e8, 2021 09 30.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1401294

ABSTRACT

We present evidence for multiple independent origins of recombinant SARS-CoV-2 viruses sampled from late 2020 and early 2021 in the United Kingdom. Their genomes carry single-nucleotide polymorphisms and deletions that are characteristic of the B.1.1.7 variant of concern but lack the full complement of lineage-defining mutations. Instead, the remainder of their genomes share contiguous genetic variation with non-B.1.1.7 viruses circulating in the same geographic area at the same time as the recombinants. In four instances, there was evidence for onward transmission of a recombinant-origin virus, including one transmission cluster of 45 sequenced cases over the course of 2 months. The inferred genomic locations of recombination breakpoints suggest that every community-transmitted recombinant virus inherited its spike region from a B.1.1.7 parental virus, consistent with a transmission advantage for B.1.1.7's set of mutations.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/transmission , Pandemics , Recombination, Genetic , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Base Sequence/genetics , COVID-19/virology , Computational Biology/methods , Gene Frequency , Genome, Viral , Genotype , Humans , Mutation , Phylogeny , Polymorphism, Single Nucleotide , United Kingdom/epidemiology , Whole Genome Sequencing/methods
11.
Cell ; 184(19): 4848-4856, 2021 09 16.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1363914

ABSTRACT

Since the first reports of a novel severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS)-like coronavirus in December 2019 in Wuhan, China, there has been intense interest in understanding how severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) emerged in the human population. Recent debate has coalesced around two competing ideas: a "laboratory escape" scenario and zoonotic emergence. Here, we critically review the current scientific evidence that may help clarify the origin of SARS-CoV-2.


Subject(s)
SARS-CoV-2/physiology , Animals , Biological Evolution , COVID-19/virology , Humans , Laboratories , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Zoonoses/virology
13.
Brief Bioinform ; 22(2): 642-663, 2021 03 22.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1343629

ABSTRACT

SARS-CoV-2 (severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2) is a novel virus of the family Coronaviridae. The virus causes the infectious disease COVID-19. The biology of coronaviruses has been studied for many years. However, bioinformatics tools designed explicitly for SARS-CoV-2 have only recently been developed as a rapid reaction to the need for fast detection, understanding and treatment of COVID-19. To control the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, it is of utmost importance to get insight into the evolution and pathogenesis of the virus. In this review, we cover bioinformatics workflows and tools for the routine detection of SARS-CoV-2 infection, the reliable analysis of sequencing data, the tracking of the COVID-19 pandemic and evaluation of containment measures, the study of coronavirus evolution, the discovery of potential drug targets and development of therapeutic strategies. For each tool, we briefly describe its use case and how it advances research specifically for SARS-CoV-2. All tools are free to use and available online, either through web applications or public code repositories. Contact:evbc@unj-jena.de.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/prevention & control , Computational Biology , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Biomedical Research , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/virology , Genome, Viral , Humans , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2/genetics
14.
Cell Rep ; 35(13): 109292, 2021 06 29.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1281394

ABSTRACT

We report severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) spike ΔH69/V70 in multiple independent lineages, often occurring after acquisition of receptor binding motif replacements such as N439K and Y453F, known to increase binding affinity to the ACE2 receptor and confer antibody escape. In vitro, we show that, although ΔH69/V70 itself is not an antibody evasion mechanism, it increases infectivity associated with enhanced incorporation of cleaved spike into virions. ΔH69/V70 is able to partially rescue infectivity of spike proteins that have acquired N439K and Y453F escape mutations by increased spike incorporation. In addition, replacement of the H69 and V70 residues in the Alpha variant B.1.1.7 spike (where ΔH69/V70 occurs naturally) impairs spike incorporation and entry efficiency of the B.1.1.7 spike pseudotyped virus. Alpha variant B.1.1.7 spike mediates faster kinetics of cell-cell fusion than wild-type Wuhan-1 D614G, dependent on ΔH69/V70. Therefore, as ΔH69/V70 compensates for immune escape mutations that impair infectivity, continued surveillance for deletions with functional effects is warranted.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/immunology , COVID-19/virology , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/immunology , Animals , Antibodies, Neutralizing/immunology , Antibodies, Viral/immunology , Cell Line , Chlorocebus aethiops , HEK293 Cells , Humans , Immune Evasion , Mutation , Pandemics , Phylogeny , Protein Binding , Recurrence , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Vero Cells
15.
Nat Rev Microbiol ; 19(7): 409-424, 2021 07.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1253944

ABSTRACT

Although most mutations in the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) genome are expected to be either deleterious and swiftly purged or relatively neutral, a small proportion will affect functional properties and may alter infectivity, disease severity or interactions with host immunity. The emergence of SARS-CoV-2 in late 2019 was followed by a period of relative evolutionary stasis lasting about 11 months. Since late 2020, however, SARS-CoV-2 evolution has been characterized by the emergence of sets of mutations, in the context of 'variants of concern', that impact virus characteristics, including transmissibility and antigenicity, probably in response to the changing immune profile of the human population. There is emerging evidence of reduced neutralization of some SARS-CoV-2 variants by postvaccination serum; however, a greater understanding of correlates of protection is required to evaluate how this may impact vaccine effectiveness. Nonetheless, manufacturers are preparing platforms for a possible update of vaccine sequences, and it is crucial that surveillance of genetic and antigenic changes in the global virus population is done alongside experiments to elucidate the phenotypic impacts of mutations. In this Review, we summarize the literature on mutations of the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein, the primary antigen, focusing on their impacts on antigenicity and contextualizing them in the protein structure, and discuss them in the context of observed mutation frequencies in global sequence datasets.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/virology , Immune Evasion , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/classification , Amino Acids/chemistry , Amino Acids/genetics , Antigenic Variation/genetics , Antigenic Variation/physiology , COVID-19/immunology , COVID-19/prevention & control , COVID-19/transmission , COVID-19 Vaccines/immunology , COVID-19 Vaccines/standards , Epitopes/chemistry , Epitopes/genetics , Epitopes/immunology , Humans , Immune Evasion/genetics , Mutation , Protein Conformation , SARS-CoV-2/classification , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/chemistry , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/immunology
16.
J Infect ; 83(1): 96-103, 2021 07.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1198895

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVES: Patients requiring haemodialysis are at increased risk of serious illness with SARS-CoV-2 infection. To improve the understanding of transmission risks in six Scottish renal dialysis units, we utilised the rapid whole-genome sequencing data generated by the COG-UK consortium. METHODS: We combined geographical, temporal and genomic sequence data from the community and hospital to estimate the probability of infection originating from within the dialysis unit, the hospital or the community using Bayesian statistical modelling and compared these results to the details of epidemiological investigations. RESULTS: Of 671 patients, 60 (8.9%) became infected with SARS-CoV-2, of whom 16 (27%) died. Within-unit and community transmission were both evident and an instance of transmission from the wider hospital setting was also demonstrated. CONCLUSIONS: Near-real-time SARS-CoV-2 sequencing data can facilitate tailored infection prevention and control measures, which can be targeted at reducing risk in these settings.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Bayes Theorem , Hospitals , Humans , Molecular Epidemiology , Renal Dialysis/adverse effects
17.
Vet Rec ; 188(8): e247, 2021 04.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1198417

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVES: The aim of the study was to find evidence of SARS-CoV-2 infection in UK cats. DESIGN: Tissue samples were tested for SARS-CoV-2 antigen using immunofluorescence and for viral RNA by in situ hybridisation. A set of 387 oropharyngeal swabs that had been submitted for routine respiratory pathogen testing was tested for SARS-CoV-2 RNA using reverse transcriptase quantitative PCR. RESULTS: Lung tissue collected post-mortem from cat 1 tested positive for both SARS-CoV-2 nucleocapsid antigen and RNA. SARS-CoV-2 RNA was detected in an oropharyngeal swab collected from cat 2 that presented with rhinitis and conjunctivitis. High throughput sequencing of the viral genome revealed five single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) compared to the nearest UK human SARS-CoV-2 sequence, and this human virus contained eight SNPs compared to the original Wuhan-Hu-1 reference sequence. An analysis of the viral genome of cat 2 together with nine other feline-derived SARS-CoV-2 sequences from around the world revealed no shared cat-specific mutations. CONCLUSIONS: These findings indicate that human-to-cat transmission of SARS-CoV-2 occurred during the COVID-19 pandemic in the UK, with the infected cats developing mild or severe respiratory disease. Given the ability of the new coronavirus to infect different species, it will be important to monitor for human-to-cat, cat-to-cat and cat-to-human transmission.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/veterinary , Cat Diseases/virology , Lung/virology , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Zoonoses , Animals , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/transmission , Cats , Female , Humans , RNA, Viral , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , United Kingdom/epidemiology
18.
PLoS Biol ; 19(3): e3001115, 2021 03.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1133664

ABSTRACT

Virus host shifts are generally associated with novel adaptations to exploit the cells of the new host species optimally. Surprisingly, Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) has apparently required little to no significant adaptation to humans since the start of the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic and to October 2020. Here we assess the types of natural selection taking place in Sarbecoviruses in horseshoe bats versus the early SARS-CoV-2 evolution in humans. While there is moderate evidence of diversifying positive selection in SARS-CoV-2 in humans, it is limited to the early phase of the pandemic, and purifying selection is much weaker in SARS-CoV-2 than in related bat Sarbecoviruses. In contrast, our analysis detects evidence for significant positive episodic diversifying selection acting at the base of the bat virus lineage SARS-CoV-2 emerged from, accompanied by an adaptive depletion in CpG composition presumed to be linked to the action of antiviral mechanisms in these ancestral bat hosts. The closest bat virus to SARS-CoV-2, RmYN02 (sharing an ancestor about 1976), is a recombinant with a structure that includes differential CpG content in Spike; clear evidence of coinfection and evolution in bats without involvement of other species. While an undiscovered "facilitating" intermediate species cannot be discounted, collectively, our results support the progenitor of SARS-CoV-2 being capable of efficient human-human transmission as a consequence of its adaptive evolutionary history in bats, not humans, which created a relatively generalist virus.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/virology , Chiroptera/virology , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Viral Zoonoses/virology , Animals , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/transmission , Evolution, Molecular , Genome, Viral , Host Specificity , Humans , Pandemics , Phylogeny , Receptors, Virus/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity , Selection, Genetic , Viral Zoonoses/genetics , Viral Zoonoses/transmission
19.
Cell ; 184(1): 64-75.e11, 2021 01 07.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1064909

ABSTRACT

Global dispersal and increasing frequency of the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein variant D614G are suggestive of a selective advantage but may also be due to a random founder effect. We investigate the hypothesis for positive selection of spike D614G in the United Kingdom using more than 25,000 whole genome SARS-CoV-2 sequences. Despite the availability of a large dataset, well represented by both spike 614 variants, not all approaches showed a conclusive signal of positive selection. Population genetic analysis indicates that 614G increases in frequency relative to 614D in a manner consistent with a selective advantage. We do not find any indication that patients infected with the spike 614G variant have higher COVID-19 mortality or clinical severity, but 614G is associated with higher viral load and younger age of patients. Significant differences in growth and size of 614G phylogenetic clusters indicate a need for continued study of this variant.


Subject(s)
Amino Acid Substitution , COVID-19/transmission , COVID-19/virology , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Aspartic Acid/analysis , Aspartic Acid/genetics , COVID-19/epidemiology , Genome, Viral , Glycine/analysis , Glycine/genetics , Humans , Mutation , SARS-CoV-2/growth & development , United Kingdom/epidemiology , Virulence , Whole Genome Sequencing
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