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1.
Clin Microbiol Infect ; 2021 Sep 20.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1415295

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVES: To investigate the response of the immune system (and its influencing factors) to vaccination with BNT162b2 or mRNA-1273. METHODS: 531 vaccinees, recruited from healthcare professionals, donated samples before, in between, and after the administration of the two doses of the vaccine. T- and B-cell responses were examined via interferon-γ (IFN-γ) release assay, and antibodies against different epitopes of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) (S1 and NCP) were detected via ELISA and surrogate neutralization assay. Results were correlated with influencing factors such as age, sex, prior infection, vaccine received (BNT162b2 or mRNA-1273), and immunosuppression. Furthermore, antinuclear antibodies (ANAs) were measured to screen for autoimmune responses following vaccination with an mRNA vaccine. RESULTS: No markers of immunity against SARS-CoV-2 were found before the first vaccination. Two weeks after it, specific responses against SARS-CoV-2 were already measurable (median ± median absolute deviation (MAD): anti-S1 IgG 195.5 ± 172.7 BAU/mL; IgA 6.7 ± 4.9 OD; surrogate neutralization 39 ± 23.7%), and were significantly increased two weeks after the second dose (anti-S1 IgG 3744 ± 2571.4 BAU/mL; IgA 12 ± 0 OD; surrogate neutralization 100 ± 0%, IFN-γ 1897.2 ± 886.7 mIU/mL). Responses were stronger for younger participants (this difference decreasing after the second dose). Further influences were previous infection with SARS-CoV-2 (causing significantly stronger responses after the first dose compared to unexposed individuals (p ≤ 0.0001)) and the vaccine received (significantly stronger reactions for recipients of mRNA-1273 after both doses, p < 0.05-0.0001). Some forms of immunosuppression significantly impeded the immune response to the vaccination (with no observable immune response in three immunosuppressed participants). There was no significant induction of ANAs by the vaccination (no change in qualitative ANA results (p 0.2592) nor ANA titres (p 0.08) from pre-to post-vaccination. CONCLUSIONS: Both vaccines elicit strong and specific immune responses against SARS-CoV-2 which become detectable one week (T-cell response) or two weeks (B-cell response) after the first dose.

2.
Int J Infect Dis ; 110: 114-122, 2021 Sep.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1349465

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVES: To examine the relationship between antibody status and cycle threshold (Ct) values, the prognostic value of the latter for COVID-19 patients, and the inter-assay comparability of SARS-CoV-2 Ct values. METHODS: In 347 COVID-19 inpatients, SARS-CoV-2 Ct values (via reverse transcription-quantitative polymerase chain reaction) on admission were compared between 2 assays and correlated with the antibody response (in the course of the disease), the clinical course and the time since onset of symptoms. RESULTS: Ct values for 2 of 3 target genes showed significant differences between the 2 assays used (P=0.012 and P<0.0001). Ct values were significantly higher for antibody positive patients (P<0.0001) and positively correlated with the amount of time since onset of symptoms (R: 0.332-0.363; P<0.001). Patients with fatal outcomes showed higher viral loads than survivors (P<0.0001). CONCLUSIONS: Ct values depend strongly on assay used and target gene examined and should not be used as quantitative values to guide therapeutic or diagnostic decisions. The inverse association between antibody status and viral load suggests that antibodies contribute to the elimination of the virus, independent of the outcome, which is influenced by the viral load on admission and might depend more strongly on other parts of the immune response.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Humans , Incidence , Reverse Transcriptase Polymerase Chain Reaction , Reverse Transcription , Viral Load
3.
N Engl J Med ; 384(9): e31, 2021 03 04.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1117382
4.
Sci Rep ; 11(1): 4363, 2021 02 23.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1099351

ABSTRACT

Laboratory testing for the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) consists of two pillars: the detection of viral RNA via rt-PCR as the diagnostic gold standard in acute cases, and the detection of antibodies against SARS-CoV-2. However, concerning the latter, questions remain about their diagnostic and prognostic value and it is not clear whether all patients develop detectable antibodies. We examined sera from 347 Spanish COVID-19 patients, collected during the peak of the epidemic outbreak in Spain, for the presence of IgA and IgG antibodies against SARS-CoV-2 and evaluated possible associations with age, sex and disease severity (as measured by duration of hospitalization, kind of respiratory support, treatment in ICU and death). The presence and to some degree the levels of anti-SARS-CoV-2 antibodies depended mainly on the amount of time between onset of symptoms and the collection of serum. A subgroup of patients did not develop antibodies at the time of sample collection. Compared to the patients that did, no differences were found. The presence and level of antibodies was not associated with age, sex, duration of hospitalization, treatment in the ICU or death. The case-fatality rate increased exponentially with older age. Neither the presence, nor the levels of anti-SARS-CoV-2 antibodies served as prognostic markers in our cohort. This is discussed as a possible consequence of the timing of the sample collection. Age is the most important risk factor for an adverse outcome in our cohort. Some patients appear not to develop antibodies within a reasonable time frame. It is unclear, however, why that is, as these patients differ in no respect examined by us from those who developed antibodies.


Subject(s)
Antibodies, Viral/immunology , COVID-19/diagnosis , COVID-19/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity , Adult , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , COVID-19/virology , Cohort Studies , Female , Humans , Incidence , Male , Middle Aged , Spain
5.
N Engl J Med ; 384(9): e31, 2021 03 04.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1066023
6.
Immunity ; 53(6): 1258-1271.e5, 2020 12 15.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-988080

ABSTRACT

CD4+ T cells reactive against SARS-CoV-2 can be found in unexposed individuals, and these are suggested to arise in response to common cold coronavirus (CCCoV) infection. Here, we utilized SARS-CoV-2-reactive CD4+ T cell enrichment to examine the antigen avidity and clonality of these cells, as well as the relative contribution of CCCoV cross-reactivity. SARS-CoV-2-reactive CD4+ memory T cells were present in virtually all unexposed individuals examined, displaying low functional avidity and multiple, highly variable cross-reactivities that were not restricted to CCCoVs. SARS-CoV-2-reactive CD4+ T cells from COVID-19 patients lacked cross-reactivity to CCCoVs, irrespective of strong memory T cell responses against CCCoV in all donors analyzed. In severe but not mild COVID-19, SARS-CoV-2-specific T cells displayed low functional avidity and clonality, despite increased frequencies. Our findings identify low-avidity CD4+ T cell responses as a hallmark of severe COVID-19 and argue against a protective role for CCCoV-reactive T cells in SARS-CoV-2 infection.


Subject(s)
CD4-Positive T-Lymphocytes/immunology , COVID-19/immunology , Receptors, Antigen, T-Cell/metabolism , Rhinovirus/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Antigens, Viral/immunology , Cells, Cultured , Cross Reactions , Disease Progression , Environmental Exposure , Humans , Immunologic Memory , Lymphocyte Activation , Protein Binding , Severity of Illness Index , T-Cell Antigen Receptor Specificity
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