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2.
EuropePMC; 2022.
Preprint in English | EuropePMC | ID: ppcovidwho-336984

ABSTRACT

Vaccine-induced protection of the population against severe COVID-19, hospitalization and death is of utmost importance, especially in the elderly. However, limited data are available on humoral immune responses following COVID-19 vaccination in the general population across a broad age range. We performed an integrated analysis of the effect of age, sex and prior SARS-CoV-2 infection on Spike S1-specific (S1) IgG concentrations up to three months post BNT162b2 vaccination. 1·735 persons, eligible for COVID-19 vaccination through the national program, were recruited from the general population (12 to 92 years old). Sixty percent were female and the median vaccination interval was 35 days (interquartile range, IQR: 35-35). All participants had seroconverted to S1 one month after two doses of vaccine. S1 IgG was higher in participants with a history of SARS-CoV-2 infection (median: 4·535 BAU/ml, IQR: 2·341-7·205) compared to infection-naïve persons (1·842 BAU/ml, 1·019-3·116) after two doses, p<0.001. In infection-naïve persons, linear mixed effects regression showed a strong negative association between age and S1 IgG one month after the first vaccination (p<0.001) across the entire age range. The association was still present after the second vaccination, but less pronounced. Females had higher S1 IgG than males after both the first and second vaccination (p<0.001);although this difference was lower after the second dose. In persons with an infection history, age nor sex was associated with peak S1 IgG. As IgG decreased with age and time since vaccination, older persons may become at risk of infection, especially with escape variants such as Omicron.

4.
EuropePMC; 2022.
Preprint in English | EuropePMC | ID: ppcovidwho-334145

ABSTRACT

Importance In patients with hematologic malignancies, the immunogenicity of the standard 2-dose mRNA-1273 coronavirus disease 19 (COVID-19) vaccination schedule is often insufficient due to underlying disease and current or recent therapy. Objective To determine whether a 3rd mRNA-1273 vaccination raises antibody concentrations in immunocompromised hematology patients to levels obtained in healthy individuals after the standard 2-dose mRNA-1273 vaccination schedule. Design Prospective observational cohort study. Setting Four academic hospitals in the Netherlands. Participants 584 evaluable immunocompromised hematology patients, all grouped in predefined cohorts spanning the spectrum of hematologic malignancies. Exposure One additional vaccination with mRNA-1273 5 months after completion of the standard 2-dose mRNA-1273 vaccination schedule. Main Outcomes and Measures Serum IgG antibodies to spike subunit 1 (S1) antigens prior to and 4 weeks after each vaccination, and pseudovirus neutralization of wildtype, delta and omicron variants in a subgroup of patients. Results In immunocompromised hematology patients, a 3rd mRNA-1273 vaccination led to median S1 IgG concentrations comparable to concentrations obtained by healthy individuals after the 2-dose mRNA-1273 schedule. The rise in S1 IgG concentration after the 3rd vaccination was most pronounced in patients with a recovering immune system, but potent responses were also observed in patients with persistent immunodeficiencies. Specifically, patients with myeloid malignancies or multiple myeloma, and recipients of autologous or allogeneic hematopoietic cell transplantation (HCT) reached median S1 IgG concentrations similar to those obtained by healthy individuals after a 2-dose schedule. Patients on or shortly after rituximab therapy, CD19-directed chimeric antigen receptor T cell therapy recipients, and chronic lymphocytic leukemia patients on ibrutinib were less or unresponsive to the 3rd vaccination. In the 27 patients who received cell therapy between the 2nd and 3rd vaccination, S1 antibodies were preserved, but a 3rd mRNA-1273 vaccination did not significantly enhance S1 IgG concentrations except for multiple myeloma patients receiving autologous HCT. A 3rd vaccination significantly improved neutralization capacity per antibody. Conclusions and Relevance The primary schedule for immunocompromised patients with hematologic malignancies should be supplemented with a delayed 3rd vaccination. B cell lymphoma patients and allogeneic HCT recipients need to be revaccinated after treatment or transplantation. Trial Registration EudraCT 2021-001072-41

5.
Sci Rep ; 12(1): 5935, 2022 04 08.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1784029

ABSTRACT

mRNA- and vector-based vaccines are used at a large scale to prevent COVID-19. We compared Spike S1-specific (S1) IgG antibodies after vaccination with mRNA-based (Comirnaty, Spikevax) or vector-based (Janssen, Vaxzevria) vaccines, using samples from a Dutch nationwide cohort. In adults 18-64 years old (n = 2412), the median vaccination interval between the two doses was 77 days for Vaxzevria (interquartile range, IQR: 69-77), 35 days (28-35) for Comirnaty and 33 days (28-35) for Spikevax. mRNA vaccines induced faster inclines and higher S1 antibodies compared to vector-based vaccines. For all vaccines, one dose resulted in boosting of S1 antibodies in adults with a history of SARS-CoV-2 infection. For Comirnaty, two to four months following the second dose (n = 196), S1 antibodies in adults aged 18-64 years old (436 BAU/mL, IQR: 328-891) were less variable and median concentrations higher compared to those in persons ≥ 80 years old (366, 177-743), but differences were not statistically significant (p > 0.100). Nearly all participants seroconverted following COVID-19 vaccination, including the aging population. These data confirm results from controlled vaccine trials in a general population, including vulnerable groups.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Adolescent , Adult , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , Antibodies, Viral , COVID-19/prevention & control , COVID-19 Vaccines , Humans , Immunoglobulin G , Kinetics , Middle Aged , RNA, Messenger , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Vaccination , Young Adult
6.
SSRN; 2022.
Preprint in English | SSRN | ID: ppcovidwho-331736

ABSTRACT

Background: The i mmune response to COVID-19 vaccination is inferior in kidney transplant recipients (KTR), and to a lesser extent in patients on dialysis or with chronic kidney disease (CKD). We assessed the immune response 6 months after mRNA-1273 vaccination in kidney patients and compared this to controls. Methods: 152 participants with CKD stages G4/5 (eGFR <30 mL/min/1.73m 2 ), 145 participants on dialysis, 267 KTR, and 181 controls were included. SARS-CoV-2 Spike S1-specific IgG antibodies were measured by fluorescent bead-based multiplex-immunoassay, neutralizing antibodies to ancestral, Delta and Omicron (BA.1) variants by plaque reduction, and T-cell responses by IFN-γ release assay. Findings: At 6 months after vaccination S1-specific antibodies were detected in 100% of controls, 98.7% of CKD G4/5 patients, 95.1% of dialysis patients, and 56.6% of KTR. These figures were comparable to the response rates at 28 days, but antibody levels waned significantly. Neutralization of the ancestral and Delta variant was detected in most participants, whereas neutralization of Omicron was mostly absent. S-specific T-cell responses were detected 6 months in 75.0% of controls, 69.4% of CKD G4/5 patients, 52.6% of dialysis patients, and 12.9% of KTR. T-cell responses at 6 months were significantly lower than responses at 28 days. Interpretation: Although seropositivity rates at 6 months were comparable to that at 28 days after vaccination, significantly decreased antibody levels and T-cell responses were observed. The combination of low antibody levels, reduced T-cell responses, and absent neutralization of the newly-emerging variants indicates the need for additional boosts or alternative vaccination strategies in KTR.

7.
Vaccine ; 40(15): 2251-2257, 2022 04 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1730146

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: With COVID-19 vaccine roll-out ongoing in many countries globally, monitoring of breakthrough infections is of great importance. Antibodies persist in the blood after a severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) infection. Since COVID-19 vaccines induce immune response to the Spike protein of the virus, which is the main serosurveillance target to date, alternative targets should be explored to distinguish infection from vaccination. METHODS: Multiplex immunoassay data from 1,513 SARS-CoV-2 RT-qPCR-tested individuals (352 positive and 1,161 negative) without COVID-19 vaccination history were used to determine the accuracy of Nucleoprotein-specific immunoglobulin G (IgG) in detecting past SARS-CoV-2 infection. We also described Spike S1 and Nucleoprotein-specific IgG responses in 230 COVID-19 vaccinated individuals (Pfizer/BioNTech). RESULTS: The sensitivity of Nucleoprotein seropositivity was 85% (95% confidence interval: 80-90%) for mild COVID-19 in the first two months following symptom onset. Sensitivity was lower in asymptomatic individuals (67%, 50-81%). Participants who had experienced a SARS-CoV-2 infection up to 11 months preceding vaccination, as assessed by Spike S1 seropositivity or RT-qPCR, produced 2.7-fold higher median levels of IgG to Spike S1 ≥ 14 days after the first dose as compared to those unexposed to SARS-CoV-2 at ≥ 7 days after the second dose (p = 0.011). Nucleoprotein-specific IgG concentrations were not affected by vaccination in infection-naïve participants. CONCLUSIONS: Serological responses to Nucleoprotein may prove helpful in identifying SARS-CoV-2 infections after vaccination. Furthermore, it can help interpret IgG to Spike S1 after COVID-19 vaccination as particularly high responses shortly after vaccination could be explained by prior exposure history.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Vaccines , COVID-19 , Antibodies, Viral , COVID-19/diagnosis , COVID-19/prevention & control , Humans , Nucleoproteins , SARS-CoV-2 , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus , Vaccination
8.
Frontiers in immunology ; 13, 2022.
Article in English | EuropePMC | ID: covidwho-1695876

ABSTRACT

Background Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2) has led to considerable morbidity/mortality worldwide, but most infections, especially among children, have a mild course. However, it remains largely unknown whether infected children develop cellular immune memory. Methods To determine whether a memory T cell response is being developed, we performed a longitudinal assessment of the SARS-CoV-2-specific T cell response by IFN-γ ELISPOT and activation marker analyses of peripheral blood samples from unvaccinated children and adults with mild-to-moderate COVID-19. Results Upon stimulation of PBMCs with heat-inactivated SARS-CoV-2 or overlapping peptides of spike (S-SARS-CoV-2) and nucleocapsid proteins, we found S-SARS-CoV-2-specific IFN-γ T cell responses in infected children (83%) and adults (100%) that were absent in unexposed controls. Frequencies of SARS-CoV-2-specific T cells were higher in infected adults, especially in those with moderate symptoms, compared to infected children. The S-SARS-CoV-2 IFN-γ T cell response correlated with S1-SARS-CoV-2-specific serum antibody concentrations. Predominantly, effector memory CD4+ T cells of a Th1 phenotype were activated upon exposure to SARS-CoV-2 antigens. Frequencies of SARS-CoV-2-specific T cells were significantly reduced at 10 months after symptom onset, while S1-SARS-CoV-2-specific IgG concentrations were still detectable in 90% of all children and adults. Conclusions Our data indicate that an antigen-specific T cell and antibody response is developed after mild SARS-CoV-2 infection in children and adults. It remains to be elucidated to what extent this SARS-CoV-2-specific response can contribute to an effective recall response after reinfection.

9.
Blood Adv ; 6(5): 1537-1546, 2022 03 08.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1666615

ABSTRACT

Vaccination guidelines for patients treated for hematological diseases are typically conservative. Given their high risk for severe COVID-19, it is important to identify those patients that benefit from vaccination. We prospectively quantified serum immunoglobulin G (IgG) antibodies to spike subunit 1 (S1) antigens during and after 2-dose mRNA-1273 (Spikevax/Moderna) vaccination in hematology patients. Obtaining S1 IgG ≥ 300 binding antibody units (BAUs)/mL was considered adequate as it represents the lower level of S1 IgG concentration obtained in healthy individuals, and it correlates with potent virus neutralization. Selected patients (n = 723) were severely immunocompromised owing to their disease or treatment thereof. Nevertheless, >50% of patients obtained S1 IgG ≥ 300 BAUs/mL after 2-dose mRNA-1273. All patients with sickle cell disease or chronic myeloid leukemia obtained adequate antibody concentrations. Around 70% of patients with chronic graft-versus-host disease (cGVHD), multiple myeloma, or untreated chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) obtained S1 IgG ≥ 300 BAUs/mL. Ruxolitinib or hypomethylating therapy but not high-dose chemotherapy blunted responses in myeloid malignancies. Responses in patients with lymphoma, patients with CLL on ibrutinib, and chimeric antigen receptor T-cell recipients were low. The minimal time interval after autologous hematopoietic cell transplantation (HCT) to reach adequate concentrations was <2 months for multiple myeloma, 8 months for lymphoma, and 4 to 6 months after allogeneic HCT. Serum IgG4, absolute B- and natural killer-cell number, and number of immunosuppressants predicted S1 IgG ≥ 300 BAUs/mL. Hematology patients on chemotherapy, shortly after HCT, or with cGVHD should not be precluded from vaccination. This trial was registered at Netherlands Trial Register as #NL9553.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Hematology , COVID-19/prevention & control , COVID-19 Vaccines , Humans , SARS-CoV-2 , Vaccination
10.
Clin Infect Dis ; 73(12): 2318-2321, 2021 12 16.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1599037

ABSTRACT

This large, nationwide, population-based, seroepidemiological study provides evidence of the effectiveness of physical distancing (>1.5 m) and indoor group size reductions in reducing severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 infection. Additionally, young adults may play an important role in viral spread, contrary to children up until age 12 years with whom close contact is permitted. CLINICAL TRIALS REGISTRATION: NTR8473.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Child , Humans , Netherlands/epidemiology , Physical Distancing , Research , Young Adult
11.
Clin Infect Dis ; 73(12): 2155-2162, 2021 12 16.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1592795

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Assessing the duration of immunity following infection with severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) is a first priority to gauge the degree of protection following infection. Such knowledge is lacking, especially in the general population. Here, we studied changes in immunoglobulin isotype seropositivity and immunoglobulin G (IgG) binding strength of SARS-CoV-2-specific serum antibodies up to 7 months following onset of symptoms in a nationwide sample. METHODS: Participants from a prospective representative serological study in the Netherlands were included based on IgG seroconversion to the spike S1 protein of SARS-CoV-2 (N = 353), with up to 3 consecutive serum samples per seroconverted participant (N = 738). Immunoglobulin M (IgM), immunoglobulin A (IgA), and IgG antibody concentrations to S1, and increase in IgG avidity in relation to time since onset of disease symptoms, were determined. RESULTS: While SARS-CoV-2-specific IgM and IgA antibodies declined rapidly after the first month after disease onset, specific IgG was still present in 92% (95% confidence interval [CI], 89%-95%) of the participants after 7 months. The estimated 2-fold decrease of IgG antibodies was 158 days (95% CI, 136-189 days). Concentrations were sustained better in persons reporting significant symptoms compared to asymptomatic persons or those with mild upper respiratory complaints only. Similarly, avidity of IgG antibodies for symptomatic persons showed a steeper increase over time compared with persons with mild or no symptoms (P = .022). CONCLUSIONS: SARS-CoV-2-specific IgG antibodies persist and show increasing avidity over time, indicative of underlying immune maturation. These data support development of immune memory against SARS-CoV-2, providing insight into protection of the general unvaccinated part of the population. CLINICAL TRIALS REGISTRATION: NL8473 (the Dutch trial registry).


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Humans , Netherlands/epidemiology , Prospective Studies
12.
Lancet Oncol ; 22(12): 1681-1691, 2021 12.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1586209

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Patients with cancer have an increased risk of complications from SARS-CoV-2 infection. Vaccination to prevent COVID-19 is recommended, but data on the immunogenicity and safety of COVID-19 vaccines for patients with solid tumours receiving systemic cancer treatment are scarce. Therefore, we aimed to assess the impact of immunotherapy, chemotherapy, and chemoimmunotherapy on the immunogenicity and safety of the mRNA-1273 (Moderna Biotech, Madrid, Spain) COVID-19 vaccine as part of the Vaccination Against COVID in Cancer (VOICE) trial. METHODS: This prospective, multicentre, non-inferiority trial was done across three centres in the Netherlands. Individuals aged 18 years or older with a life expectancy of more than 12 months were enrolled into four cohorts: individuals without cancer (cohort A [control cohort]), and patients with solid tumours, regardless of stage and histology, treated with immunotherapy (cohort B), chemotherapy (cohort C), or chemoimmunotherapy (cohort D). Participants received two mRNA-1273 vaccinations of 100 µg in 0·5 mL intramuscularly, 28 days apart. The primary endpoint, analysed per protocol (excluding patients with a positive baseline sample [>10 binding antibody units (BAU)/mL], indicating previous SARS-CoV-2 infection), was defined as the SARS-CoV-2 spike S1-specific IgG serum antibody response (ie, SARS-CoV-2-binding antibody concentration of >10 BAU/mL) 28 days after the second vaccination. For the primary endpoint analysis, a non-inferiority design with a margin of 10% was used. We also assessed adverse events in all patients who received at least one vaccination, and recorded solicited adverse events in participants who received at least one vaccination but excluding those who already had seroconversion (>10 BAU/mL) at baseline. This study is ongoing and is registered with ClinicalTrials.gov, NCT04715438. FINDINGS: Between Feb 17 and March 12, 2021, 791 participants were enrolled and followed up for a median of 122 days (IQR 118 to 128). A SARS-CoV-2-binding antibody response was found in 240 (100%; 95% CI 98 to 100) of 240 evaluable participants in cohort A, 130 (99%; 96 to >99) of 131 evaluable patients in cohort B, 223 (97%; 94 to 99) of 229 evaluable patients in cohort C, and 143 (100%; 97 to 100) of 143 evaluable patients in cohort D. The SARS-CoV-2-binding antibody response in each patient cohort was non-inferior compared with cohort A. No new safety signals were observed. Grade 3 or worse serious adverse events occurred in no participants in cohort A, three (2%) of 137 patients in cohort B, six (2%) of 244 patients in cohort C, and one (1%) of 163 patients in cohort D, with four events (two of fever, and one each of diarrhoea and febrile neutropenia) potentially related to the vaccination. There were no vaccine-related deaths. INTERPRETATION: Most patients with cancer develop, while receiving chemotherapy, immunotherapy, or both for a solid tumour, an adequate antibody response to vaccination with the mRNA-1273 COVID-19 vaccine. The vaccine is also safe in these patients. The minority of patients with an inadequate response after two vaccinations might benefit from a third vaccination. FUNDING: ZonMw, The Netherlands Organisation for Health Research and Development.


Subject(s)
/adverse effects , Antineoplastic Agents/immunology , Immunotherapy , Neoplasms/therapy , Vaccination/adverse effects , /administration & dosage , Aged , Antibodies, Viral/blood , Antineoplastic Agents/therapeutic use , COVID-19/prevention & control , Cohort Studies , Combined Modality Therapy , Female , Humans , Immunogenicity, Vaccine , Immunomodulation , Injections, Intramuscular , Interferon-gamma/metabolism , Male , Middle Aged , Neoplasms/immunology , Netherlands , Prospective Studies , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Surveys and Questionnaires
13.
Transplantation ; 106(4): 821-834, 2022 04 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1511132

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: In kidney patients COVID-19 is associated with severely increased morbidity and mortality. A comprehensive comparison of the immunogenicity, tolerability, and safety of COVID-19 vaccination in different cohorts of kidney patients and a control cohort is lacking. METHODS: This investigator driven, prospective, controlled multicenter study included 162 participants with chronic kidney disease (CKD) stages G4/5 (eGFR < 30 mL/min/1.73m2), 159 participants on dialysis, 288 kidney transplant recipients, and 191 controls. Participants received 2 doses of the mRNA-1273 COVID-19 vaccine (Moderna). The primary endpoint was seroconversion. RESULTS: Transplant recipients had a significantly lower seroconversion rate when compared with controls (56.9% versus 100%, P < 0.001), with especially mycophenolic acid, but also, higher age, lower lymphocyte concentration, lower eGFR, and shorter time after transplantation being associated with nonresponder state. Transplant recipients also showed significantly lower titers of neutralizing antibodies and T-cell responses when compared with controls. Although a high seroconversion rate was observed for participants with CKD G4/5 (100%) and on dialysis (99.4%), mean antibody concentrations in the CKD G4/5 cohort and dialysis cohort were lower than in controls (2405 [interquartile interval 1287-4524] and 1650 [698-3024] versus 3186 [1896-4911] BAU/mL, P = 0.06 and P < 0.001, respectively). Dialysis patients and especially kidney transplant recipients experienced less systemic vaccination related adverse events. No specific safety issues were noted. CONCLUSIONS: The immune response following vaccination in patients with CKD G4/5 and on dialysis is almost comparable to controls. In contrast, kidney transplant recipients have a poor response. In this latter, patient group development of alternative vaccination strategies are warranted.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Kidney Transplantation , Renal Insufficiency, Chronic , COVID-19/prevention & control , COVID-19 Vaccines/adverse effects , Humans , Immunity , Kidney Transplantation/adverse effects , Prospective Studies , Renal Dialysis , Renal Insufficiency, Chronic/complications , Renal Insufficiency, Chronic/therapy , Vaccination
14.
Eur J Epidemiol ; 36(7): 735-739, 2021 Jul.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1265533

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: The proportion of SARS-CoV-2 positive persons who are asymptomatic-and whether this proportion is age-dependent-are still open research questions. Because an unknown proportion of reported symptoms among SARS-CoV-2 positives will be attributable to another infection or affliction, the observed, or 'crude' proportion without symptoms may underestimate the proportion of persons without symptoms that are caused by SARS-CoV-2 infection. METHODS: Based on two rounds of a large population-based serological study comprising test results on seropositivity and self-reported symptom history conducted in April/May and June/July 2020 in the Netherlands (n = 7517), we estimated the proportion of reported symptoms among those persons infected with SARS-CoV-2 that is attributable to this infection, where the set of relevant symptoms fulfills the ECDC case definition of COVID-19, using inferential methods for the attributable risk (AR). Generalised additive regression modelling was used to estimate the age-dependent relative risk (RR) of reported symptoms, and the AR and asymptomatic proportion (AP) were calculated from the fitted RR. RESULTS: Using age-aggregated data, the 'crude' AP was 37% but the model-estimated AP was 65% (95% CI 63-68%). The estimated AP varied with age, from 74% (95% CI 65-90%) for < 20 years, to 61% (95% CI 57-65%) for the 50-59 years age-group. CONCLUSION: Whereas the 'crude' AP represents a lower bound for the proportion of persons infected with SARS-CoV-2 without COVID-19 symptoms, the AP as estimated via an attributable risk approach represents an upper bound. Age-specific AP estimates can inform the implementation of public health actions such as targetted virological testing and therefore enhance containment strategies.


Subject(s)
Antibodies, Viral/blood , Asymptomatic Infections/epidemiology , COVID-19/epidemiology , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Adolescent , Adult , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , Biomarkers/blood , COVID-19/diagnosis , COVID-19/virology , COVID-19 Serological Testing , Child , Child, Preschool , Female , Humans , Infant , Male , Middle Aged , Netherlands/epidemiology , Poisson Distribution , Regression Analysis , Risk Assessment , Self Report , Seroepidemiologic Studies , Young Adult
15.
Sci Immunol ; 6(59)2021 05 25.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1243688

ABSTRACT

The emergence of SARS-CoV-2 variants harboring mutations in the spike (S) protein has raised concern about potential immune escape. Here, we studied humoral and cellular immune responses to wild type SARS-CoV-2 and the B.1.1.7 and B.1.351 variants of concern in a cohort of 121 BNT162b2 mRNA-vaccinated health care workers (HCW). Twenty-three HCW recovered from mild COVID-19 disease and exhibited a recall response with high levels of SARS-CoV-2-specific functional antibodies and virus-specific T cells after a single vaccination. Specific immune responses were also detected in seronegative HCW after one vaccination, but a second dose was required to reach high levels of functional antibodies and cellular immune responses in all individuals. Vaccination-induced antibodies cross-neutralized the variants B.1.1.7 and B.1.351, but the neutralizing capacity and Fc-mediated functionality against B.1.351 was consistently 2- to 4-fold lower than to the homologous virus. In addition, peripheral blood mononuclear cells were stimulated with peptide pools spanning the mutated S regions of B.1.1.7 and B.1.351 to detect cross-reactivity of SARS-CoV-2-specific T cells with variants. Importantly, we observed no differences in CD4+ T-cell activation in response to variant antigens, indicating that the B.1.1.7 and B.1.351 S proteins do not escape T-cell-mediated immunity elicited by the wild type S protein. In conclusion, this study shows that some variants can partially escape humoral immunity induced by SARS-CoV-2 infection or BNT162b2 vaccination, but S-specific CD4+ T-cell activation is not affected by the mutations in the B.1.1.7 and B.1.351 variants.


Subject(s)
Antibodies, Viral/immunology , CD4-Positive T-Lymphocytes/immunology , CD8-Positive T-Lymphocytes/immunology , COVID-19/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/immunology , COVID-19 Vaccines/immunology , Cell Line , Cross Reactions/immunology , Humans , Immunologic Memory/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Vaccination
16.
Viruses ; 13(2)2021 02 11.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1079725

ABSTRACT

Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) emerged as a new human pathogen in late 2019 and it has infected over 100 million people in less than a year. There is a clear need for effective antiviral drugs to complement current preventive measures, including vaccines. In this study, we demonstrate that berberine and obatoclax, two broad-spectrum antiviral compounds, are effective against multiple isolates of SARS-CoV-2. Berberine, a plant-derived alkaloid, inhibited SARS-CoV-2 at low micromolar concentrations and obatoclax, which was originally developed as an anti-apoptotic protein antagonist, was effective at sub-micromolar concentrations. Time-of-addition studies indicated that berberine acts on the late stage of the viral life cycle. In agreement, berberine mildly affected viral RNA synthesis, but it strongly reduced infectious viral titers, leading to an increase in the particle-to-pfu ratio. In contrast, obatoclax acted at the early stage of the infection, which is in line with its activity to neutralize the acidic environment in endosomes. We assessed infection of primary human nasal epithelial cells that were cultured on an air-liquid interface and found that SARS-CoV-2 infection induced and repressed expression of specific sets of cytokines and chemokines. Moreover, both obatoclax and berberine inhibited SARS-CoV-2 replication in these primary target cells. We propose berberine and obatoclax as potential antiviral drugs against SARS-CoV-2 that could be considered for further efficacy testing.


Subject(s)
Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , Berberine/pharmacology , Indoles/pharmacology , Pyrroles/pharmacology , SARS-CoV-2/drug effects , Virus Replication/drug effects , Adolescent , Animals , COVID-19/virology , Cells, Cultured , Chlorocebus aethiops , Epithelial Cells/virology , Humans , Male , RNA, Viral/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/physiology , Vero Cells
17.
J Infect Dis ; 222(9): 1452-1461, 2020 10 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-957721

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: The COVID-19 pandemic necessitates better understanding of the kinetics of antibody production induced by infection with SARS-CoV-2. We aimed to develop a high-throughput multiplex assay to detect antibodies to SARS-CoV-2 to assess immunity to the virus in the general population. METHODS: Spike protein subunits S1 and receptor binding domain, and nucleoprotein were coupled to microspheres. Sera collected before emergence of SARS-CoV-2 (n = 224) and of non-SARS-CoV-2 influenza-like illness (n = 184), and laboratory-confirmed cases of SARS-CoV-2 infection (n = 115) with various severities of COVID-19 were tested for SARS-CoV-2-specific IgG concentrations. RESULTS: Our assay discriminated SARS-CoV-2-induced antibodies and those induced by other viruses. The assay specificity was 95.1%-99.0% with sensitivity 83.6%-95.7%. By merging the test results for all 3 antigens a specificity of 100% was achieved with a sensitivity of at least 90%. Hospitalized COVID-19 patients developed higher IgG concentrations and the rate of IgG production increased faster compared to nonhospitalized cases. CONCLUSIONS: The bead-based serological assay for quantitation of SARS-CoV-2-specific antibodies proved to be robust and can be conducted in many laboratories. We demonstrated that testing of antibodies against multiple antigens increases sensitivity and specificity compared to single-antigen-specific IgG determination.


Subject(s)
Antibodies, Viral/blood , Betacoronavirus/immunology , Coronavirus Infections/blood , Coronavirus Infections/epidemiology , Immunoglobulin G/blood , Pandemics , Pneumonia, Viral/blood , Pneumonia, Viral/epidemiology , Adaptive Immunity , Adult , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , Area Under Curve , COVID-19 , Case-Control Studies , Female , Humans , Immunoassay , Male , Middle Aged , Netherlands/epidemiology , Nuclear Proteins/immunology , Patient Acuity , ROC Curve , SARS-CoV-2 , Seroconversion , Seroepidemiologic Studies , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/immunology
18.
J Epidemiol Community Health ; 2020 Nov 28.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-949241

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: We aimed to detect SARS-CoV-2 serum antibodies in the general population of the Netherlands and identify risk factors for seropositivity amidst the first COVID-19 epidemic wave. METHODS: Participants (n=3207, aged 2-90 years), enrolled from a previously established nationwide serosurveillance study, provided a self-collected fingerstick blood sample and completed a questionnaire (median inclusion date 3 April 2020). IgG antibodies targeted against the spike S1-protein of SARS-CoV-2 were quantified using a validated multiplex-immunoassay. Seroprevalence was estimated controlling for survey design, individual pre-pandemic concentration, and test performance. Random-effects logistic regression identified risk factors for seropositivity. RESULTS: Overall seroprevalence in the Netherlands was 2.8% (95% CI 2.1 to 3.7), with no differences between sexes or ethnic background, and regionally ranging between 1.3 and 4.0%. Estimates were highest among 18-39 year-olds (4.9%), and lowest in children 2-17 years (1.7%). Multivariable analysis revealed that persons taking immunosuppressants and those from the Orthodox-Reformed Protestant community had over four times higher odds of being seropositive compared to others. Anosmia/ageusia was the most discriminative symptom between seropositive (53%) and seronegative persons (4%, p<0.0001). Antibody concentrations in seropositive persons were significantly higher in those with fever or dyspnoea in contrast to those without (p=0.01 and p=0.04, respectively). CONCLUSIONS: In the midst of the first epidemic wave, 2.8% of the Dutch population was estimated to be infected with SARS-CoV-2, that is, 30 times higher than reported. This study identified independent groups with increased odds for seropositivity that may require specific surveillance measures to guide future protective interventions internationally, including vaccination once available.

19.
Processes ; 8(12):1539, 2020.
Article in English | MDPI | ID: covidwho-945907

ABSTRACT

The spike protein of the pandemic human Corona virus is essential for virus entry into human cells. In fact, most neutralizing antibodies against Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Corona Virus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) are directed against the Virus-surface exposed spike protein, making it the antigen of choice for use in vaccines and diagnostic tests. In the current pandemic context, global demand for spike proteins has rapidly increased and could exceed hundreds of grams to kilograms annually. Coronavirus spikes are large heavily glycosylated homo-trimeric complexes, with inherent instability. The poor manufacturability now threatens the availability of these proteins for vaccines and diagnostic tests. Here, we outline scalable, Good Manufacturing Practice (GMP) compliant, and chemically defined processes for the production of two cell-secreted stabilized forms of the trimeric spike proteins (Wuhan and D614G variant). The processes are chemically defined and based on clonal suspension-CHO cell populations and on protein purification via a two-step scalable downstream process. The trimeric conformation was confirmed using electron microscopy and HPLC analysis. Binding to susceptible cells was shown using a virus-inhibition assay. The diagnostic sensitivity and specificity for detection of serum SARS-CoV-2-specific-immunoglobulin molecules was found to exceed that of spike fragments (Spike fragment-1, S1 and Receptor Binding Domain, RBD). The process described here will enable production of sufficient high-quality trimeric spike protein to meet the global demand for SARS-CoV-2 diagnostic tests and potentially vaccines.

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