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1.
Cell Host Microbe ; 29(12): 1738-1743.e4, 2021 Dec 08.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1574127

ABSTRACT

Different SARS-CoV-2 vaccines are approved in various countries, but few direct comparisons of the antibody responses they stimulate have been reported. We collected plasma specimens in July 2021 from 196 Mongolian participants fully vaccinated with one of four COVID-19 vaccines: Pfizer/BioNTech, AstraZeneca, Sputnik V, and Sinopharm. Functional antibody testing with a panel of nine SARS-CoV-2 viral variant receptor binding domain (RBD) proteins revealed marked differences in vaccine responses, with low antibody levels and RBD-ACE2 blocking activity stimulated by the Sinopharm and Sputnik V vaccines in comparison to the AstraZeneca or Pfizer/BioNTech vaccines. The Alpha variant caused 97% of infections in Mongolia in June and early July 2021. Individuals who recover from SARS-CoV-2 infection after vaccination achieve high antibody titers in most cases. These data suggest that public health interventions such as vaccine boosting, potentially with more potent vaccine types, may be needed to control COVID-19 in Mongolia and worldwide.

2.
J Clin Microbiol ; 59(8): e0085921, 2021 Jul 19.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1494947

ABSTRACT

The emergence of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) variants with concerning phenotypic mutations is of public health interest. Genomic surveillance is an important tool for a pandemic response, but many laboratories do not have the resources to support population-level sequencing. We hypothesized that a nucleic acid amplification test (NAAT) to genotype mutations in the viral spike protein could facilitate high-throughput variant surveillance. We designed and analytically validated a one-step multiplex allele-specific reverse transcriptase PCR (RT-qPCR) to detect three nonsynonymous spike protein mutations (L452R, E484K, N501Y). Assay specificity was validated with next-generation whole-genome sequencing. We then screened a large cohort of SARS-CoV-2-positive specimens from our San Francisco Bay Area population. Between 1 December 2020 and 1 March 2021, we screened 4,049 unique infections by genotyping RT-qPCR, with an assay failure rate of 2.8%. We detected 1,567 L452R mutations (38.7%), 34 N501Y mutations (0.84%), 22 E484K mutations (0.54%), and 3 (0.07%) E484K plus N501Y mutations. The assay had perfect (100%) concordance with whole-genome sequencing of a validation subset of 229 specimens and detected B.1.1.7, B.1.351, B.1.427, B.1.429, B.1.526, and P.2 variants, among others. The assay revealed the rapid emergence of the L452R variant in our population, with a prevalence of 24.8% in December 2020 that increased to 62.5% in March 2021. We developed and clinically implemented a genotyping RT-qPCR to conduct high-throughput SARS-CoV-2 variant screening. This approach can be adapted for emerging mutations and immediately implemented in laboratories already performing NAAT worldwide using existing equipment, personnel, and extracted nucleic acid.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Epidemiological Monitoring , Genotype , Humans , Reverse Transcriptase Polymerase Chain Reaction
3.
Emerg Infect Dis ; 27(10): 2720-2723, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1486743

ABSTRACT

We report persistent severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 infection in a patient with HIV/AIDS; the virus developed spike N terminal domain and receptor binding domain neutralization resistance mutations. Our findings suggest that immunocompromised patients can harbor emerging variants of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2.


Subject(s)
Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome , COVID-19 , Humans , Mutation , Protein Binding , SARS-CoV-2 , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics
5.
Clin Chem ; 2021 Oct 04.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1450383

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Detection of SARS-CoV-2 nucleocapsid antigen in blood has been described, but the diagnostic and prognostic role of antigenemia is not well understood. This study aimed to determine the frequency, duration, and concentration of nucleocapsid antigen in plasma and its association with COVID-19 severity. METHODS: We utilized an ultrasensitive electrochemiluminescence immunoassay targeting SARS-CoV-2 nucleocapsid antigen to evaluate 777 plasma samples from 104 individuals with COVID-19. We compared plasma antigen to respiratory nucleic acid amplification testing (NAAT) in 74 individuals with COVID-19 from samples collected ± 1 day of diagnostic respiratory NAAT, and in 52 SARS-CoV-2-negative individuals. We used Kruskal-Wallis tests, multivariable logistic regression, and mixed-effects modeling to evaluate whether plasma antigen concentration was associated with disease severity. RESULTS: Plasma antigen had 91.9% (95% CI 83.2-97.0%) clinical sensitivity and 94.2% (84.1-98.8%) clinical specificity. Antigen-negative plasma samples belonged to patients with later respiratory cycle thresholds (Ct) when compared with antigen-positive plasma samples. Median plasma antigen concentration (log10 fg/mL) was 5.4 (IQR 3.9-6.0) in outpatients, 6.0 (5.4-6.5) in inpatients, and 6.6 (6.1-7.2) in intensive care unit (ICU) patients. In models adjusted for age, sex, diabetes, and hypertension, plasma antigen concentration at diagnosis was associated with ICU admission (OR 2.8 [95% CI 1.2-6.2], P=.01), but not with non-ICU hospitalization. Rate of antigen decrease was not associated with disease severity. CONCLUSIONS: SARS-CoV-2 plasma nucleocapsid antigen exhibited comparable diagnostic performance to upper respiratory NAAT, especially among those with late respiratory Ct. In addition to currently available tools, antigenemia may facilitate patient triage to optimize intensive care utilization.

6.
Front Immunol ; 12: 739037, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1448729

ABSTRACT

Background: Transfusion of COVID-19 convalescent plasma (CCP) containing high titers of anti-SARS-CoV-2 antibodies serves as therapy for COVID-19 patients. Transfusions early during disease course was found to be beneficial. Lessons from the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic could inform early responses to future pandemics and may continue to be relevant in lower resource settings. We sought to identify factors correlating to high antibody titers in convalescent plasma donors and understand the magnitude and pharmacokinetic time course of both transfused antibody titers and the endogenous antibody titers in transfused recipients. Methods: Plasma samples were collected up to 174 days after convalescence from 93 CCP donors with mild disease, and from 16 COVID-19 patients before and after transfusion. Using ELISA, anti-SARS-CoV-2 Spike RBD, S1, and N-protein antibodies, as well as capacity of antibodies to block ACE2 from binding to RBD was measured in an in vitro assay. As an estimate for viral load, viral RNA and N-protein plasma levels were assessed in COVID-19 patients. Results: Anti-SARS-CoV-2 antibody levels and RBD-ACE2 blocking capacity were highest within the first 60 days after symptom resolution and markedly decreased after 120 days. Highest antibody titers were found in CCP donors that experienced fever. Effect of transfused CCP was detectable in COVID-19 patients who received high-titer CCP and had not seroconverted at the time of transfusion. Decrease in viral RNA was seen in two of these patients. Conclusion: Our results suggest that high titer CCP should be collected within 60 days after recovery from donors with past fever. The much lower titers conferred by transfused antibodies compared to endogenous production in the patient underscore the importance of providing CCP prior to endogenous seroconversion.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/therapy , Convalescence , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Seroconversion , Adult , Antibodies, Neutralizing/blood , Antibodies, Neutralizing/immunology , Antibodies, Viral/blood , Antibodies, Viral/immunology , Antigens, Viral/blood , Blood Donors , COVID-19/blood , COVID-19/immunology , Female , Humans , Immunization, Passive , Kinetics , Male , Middle Aged , Outpatients , RNA, Viral/blood
7.
EBioMedicine ; 71: 103546, 2021 Sep.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1363149

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Respiratory virus infections are significant causes of morbidity and mortality, and may induce host metabolite alterations by infecting respiratory epithelial cells. We investigated the use of liquid chromatography quadrupole time-of-flight mass spectrometry (LC/Q-TOF) combined with machine learning for the diagnosis of influenza infection. METHODS: We analyzed nasopharyngeal swab samples by LC/Q-TOF to identify distinct metabolic signatures for diagnosis of acute illness. Machine learning models were performed for classification, followed by Shapley additive explanation (SHAP) analysis to analyze feature importance and for biomarker discovery. FINDINGS: A total of 236 samples were tested in the discovery phase by LC/Q-TOF, including 118 positive samples (40 influenza A 2009 H1N1, 39 influenza H3 and 39 influenza B) as well as 118 age and sex-matched negative controls with acute respiratory illness. Analysis showed an area under the receiver operating characteristic curve (AUC) of 1.00 (95% confidence interval [95% CI] 0.99, 1.00), sensitivity of 1.00 (95% CI 0.86, 1.00) and specificity of 0.96 (95% CI 0.81, 0.99). The metabolite most strongly associated with differential classification was pyroglutamic acid. Independent validation of a biomarker signature based on the top 20 differentiating ion features was performed in a prospective cohort of 96 symptomatic individuals including 48 positive samples (24 influenza A 2009 H1N1, 5 influenza H3 and 19 influenza B) and 48 negative samples. Testing performed using a clinically-applicable targeted approach, liquid chromatography triple quadrupole mass spectrometry, showed an AUC of 1.00 (95% CI 0.998, 1.00), sensitivity of 0.94 (95% CI 0.83, 0.98), and specificity of 1.00 (95% CI 0.93, 1.00). Limitations include lack of sample suitability assessment, and need to validate these findings in additional patient populations. INTERPRETATION: This metabolomic approach has potential for diagnostic applications in infectious diseases testing, including other respiratory viruses, and may eventually be adapted for point-of-care testing. FUNDING: None.

8.
EBioMedicine ; 67: 103355, 2021 May.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1385438

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: There is increasing concern that persistent infection of SARS-CoV-2 within immunocompromised hosts could serve as a reservoir for mutation accumulation and subsequent emergence of novel strains with the potential to evade immune responses. METHODS: We describe three patients with acute lymphoblastic leukemia who were persistently positive for SARS-CoV-2 by real-time polymerase chain reaction. Viral viability from longitudinally-collected specimens was assessed. Whole-genome sequencing and serological studies were performed to measure viral evolution and evidence of immune escape. FINDINGS: We found compelling evidence of ongoing replication and infectivity for up to 162 days from initial positive by subgenomic RNA, single-stranded RNA, and viral culture analysis. Our results reveal a broad spectrum of infectivity, host immune responses, and accumulation of mutations, some with the potential for immune escape. INTERPRETATION: Our results highlight the potential need to reassess infection control precautions in the management and care of immunocompromised patients. Routine surveillance of mutations and evaluation of their potential impact on viral transmission and immune escape should be considered.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/immunology , Immune Evasion , Mutation , Precursor Cell Lymphoblastic Leukemia-Lymphoma/virology , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , COVID-19/virology , Child, Preschool , Evolution, Molecular , Female , Genome, Viral , High-Throughput Nucleotide Sequencing , Humans , Immunity, Humoral , Male , Precursor Cell Lymphoblastic Leukemia-Lymphoma/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/classification , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Sequence Analysis, RNA , Whole Genome Sequencing , Young Adult
9.
J Clin Virol ; 127: 104383, 2020 06.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1385847

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Numerous nucleic acid amplification assays have recently received emergency use authorization (EUA) for the diagnosis of SARS-CoV-2 infection, and there is a need to assess their test performance relative to one another. OBJECTIVES: The aim of this study was to compare the test performance of the Hologic Panther Fusion SARS-CoV-2 assay targeting two regions of open reading frame 1ab (ORF1ab) to a high complexity molecular-based, laboratory-developed EUA from Stanford Health Care (SHC) targeting the SARS-CoV-2 envelope (E) gene. STUDY DESIGN: We performed a diagnostic comparison study by testing nasopharyngeal samples on the two assays. Assay agreement was assessed by overall percent agreement and Cohen's kappa coefficient. RESULTS: A total of 184 nasopharyngeal samples were tested using the two assays, of which 180 showed valid results and were included for the comparative analysis. Overall percent agreement between the assays was 98.3 % (95 % confidence interval (CI) 95.2-99.7) and kappa coefficient was 0.97 (95 % CI 0.93-1.0). One sample was detected on the SHC laboratory developed test (LDT) and not on the Panther Fusion, and had a Ct of 35.9. Conversely, 2 samples were detected on the Panther Fusion and not on the LDT, and had Ct values of 37.2 and 36.6. CONCLUSION: The Panther Fusion SARS-CoV-2 assay and the SHC LDT perform similarly on clinical nasopharyngeal swab specimens. Other considerations, including reagent availability, turnaround time, labor requirements, cost and instrument throughput should guide the decision of which assay to perform.


Subject(s)
Coronavirus Infections/diagnosis , Molecular Diagnostic Techniques/methods , Molecular Diagnostic Techniques/standards , Pneumonia, Viral/diagnosis , Reagent Kits, Diagnostic/standards , Viral Envelope Proteins/isolation & purification , Betacoronavirus/genetics , COVID-19 , Coronavirus Envelope Proteins , Humans , Nasopharynx/virology , Pandemics , Reproducibility of Results , SARS-CoV-2 , Viral Envelope Proteins/genetics
11.
Diagn Microbiol Infect Dis ; 101(4): 115517, 2021 Dec.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1347571

ABSTRACT

Dengue and COVID-19 cocirculation presents a diagnostic conundrum for physicians evaluating patients with acute febrile illnesses, both in endemic regions and among returning travelers. We present a case of a returning traveler from Pakistan who, following repeated negative SARS-CoV-2 tests, was found to have a Dengue virus serotype 2 infection.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/diagnosis , Dengue/diagnosis , SARS-CoV-2 , Adult , COVID-19/epidemiology , California/epidemiology , Dengue/epidemiology , Dengue Virus/classification , Dengue Virus/genetics , Female , Genome, Viral , Humans , Pakistan/epidemiology , Phylogeny , Reverse Transcriptase Polymerase Chain Reaction , Serogroup , Travel
12.
Emerg Infect Dis ; 27(10): 2720-2723, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1323073

ABSTRACT

We report persistent severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 infection in a patient with HIV/AIDS; the virus developed spike N terminal domain and receptor binding domain neutralization resistance mutations. Our findings suggest that immunocompromised patients can harbor emerging variants of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2.


Subject(s)
Acquired Immunodeficiency Syndrome , COVID-19 , Humans , Mutation , Protein Binding , SARS-CoV-2 , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics
13.
J Clin Microbiol ; 59(8): e0085921, 2021 Jul 19.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1316925

ABSTRACT

The emergence of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) variants with concerning phenotypic mutations is of public health interest. Genomic surveillance is an important tool for a pandemic response, but many laboratories do not have the resources to support population-level sequencing. We hypothesized that a nucleic acid amplification test (NAAT) to genotype mutations in the viral spike protein could facilitate high-throughput variant surveillance. We designed and analytically validated a one-step multiplex allele-specific reverse transcriptase PCR (RT-qPCR) to detect three nonsynonymous spike protein mutations (L452R, E484K, N501Y). Assay specificity was validated with next-generation whole-genome sequencing. We then screened a large cohort of SARS-CoV-2-positive specimens from our San Francisco Bay Area population. Between 1 December 2020 and 1 March 2021, we screened 4,049 unique infections by genotyping RT-qPCR, with an assay failure rate of 2.8%. We detected 1,567 L452R mutations (38.7%), 34 N501Y mutations (0.84%), 22 E484K mutations (0.54%), and 3 (0.07%) E484K plus N501Y mutations. The assay had perfect (100%) concordance with whole-genome sequencing of a validation subset of 229 specimens and detected B.1.1.7, B.1.351, B.1.427, B.1.429, B.1.526, and P.2 variants, among others. The assay revealed the rapid emergence of the L452R variant in our population, with a prevalence of 24.8% in December 2020 that increased to 62.5% in March 2021. We developed and clinically implemented a genotyping RT-qPCR to conduct high-throughput SARS-CoV-2 variant screening. This approach can be adapted for emerging mutations and immediately implemented in laboratories already performing NAAT worldwide using existing equipment, personnel, and extracted nucleic acid.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Epidemiological Monitoring , Genotype , Humans , Reverse Transcriptase Polymerase Chain Reaction
17.
Genome Med ; 13(1): 62, 2021 04 19.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1191796

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: The genome of SARS-CoV-2 is susceptible to mutations during viral replication due to the errors generated by RNA-dependent RNA polymerases. These mutations enable the SARS-CoV-2 to evolve into new strains. Viral quasispecies emerge from de novo mutations that occur in individual patients. In combination, these sets of viral mutations provide distinct genetic fingerprints that reveal the patterns of transmission and have utility in contact tracing. METHODS: Leveraging thousands of sequenced SARS-CoV-2 genomes, we performed a viral pangenome analysis to identify conserved genomic sequences. We used a rapid and highly efficient computational approach that relies on k-mers, short tracts of sequence, instead of conventional sequence alignment. Using this method, we annotated viral mutation signatures that were associated with specific strains. Based on these highly conserved viral sequences, we developed a rapid and highly scalable targeted sequencing assay to identify mutations, detect quasispecies variants, and identify mutation signatures from patients. These results were compared to the pangenome genetic fingerprints. RESULTS: We built a k-mer index for thousands of SARS-CoV-2 genomes and identified conserved genomics regions and landscape of mutations across thousands of virus genomes. We delineated mutation profiles spanning common genetic fingerprints (the combination of mutations in a viral assembly) and a combination of mutations that appear in only a small number of patients. We developed a targeted sequencing assay by selecting primers from the conserved viral genome regions to flank frequent mutations. Using a cohort of 100 SARS-CoV-2 clinical samples, we identified genetic fingerprints consisting of strain-specific mutations seen across populations and de novo quasispecies mutations localized to individual infections. We compared the mutation profiles of viral samples undergoing analysis with the features of the pangenome. CONCLUSIONS: We conducted an analysis for viral mutation profiles that provide the basis of genetic fingerprints. Our study linked pangenome analysis with targeted deep sequenced SARS-CoV-2 clinical samples. We identified quasispecies mutations occurring within individual patients and determined their general prevalence when compared to over 70,000 other strains. Analysis of these genetic fingerprints may provide a way of conducting molecular contact tracing.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/virology , Genome, Viral , Mutation , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Base Sequence , Conserved Sequence , DNA Fingerprinting , Humans , RNA, Viral , Sequence Analysis, RNA
18.
Clin Infect Dis ; 2021 Apr 08.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1172645

ABSTRACT

An ultra-sensitive severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) nucleocapsid antigen assay (S-PLEX, MesoScale Diagnostics) was evaluated in 250 retrospective and 200 prospective upper respiratory specimens. In samples with cycle threshold <35, there was 95%-98% positive and 93%-96% negative percent agreement with reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction. S-PLEX may provide a high-throughput alternative to nucleic acid-based testing for coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) diagnosis.

19.
J Clin Virol ; 139: 104818, 2021 06.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1164017

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) endgame may benefit from simple, accurate antibody testing to characterize seroprevalence and immunization coverage. OBJECTIVES: To evaluate the performance of the lateral flow QIAreach anti-SARS-CoV-2 Total rapid nanoparticle fluorescence immunoassay compared to reference isotype-specific IgG, IgM, and IgA SARS-CoV-2 ELISA using S1 or receptor binding domain (RBD) as antigens. STUDY DESIGN: A diagnostic comparison study was carried out using 154 well-characterized heparin plasma samples. Agreement between assays was assessed by overall, positive, and negative percent agreement and Cohen's kappa coefficient. RESULTS: Overall agreement between the QIAreach anti-SARS-CoV-2 Total and any anti-spike domain (S1 or RBD) antibody isotype was 96.0 % (95 % CI 89.8-98.8), the positive percent agreement was 97.6 % (95 % CI 91.0-99.9), the negative percent agreement was 88.2 % (95 % CI 64.4-98.0). The kappa coefficient was 0.86 (95 % CI 0.72 to 0.99). CONCLUSION: The QIAreach anti-SARS-CoV-2 Total rapid antibody test provides comparable performance to high-complexity, laboratory-based ELISA.


Subject(s)
Antibodies, Viral/blood , COVID-19/diagnosis , Fluorescent Antibody Technique/methods , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Adult , Aged , Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay , Female , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Nanoparticles
20.
J Clin Virol ; 138: 104792, 2021 05.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1126921

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Significant overlap exists between the symptoms of SARS-CoV-2 and other respiratory viruses. This poses a serious challenge to clinical diagnosis, laboratory testing, and infection control programs. OBJECTIVES: To evaluate the performance of the Hologic Panther Fusion Respiratory Assays (RA) compared to the GenMark ePlex Respiratory Pathogen Panel (RPP) and to assess the ability of the Panther Fusion to perform parallel testing of SARS-CoV-2 and other respiratory viruses from a single sample. STUDY DESIGN: A diagnostic comparison study was carried out using 375 clinical nasopharyngeal specimens. Assay performance was assessed by overall, positive, and negative percent agreement and Cohen's kappa coefficient. RESULTS: Overall agreement between the Fusion RA and ePlex RPP was 97.3 % (95 % CI 96.3-98.0), positive percent agreement was 97.2 % (95 % CI 93.0-99.2), negative percent agreement was 97.3 % (95 % CI 96.3-98.0), and the kappa coefficient was 0.85 (95 % CI 0.81-0.89). Forty additional viruses in 30 specimens were detected by Fusion that were not detected by ePlex. The maximum specimen throughput for parallel testing of the Fusion Respiratory Assays with SARS-CoV-2 was 275 samples in 20.7 h for Fusion SARS-CoV-2 and 350 samples in 20.0 h for Aptima Transcription Mediated Amplification SARS-CoV-2. CONCLUSION: Fusion RA demonstrated substantial agreement compared to the ePlex RPP. However, the Fusion detected respiratory viruses not identified by ePlex, consistent with higher clinical sensitivity. Workflows for parallel testing of respiratory pathogens and SARS-CoV-2 demonstrate that the Panther Fusion instrument provides a flexible, moderate to high throughput testing option for pandemic and seasonal respiratory viruses.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Nucleic Acid Testing/methods , COVID-19/diagnosis , Nasopharynx/virology , RNA, Viral/isolation & purification , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Diagnostic Tests, Routine , Humans , Influenza, Human/diagnosis , Retrospective Studies , Sensitivity and Specificity
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