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1.
BMC Genomics ; 23(1): 510, 2022 Jul 14.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1933076

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: The SARS-CoV-2 virus is responsible for the COVID-19 pandemic. To better understand the evolution of SARS-CoV-2 early in the pandemic in the Province of Cordoba, Argentina, we performed a comparative genomic analysis of SARS-CoV-2 strains detected in survivors and non-survivors of COVID-19. We also carried out an epidemiological study to find a possible association between the symptoms and comorbidities of these patients with their clinical outcomes. RESULTS: A representative sampling was performed in different cities in the Province of Cordoba. Ten and nine complete SARS-CoV-2 genomes were obtained by next-generation sequencing of nasopharyngeal specimens from non-survivors and survivors, respectively. Phylogenetic and phylodynamic analyses revealed multiple introductions of the most common lineages in South America, including B.1, B.1.1.1, B.1.499, and N.3. Fifty-six mutations were identified, with 14% of those in common between the non-survivor and survivor groups. Specific SARS-CoV-2 mutations for survivors constituted 25% whereas for non-survivors they were 41% of the repertoire, indicating partial selectivity. The non-survivors' variants showed higher diversity in 9 genes, with a majority in Nsp3, while the survivors' variants were detected in 5 genes, with a higher incidence in the Spike protein. At least one comorbidity was present in 60% of non-survivor patients and 33% of survivors. Age 75-85 years (p = 0.018) and hospitalization (p = 0.019) were associated with non-survivor patients. Related to the most common symptoms, the prevalence of fever was similar in both groups, while dyspnea was more frequent among non-survivors and cough among survivors. CONCLUSIONS: This study describes the association of clinical characteristics with the clinical outcomes of survivors and non-survivors of COVID-19 patients, and the specific mutations found in the genome sequences of SARS-CoV-2 in each patient group. Future research on the functional characterization of novel mutations should be performed to understand the role of these variations in SARS-CoV-2 pathogenesis and COVID-19 disease outcomes. These results add new genomic data to better understand the evolution of the SARS-CoV-2 variants that spread in Argentina during the first wave of the COVID-19 pandemic.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , Argentina/epidemiology , COVID-19/epidemiology , Genome, Viral , Genomics , Humans , Pandemics , Phylogeny , SARS-CoV-2/genetics
2.
EuropePMC; 2022.
Preprint in English | EuropePMC | ID: ppcovidwho-337714

ABSTRACT

Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) variants are characterized by differences in transmissibility and response to therapeutics. Therefore, discriminating among them is vital for surveillance, infection prevention, and patient care. While whole viral genome sequencing (WGS) is the "gold standard" for variant identification, molecular variant panels have become increasingly available. Most, however, are based on limited targets and have not undergone comprehensive evaluation. We assessed the diagnostic performance of the highly multiplexed Agena MassARRAY® SARS-CoV-2 Variant Panel v3 to identify variants in a diverse set of 391 SARS-CoV-2 clinical RNA specimens collected across our health systems in New York City, USA as well as in Bogota, Colombia (September 2, 2020 - March 2, 2022). We demonstrate almost perfect levels of interrater agreement between this assay and WGS for 9 of 11 variant calls (κ ≥ 0.856) and 25 of 30 targets (κ ≥ 0.820) tested on the panel. The assay had a high diagnostic sensitivity (≥93.67%) for contemporary variants (e.g., Iota, Alpha, Delta, Omicron [BA.1 sublineage]) and a high diagnostic specificity for all 11 variants (≥96.15%) and all 30 targets (≥94.34%) tested. Moreover, we highlight distinct target patterns that can be utilized to identify variants not yet defined on the panel including the Omicron BA.2 and other sublineages. These findings exemplify the power of highly multiplexed diagnostic panels to accurately call variants and the potential for target result signatures to elucidate new ones.

3.
EuropePMC; 2022.
Preprint in English | EuropePMC | ID: ppcovidwho-337661

ABSTRACT

A bstract Persistent SARS-CoV-2 infections have been reported in immune-compromised individuals and people undergoing immune-modulatory treatments. It has been speculated that the emergence of antigenically diverse SARS-CoV-2 variants such as the Omicron variant may be the result of intra-host viral evolution driven by suboptimal immune responses, which must be followed by forward transmission. However, while intrahost evolution has been documented, to our knowledge no direct evidence of subsequent forward transmission is available to date. Here we describe the emergence of an Omicron BA.1 sub-lineage with 8 additional amino acid substitutions within the spike (E96D, L167T, R346T, L455W, K458M, A484V, H681R, A688V) in an immune-compromised host along with evidence of 5 forward transmission cases. Our findings show that the Omicron BA.1 lineage can further diverge from its exceptionally mutated genome during prolonged SARS-CoV-2 infection;highlighting an urgent need to employ therapeutic strategies to limit duration of infection and spread in vulnerable patients.

4.
J Mol Diagn ; 24(7): 738-749, 2022 Jul.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1819546

ABSTRACT

As severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) continues to circulate, multiple variants of concern have emerged. New variants pose challenges for diagnostic platforms because sequence diversity can alter primer/probe-binding sites (PBSs), causing false-negative results. The MassARRAY SARS-CoV-2 Panel (Agena Bioscience) uses RT-PCR and mass spectrometry to detect five multiplex targets across N and ORF1ab genes. Herein, we use a data set of 256 SARS-CoV-2-positive specimens collected between April 11, 2021, and August 28, 2021, to evaluate target performance with paired sequencing data. During this time frame, two targets in the N gene (N2 and N3) were subject to the greatest sequence diversity. In specimens with N3 dropout, 69% harbored the Alpha-specific A28095U polymorphism that introduces a 3'-mismatch to the N3 forward PBS and increases risk of target dropout relative to specimens with 28095A (relative risk, 20.02; 95% CI, 11.36 to 35.72; P < 0.0001). Furthermore, among specimens with N2 dropout, 90% harbored the Delta-specific G28916U polymorphism that creates a 3'-mismatch to the N2 probe PBS and increases target dropout risk (relative risk, 11.92; 95% CI, 8.17 to 14.06; P < 0.0001). These findings highlight the robust capability of MassARRAY SARS-CoV-2 Panel target results to reveal circulating virus diversity, and they underscore the power of multitarget design to capture variants of concern.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , COVID-19/diagnosis , COVID-19/epidemiology , Humans , New York City/epidemiology , Reverse Transcriptase Polymerase Chain Reaction , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Sensitivity and Specificity , Spectrometry, Mass, Matrix-Assisted Laser Desorption-Ionization
5.
Cell Host Microbe ; 30(3): 373-387.e7, 2022 03 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1767977

ABSTRACT

SARS-CoV-2 lineages have diverged into highly prevalent variants termed "variants of concern" (VOCs). Here, we characterized emerging SARS-CoV-2 spike polymorphisms in vitro and in vivo to understand their impact on transmissibility and virus pathogenicity and fitness. We demonstrate that the substitution S:655Y, represented in the gamma and omicron VOCs, enhances viral replication and spike protein cleavage. The S:655Y substitution was transmitted more efficiently than its ancestor S:655H in the hamster infection model and was able to outcompete S:655H in the hamster model and in a human primary airway system. Finally, we analyzed a set of emerging SARS-CoV-2 variants to investigate how different sets of mutations may impact spike processing. All VOCs tested exhibited increased spike cleavage and fusogenic capacity. Taken together, our study demonstrates that the spike mutations present in VOCs that become epidemiologically prevalent in humans are linked to an increase in spike processing and virus transmission.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Humans , Mutation , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics
6.
J Med Virol ; 94(4): 1606-1616, 2022 04.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1718406

ABSTRACT

The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic has sparked the rapid development of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) diagnostics. However, emerging variants pose the risk for target dropout and false-negative results secondary to primer/probe binding site (PBS) mismatches. The Agena MassARRAY® SARS-CoV-2 Panel combines reverse-transcription polymerase chain reaction and matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization time-of-flight mass-spectrometry to probe for five targets across N and ORF1ab genes, which provides a robust platform to accommodate PBS mismatches in divergent viruses. Herein, we utilize a deidentified data set of 1262 SARS-CoV-2-positive specimens from Mount Sinai Health System (New York City) from December 2020 to April 2021 to evaluate target results and corresponding sequencing data. Overall, the level of PBS mismatches was greater in specimens with target dropout. Of specimens with N3 target dropout, 57% harbored an A28095T substitution that is highly specific for the Alpha (B.1.1.7) variant of concern. These data highlight the benefit of redundancy in target design and the potential for target performance to illuminate the dynamics of circulating SARS-CoV-2 variants.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Nucleic Acid Testing/methods , Reverse Transcriptase Polymerase Chain Reaction , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Spectrometry, Mass, Matrix-Assisted Laser Desorption-Ionization , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/virology , Coronavirus Nucleocapsid Proteins/genetics , Genetic Variation , Genome, Viral/genetics , Humans , New York City/epidemiology , Phosphoproteins/genetics , Polyproteins/genetics , RNA, Viral/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Viral Proteins/genetics
7.
J Med Virol ; 94(4): 1606-1616, 2022 04.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1589045

ABSTRACT

The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic has sparked the rapid development of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) diagnostics. However, emerging variants pose the risk for target dropout and false-negative results secondary to primer/probe binding site (PBS) mismatches. The Agena MassARRAY® SARS-CoV-2 Panel combines reverse-transcription polymerase chain reaction and matrix-assisted laser desorption/ionization time-of-flight mass-spectrometry to probe for five targets across N and ORF1ab genes, which provides a robust platform to accommodate PBS mismatches in divergent viruses. Herein, we utilize a deidentified data set of 1262 SARS-CoV-2-positive specimens from Mount Sinai Health System (New York City) from December 2020 to April 2021 to evaluate target results and corresponding sequencing data. Overall, the level of PBS mismatches was greater in specimens with target dropout. Of specimens with N3 target dropout, 57% harbored an A28095T substitution that is highly specific for the Alpha (B.1.1.7) variant of concern. These data highlight the benefit of redundancy in target design and the potential for target performance to illuminate the dynamics of circulating SARS-CoV-2 variants.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Nucleic Acid Testing/methods , Reverse Transcriptase Polymerase Chain Reaction , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Spectrometry, Mass, Matrix-Assisted Laser Desorption-Ionization , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/virology , Coronavirus Nucleocapsid Proteins/genetics , Genetic Variation , Genome, Viral/genetics , Humans , New York City/epidemiology , Phosphoproteins/genetics , Polyproteins/genetics , RNA, Viral/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Viral Proteins/genetics
8.
EuropePMC; 2021.
Preprint in English | EuropePMC | ID: ppcovidwho-296713

ABSTRACT

As severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) continues to circulate, multiple variants of concern (VOC) have emerged. New variants pose challenges for diagnostic platforms since sequence diversity can alter primer/probe binding sites (PBS), causing false-negative results. The Agena MassARRAY ® SARS-CoV-2 Panel utilizes reverse-transcription polymerase chain reaction and mass-spectrometry to detect five multiplex targets across N and ORF1ab genes. Herein, we utilize a dataset of 256 SARS-CoV-2-positive specimens collected between April 11, 2021-August 28, 2021 to evaluate target performance with paired sequencing data. During this timeframe, two targets in the N gene (N2, N3) were subject to the greatest sequence diversity. In specimens with N3 dropout, 69% harbored the Alpha-specific A28095U polymorphism that introduces a 3’-mismatch to the N3 forward PBS and increases risk of target dropout relative to specimens with 28095A (relative risk (RR): 20.02;p<0.0001;95% Confidence Interval (CI): 11.36-35.72). Furthermore, among specimens with N2 dropout, 90% harbored the Delta-specific G28916U polymorphism that creates a 3’-mismatch to the N2 probe PBS and increases target dropout risk (RR: 11.92;p<0.0001;95% CI: 8.17-14.06). These findings highlight the robust capability of Agena MassARRAY ® SARS-CoV-2 Panel target results to reveal circulating virus diversity and underscore the power of multi-target design to capture VOC.

9.
EBioMedicine ; 73: 103626, 2021 Nov.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1471943

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Highly efficacious vaccines against severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) have been developed. However, the emergence of viral variants that are more infectious than the earlier SARS-CoV-2 strains is concerning. Several of these viral variants have the potential to partially escape neutralizing antibody responses, warranting continued immune-monitoring. METHODS: We used a panel of 30 post-mRNA vaccination sera to determine neutralization and RBD and spike binding activity against a number of emerging viral variants. The virus neutralization was determined using authentic SARS-CoV-2 clinical isolates in an assay format that mimics physiological conditions. FINDINGS: We tested seven currently circulating viral variants of concern/interest, including the three Iota sublineages, Alpha (E484K), Beta, Delta and Lambda in neutralization assays. We found only small decreases in neutralization against Iota and Delta. The reduction was stronger against a sub-variant of Lambda, followed by Beta and Alpha (E484K). Lambda is currently circulating in parts of Latin America and was detected in Germany, the US and Israel. Of note, reduction in a receptor binding domain and spike binding assay that also included Gamma, Kappa and A.23.1 was negligible. INTERPRETATION: Taken together, these findings suggest that mRNA SARS-CoV-2 vaccines may remain effective against these viral variants of concern/interest and that spike binding antibody tests likely retain specificity in the face of evolving SARS-CoV-2 diversity. FUNDING: This work is part of the PARIS/SPARTA studies funded by the NIAID Collaborative Influenza Vaccine Innovation Centers (CIVIC) contract 75N93019C00051. In addition, this work was also partially funded by the Centers of Excellence for Influenza Research and Surveillance (CEIRS, contract # HHSN272201400008C), the JPB Foundation, the Open Philanthropy Project (research grant 2020-215611 (5384), by anonymous donors and by the Serological Sciences Network (SeroNet) in part with Federal funds from the National Cancer Institute, National Institutes of Health, under Contract No. 75N91019D00024, Task Order No. 75N91020F00003.


Subject(s)
Antibodies, Neutralizing/immunology , COVID-19 Vaccines/administration & dosage , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/immunology , Vaccines, Synthetic/administration & dosage , Antigen-Antibody Reactions , COVID-19/prevention & control , COVID-19/virology , Humans , Neutralization Tests , Phylogeny , Protein Domains/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/classification , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , SARS-CoV-2/metabolism
12.
Int J Infect Dis ; 110: 410-416, 2021 Sep.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1330878

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVES: To evaluate the genomic epidemiology of SARS-CoV-2 from Venezuelan migrants living in Colombia. METHODS: This study sequenced SARS-CoV-2 from 30 clinical specimens collected from Venezuelan migrants. Genomes were compared with the Wuhan reference genome to identify polymorphisms, reconstruct phylogenetic relationships and perform comparative genomic analyses. Geographic, sociodemographic and clinical data were also studied across genotypes. RESULTS: This study demonstrated the presence of six distinct SARS-CoV-2 lineages circulating among Venezuelan migrants, as well as a close relationship between SARS-CoV-2 genomic sequences obtained from individuals living in the Venezuelan-Colombian border regions of La Guajira (Colombia) and Zulia (Venezuela). Three clusters (C-1, C-2 and C-3) were well supported by phylogenomic inference, supporting the hypothesis of three potential transmission routes across the Colombian-Venezuelan border. These genomes included point mutations previously associated with increased infectivity. A mutation (L18F) in the N-terminal domain of the spike protein that has been associated with compromised binding of neutralizing antibodies was found in 2 of 30 (6.6%) genomes. A statistically significant association was identified with symptomatology for cluster C2. CONCLUSION: The close phylogenetic relationships between SARS-CoV-2 genomes from Venezuelan migrants and from people living at the Venezuela-Colombian border support the importance of human movements for the spread of COVID-19 and for emerging virus variants.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Transients and Migrants , Colombia/epidemiology , Humans , Phylogeny , SARS-CoV-2
13.
Sci Rep ; 11(1): 13308, 2021 06 25.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1281741

ABSTRACT

Gastrointestinal symptoms are common in COVID-19 patients but the nature of the gut immune response to SARS-CoV-2 remains poorly characterized, partly due to the difficulty of obtaining biopsy specimens from infected individuals. In lieu of tissue samples, we measured cytokines, inflammatory markers, viral RNA, microbiome composition, and antibody responses in stool samples from a cohort of 44 hospitalized COVID-19 patients. SARS-CoV-2 RNA was detected in stool of 41% of patients and more frequently in patients with diarrhea. Patients who survived had lower fecal viral RNA than those who died. Strains isolated from stool and nasopharynx of an individual were the same. Compared to uninfected controls, COVID-19 patients had higher fecal levels of IL-8 and lower levels of fecal IL-10. Stool IL-23 was higher in patients with more severe COVID-19 disease, and we found evidence of intestinal virus-specific IgA responses associated with more severe disease. We provide evidence for an ongoing humeral immune response to SARS-CoV-2 in the gastrointestinal tract, but little evidence of overt inflammation.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Feces , Gastrointestinal Microbiome , Nasopharynx/virology , RNA, Viral/isolation & purification , Aged , Biomarkers/metabolism , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/immunology , Cohort Studies , Cytokines/metabolism , Feces/virology , Female , Humans , Immunoglobulin A/blood , Immunoglobulin A/immunology , Male , Middle Aged , New York City/epidemiology , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification
14.
Nat Commun ; 12(1): 3463, 2021 06 08.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1261999

ABSTRACT

Numerous reports document the spread of SARS-CoV-2, but there is limited information on its introduction before the identification of a local case. This may lead to incorrect assumptions when modeling viral origins and transmission. Here, we utilize a sample pooling strategy to screen for previously undetected SARS-CoV-2 in de-identified, respiratory pathogen-negative nasopharyngeal specimens from 3,040 patients across the Mount Sinai Health System in New York. The patients had been previously evaluated for respiratory symptoms or influenza-like illness during the first 10 weeks of 2020. We identify SARS-CoV-2 RNA from specimens collected as early as 25 January 2020, and complete SARS-CoV-2 genome sequences from multiple pools of samples collected between late February and early March, documenting an increase prior to the later surge. Our results provide evidence of sporadic SARS-CoV-2 infections a full month before both the first officially documented case and emergence of New York as a COVID-19 epicenter in March 2020.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/epidemiology , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2/physiology , Humans , Nasopharynx/virology , New York/epidemiology , Phylogeny , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification
15.
PLoS Negl Trop Dis ; 15(4): e0009327, 2021 04.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1186600

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: The SARS-CoV-2 pandemic has forced health authorities across the world to take important decisions to curtail its spread. Genomic epidemiology has emerged as a valuable tool to understand introductions and spread of the virus in a specific geographic location. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: Here, we report the sequences of 59 SARS-CoV-2 samples from inhabitants of the Colombian Amazonas department. The viral genomes were distributed in two robust clusters within the distinct GISAID clades GH and G. Spatial-temporal analyses revealed two independent introductions of SARS-CoV-2 in the region, one around April 1, 2020 associated with a local transmission, and one around April 2, 2020 associated with other South American genomes (Uruguay and Brazil). We also identified ten lineages circulating in the Amazonas department including the P.1 variant of concern (VOC). CONCLUSIONS/SIGNIFICANCE: This study represents the first genomic epidemiology investigation of SARS-CoV-2 in one of the territories with the highest report of indigenous communities of the country. Such findings are essential to decipher viral transmission, inform on global spread and to direct implementation of infection prevention and control measures for these vulnerable populations, especially, due to the recent circulation of one of the variants of concern (P.1) associated with major transmissibility and possible reinfections.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/virology , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , COVID-19/ethnology , COVID-19/transmission , Colombia/epidemiology , Humans , Indians, South American , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Spatial Analysis , Time Factors
16.
Emerg Microbes Infect ; 10(1): 376-383, 2021 Dec.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-977353

ABSTRACT

Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) has been detected in domestic and wild cats. However, little is known about natural viral infections of domestic cats, although their importance for modelling disease spread, informing strategies for managing positive human-animal relationships and disease prevention. Here, we describe the SARS-CoV-2 infection in a household of two human adults and sibling cats (one male and two females) using real-time RT-PCR, an ELISA test, viral sequencing, and virus isolation. On May 5th, 2020, the cat-owners tested positive for SARS-CoV-2. Two days later, the male cat showed mild respiratory symptoms and tested positive. Four days after the male cat, the two female cats became positive, asymptomatically. Also, one human and one cat showed antibodies against SARS-CoV-2. All cats excreted detectable SARS-CoV-2 RNA for a shorter duration than humans and viral sequences analysis confirmed human-to-cat transmission. We could not determine if cat-to-cat transmission also occurred.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/veterinary , COVID-19/virology , Cats/virology , Virus Shedding , Adult , Animals , Chile , Female , Genome, Viral , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , RNA, Viral/analysis , SARS-CoV-2/growth & development , SARS-CoV-2/physiology
17.
N Engl J Med ; 383(25): 2407-2416, 2020 12 17.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-919364

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: The efficacy of public health measures to control the transmission of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) has not been well studied in young adults. METHODS: We investigated SARS-CoV-2 infections among U.S. Marine Corps recruits who underwent a 2-week quarantine at home followed by a second supervised 2-week quarantine at a closed college campus that involved mask wearing, social distancing, and daily temperature and symptom monitoring. Study volunteers were tested for SARS-CoV-2 by means of quantitative polymerase-chain-reaction (qPCR) assay of nares swab specimens obtained between the time of arrival and the second day of supervised quarantine and on days 7 and 14. Recruits who did not volunteer for the study underwent qPCR testing only on day 14, at the end of the quarantine period. We performed phylogenetic analysis of viral genomes obtained from infected study volunteers to identify clusters and to assess the epidemiologic features of infections. RESULTS: A total of 1848 recruits volunteered to participate in the study; within 2 days after arrival on campus, 16 (0.9%) tested positive for SARS-CoV-2, 15 of whom were asymptomatic. An additional 35 participants (1.9%) tested positive on day 7 or on day 14. Five of the 51 participants (9.8%) who tested positive at any time had symptoms in the week before a positive qPCR test. Of the recruits who declined to participate in the study, 26 (1.7%) of the 1554 recruits with available qPCR results tested positive on day 14. No SARS-CoV-2 infections were identified through clinical qPCR testing performed as a result of daily symptom monitoring. Analysis of 36 SARS-CoV-2 genomes obtained from 32 participants revealed six transmission clusters among 18 participants. Epidemiologic analysis supported multiple local transmission events, including transmission between roommates and among recruits within the same platoon. CONCLUSIONS: Among Marine Corps recruits, approximately 2% who had previously had negative results for SARS-CoV-2 at the beginning of supervised quarantine, and less than 2% of recruits with unknown previous status, tested positive by day 14. Most recruits who tested positive were asymptomatic, and no infections were detected through daily symptom monitoring. Transmission clusters occurred within platoons. (Funded by the Defense Health Agency and others.).


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Testing , COVID-19/transmission , Disease Transmission, Infectious/statistics & numerical data , Military Personnel , Quarantine , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Asymptomatic Infections , COVID-19/diagnosis , COVID-19/epidemiology , Genome, Viral , Humans , Male , Phylogeny , Real-Time Polymerase Chain Reaction , Risk Factors , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , South Carolina/epidemiology , Whole Genome Sequencing , Young Adult
18.
Infect Genet Evol ; 86: 104616, 2020 12.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-907154

ABSTRACT

INTRODUCTION: Venezuela and Colombia both adopted measures of containment early in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. However, Venezuela's ongoing humanitarian crisis has decimated its health care system, and forced millions of Venezuelans to flee through its porous border with Colombia. The extensive shared border, and illegal cross-border transit through improvised trails between the two countries are major challenges for public health authorities. We report the first SARS-CoV-2 genomes from Venezuela, and present a snapshot of the SARS-CoV-2 epidemiologic landscape in the Colombian-Venezuelan border region. METHODS: We sequenced and assembled viral genomes from total RNA extracted from nasopharyngeal (NP) clinical specimens using a custom reference-based analysis pipeline. Three assemblies obtained were subjected to typing using the Phylogenetic Assignment of Named Global Outbreak LINeages 'Pangolin' tool. A total of 376 publicly available SARS-CoV-2 genomes from South America were obtained from the GISAID database to perform comparative genomic analyses. Additionally, the Wuhan-1 strain was used as reference. RESULTS: We found that two of the SARS-CoV-2 genomes from Venezuela belonged to the B1 lineage, and the third to the B.1.13 lineage. We observed a point mutation in the Spike protein gene (D614G substitution), previously reported to be associated with increased infectivity, in all three Venezuelan genomes. Additionally, three mutations (R203K/G204R substitution) were present in the nucleocapsid (N) gene of one Venezuelan genome. CONCLUSIONS: Genomic sequencing demonstrates similarity between SARS-CoV-2 lineages from Venezuela and viruses collected from patients in bordering areas in Colombia and from Brazil, consistent with cross-border transit despite administrative measures including lockdowns. The presence of mutations associated with increased infectivity in the 3 Venezuelan genomes we report and Colombian SARS-CoV-2 genomes from neighboring borders areas may pose additional challenges for control of SARS-CoV-2 spread in the complex epidemiological landscape in Latin American countries. Public health authorities should carefully follow the progress of the pandemic and its impact on displaced populations within the region.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/transmission , COVID-19/virology , Colombia , Genome, Viral/genetics , Humans , Mutation/genetics , Polymorphism, Single Nucleotide/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/classification , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Venezuela
19.
Science ; 369(6501): 297-301, 2020 07 17.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-418857

ABSTRACT

New York City (NYC) has emerged as one of the epicenters of the current severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) pandemic. To identify the early transmission events underlying the rapid spread of the virus in the NYC metropolitan area, we sequenced the virus that causes coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) in patients seeking care at the Mount Sinai Health System. Phylogenetic analysis of 84 distinct SARS-CoV-2 genomes indicates multiple, independent, but isolated introductions mainly from Europe and other parts of the United States. Moreover, we found evidence for community transmission of SARS-CoV-2 as suggested by clusters of related viruses found in patients living in different neighborhoods of the city.


Subject(s)
Betacoronavirus/genetics , Coronavirus Infections/epidemiology , Coronavirus Infections/transmission , Genome, Viral , Pneumonia, Viral/epidemiology , Pneumonia, Viral/transmission , Adult , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , COVID-19 , Coronavirus Infections/mortality , Epidemiological Monitoring , Female , Geography, Medical , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , New York City/epidemiology , Pandemics , Phylogeny , Pneumonia, Viral/mortality , Residence Characteristics , SARS-CoV-2 , Young Adult
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