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1.
Preprint in English | bioRxiv | ID: ppbiorxiv-516888

ABSTRACT

Convergent evolution of SARS-CoV-2 Omicron BA.2, BA.4 and BA.5 lineages has led to the emergence of several new subvariants, including BA.2.75.2, BA.4.6. and BQ.1.1. The subvariants BA.2.75.2 and BQ.1.1 are expected to become predominant in many countries in November 2022. They carry an additional and often redundant set of mutations in the spike, likely responsible for increased transmissibility and immune evasion. Here, we established a viral amplification procedure to easily isolate Omicron strains. We examined their sensitivity to 6 therapeutic monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) and to 72 sera from Pfizer BNT162b2-vaccinated individuals, with or without BA.1/BA.2 or BA.5 breakthrough infection. Ronapreve (Casirivimab and Imdevimab) and Evusheld (Cilgavimab and Tixagevimab) lost any antiviral efficacy against BA.2.75.2 and BQ.1.1, whereas Xevudy (Sotrovimab) remained weakly active. BQ.1.1 was also resistant to Bebtelovimab. Neutralizing titers in triply vaccinated individuals were low to undetectable against BQ.1.1 and BA.2.75.2, 4 months after boosting. A BA.1/BA.2 breakthrough infection increased these titers, which remained about 18-fold lower against BA.2.75.2 and BQ.1.1, than against BA.1. Reciprocally, a BA.5 breakthrough infection increased more efficiently neutralization against BA.5 and BQ.1.1 than against BA.2.75.2. Thus, the evolution trajectory of novel Omicron subvariants facilitated their spread in immunized populations and raises concerns about the efficacy of most currently available mAbs.

2.
Preprint in English | medRxiv | ID: ppmedrxiv-22278699

ABSTRACT

The emergence of novel Omicron lineages, such as BA.5, may impact the therapeutic efficacy of anti-SARS-CoV-2 neutralizing monoclonal antibodies (mAbs). Here, we evaluated the neutralization and ADCC activity of 6 therapeutic mAbs against Delta, BA.2, BA.4 and BA.5 isolates. The Omicron sub-variants escaped most of the antibodies but remained sensitive to Bebtelovimab and Cilgavimab. Consistent with their shared spike sequence, BA.4 and BA.5 displayed identical neutralization profiles. Sotrovimab was the most efficient at eliciting ADCC. We also analyzed 121 sera from 40 immunocompromised individuals up to 6 months after infusion of 1200 mg of Ronapreve (Imdevimab + Casirivimab), and 300 or 600 mg of Evusheld (Cilgavimab + Tixagevimab). Sera from Ronapreve-treated individuals did not neutralize Omicron subvariants. Evusheld-treated individuals neutralized BA.2 and BA.5, but titers were reduced by 41- and 130-fold, respectively, compared to Delta. A longitudinal evaluation of sera from Evusheld-treated patients revealed a slow decay of mAb levels and neutralization. The decline was more rapid against BA.5. Our data shed light on the antiviral activities of therapeutic mAbs and the duration of effectiveness of Evusheld pre-exposure prophylaxis.

3.
Preprint in English | medRxiv | ID: ppmedrxiv-22277885

ABSTRACT

Since early 2022, Omicron BA.1 has been eclipsed by BA.2, which was in turn outcompeted by BA.5, that displays enhanced antibody escape properties. Here, we evaluated the duration of the neutralizing antibody (Nab) response, up to 16 months after Pfizer BNT162b2 vaccination, in individuals with or without BA.1/BA.2 breakthrough infection. We measured neutralization of the ancestral D614G lineage, Delta and Omicron BA.1, BA.2, BA.5 variants in 291 sera and 35 nasal swabs from 27 individuals. Upon vaccination, serum Nab titers were reduced by 10-, 15-and 25-fold for BA.1, BA.2 and BA.5, respectively, compared with D614G. The duration of neutralization was markedly shortened, from an estimated period of 11.5 months post-boost with D614G to 5.5 months with BA.5. After breakthrough, we observed a sharp increase of Nabs against Omicron subvariants, followed by a plateau and a slow decline after 4-5 months. In nasal swabs, infection, but not vaccination, triggered a strong IgA response and a detectable Omicron neutralizing activity. Thus, BA.5 spread is partly due to abbreviated vaccine efficacy, particularly in individuals who were not infected with previous Omicron variants.

4.
Preprint in English | medRxiv | ID: ppmedrxiv-22275460

ABSTRACT

Population-level immunity to SARS-CoV-2 is growing through vaccination as well as ongoing circulation. Given waning immunity and emergence of new variants, it is important to dynamically determine the risk of re-infection in the population. For estimating immune protection, neutralization titers are most informative, but these assays are difficult to conduct at a population level. Measurement of antibody levels can be implemented at high throughput, but has not been robustly validated as a correlate of protection. Here, we have developed a method that predicts neutralization and protection based on variant-specific antibody measurements to SARS-CoV-2 antigens. This approach allowed us to estimate population-immunity in a longitudinal cohort from France followed for up to 2 years. Participants with a single vaccination or immunity caused by infection only are especially vulnerable to COVID-19 or hospitalization due to SARS-CoV-2. While the median reduced risk to COVID-19 in participants with 3 vaccinations was 96%, the median reduced risk among participants with infection-acquired immunity only was 42%. The results presented here are consistent with data from vaccine-effectiveness studies indicating robustness of our approach. Our multiplex serological assay can be readily optimized and employed to study any new variant and provides a framework for development of an assay that would include protection estimates.

5.
Preprint in English | bioRxiv | ID: ppbiorxiv-486719

ABSTRACT

Memory B-cell and antibody responses to the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein contribute to long-term immune protection against severe COVID-19, which can also be prevented by antibody-based interventions. Here, wide SARS-CoV-2 immunoprofiling in COVID-19 convalescents combining serological, cellular and monoclonal antibody explorations, revealed humoral immunity coordination. Detailed characterization of a hundred SARS-CoV-2 spike memory B-cell monoclonal antibodies uncovered diversity in their repertoire and antiviral functions. The latter were influenced by the targeted spike region with strong Fc-dependent effectors to the S2 subunit and potent neutralizers to the receptor binding domain. Amongst those, Cv2.1169 and Cv2.3194 antibodies cross-neutralized SARS-CoV-2 variants of concern including Omicron BA.1 and BA.2. Cv2.1169, isolated from a mucosa-derived IgA memory B cell, demonstrated potency boost as IgA dimers and therapeutic efficacy as IgG antibodies in animal models. Structural data provided mechanistic clues to Cv2.1169 potency and breadth. Thus, potent broadly neutralizing IgA antibodies elicited in mucosal tissues can stem SARS-CoV-2 infection, and Cv2.1169 and Cv2.3194 are prime candidates for COVID-19 prevention and treatment.

6.
Preprint in English | medRxiv | ID: ppmedrxiv-22273175

ABSTRACT

BackgroundThe protective immunity against Omicron following a BNT162b2 Pfizer booster dose among elderly is not well characterized. MethodsThirty-eight residents from three nursing homes were recruited for the study. Antibodies targeting the Spike protein of SARS-CoV-2 were measured with the S-Flow assay. Neutralizing activities in sera were measured as effective dilution 50% (ED50) with the S-Fuse assay using authentic isolates of Delta and Omicron. ResultsAmong the 38 elderly included in the study, with median (inter-quartile range, IQR) age of 88 (81-92) years, 30 (78.9%) had been previously infected. The ED50 of neutralization were lower against Omicron than Delta, and higher among convalescent compared to naive residents. During an Omicron epidemic affecting two of the three nursing homes in December 2021-January 2022, 75% (6/8) of naive residents got infected, compared to 25% (6/24) of convalescents (P=0.03). Antibody levels to Spike and ED50 of neutralization against Omicron after the BNT162b2 booster dose were lower in those with breakthrough infection (n=12) compared to those without (n=20): median of 1256 vs 2523 BAU/mL (P=0.02) and median ED50 of 234 vs 1298 (P=0.0004), respectively. ConclusionThis study confirmed the importance of receiving at least three antigenic exposures to the SARS-CoV-2 Spike protein for achieving satisfactory neutralizing antibody levels. In this population, protection against Omicron infection was increased in individuals who had been previously infected in addition to the three vaccine doses. Thus, a fourth antigenic exposure may be useful in the elderly population to prevent infection with Omicron, a variant known for its high escape immunity properties.

7.
Preprint in English | medRxiv | ID: ppmedrxiv-22272066

ABSTRACT

The SARS-CoV-2 Omicron BA.1 variant has been supplanted in many countries by the BA.2 sub-lineage. BA.2 differs from BA.1 by about 21 mutations in its spike. Human anti-spike monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) are used for prevention or treatment of COVID-19. However, the capacity of therapeutic mAbs to neutralize BA.1 and BA.2 remains poorly characterized. Here, we first compared the sensitivity of BA.1 and BA.2 to neutralization by 9 therapeutic mAbs. In contrast to BA.1, BA.2 was sensitive to Cilgavimab, partly inhibited by Imdevimab and resistant to Adintrevimab and Sotrovimab. Two combinations of mAbs, Ronapreve (Casirivimab + Imdevimab) and Evusheld (Cilgavimab + Tixagevimab), are indicated as a pre-exposure prophylaxis in immunocompromised persons at risk of severe disease. We analyzed sera from 29 such individuals, up to one month after administration of Ronapreve and/or Evusheld. After treatment, all individuals displayed elevated antibody levels in their sera and neutralized Delta with high titers. Ronapreve recipients did not neutralize BA.1 and weakly impaired BA.2. With Evusheld, neutralization of BA.1 and BA.2 was detected in 19 and 29 out of 29 patients, respectively. As compared to Delta, titers were more severely decreased against BA.1 (344-fold) than BA.2 (9-fold). We further report 4 breakthrough Omicron infections among the 29 participants. Therefore, BA.1 and BA.2 exhibit noticeable differences in their sensitivity to therapeutic mAbs. Anti-Omicron activity of Ronapreve, and to a lesser extent that of Evusheld, is reduced in patients sera, a phenomenon associated with decreased clinical efficacy.

8.
Preprint in English | bioRxiv | ID: ppbiorxiv-475248

ABSTRACT

SARS-CoV-2 lineages are continuously evolving. As of December 2021, the AY.4.2 Delta sub-lineage represented 20 % of sequenced strains in UK and has been detected in dozens of countries. It has since then been supplanted by the Omicron variant. AY.4.2 displays three additional mutations (T95I, Y145H and A222V) in the N-terminal domain (NTD) of the spike when compared to the original Delta variant (B.1.617.2) and remains poorly characterized. Here, we analyzed the fusogenicity of the AY.4.2 spike and the sensitivity of an authentic AY.4.2 isolate to neutralizing antibodies. The AY.4.2 spike exhibited similar fusogenicity and binding to ACE2 than Delta. The sensitivity of infectious AY.4.2 to a panel of monoclonal neutralizing antibodies was similar to Delta, except for the anti-RBD Imdevimab, which showed incomplete neutralization. Sensitivity of AY.4.2 to sera from individuals having received two or three doses of Pfizer or two doses of AstraZeneca vaccines was reduced by 1.7 to 2.1 fold, when compared to Delta. Our results suggest that mutations in the NTD remotely impair the efficacy of anti-RBD antibodies. The temporary spread of AY.4.2 was not associated with major changes in spike function but rather to a partially reduced neutralization sensitivity.

9.
Preprint in English | bioRxiv | ID: ppbiorxiv-472630

ABSTRACT

The SARS-CoV-2 Omicron variant was first identified in November 2021 in Botswana and South Africa1,2. It has in the meantime spread to many countries and is expected to rapidly become dominant worldwide. The lineage is characterized by the presence of about 32 mutations in the Spike, located mostly in the N-terminal domain (NTD) and the receptor binding domain (RBD), which may enhance viral fitness and allow antibody evasion. Here, we isolated an infectious Omicron virus in Belgium, from a traveller returning from Egypt. We examined its sensitivity to 9 monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) clinically approved or in development3, and to antibodies present in 90 sera from COVID-19 vaccine recipients or convalescent individuals. Omicron was totally or partially resistant to neutralization by all mAbs tested. Sera from Pfizer or AstraZeneca vaccine recipients, sampled 5 months after complete vaccination, barely inhibited Omicron. Sera from COVID-19 convalescent patients collected 6 or 12 months post symptoms displayed low or no neutralizing activity against Omicron. Administration of a booster Pfizer dose as well as vaccination of previously infected individuals generated an anti-Omicron neutralizing response, with titers 5 to 31 fold lower against Omicron than against Delta. Thus, Omicron escapes most therapeutic monoclonal antibodies and to a large extent vaccine-elicited antibodies.

10.
Preprint in English | medRxiv | ID: ppmedrxiv-21266704

ABSTRACT

In immunocompetent subjects, the effectiveness of SARS-CoV-2 vaccines against the delta variant appears three- to five-fold lower than that observed against the alpha variant. Additionally, three doses of SARS-CoV-2 mRNA-based vaccines might be unable to elicit a sufficient immune response against any variant in immunocompromised kidney transplant recipients. This study describes the kinetics of the neutralizing antibody (NAbs) response against the delta strain before and after a fourth dose of a mRNA vaccine in 67 kidney transplant recipients who had experienced a weak antibody response after three doses. While only 16% of patients harbored NAbs against the delta strain prior to the fourth injection - this percentage raised to 66% afterwards. We also found that, after the fourth dose, the NAbs titer increased significantly (p=0.0001) from <7.5 (IQR : <7.5-15.1) to 47.1 (IQR <7.5-284.2). Collectively, our data indicate that a fourth dose of the mRNA-1273 vaccine in kidney transplant recipients with a weak antibody response after three previous doses improves serum neutralization against the delta variant.

11.
Preprint in English | bioRxiv | ID: ppbiorxiv-462234

ABSTRACT

As the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic continues, there is a strong need for highly potent monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) that are resistant against severe acute respiratory syndrome-coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) variants of concern (VoCs). Here, we evaluate the potency of a previously described mAb J08 against these variants using cell-based assays and delve into the molecular details of the binding interaction using cryo-EM. We show that mAb J08 has low nanomolar affinity against VoCs, binds high on the receptor binding domain (RBD) ridge and is therefore unaffected by most mutations, and can bind in the RBD-up and -down conformations. These findings further validate the phase II/III human clinical trial underway using mAb J08 as a monoclonal therapy. One Sentence SummaryPotent neutralizing monoclonal antibody J08 binds SARS-CoV-2 spike independent of known escape mutations.

12.
Preprint in English | medRxiv | ID: ppmedrxiv-21262027

ABSTRACT

Serological tests are important for understanding the physiopathology and following the evolution of the Covid-19 pandemic. Assays based on flow cytometry (FACS) of tissue culture cells expressing the spike (S) protein of SARS-CoV-2 have repeatedly proven to perform slightly better than the plate-based assays ELISA and CLIA (chemiluminescent immuno-assay), and markedly better than lateral flow immuno-assays (LFIA). Here, we describe an optimized and very simple FACS assay based on staining a mix of two Jurkat cell lines, expressing either high levels of the S protein (Jurkat-S) or a fluorescent protein (Jurkat-R expressing m-Cherry, or Jurkat-G, expressing GFP, which serve as an internal negative control). We show that the Jurkat-S&R-flow test has a much broader dynamic range than a commercial ELISA test and performs at least as well in terms of sensitivity and specificity. Also, it is more sensitive and quantitative than the hemagglutination-based test HAT, which we described recently. The Jurkat-flow test requires only a few microliters of blood; thus, it can be used to quantify various Ig isotypes in capillary blood collected from a finger prick. It can be used also to evaluate serological responses in mice, hamsters, cats and dogs. Whilst the Jurkat-flow test is ill-suited and not intended for clinical use, it offers a very attractive solution for laboratories with access to tissue culture and flow cytometry who want to monitor serological responses in humans or in animals, and how these relate to susceptibility to infection, or re-infection, by the virus, and to protection against Covid-19. NoteThis manuscript has been refereed by Review Commons, and modified thanks to the comments and suggestions from two referees. Those comments, and our replies, are provided at the end of the manuscripts pdf, and can also be accessed by clicking on the box with a little green number found just above the "Abstract " tab in the medRXiv window.

13.
Preprint in English | bioRxiv | ID: ppbiorxiv-455901

ABSTRACT

Assessing the duration of humoral and cellular immunity remains key to overcome the current SARS-CoV-2 pandemic, especially in understudied populations in least developed countries. Sixty-four Cambodian individuals with laboratory-confirmed infection with asymptomatic or mild/moderate clinical presentation were evaluated for humoral immune response to the viral spike protein and antibody effector functions during acute phase of infection and at 6-9 months follow-up. Antigen-specific B cells, CD4+ and CD8+ T cells were characterized, and T cells were interrogated for functionality at late convalescence. Anti-spike (S) antibody titers decreased over time, but effector functions mediated by S-specific antibodies remained stable. S- and nucleocapsid (N)-specific B cells could be detected in late convalescence in the activated memory B cell compartment and are mostly IgG+. CD4+ and CD8+ T cell immunity was maintained to S and membrane (M) protein. Asymptomatic infection resulted in decreased ADCC and frequency of SARS-CoV-2-specific CD4+ T cells at late convalescence. Whereas anti-S antibodies correlated with S-specific B cells, there was no correlation between T cell response and humoral immunity. Hence, all aspects of a protective immune response are maintained up to nine months after SARS-CoV-2 infection in the absence of re-infection. One sentence summaryFunctional immune memory to SARS-CoV-2, consisting of polyfunctional antibodies, memory B cells and memory T cells are maintained up to nine months in a South-East Asian cohort in the absence of re-infection.

14.
Preprint in English | medRxiv | ID: ppmedrxiv-21261766

ABSTRACT

BackgroundThe emergence of strains of SARS-CoV-2 exhibiting increase viral fitness and immune escape potential, such as the Delta variant (B.1.617.2), raises concerns in immunocompromised patients. To what extent Delta evades vaccine-induced immunity in immunocompromised individuals with systemic inflammatory diseases remains unclear. MethodsWe conducted a prospective study in patients with systemic inflammatory diseases (cases) and controls receiving two doses of BNT162b2. Primary end points were anti-spike antibodies levels and cross-neutralization of Alpha and Delta variants after BNT162b2 vaccine. Secondary end points were T-cell responses, breakthrough infections and safety. ResultsSixty-four cases and 21 controls not previously infected with SARS-CoV-2 were analyzed. Kinetics of anti-spike IgG and IgA after BNT162b2 vaccine showed lower and delayed induction in cases, more pronounced with rituximab. Administration of two doses of BNT162b2 generated a neutralizing response against Alpha and Delta in 100% of controls, while sera from only one of rituximab-treated patients neutralized Alpha (5%) and none Delta. Other therapeutic regimens induced a partial neutralizing activity against Alpha, even lower against Delta. All controls and cases except those treated with methotrexate mounted a SARS-CoV-2 specific T-cell response. Methotrexate abrogated T-cell responses after one dose and dramatically impaired T-cell responses after 2 doses of BNT162b2. ConclusionsRituximab and methotrexate differentially impact the immunogenicity of BNT162b2, by impairing B-cell and T-cell responses, respectively. Delta fully escapes the humoral response of individuals treated with rituximab. These findings support efforts to improve BNT162b2 immunogenicity in immunocompromised individuals (Funded by the Fonds IMMUNOV; ClinicalTrials.gov number, NCT04870411).

15.
Preprint in English | medRxiv | ID: ppmedrxiv-21261769

ABSTRACT

Multiple myeloma (MM) patients are at risk of fatal outcome after SARS-CoV-2 infection. Preliminary data suggest that MM patients have an impaired response to vaccination. This prospective study analyzed the humoral and cellular immune responses to two doses of BNT162b2 in 72 MM patients, including 48 receiving anti-CD38 immunotherapy. Results evidenced that MM patients display lower levels of SARS-CoV-2 specific IgG and IgA antibodies and decreased neutralization of alpha and delta variants when compared to healthy controls. They also showed decreased numbers of circulating IFN{gamma}-producing Spike SARS-CoV-2 specific T lymphocytes. This defective immune response was particularly marked in patients receiving anti-CD38 immunotherapy. Furthermore, a retrospective investigation of MM patients among COVID-19-related death in the Paris area suggested a limited efficacy of BNT162b2 in patients treated with anti-CD38. Overall, these results show a decreased immunogenicity of BNT162b2 in MM patients and stress the need for novel strategies to improve SARS-CoV-2 prophylaxis in immunocompromised individuals.

16.
Preprint in English | bioRxiv | ID: ppbiorxiv-445838

ABSTRACT

The SARS-CoV-2 B.1.617 lineage emerged in October 2020 in India1-6. It has since then become dominant in some indian regions and further spread to many countries. The lineage includes three main subtypes (B1.617.1, B.1617.2 and B.1.617.3), which harbour diverse Spike mutations in the N-terminal domain (NTD) and the receptor binding domain (RBD) which may increase their immune evasion potential. B.1.617.2 is believed to spread faster than the other versions. Here, we isolated infectious B.1.617.2 from a traveller returning from India. We examined its sensitivity to monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) and to antibodies present in sera from COVID-19 convalescent individuals or vaccine recipients, in comparison to other viral lineages. B.1.617.2 was resistant to neutralization by some anti-NTD and anti-RBD mAbs, including Bamlanivimab, which were impaired in binding to the B.1.617.2 Spike. Sera from convalescent patients collected up to 12 months post symptoms and from Pfizer Comirnaty vaccine recipients were 3 to 6 fold less potent against B.1.617.2, relative to B.1.1.7. Sera from individuals having received one dose of AstraZeneca Vaxzevria barely inhibited B.1.617.2. Thus, B.1.617.2 spread is associated with an escape to antibodies targeting non-RBD and RBD Spike epitopes.

17.
Preprint in English | medRxiv | ID: ppmedrxiv-21257393

ABSTRACT

The mechanisms that allowed for the SARS-CoV-2 B.1.1.7 variant to rapidly outcompete pre-existing variants in many countries remain poorly characterized. Here, we analyzed viral release, anti-SARS-CoV-2 antibodies and cytokine production in a retrospective series of 427 RT-qPCR+ nasopharyngeal swabs collected in COVID-19 patients harbouring either non-B.1.1.7 or B.1.17 variants. We utilized a novel rapid assay, based on S-Fuse-T reporter cells, to quantify infectious SARS-CoV-2. With both non-B.1.1.7 and B.1.1.7 variants, viral titers were highly variable, ranging from 0 to >106 infectious units, and correlated with viral RNA levels. Lateral flow antigenic rapid diagnostic tests (RDTs) were positive in 96% of the samples harbouring infectious virus. About 67 % of individuals carried detectable infectious virus within the first two days after onset of symptoms. This proportion decreased overtime, and viable virus was detected up to 14 days. Samples containing anti-SARS-CoV-2 IgG or IgA did not generally harbour infectious virus. The proportion of individuals displaying viable virus or being RDT-positive was not higher with B.1.1.7 than with non-B.1.1.7 variants. Ct values were slightly but not significantly lower with B.1.1.7. The variant was characterized by a fast decrease of infectivity overtime and a marked release of 17 cytokines (including IFN-{beta}, IP-10, IL-10 and TRAIL). Our results highlight differences between non-B.1.1.7 and B.1.1.7 variants. B.1.1.7 is associated with modified viral decays and cytokine profiles at the nasopharyngeal mucosae during symptomatic infection.

18.
Preprint in English | medRxiv | ID: ppmedrxiv-21256823

ABSTRACT

Assessment of the kinetics of SARS-CoV-2 antibodies is essential to predict protection against reinfection and durability of vaccine protection. Here, we longitudinally measured Spike (S) and Nucleocapsid (N)-specific antibodies in 1,309 healthcare workers (HCW) including 393 convalescent COVID-19 and 916 COVID-19 negative HCW up to 405 days. From M1 to M7-9 after infection, SARS-CoV-2 antibodies decreased moderately in convalescent HCW in a biphasic model, with men showing a slower decay of anti-N (p=0.02), and a faster decay of anti-S (p=0.0008) than women. At M11-13, anti-N antibodies dramatically decreased (half-life: 210 days) while anti-S stabilized (half-life: 630 days) at a median of 2.41 log Arbitrary Units (AU)/mL (Interquartile Range (IQR): 2.11 -2.75). One case of reinfection was recorded in convalescent HCW (0.47 per 100 person-years) versus 50 in COVID-19 negative HCW (10.11 per 100 person-years). Correlation with live-virus neutralization assay revealed that variants D614G and B.1.1.7, but not B.1.351, were sensitive to anti-S antibodies at 2.3 log AU/mL, while IgG [≥] 3 log AU/mL neutralized all three variants. After SARS-CoV-2 vaccination, anti-S levels reached 4 logs regardless of pre-vaccination IgG levels, type of vaccine, and number of doses. Our study demonstrates a long-term persistence of anti-S IgG antibodies that may protect against reinfection. By significantly increasing cross-neutralizing antibody titers, a single-dose vaccination strengthens protection against escape mutants.

19.
Preprint in English | bioRxiv | ID: ppbiorxiv-442916

ABSTRACT

Interferon restricts SARS-CoV-2 replication in cell culture, but only a handful of Interferon Stimulated Genes with antiviral activity against SARS-CoV-2 have been identified. Here, we describe a functional CRISPR/Cas9 screen aiming at identifying SARS-CoV-2 restriction factors. We identified DAXX, a scaffold protein residing in PML nuclear bodies known to limit the replication of DNA viruses and retroviruses, as a potent inhibitor of SARS-CoV-2 and SARS-CoV replication in human cells. Basal expression of DAXX was sufficient to limit the replication of SARS-CoV-2, and DAXX over-expression further restricted infection. In contrast with most of its previously described antiviral activities, DAXX-mediated restriction of SARS-CoV-2 was independent of the SUMOylation pathway. SARS-CoV-2 infection triggered the re-localization of DAXX to cytoplasmic sites and promoted its degradation. Mechanistically, this process was mediated by the viral papain-like protease (PLpro) and the proteasome. Together, these results demonstrate that DAXX restricts SARS-CoV-2, which in turn has evolved a mechanism to counteract its action.

20.
Preprint in English | medRxiv | ID: ppmedrxiv-21252532

ABSTRACT

Infection with severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) induces a complex antibody response that varies by orders of magnitude between individuals and over time. Waning antibody levels lead to reduced sensitivity of serological diagnostic tests over time. This undermines the utility of serological surveillance as the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic progresses into its second year. Here we develop a multiplex serological test for measuring antibodies of three isotypes (IgG, IgM, IgA) to five SARS-CoV-2 antigens (Spike (S), receptor binding domain (RBD), Nucleocapsid (N), Spike subunit 2, Membrane-Envelope fusion) and the Spike proteins of four seasonal coronaviruses. We measure antibody responses in several cohorts of French and Irish hospitalized patients and healthcare workers followed for up to eleven months after symptom onset. The data are analysed with a mathematical model of antibody kinetics to quantify the duration of antibody responses accounting for inter-individual variation. One year after symptoms, we estimate that 36% (95% range: 11%, 94%) of anti-S IgG remains, 31% (9%, 89%) anti-RBD IgG remains, and 7% (1%, 31%) anti-N IgG remains. Antibodies of the IgM isotype waned more rapidly, with 9% (2%, 32%) anti-RBD IgM remaining after one year. Antibodies of the IgA isotype also waned rapidly, with 10% (3%, 38%) anti-RBD IgA remaining after one year. Quantitative measurements of antibody responses were used to train machine learning algorithms for classification of previous infection and estimation of time since infection. The resulting diagnostic test classified previous infections with 99% specificity and 98% (95% confidence interval: 94%, 99%) sensitivity, with no evidence for declining sensitivity over the time scale considered. The diagnostic test also provided accurate classification of time since infection into intervals of 0 - 3 months, 3 - 6 months, and 6 - 12 months. Finally, we present a computational method for serological reconstruction of past SARS-CoV-2 transmission using the data from this test when applied to samples from a single cross-sectional sero-prevalence survey.

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