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1.
Nat Commun ; 13(1): 2951, 2022 05 26.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1864743

ABSTRACT

The antibody response magnitude and kinetics may impact clinical severity, serological diagnosis and long-term protection of COVID-19, which may play a role in why children experience lower morbidity. We therefore tested samples from 122 children in Hong Kong with symptomatic (n = 78) and asymptomatic (n = 44) SARS-CoV-2 infections up to 200 days post infection, relative to 71 infected adults (symptomatic n = 61, and asymptomatic n = 10), and negative controls (n = 48). We assessed serum IgG antibodies to a 14-wide antigen panel of structural and accessory proteins by Luciferase Immuno-Precipitation System (LIPS) assay and circulating cytokines. Infected children have lower levels of Spike, Membrane, ORF3a, ORF7a, ORF7b antibodies, comparable ORF8 and elevated E-specific antibodies than adults. Combination of two unique antibody targets, ORF3d and ORF8, can accurately discriminate SARS-CoV-2 infection in children. Principal component analysis reveals distinct pediatric serological signatures, and the highest contribution to variance from adults are antibody responses to non-structural proteins ORF3d, NSP1, ORF3a and ORF8. From a diverse panel of cytokines that can modulate immune priming and relative inflammation, IL-8, MCP-1 and IL-6 correlate with the magnitude of pediatric antibody specificity and severity. Antibodies to SARS-CoV-2 internal proteins may become an important sero surveillance tool of infection with the roll-out of vaccines in the pediatric population.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Adult , Antibody Specificity , Child , Cytokines , Humans , Immunoglobulin G
2.
EBioMedicine ; 71: 103544, 2021 Sep.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1363987

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Several SARS-CoV-2 lineages with spike receptor binding domain (RBD) N501Y mutation have spread globally. We evaluated the impact of N501Y on neutralizing activity of COVID-19 convalescent sera and on anti-RBD IgG assays. METHODS: The susceptibility to neutralization by COVID-19 patients' convalescent sera from Hong Kong were compared between two SARS-CoV-2 isolates (B117-1/B117-2) from the α variant with N501Y and 4 non-N501Y isolates. The effect of N501Y on antibody binding was assessed. The performance of commercially-available IgG assays was determined for patients infected with N501Y variants. FINDINGS: The microneutralization antibody (MN) titers of convalescent sera from 9 recovered COVID-19 patients against B117-1 (geometric mean titer[GMT],80; 95% CI, 47-136) were similar to those against the non-N501Y viruses. However, MN titer of these serum against B117-2 (GMT, 20; 95% CI, 11-36) was statistically significantly reduced when compared with non-N501Y viruses (P < 0.01; one-way ANOVA). The difference between B117-1 and B117-2 was confirmed by testing 60 additional convalescent sera. B117-1 and B117-2 differ by only 3 amino acids (nsp2-S512Y, nsp13-K460R, spike-A1056V). Enzyme immunoassay using 272 convalescent sera showed reduced binding of anti-RBD IgG to N501Y or N501Y-E484K-K417N when compared with that of wild-type RBD (mean difference: 0.1116 and 0.5613, respectively; one-way ANOVA). Of 7 anti-N-IgG positive sera from patients infected with N501Y variants (collected 9-14 days post symptom onset), 6 (85.7%) tested negative for a commercially-available anti-S1-IgG assay. FUNDING: Richard and Carol Yu, Michael Tong, and the Government Consultancy Service (see acknowledgments for full list). INTERPRETATION: We highlighted the importance of using a panel of viruses within the same lineage to determine the impact of virus variants on neutralization. Furthermore, clinicians should be aware of the potential reduced sensitivity of anti-RBD IgG assays.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/therapy , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Adult , Aged , Antibodies, Neutralizing/administration & dosage , Antibodies, Neutralizing/immunology , Antibodies, Viral/administration & dosage , Antibodies, Viral/ultrastructure , COVID-19/genetics , COVID-19/immunology , COVID-19/virology , Female , Humans , Immunization, Passive , Male , Middle Aged , Mutation/genetics , Neutralization Tests , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/immunology
3.
Nat Commun ; 12(1): 4678, 2021 07 29.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1333941

ABSTRACT

SARS-CoV-2 infection of children leads to a mild illness and the immunological differences with adults are unclear. Here, we report SARS-CoV-2 specific T cell responses in infected adults and children and find that the acute and memory CD4+ T cell responses to structural SARS-CoV-2 proteins increase with age, whereas CD8+ T cell responses increase with time post-infection. Infected children have lower CD4+ and CD8+ T cell responses to SARS-CoV-2 structural and ORF1ab proteins when compared with infected adults, comparable T cell polyfunctionality and reduced CD4+ T cell effector memory. Compared with adults, children have lower levels of antibodies to ß-coronaviruses, indicating differing baseline immunity. Total T follicular helper responses are increased, whilst monocyte numbers are reduced, indicating rapid adaptive co-ordination of the T and B cell responses and differing levels of inflammation. Therefore, reduced prior ß-coronavirus immunity and reduced T cell activation in children might drive milder COVID-19 pathogenesis.


Subject(s)
CD4-Positive T-Lymphocytes/immunology , CD8-Positive T-Lymphocytes/immunology , COVID-19/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Adolescent , Adult , Age Factors , Aged , Antibodies, Viral/immunology , COVID-19/metabolism , COVID-19/pathology , COVID-19/virology , Child , Child, Preschool , Female , Humans , Infant , Inflammation/immunology , Longitudinal Studies , Male , Middle Aged , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , SARS-CoV-2/metabolism , Young Adult
4.
Clin Infect Dis ; 73(1): 137-142, 2021 07 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1291923

ABSTRACT

After 2 months of relative quiescence, a large coronavirus disease 2019 outbreak occurred in Hong Kong in July 2020 after gradual relaxation of social distancing policy. Unique severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) phylogenetic clusters have been identified among locally acquired cases, with most genomes belonging to cluster HK1, which is phylogenetically related to SARS-CoV-2 reported overseas.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Disease Outbreaks , Hong Kong , Humans , Phylogeny
5.
Lancet Reg Health West Pac ; 10: 100130, 2021 May.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1144861

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Viral genomic surveillance is vital for understanding the transmission of COVID-19. In Hong Kong, breakthrough outbreaks have occurred in July (third wave) and November (fourth wave) 2020. We used whole viral genome analysis to study the characteristics of these waves. METHODS: We analyzed 509 SARS-CoV-2 genomes collected from Hong Kong patients between 22nd January and 29th November, 2020. Phylogenetic and phylodynamic analyses were performed, and were interpreted with epidemiological information. FINDINGS: During the third and fourth waves, diverse SARS-CoV-2 genomes were identified among imported infections. Conversely, local infections were dominated by a single lineage during each wave, with 96.6% (259/268) in the third wave and 100% (73/73) in the fourth wave belonging to B.1.1.63 and B.1.36.27 lineages, respectively. While B.1.1.63 lineage was imported 2 weeks before the beginning of the third wave, B.1.36.27 lineage has circulated in Hong Kong for 2 months prior to the fourth wave. During the fourth wave, 50.7% (37/73) of local infections in November was identical to the viral genome from an imported case in September. Within B.1.1.63 or B.1.36.27 lineage in our cohort, the most common non-synonymous mutations occurred at the helicase (nsp13) gene. INTERPRETATION: Although stringent measures have prevented most imported cases from spreading in Hong Kong, a single lineage with low-level local transmission in October and early November was responsible for the fourth wave. A superspreading event or lower temperature in November may have facilitated the spread of the B.1.36.27 lineage.

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