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1.
Immunity ; 2022 Jun 08.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1882102

ABSTRACT

As the establishment of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2)-specific T cell memory in children remains largely unexplored, we recruited convalescent COVID-19 children and adults to define their circulating memory SARS-CoV-2-specific CD4+ and CD8+ T cells prior to vaccination. We analyzed epitope-specific T cells directly ex vivo using seven HLA class I and class II tetramers presenting SARS-CoV-2 epitopes, together with Spike-specific B cells. Unvaccinated children who seroconverted had comparable Spike-specific but lower ORF1a- and N-specific memory T cell responses compared with adults. This agreed with our TCR sequencing data showing reduced clonal expansion in children. A strong stem cell memory phenotype and common T cell receptor motifs were detected within tetramer-specific T cells in seroconverted children. Conversely, children who did not seroconvert had tetramer-specific T cells of predominantly naive phenotypes and diverse TCRαß repertoires. Our study demonstrates the generation of SARS-CoV-2-specific T cell memory with common TCRαß motifs in unvaccinated seroconverted children after their first virus encounter.

2.
Immunity ; 2022 May 27.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1867266

ABSTRACT

Vaccination against SARS-CoV-2 protects from infection and improves clinical outcomes in breakthrough infections, likely reflecting residual vaccine-elicited immunity and recall of immunological memory. Here, we define the early kinetics of spike-specific humoral and cellular immunity after vaccination of seropositive individuals and after Delta or Omicron breakthrough infection in vaccinated individuals. Early longitudinal sampling revealed the timing and magnitude of recall, with the phenotypic activation of B cells preceding an increase in neutralizing antibody titers. While vaccination of seropositive individuals resulted in robust recall of humoral and T cell immunity, recall of vaccine-elicited responses was delayed and variable in magnitude during breakthrough infections and depended on the infecting variant of concern. While the delayed kinetics of immune recall provides a potential mechanism for the lack of early control of viral replication, the recall of antibodies coincided with viral clearance and likely underpins the protective effects of vaccination against severe COVID-19.

3.
J Immunol ; 208(10): 2267-2271, 2022 05 15.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1835021

ABSTRACT

Understanding the generation of immunity to SARS-CoV-2 in lymphoid tissues draining the site of infection has implications for immunity to SARS-CoV-2. We performed tonsil biopsies under local anesthesia in 19 subjects who had recovered from SARS-CoV-2 infection 24-225 d previously. The biopsies yielded >3 million cells for flow cytometric analysis in 17 subjects. Total and SARS-CoV-2 spike-specific germinal center B cells, and T follicular helper cells, were readily detectable in human tonsils early after SARS-CoV-2 infection, as assessed by flow cytometry. Responses were higher in samples within 2 mo of infection but still detectable in some subjects out to 7 mo following infection. We conclude the tonsils are a secondary lymphoid organ that develop germinal center responses to SARS-CoV-2 infection and could play a role in the long-term development of immunity.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Antibodies, Viral , Germinal Center , Humans , Palatine Tonsil , SARS-CoV-2 , T Follicular Helper Cells
4.
Lancet Infect Dis ; 22(6): 744-745, 2022 06.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1768669
5.
Nat Immunol ; 23(5): 768-780, 2022 05.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1751739

ABSTRACT

Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) infection and vaccination elicit CD4+ T cell responses to the spike protein, including circulating follicular helper T (cTFH) cells that correlate with neutralizing antibodies. Using a novel HLA-DRB1*15:01/S751 tetramer to track spike-specific CD4+ T cells, we show that primary infection or vaccination induces robust S751-specific CXCR5- and cTFH cell memory responses. Secondary exposure induced recall of CD4+ T cells with a transitory CXCR3+ phenotype, and drove expansion of cTFH cells transiently expressing ICOS, CD38 and PD-1. In both contexts, cells exhibited a restricted T cell antigen receptor repertoire, including a highly public clonotype and considerable clonotypic overlap between CXCR5- and cTFH populations. Following a third vaccine dose, the rapid re-expansion of spike-specific CD4+ T cells contrasted with the comparatively delayed increase in antibody titers. Overall, we demonstrate that stable pools of cTFH and memory CD4+ T cells established by infection and/or vaccination are efficiently recalled upon antigen reexposure and may contribute to long-term protection against SARS-CoV-2.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Antibodies, Neutralizing , Antibodies, Viral , Epitopes/metabolism , Humans , Receptors, CXCR5/metabolism , T-Lymphocytes, Helper-Inducer
6.
EuropePMC; 2020.
Preprint in English | EuropePMC | ID: ppcovidwho-317943

ABSTRACT

T-cell responses to SARS-CoV-2-derived peptide pools have been documented, however it remains largely unclear whether prominent SARS-CoV-2-specific T cell populations originate from naïve or pre-existing memory sets. As HLA-B*07:02-restricted N105-113 epitope (B7/N105) is the most dominant SARS-CoV-2 CD8+ T-cell specificity to date, we dissected CD8+ T-cell responses directed at this epitope by direct ex vivo analyses in peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs) from acute and convalescent COVID-19 patients, and pre-pandemic PBMCs, tonsils, lungs and spleens. Using peptide-HLA tetramers, immunodominant B7/N105+CD8+ T-cells were detected at a high frequency (∼2.18x10-4) in COVID-19 patients, comparable to the well-established influenza-specific A2/M158+CD8+ T-cell population. Remarkably, frequencies of B7/N105+CD8+ T-cells were also readily detectable in pre-pandemic PBMCs and tonsils (at 6.55x10-5 and 2.76x10-4, respectively), although they mainly displayed a naïve phenotype, indicating a lack of previous cross-reactive exposures. Ex vivo TCRαβ analyses revealed that a diverse TCRαβ repertoire and promiscuity in αβ TCR pairing underlie such high naïve precursor frequencies of B7/N105+CD8+ T-cells. Overall, our study demonstrates that high precursor frequency and plasticity of TCRα-TCRβ pairing underpin immunodominance of SARS-CoV-2-specific B7/N105+CD8+ T-cell responses and advocates for vaccine strategies which include the nucleocapsid protein to elicit immunodominant CD8+ T-cell responses in HLA-B*07:02 individuals.Funding: This work was supported by theClifford Craig Foundation to KLF and KK, NHMRC Leadership Investigator Grant to KK (1173871), NHMRC Program Grant to DLD (#1132975), Research Grants Council of theHong Kong Special Administrative Region, China (#T11-712/19-N) to KK, the Victorian Government (SJK, AKW), MRFF award (#2002073) to SJK and AKW, MRFFAward (#1202445) to KK, NHMRC program grant 1149990 (SJK) and NHMRC project grant 1162760 (AKW). AKW is supported by Emerging Leadership 1 Investigator Grant (#1173433), JAJ by an NHMRC Early Career Fellowship (ECF) (#1123673), KK by NHMRC SeniorResearch Fellowship (1102792), DLD by a NHMRC Principal Research Fellowship(#1137285) and SJK by NHMRC Senior Principal Research Fellowship (#1136322). CES has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation program under the Marie Skłodowska-Curie grant agreement (#792532). JR is supported by an ARC Laureate fellowship. JRH and WZ are supported by the Melbourne Research Scholarship from The University of Melbourne. LH is supported by the Melbourne International Research Scholarship (MIRS) and the Melbourne International Fee Remission Scholarship (MIFRS) from The University of Melbourne.Ethical Approval: Experiments conformed to the Declaration of Helsinki Principles and theAustralian National Health and Medical Research Council Code of Practice. Written informed consents were obtained from all blood donors prior to the study. Lung and spleen tissues were obtained from deceased organ donors after written informed consents from the next of kin.Written informed consents were obtained from participants’ parental or guardians for underage tonsil tissue donors. The study was approved by the Alfred Hospital (#280/14), Austin Health (HREC/63201/Austin-2020);the University of Melbourne (#2057366.1, #2056901.1,#2056689, #2056761, #1442952, #1955465, and #1443389), the Australian Red CrossLifeblood (ID 2015#8), the Tasmanian Health and Medical (ID H0017479) and the James Cook University (H7886) Human Research Ethics Committees.

7.
EuropePMC; 2021.
Preprint in English | EuropePMC | ID: ppcovidwho-313938

ABSTRACT

Although pregnancy poses a greater risk for severe COVID-19, the underlying immunological changes associated with SARS-CoV-2 infection during pregnancy are poorly understood. We defined immune responses to SARS-CoV-2 in pregnant and non-pregnant women during acute and convalescent COVID-19 up to 258 days post symptom onset, quantifying 217 immunological parameters. Additionally, matched maternal and cord blood were collected from COVID-19 convalescent pregnancies. Although serological responses to SARS-CoV-2 were similar in pregnant and non-pregnant women, cellular immune analyses revealed marked differences in key NK cell and unconventional T cell responses during COVID-19 in pregnant women. While NK, γδ T cells and MAIT cells displayed pre-activated phenotypes in healthy pregnant women when compared to non-pregnant age-matched women, activation profiles of these pre-activated NK and unconventional T cells remained unchanged at acute and convalescent COVID-19 in pregnancy. Conversely, activation dynamics of NK and unconventional T cells were prototypical in non-pregnant women in COVID-19. In contrast, activation of αβ CD4 + and CD8 + T cells, T follicular helper cells and antibody-secreting cells was similar in pregnant and non-pregnant women with COVID-19. Elevated levels of IL-1β, IFN-γ, IL-8, IL-18 and IL-33 were also found in pregnant women in their healthy state, and these cytokine levels remained elevated during acute and convalescent COVID-19. Collectively, our study provides the first comprehensive map of longitudinal immunological responses to SARS-CoV-2 infection in pregnant women, providing insights into patient management and education during COVID-19 pregnancy.

8.
EBioMedicine ; 74: 103729, 2021 Dec.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1555409

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: As vaccines against SARS-CoV-2 are now being rolled out, a better understanding of immunity to the virus, whether from infection, or passive or active immunisation, and the durability of this protection is required. This will benefit from the ability to measure antibody-based protection to SARS-CoV-2, ideally with rapid turnaround and without the need for laboratory-based testing. METHODS: We have developed a lateral flow POC test that can measure levels of RBD-ACE2 neutralising antibody (NAb) from whole blood, with a result that can be determined by eye or quantitatively on a small instrument. We compared our lateral flow test with the gold-standard microneutralisation assay, using samples from convalescent and vaccinated donors, as well as immunised macaques. FINDINGS: We show a high correlation between our lateral flow test with conventional neutralisation and that this test is applicable with animal samples. We also show that this assay is readily adaptable to test for protection to newly emerging SARS-CoV-2 variants, including the beta variant which revealed a marked reduction in NAb activity. Lastly, using a cohort of vaccinated humans, we demonstrate that our whole-blood test correlates closely with microneutralisation assay data (specificity 100% and sensitivity 96% at a microneutralisation cutoff of 1:40) and that fingerprick whole blood samples are sufficient for this test. INTERPRETATION: Taken together, the COVID-19 NAb-testTM device described here provides a rapid readout of NAb based protection to SARS-CoV-2 at the point of care. FUNDING: Support was received from the Victorian Operational Infrastructure Support Program and the Australian Government Department of Health. This work was supported by grants from the Department of Health and Human Services of the Victorian State Government; the ARC (CE140100011, CE140100036), the NHMRC (1113293, 2002317 and 1116530), and Medical Research Future Fund Awards (2005544, 2002073, 2002132). Individual researchers were supported by an NHMRC Emerging Leadership Level 1 Investigator Grants (1194036), NHMRC APPRISE Research Fellowship (1116530), NHMRC Leadership Investigator Grant (1173871), NHMRC Principal Research Fellowship (1137285), NHMRC Investigator Grants (1177174 and 1174555) and NHMRC Senior Principal Research Fellowships (1117766 and 1136322). Grateful support was also received from the A2 Milk Company and the Jack Ma Foundation.


Subject(s)
Antibodies, Neutralizing/blood , Antibodies, Viral/blood , COVID-19 Serological Testing/methods , COVID-19/immunology , Point-of-Care Systems , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Animals , Australia , COVID-19 Vaccines/immunology , Humans , Macaca/immunology , Neutralization Tests , Vaccination
9.
EuropePMC; 2021.
Preprint in English | EuropePMC | ID: ppcovidwho-291856

ABSTRACT

CD4+ T cells play a critical role in the immune response to viral infection. SARS-CoV-2 infection and vaccination elicit strong CD4+ T cell responses to the viral spike protein, including circulating T follicular helper (cTFH) cells that correlate with the development of neutralising antibodies. Here we use a novel HLA-DRB1*15:01/S751 tetramer to precisely track spike-specific CD4+ T cells following recovery from mild/moderate COVID-19, or after vaccination with spike-encoding vaccines. SARS-CoV-2 infection induces robust S751-specific responses with both CXCR5- and cTFH phenotypes that are maintained for at least 12 months in a stable, CXCR3-biased, central memory pool. Vaccination of immunologically naïve subjects similarly drives expansion of S751-specific T cells with a highly restricted TCR repertoire comprised of both public and private clonotypes. Vaccination of convalescent individuals drives recall of CD4+ T cell clones established during infection, which are shared between the CXCR5- and cTFH compartments. This recall response is evident 5 days after antigen exposure and includes a population of spike-specific cTFH that persist in the periphery after losing expression of PD-1. Overall this study demonstrates the generation of a stable pool of cTFH and memory CD4+ T cells that can be recalled upon spike antigen re-exposure, which may play an important role in long-term protection against SARS-CoV-2 infection.

10.
Trends Immunol ; 42(11): 956-959, 2021 11.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1440136

ABSTRACT

Reformulating severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) vaccines with variant strains is being pursued to combat the global surge in infections. We hypothesize that this may be suboptimal due to immune imprinting from earlier vaccination or infection with the original SARS-CoV-2 strain. New strategies may be needed to improve efficacy of SARS-CoV-2 variant vaccines.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Vaccines , COVID-19 Vaccines , Humans , SARS-CoV-2
11.
Cell Rep ; 37(2): 109822, 2021 10 12.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1433046

ABSTRACT

Potent neutralizing monoclonal antibodies are one of the few agents currently available to treat COVID-19. SARS-CoV-2 variants of concern (VOCs) that carry multiple mutations in the viral spike protein can exhibit neutralization resistance, potentially affecting the effectiveness of some antibody-based therapeutics. Here, the generation of a diverse panel of 91 human, neutralizing monoclonal antibodies provides an in-depth structural and phenotypic definition of receptor binding domain (RBD) antigenic sites on the viral spike. These RBD antibodies ameliorate SARS-CoV-2 infection in mice and hamster models in a dose-dependent manner and in proportion to in vitro, neutralizing potency. Assessing the effect of mutations in the spike protein on antibody recognition and neutralization highlights both potent single antibodies and stereotypic classes of antibodies that are unaffected by currently circulating VOCs, such as B.1.351 and P.1. These neutralizing monoclonal antibodies and others that bind analogous epitopes represent potentially useful future anti-SARS-CoV-2 therapeutics.


Subject(s)
Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/immunology , Antibodies, Neutralizing/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/metabolism , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/ultrastructure , Animals , Antibodies, Monoclonal/immunology , Antibodies, Neutralizing/therapeutic use , Antibodies, Neutralizing/ultrastructure , Antibodies, Viral/immunology , COVID-19/immunology , Cricetinae , Cryoelectron Microscopy/methods , Epitopes/immunology , Female , Humans , Male , Mice , Mice, Inbred C57BL , Middle Aged , Neutralization Tests , Protein Binding/physiology , Receptors, Virus/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/immunology
12.
Adv Healthc Mater ; 10(10): e2002142, 2021 05.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1384090

ABSTRACT

Despite remarkable successes of immunization in protecting public health, safe and effective vaccines against a number of life-threatening pathogens such as HIV, ebola, influenza, and SARS-CoV-2 remain urgently needed. Subunit vaccines can avoid potential toxicity associated with traditional whole virion-inactivated and live-attenuated vaccines; however, the immunogenicity of subunit vaccines is often poor. A facile method is here reported to produce lipid nanoparticle subunit vaccines that exhibit high immunogenicity and elicit protection against influenza virus. Influenza hemagglutinin (HA) immunogens are functionalized on the surface of liposomes via stable metal chelation chemistry, using a scalable advanced microfluidic mixing technology (NanoAssemblr). Immunization of mice with HA-liposomes elicits increased serum antibody titers and superior protection against highly pathogenic virus challenge compared with free HA protein. HA-liposomal vaccines display enhanced antigen deposition into germinal centers within the draining lymph nodes, driving increased HA-specific B cell, and follicular helper T cell responses. This work provides mechanistic insights into highly protective HA-liposome vaccines and informs the rational design and rapid production of next generation nanoparticle subunit vaccines.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Influenza Vaccines , Orthomyxoviridae Infections , Animals , Antibodies, Viral , Germinal Center , Hemagglutinin Glycoproteins, Influenza Virus , Hemagglutinins , Humans , Liposomes , Mice , Orthomyxoviridae Infections/prevention & control , SARS-CoV-2 , T-Lymphocytes, Helper-Inducer
13.
Cell Rep Med ; 2(6): 100296, 2021 06 15.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1225428

ABSTRACT

The capacity of antibodies to engage with immune cells via the Fc region is important in preventing and controlling many infectious diseases. The evolution of such antibodies during convalescence from coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) is largely unknown. We develop assays to measure Fc-dependent antibody functions against severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) spike (S)-expressing cells in serial samples from subjects primarily with mild-moderate COVID-19 up to 149 days post-infection. We find that S-specific antibodies capable of engaging Fcγ receptors decay over time, with S-specific antibody-dependent cellular cytotoxicity (ADCC) and antibody-dependent phagocytosis (ADP) activity within plasma declining accordingly. Although there is significant decay in ADCC and ADP activity, they remain readily detectable in almost all subjects at the last time point studied (94%) in contrast with neutralization activity (70%). Although it remains unclear the degree to which Fc effector functions contribute to protection against SARS-CoV-2 re-infection, our results indicate that antibodies with Fc effector functions persist longer than neutralizing antibodies.


Subject(s)
Antibodies, Viral/metabolism , COVID-19/immunology , Immunoglobulin Fc Fragments/metabolism , Antibodies, Viral/blood , Antibody-Dependent Cell Cytotoxicity/immunology , COVID-19/pathology , COVID-19/virology , Cell Line, Tumor , Dimerization , Humans , Immunoglobulin Fc Fragments/genetics , Immunoglobulin Fc Fragments/immunology , Kinetics , Neutralization Tests , Phagocytosis , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , SARS-CoV-2/metabolism , Severity of Illness Index , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/immunology , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/metabolism
14.
Immunity ; 54(5): 1066-1082.e5, 2021 05 11.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1216346

ABSTRACT

To better understand primary and recall T cell responses during coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), it is important to examine unmanipulated severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2)-specific T cells. By using peptide-human leukocyte antigen (HLA) tetramers for direct ex vivo analysis, we characterized CD8+ T cells specific for SARS-CoV-2 epitopes in COVID-19 patients and unexposed individuals. Unlike CD8+ T cells directed toward subdominant epitopes (B7/N257, A2/S269, and A24/S1,208) CD8+ T cells specific for the immunodominant B7/N105 epitope were detected at high frequencies in pre-pandemic samples and at increased frequencies during acute COVID-19 and convalescence. SARS-CoV-2-specific CD8+ T cells in pre-pandemic samples from children, adults, and elderly individuals predominantly displayed a naive phenotype, indicating a lack of previous cross-reactive exposures. T cell receptor (TCR) analyses revealed diverse TCRαß repertoires and promiscuous αß-TCR pairing within B7/N105+CD8+ T cells. Our study demonstrates high naive precursor frequency and TCRαß diversity within immunodominant B7/N105-specific CD8+ T cells and provides insight into SARS-CoV-2-specific T cell origins and subsequent responses.


Subject(s)
CD8-Positive T-Lymphocytes/immunology , COVID-19/immunology , Coronavirus Nucleocapsid Proteins/immunology , Immunodominant Epitopes/immunology , Receptors, Antigen, T-Cell/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Adult , Aged , Amino Acid Motifs , CD4-Positive T-Lymphocytes , Child , Convalescence , Coronavirus Nucleocapsid Proteins/chemistry , Epitopes, T-Lymphocyte/chemistry , Epitopes, T-Lymphocyte/immunology , Female , Humans , Immunodominant Epitopes/chemistry , Male , Middle Aged , Phenotype , Phosphoproteins/chemistry , Phosphoproteins/immunology , Receptors, Antigen, T-Cell/chemistry , Receptors, Antigen, T-Cell/genetics , Receptors, Antigen, T-Cell, alpha-beta/chemistry , Receptors, Antigen, T-Cell, alpha-beta/genetics , Receptors, Antigen, T-Cell, alpha-beta/immunology , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/chemistry , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/immunology
15.
Nat Commun ; 12(1): 2037, 2021 04 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1164849

ABSTRACT

The hallmarks of COVID-19 are higher pathogenicity and mortality in the elderly compared to children. Examining baseline SARS-CoV-2 cross-reactive immunological responses, induced by circulating human coronaviruses (hCoVs), is needed to understand such divergent clinical outcomes. Here we show analysis of coronavirus antibody responses of pre-pandemic healthy children (n = 89), adults (n = 98), elderly (n = 57), and COVID-19 patients (n = 50) by systems serology. Moderate levels of cross-reactive, but non-neutralizing, SARS-CoV-2 antibodies are detected in pre-pandemic healthy individuals. SARS-CoV-2 antigen-specific Fcγ receptor binding accurately distinguishes COVID-19 patients from healthy individuals, suggesting that SARS-CoV-2 infection induces qualitative changes to antibody Fc, enhancing Fcγ receptor engagement. Higher cross-reactive SARS-CoV-2 IgA and IgG are observed in healthy elderly, while healthy children display elevated SARS-CoV-2 IgM, suggesting that children have fewer hCoV exposures, resulting in less-experienced but more polyreactive humoral immunity. Age-dependent analysis of COVID-19 patients, confirms elevated class-switched antibodies in elderly, while children have stronger Fc responses which we demonstrate are functionally different. These insights will inform COVID-19 vaccination strategies, improved serological diagnostics and therapeutics.


Subject(s)
Antibodies, Viral/blood , Antibodies, Viral/immunology , Antibody Formation/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Adolescent , Adult , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , COVID-19/immunology , COVID-19 Vaccines/immunology , Child , Child, Preschool , Cross Reactions/immunology , Humans , Immunoglobulin A/blood , Immunoglobulin A/immunology , Immunoglobulin G/blood , Immunoglobulin G/immunology , Immunoglobulin M/blood , Immunoglobulin M/immunology , Middle Aged , Receptors, IgG/immunology , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/immunology , Young Adult
16.
Clin Transl Immunology ; 10(3): e1264, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1144232

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVES: Endemic human coronaviruses (hCoVs) circulate worldwide but cause minimal mortality. Although seroconversion to hCoV is near ubiquitous during childhood, little is known about hCoV-specific T-cell memory in adults. METHODS: We quantified CD4 T-cell and antibody responses to hCoV spike antigens in 42 SARS-CoV-2-uninfected individuals. Antigen-specific memory T cells and circulating T follicular helper (cTFH) cells were identified using an activation-induced marker assay and characterised for memory phenotype and chemokine receptor expression. RESULTS: T-cell responses were widespread within conventional memory and cTFH compartments but did not correlate with IgG titres. SARS-CoV-2 cross-reactive T cells were observed in 48% of participants and correlated with HKU1 memory. hCoV-specific T cells exhibited a CCR6+ central memory phenotype in the blood, but were enriched for frequency and CXCR3 expression in human lung-draining lymph nodes. CONCLUSION: Overall, hCoV-specific humoral and cellular memory are independently maintained, with a shared phenotype existing among coronavirus-specific CD4 T cells. This understanding of endemic coronavirus immunity provides insight into the homeostatic maintenance of immune responses that are likely to be critical components of protection against SARS-CoV-2.

17.
Nat Commun ; 12(1): 1403, 2021 03 03.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1117351

ABSTRACT

SARS-CoV-2 vaccines are advancing into human clinical trials, with emphasis on eliciting high titres of neutralising antibodies against the viral spike (S). However, the merits of broadly targeting S versus focusing antibody onto the smaller receptor binding domain (RBD) are unclear. Here we assess prototypic S and RBD subunit vaccines in homologous or heterologous prime-boost regimens in mice and non-human primates. We find S is highly immunogenic in mice, while the comparatively poor immunogenicity of RBD is associated with limiting germinal centre and T follicular helper cell activity. Boosting S-primed mice with either S or RBD significantly augments neutralising titres, with RBD-focussing driving moderate improvement in serum neutralisation. In contrast, both S and RBD vaccines are comparably immunogenic in macaques, eliciting serological neutralising activity that generally exceed levels in convalescent humans. These studies confirm recombinant S proteins as promising vaccine candidates and highlight multiple pathways to achieving potent serological neutralisation.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Vaccines/therapeutic use , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity , Animals , Antibodies, Neutralizing/immunology , Antibody Formation/physiology , Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay , Flow Cytometry , Humans , Macaca , Male , Mice , Mice, Inbred BALB C , Mice, Inbred C57BL , T-Lymphocytes, Helper-Inducer/immunology , T-Lymphocytes, Helper-Inducer/metabolism , Viral Vaccines/therapeutic use
18.
Nat Commun ; 12(1): 1162, 2021 02 19.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1091489

ABSTRACT

The durability of infection-induced SARS-CoV-2 immunity has major implications for reinfection and vaccine development. Here, we show a comprehensive profile of antibody, B cell and T cell dynamics over time in a cohort of patients who have recovered from mild-moderate COVID-19. Binding and neutralising antibody responses, together with individual serum clonotypes, decay over the first 4 months post-infection. A similar decline in Spike-specific CD4+ and circulating T follicular helper frequencies occurs. By contrast, S-specific IgG+ memory B cells consistently accumulate over time, eventually comprising a substantial fraction of circulating the memory B cell pool. Modelling of the concomitant immune kinetics predicts maintenance of serological neutralising activity above a titre of 1:40 in 50% of convalescent participants to 74 days, although there is probably additive protection from B cell and T cell immunity. This study indicates that SARS-CoV-2 immunity after infection might be transiently protective at a population level. Therefore, SARS-CoV-2 vaccines might require greater immunogenicity and durability than natural infection to drive long-term protection.


Subject(s)
Antibodies, Viral/immunology , Antibody Formation , COVID-19/immunology , Immunity, Cellular , Immunologic Memory , Antibodies, Neutralizing/blood , Antibodies, Neutralizing/immunology , Antibodies, Viral/blood , B-Lymphocytes/immunology , CD4-Positive T-Lymphocytes/immunology , Humans , Immunoglobulin G/immunology , Longitudinal Studies , Models, Theoretical , Neutralization Tests , T-Lymphocytes, Helper-Inducer/immunology
19.
Sci Rep ; 11(1): 1864, 2021 01 21.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1042540

ABSTRACT

The ferret is a key animal model for investigating the pathogenicity and transmissibility of important human viruses, and for the pre-clinical assessment of vaccines. However, relatively little is known about the ferret immune system, due in part to a paucity of ferret-reactive reagents. In particular, T follicular helper (Tfh) cells are critical in the generation of effective humoral responses in humans, mice and other animal models but to date it has not been possible to identify Tfh in ferrets. Here, we describe the screening and development of ferret-reactive BCL6, CXCR5 and PD-1 monoclonal antibodies. We found two commercial anti-BCL6 antibodies (clone K112-91 and clone IG191E/A8) had cross-reactivity with lymph node cells from influenza-infected ferrets. We next developed two murine monoclonal antibodies against ferret CXCR5 (clone feX5-C05) and PD-1 (clone fePD-CL1) using a single B cell PCR-based method. We were able to clearly identify Tfh cells in lymph nodes from influenza infected ferrets using these antibodies. The development of ferret Tfh marker antibodies and the identification of ferret Tfh cells will assist the evaluation of vaccine-induced Tfh responses in the ferret model and the design of novel vaccines against the infection of influenza and other viruses, including SARS-CoV2.


Subject(s)
Antibodies, Monoclonal/immunology , Ferrets/immunology , High-Throughput Screening Assays/methods , T Follicular Helper Cells/immunology , Animals , Antibodies, Monoclonal/isolation & purification , COVID-19 Vaccines/immunology , Cross Reactions/immunology , Humans , Influenza Vaccines/immunology , Lymph Nodes/immunology , Mice , Programmed Cell Death 1 Receptor/immunology , Proto-Oncogene Proteins c-bcl-6/immunology , Receptors, CXCR5/immunology , Viral Vaccines/immunology
20.
Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A ; 117(39): 24384-24391, 2020 09 29.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-775833

ABSTRACT

An improved understanding of human T cell-mediated immunity in COVID-19 is important for optimizing therapeutic and vaccine strategies. Experience with influenza shows that infection primes CD8+ T cell memory to peptides presented by common HLA types like HLA-A2, which enhances recovery and diminishes clinical severity upon reinfection. Stimulating peripheral blood mononuclear cells from COVID-19 convalescent patients with overlapping peptides from severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) led to the clonal expansion of SARS-CoV-2-specific CD8+ and CD4+ T cells in vitro, with CD4+ T cells being robust. We identified two HLA-A*02:01-restricted SARS-CoV-2-specfic CD8+ T cell epitopes, A2/S269-277 and A2/Orf1ab3183-3191 Using peptide-HLA tetramer enrichment, direct ex vivo assessment of A2/S269 +CD8+ and A2/Orf1ab3183 +CD8+ populations indicated that A2/S269 +CD8+ T cells were detected at comparable frequencies (∼1.3 × 10-5) in acute and convalescent HLA-A*02:01+ patients. These frequencies were higher than those found in uninfected HLA-A*02:01+ donors (∼2.5 × 10-6), but low when compared to frequencies for influenza-specific (A2/M158) and Epstein-Barr virus (EBV)-specific (A2/BMLF1280) (∼1.38 × 10-4) populations. Phenotyping A2/S269 +CD8+ T cells from COVID-19 convalescents ex vivo showed that A2/S269 +CD8+ T cells were predominantly negative for CD38, HLA-DR, PD-1, and CD71 activation markers, although the majority of total CD8+ T cells expressed granzymes and/or perforin. Furthermore, the bias toward naïve, stem cell memory and central memory A2/S269 +CD8+ T cells rather than effector memory populations suggests that SARS-CoV-2 infection may be compromising CD8+ T cell activation. Priming with appropriate vaccines may thus be beneficial for optimizing CD8+ T cell immunity in COVID-19.


Subject(s)
Betacoronavirus/immunology , CD8-Positive T-Lymphocytes/immunology , Coronavirus Infections/immunology , HLA-A2 Antigen/immunology , Pneumonia, Viral/immunology , CD4-Positive T-Lymphocytes/immunology , COVID-19 , Epitopes, T-Lymphocyte , Female , Humans , Immunologic Memory , Immunophenotyping , Leukocytes, Mononuclear/immunology , Lymphocyte Activation , Male , Middle Aged , Pandemics , Peptide Fragments/chemistry , Peptide Fragments/immunology , Polyproteins , SARS-CoV-2 , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/chemistry , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/immunology , Viral Proteins/chemistry , Viral Proteins/immunology
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