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1.
Immunology ; 165(2): 250-259, 2022 02.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1511322

ABSTRACT

Accurate assessment of SARS-CoV-2 immunity is critical in evaluating vaccine efficacy and devising public health policies. Whilst the exact nature of effective immunity remains incompletely defined, SARS-CoV-2-specific T-cell responses are a critical feature that will likely form a key correlate of protection against COVID-19. Here, we developed and optimized a high-throughput whole blood-based assay to determine the T-cell response associated with prior SARS-CoV-2 infection and/or vaccination amongst 231 healthy donors and 68 cancer patients. Following overnight in vitro stimulation with SARS-CoV-2-specific peptides, blood plasma samples were analysed for TH 1-type cytokines. Highly significant differential IFN-γ+ /IL-2+ SARS-CoV-2-specific T-cell responses were seen amongst previously infected COVID-19-positive healthy donors in comparison with unknown / naïve individuals (p < 0·0001). IFN-γ production was more effective at identifying asymptomatic donors, demonstrating higher sensitivity (96·0% vs. 83·3%) but lower specificity (84·4% vs. 92·5%) than measurement of IL-2. A single COVID-19 vaccine dose induced IFN-γ and/or IL-2 SARS-CoV-2-specific T-cell responses in 116 of 128 (90·6%) healthy donors, reducing significantly to 27 of 56 (48·2%) when measured in cancer patients (p < 0·0001). A second dose was sufficient to boost T-cell responses in the majority (90·6%) of cancer patients, albeit IFN-γ+ responses were still significantly lower overall than those induced in healthy donors (p = 0·034). Three-month post-vaccination T-cell responses also declined at a faster rate in cancer patients. Overall, this cost-effective standardizable test ensures accurate and comparable assessments of SARS-CoV-2-specific T-cell responses amenable to widespread population immunity testing, and identifies individuals at greater need of booster vaccinations.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Vaccines/immunology , COVID-19/immunology , Carrier State/immunology , Immunity, Cellular , Immunogenicity, Vaccine , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Th1 Cells/immunology , Vaccination , Adolescent , Adult , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , COVID-19/prevention & control , Female , Humans , Interferon-gamma/immunology , Male , Middle Aged
2.
iScience ; 24(11): 103215, 2021 Nov 19.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1446746

ABSTRACT

Multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children (MIS-C) is a life-threatening disease occurring several weeks after severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) infection. Deep immune profiling showed acute MIS-C patients had highly activated neutrophils, classical monocytes and memory CD8+ T-cells, with increased frequencies of B-cell plasmablasts and double-negative B-cells. Post treatment samples from the same patients, taken during symptom resolution, identified recovery-associated immune features including increased monocyte CD163 levels, emergence of a new population of immature neutrophils and, in some patients, transiently increased plasma arginase. Plasma profiling identified multiple features shared by MIS-C, Kawasaki Disease and COVID-19 and that therapeutic inhibition of IL-6 may be preferable to IL-1 or TNF-α. We identified several potential mechanisms of action for IVIG, the most commonly used drug to treat MIS-C. Finally, we showed systemic complement activation with high plasma C5b-9 levels is common in MIS-C suggesting complement inhibitors could be used to treat the disease.

3.
Ann Clin Biochem ; 58(2): 123-131, 2021 03.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1067019

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Serological assays for Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) have roles in seroepidemiology, convalescent plasma-testing, antibody durability and vaccine studies. Currently, SARS-CoV-2 serology is performed using serum/plasma collected by venepuncture. Dried blood spot (DBS) testing offers significant advantages as it is minimally invasive, avoids venepuncture with specimens being mailed to the laboratory. METHODS: A pathway utilizing a newborn screening laboratory infrastructure was developed using an enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay to detect IgG antibodies against the receptor-binding domain of the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein in DBS specimens. Paired plasma and DBS specimens from SARS-CoV-2 antibody-positive and -negative subjects and polymerase chain reaction positive subjects were tested. DBS specimen stability, effect of blood volume and punch location were also evaluated. RESULTS: DBS specimens from antibody-negative (n = 85) and -positive (n = 35) subjects and polymerase chain reaction positive subjects (n = 11) had a mean (SD; range) optical density (OD) of 0.14 (0.046; 0.03-0.27), 0.98 (0.41; 0.31-1.64) and 1.12 (0.37; 0.49-1.54), respectively. An action value OD >0.28 correctly assigned all cases. The weighted Deming regression for comparison of the DBS and the plasma assay yielded: y = 0.004041 + 1.005x, r = 0.991, Sy/x 0.171, n = 82. Extraction efficiency of antibodies from DBS specimens was >99%. DBS specimens were stable for at least 28 days at ambient room temperature and humidity. CONCLUSIONS: SARS-CoV-2 IgG receptor-binding domain antibodies can be reliably detected in DBS specimens. DBS serological testing offers lower costs than either point of care or serum/plasma assays that require patient travel, phlebotomy and hospital/clinic resources; the development of a DBS assay may be particularly important for resource poor settings.


Subject(s)
Antibodies, Viral/immunology , COVID-19 Serological Testing , COVID-19/immunology , Dried Blood Spot Testing , Immunoglobulin G/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , COVID-19/diagnosis , Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay , Humans , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/immunology
4.
Nat Commun ; 11(1): 6385, 2020 12 14.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-977267

ABSTRACT

The response to the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic has been hampered by lack of an effective severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) antiviral therapy. Here we report the use of remdesivir in a patient with COVID-19 and the prototypic genetic antibody deficiency X-linked agammaglobulinaemia (XLA). Despite evidence of complement activation and a robust T cell response, the patient developed persistent SARS-CoV-2 pneumonitis, without progressing to multi-organ involvement. This unusual clinical course is consistent with a contribution of antibodies to both viral clearance and progression to severe disease. In the absence of these confounders, we take an experimental medicine approach to examine the in vivo utility of remdesivir. Over two independent courses of treatment, we observe a temporally correlated clinical and virological response, leading to clinical resolution and viral clearance, with no evidence of acquired drug resistance. We therefore provide evidence for the antiviral efficacy of remdesivir in vivo, and its potential benefit in selected patients.


Subject(s)
Adenosine Monophosphate/analogs & derivatives , Alanine/analogs & derivatives , Immunity, Humoral/drug effects , SARS-CoV-2/drug effects , Adenosine Monophosphate/therapeutic use , Adult , Alanine/therapeutic use , Antiviral Agents/therapeutic use , COVID-19/virology , Fever/prevention & control , Humans , Immunity, Humoral/immunology , Lymphocyte Count , Male , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/physiology , Treatment Outcome
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