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1.
J Virol ; 97(2): e0168422, 2023 02 28.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2193454

ABSTRACT

The severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) Omicron variant is becoming a dominant circulator and has several mutations in the spike glycoprotein, which may cause shifts of immunogenicity, so as to result in immune escape and breakthrough infection among the already infected or vaccinated populations. It is unclear whether infection with Omicron could generate adequate cross-variant protection. To investigate this possibility, we used Syrian hamsters as an animal model for infection of SARS-CoV-2. The serum from Omicron BA.1 variant-infected hamsters showed a significantly lower neutralization effect against infection of the same or different SARS-CoV-2 variants than the serum from Beta variant-infected hamsters. Furthermore, the serum from Omicron BA.1 variant-infected hamsters were insufficient to protect against rechallenge of SARS-CoV-2 Prototype, Beta and Delta variants and itself. Importantly, we found that rechallenge with different SARS-CoV-2 lineages elevated cross-variant serum neutralization titers. Overall, our findings indicate a weakened immunogenicity feature of Omicron BA.1 variant that can be overcome by rechallenge of a different SARS-CoV-2 lineages. Our results may lead to a new guideline in generation and use of the vaccinations to combat the pandemic of SARS-CoV-2 Omicron variant and possible new variants. IMPORTANCE The severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) Omicron variant causes breakthrough infections among convalescent patients and vaccinated populations. However, Omicron does not generate robust cross-protective responses. Here, we investigate whether heterologous SARS-CoV-2 challenge is able to enhance antibody response in a sensitive animal model, namely, Syrian hamster. Of note, a heterologous challenge of Beta and Omicron BA.1 variant significantly broadens the breadth of SARS-CoV-2 neutralizing responses against the prototype, Beta, Delta, and Omicron BA.1 variants. Our findings confirm that vaccination strategy with heterologous antigens might be a good option to protect against the evolving SARS-CoV-2.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Animals , Cricetinae , Antibodies, Neutralizing , Antibodies, Viral , Antigens, Heterophile/immunology , Breakthrough Infections , COVID-19/prevention & control , Mesocricetus , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Immunogenicity, Vaccine
2.
Front Immunol ; 13: 1027924, 2022.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2119762

ABSTRACT

Objectives: We aimed to evaluate the duration and breadth of antibodies elicited by inactivated COVID-19 vaccinations in healthy blood donors. Methods: We performed serological tests on 1,417 samples from 658 blood donors who received two (n=357), or three (n=301) doses of COVID-19 inactivated vaccine. We also accessed the change in antibody response before and after booster vaccination in 94 participants and their neutralization breadth to the current variants after the booster. Results: Following vaccination, for either the 2- or 3-dose, the neutralizing antibodies (nAbs) peaked with about 97% seropositivity approximately within one month but subsequently decreased over time. Of plasmas collected 6-8 months after the last immunization, the nAb seropositivities were 37% and 85% in populations with 2-dose and 3-dose vaccinations, respectively. The nAbs of plasma samples (collected between 2-6 weeks after the 3rd dose) from triple-vaccinated donors (n=94) showed a geometric mean titer of 145.3 (95% CI: 117.2 to 180.1) against the ancestral B.1, slightly reduced by 1.7-fold against Delta variant, but markedly decreased by 4-6 fold in neutralizing Omicron variants, including the sub-lineages of BA.1 (5.6-fold), BA.1.1 (6.0-fold), BA.2 (4.2-fold), B.2.12.1 (6.2-fold) and BA.4/5 (6.5-fold). Conclusion: These findings suggested that the 3rd dose of inactivated COVID-19 vaccine prolongs the antibody duration in healthy populations, but the elicited-nAbs are less efficient in neutralizing circulating Omicron variants.


Subject(s)
Antibody Formation , COVID-19 , Humans , COVID-19 Vaccines , Blood Donors , COVID-19/prevention & control , SARS-CoV-2 , Antibodies, Neutralizing , Vaccination
3.
iScience ; 25(12): 105475, 2022 Dec 22.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2095531

ABSTRACT

Recently, a new variant lineage of SARS-CoV-2, namely Omicron, became the dominant global circulating strain. The multiple antigenic mutations of Omicron largely decrease the efficiency of current vaccines and neutralizing antibodies, which highlights the need for more potent and reachable medical countermeasures. Here, we hypothesize that direct viral clearance by nasal irrigation might be a convenient and alternative option, and perform proof-of-concept experiments in the Syrian hamster model. Interestingly, Omicron shows a different dynamic in the changes of viral RNA, viral titers, and proinflammatory cytokines in nasal rinsing samples when compared with the prototype. Meanwhile, the levels of viral load and proinflammatory cytokines in nasal rinsing samples can indicate the severity of lung injury. Of note, daily nasal irrigation efficiently attenuates inflammation and lung injury in Omicron-infected hamsters by decreasing the viral loads in the respiratory tract organs. Moreover, daily nasal irrigation effectively suppresses viral transmission by close contact.

4.
Cell Rep ; 38(12): 110558, 2022 03 22.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1797096

ABSTRACT

Mutations in the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) spike receptor-binding domain (RBD) may alter viral host tropism and affect the activities of neutralizing antibodies. Here, we investigated 153 RBD mutants and 11 globally circulating variants of concern (VOCs) and variants of interest (VOIs) (including Omicron) for their antigenic changes and cross-species tropism in cells expressing 18 ACE2 orthologs. Several RBD mutations strengthened viral infectivity in cells expressing ACE2 orthologs of non-human animals, particularly those less susceptible to the ancestral strain. The mutations surrounding amino acids (aas) 439-448 and aa 484 are more likely to cause neutralization resistance. Strikingly, enhanced cross-species infection potential in the mouse and ferret, instead of the neutralization-escape scores of the mutations, account for the positive correlation with the cumulative prevalence of mutations in humans. These findings present insights for potential drivers of circulating SARS-CoV-2 variants and provide informative parameters for tracking and forecasting spreading mutations.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Animals , Ferrets , Humans , Membrane Glycoproteins/metabolism , Mice , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus , Tropism , Viral Envelope Proteins
5.
Cell reports ; 2022.
Article in English | EuropePMC | ID: covidwho-1728589

ABSTRACT

Zhang et al. show in vitro cross-species infectivity and neutralization-escape characteristics of 153 SARS-CoV-2 RBD mutants and 11 globally circulating VOC/VOI variants. They reveal an association between enhanced cross-species infection potential and the current cumulative prevalence of mutations, which can inform surveillance and forecasting of SARS-CoV-2 spike mutations.

6.
Small Methods ; 5(2): 2001031, 2021 Feb 15.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-986422

ABSTRACT

The ongoing corona virus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic, caused by SARS-CoV-2 infection, has resulted in hundreds of thousands of deaths. Cellular entry of SARS-CoV-2, which is mediated by the viral spike protein and ACE2 receptor, is an essential target for the development of vaccines, therapeutic antibodies, and drugs. Using a mammalian cell expression system, a genetically engineered sensor of fluorescent protein (Gamillus)-fused SARS-CoV-2 spike trimer (STG) to probe the viral entry process is developed. In ACE2-expressing cells, it is found that the STG probe has excellent performance in the live-cell visualization of receptor binding, cellular uptake, and intracellular trafficking of SARS-CoV-2 under virus-free conditions. The new system allows quantitative analyses of the inhibition potentials and detailed influence of COVID-19-convalescent human plasmas, neutralizing antibodies and compounds, providing a versatile tool for high-throughput screening and phenotypic characterization of SARS-CoV-2 entry inhibitors. This approach may also be adapted to develop a viral entry visualization system for other viruses.

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