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1.
EuropePMC; 2022.
Preprint in English | EuropePMC | ID: ppcovidwho-337737

ABSTRACT

The COVID-19 pandemic caused by SARS-CoV-2 has caused millions of infections and deaths worldwide. Limited treatment options and the threat from emerging variants underline the need for novel and widely accessible therapeutics. G-quadruplexes (G4s) are nucleic acid secondary structures known to affect many cellular processes including viral replication and transcription. We identified heretofore not reported G4s with remarkably low mutation frequency across >4 million SARS-CoV-2 genomes. The G4 structure was targeted using FDA approved drugs that can bind G4s - Chlorpromazine (CPZ) and Prochlorperazine (PCZ). We found significant inhibition in lung pathology and lung viral load of SARS-CoV-2 challenged hamsters when treated with CPZ, PCZ that was comparable to the widely used antiviral drug Remdesivir. In support, in vitro G4 binding, inhibition of reverse transcription from RNA isolated from COVID-infected humans, and attenuated viral replication and infectivity in vero cell cultures were clear in case of both CPZ/PCZ. Apart from the wide accessibility of CPZ/PCZ, targeting relatively invariant nucleic acid structures poses an attractive strategy against fast mutating viruses like SARS-CoV-2.

2.
J Med Virol ; 94(4): 1696-1700, 2022 04.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1718390

ABSTRACT

Emerging reports of SARS-CoV-2 breakthrough infections entail methodical genomic surveillance for determining the efficacy of vaccines. This study elaborates genomic analysis of isolates from breakthrough infections following vaccination with AZD1222/Covishield and BBV152/Covaxin. Variants of concern B.1.617.2 and B.1.1.7 responsible for cases surge in April-May 2021 in Delhi, were the predominant lineages among breakthrough infections.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/virology , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Adult , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/prevention & control , COVID-19 Vaccines , Female , Genome, Viral/genetics , Genomics , Humans , India/epidemiology , Male , Middle Aged , Phylogeny , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Vaccination , Vaccines, Inactivated/administration & dosage , Young Adult
3.
Science ; 374(6570): 995-999, 2021 Nov 19.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1526449

ABSTRACT

Delhi, the national capital of India, experienced multiple severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) outbreaks in 2020 and reached population seropositivity of >50% by 2021. During April 2021, the city became overwhelmed by COVID-19 cases and fatalities, as a new variant, B.1.617.2 (Delta), replaced B.1.1.7 (Alpha). A Bayesian model explains the growth advantage of Delta through a combination of increased transmissibility and reduced sensitivity to immune responses generated against earlier variants (median estimates: 1.5-fold greater transmissibility and 20% reduction in sensitivity). Seropositivity of an employee and family cohort increased from 42% to 87.5% between March and July 2021, with 27% reinfections, as judged by increased antibody concentration after a previous decline. The likely high transmissibility and partial evasion of immunity by the Delta variant contributed to an overwhelming surge in Delhi.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/virology , Genome, Viral , Adolescent , Adult , COVID-19/immunology , COVID-19/transmission , Child , Humans , Immune Evasion , India/epidemiology , Molecular Epidemiology , Phylogeny , Reinfection , Seroepidemiologic Studies , Young Adult
4.
Nucleic Acids Res ; 50(D1): D771-D776, 2022 01 07.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1467380

ABSTRACT

Ever since the breakout of COVID-19 disease, ceaseless genomic research to inspect the epidemiology and evolution of the pathogen has been undertaken globally. Large scale viral genome sequencing and analysis have uncovered the functional impact of numerous genetic variants in disease pathogenesis and transmission. Emerging evidence of mutations in spike protein domains escaping antibody neutralization is reported. We have built a database with precise collation of manually curated variants in SARS-CoV-2 from literature with potential escape mechanisms from a range of neutralizing antibodies. This comprehensive repository encompasses a total of 5258 variants accounting for 2068 unique variants tested against 230 antibodies, patient convalescent plasma and vaccine breakthrough events. This resource enables the user to gain access to an extensive annotation of SARS-CoV-2 escape variants which would contribute to exploring and understanding the underlying mechanisms of immune response against the pathogen. The resource is available at http://clingen.igib.res.in/esc/.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/therapy , Databases, Factual , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Antibodies, Neutralizing/immunology , COVID-19/immunology , COVID-19/virology , Epitopes, B-Lymphocyte/immunology , Epitopes, T-Lymphocyte/immunology , Genetic Variation , Humans , Immune Evasion , Immunization, Passive , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/immunology , User-Computer Interface
5.
Pharmacogenomics ; 22(10): 603-618, 2021 07.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1278319

ABSTRACT

Aim: Numerous drugs are being widely prescribed for COVID-19 treatment without any direct evidence for the drug safety/efficacy in patients across diverse ethnic populations. Materials & methods: We analyzed whole genomes of 1029 Indian individuals (IndiGen) to understand the extent of drug-gene (pharmacogenetic), drug-drug and drug-drug-gene interactions associated with COVID-19 therapy in the Indian population. Results: We identified 30 clinically significant pharmacogenetic variants and 73 predicted deleterious pharmacogenetic variants. COVID-19-associated pharmacogenes were substantially overlapped with those of metabolic disorder therapeutics. CYP3A4, ABCB1 and ALB are the most shared pharmacogenes. Fifteen COVID-19 therapeutics were predicted as likely drug-drug interaction candidates when used with four CYP inhibitor drugs. Conclusion: Our findings provide actionable insights for future validation studies and improved clinical decisions for COVID-19 therapy in Indians.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/drug therapy , COVID-19/genetics , Antiviral Agents/therapeutic use , Drug Interactions/genetics , Genome/genetics , Genotype , Humans , India , Pharmacogenetics/methods , Pharmacogenomic Testing/methods , Pharmacogenomic Variants/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/drug effects
7.
Front Genet ; 12: 630542, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1170082

ABSTRACT

Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) rapidly spread from a city in China to almost every country in the world, affecting millions of individuals. The rapid increase in the COVID-19 cases in the state of Kerala in India has necessitated the understanding of SARS-CoV-2 genetic epidemiology. We sequenced 200 samples from patients in Kerala using COVIDSeq protocol amplicon-based sequencing. The analysis identified 166 high-quality single-nucleotide variants encompassing four novel variants and 89 new variants in the Indian isolated SARS-CoV-2. Phylogenetic and haplotype analysis revealed that the virus was dominated by three distinct introductions followed by local spread suggesting recent outbreaks and that it belongs to the A2a clade. Further analysis of the functional variants revealed that two variants in the S gene associated with increased infectivity and five variants mapped in primer binding sites affect the efficacy of RT-PCR. To the best of our knowledge, this is the first and most comprehensive report of SARS-CoV-2 genetic epidemiology from Kerala.

8.
Int J Infect Dis ; 102: 460-462, 2021 Jan.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-917310

ABSTRACT

An epidemic of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) causing coronavirus diseases (C0VID-19) initially reported in Wuhan, China has rapidly emerged into a global pandemic affecting millions of people worldwide. Molecular detection of SARS-CoV-2 using reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) forms the mainstay in screening, diagnosis and epidemiology of the disease. Since the virus evolves by accumulating base substitutions, mutations in the viral genome could possibly affect the accuracy of RT-PCR-based detection assays. The recent availability of genomes of SARS-CoV-2 isolates motivated us to assess the presence and potential impact of variations in target sites of the oligonucleotide primers and probes used in molecular diagnosis. We catalogued a total of 132 primer or probe sequences from literature and data available in the public domain. Our analysis revealed that a total of 5862 unique genetic variants mapped to at least one of the 132 primer or probe binding sites in the genome. A total of 29 unique variants were present in ≥ 1% of genomes from at least one of the continents (Asia, Africa, Australia, Europe, North America, and South America) that mapped to 36 unique primers or probes binding sites. Similarly, a total of 27 primer or probe binding sites had cumulative variants frequency of ≥ 1% in the global SARS-CoV-2 genomes. These included primers or probes sites which are used worldwide for molecular diagnosis as well as approved by national and international agencies. We also found 286 SARS-CoV-2 genomic regions with low variability at a continuous stretch of ≥ 20bps that could be potentially used for primer designing. This highlights the need for sequencing genomes of emerging pathogens to enable evidence-based policies for development and approval of diagnostics.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/virology , Genome, Viral , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , COVID-19/diagnosis , Humans , Reverse Transcriptase Polymerase Chain Reaction
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