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1.
Front Immunol ; 12: 793953, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1572289

ABSTRACT

Durability of SARS-CoV-2 Spike antibody responses after infection provides information relevant to understanding protection against COVID-19 in humans. We report the results of a sequential evaluation of anti-SARS-CoV-2 antibodies in convalescent patients with a median follow-up of 14 months (range 12.4-15.4) post first symptom onset. We report persistence of antibodies for all four specificities tested [Spike, Spike Receptor Binding Domain (Spike-RBD), Nucleocapsid, Nucleocapsid RNA Binding Domain (N-RBD)]. Anti-Spike antibodies persist better than anti-Nucleocapsid antibodies. The durability analysis supports a bi-phasic antibody decay with longer half-lives of antibodies after 6 months and antibody persistence for up to 14 months. Patients infected with the Wuhan (WA1) strain maintained strong cross-reactive recognition of Alpha and Delta Spike-RBD but significantly reduced binding to Beta and Mu Spike-RBD. Sixty percent of convalescent patients with detectable WA1-specific NAb also showed strong neutralization of the Delta variant, the prevalent strain of the present pandemic. These data show that convalescent patients maintain functional antibody responses for more than one year after infection, suggesting a strong long-lasting response after symptomatic disease that may offer a prolonged protection against re-infection. One patient from this cohort showed strong increase of both Spike and Nucleocapsid antibodies at 14 months post-infection indicating SARS-CoV-2 re-exposure. These antibodies showed stronger cross-reactivity to a panel of Spike-RBD including Beta, Delta and Mu and neutralization of a panel of Spike variants including Beta and Gamma. This patient provides an example of strong anti-Spike recall immunity able to control infection at an asymptomatic level. Together, the antibodies from SARS-CoV-2 convalescent patients persist over 14 months and continue to maintain cross-reactivity to the current variants of concern and show strong functional properties.


Subject(s)
Antibodies, Neutralizing/immunology , Antibodies, Viral/immunology , COVID-19/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/immunology , Adult , Aged , Antibodies, Neutralizing/metabolism , Antibodies, Viral/metabolism , Binding Sites, Antibody/immunology , COVID-19/virology , Cohort Studies , Cross Reactions/immunology , Female , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Neutralization Tests/methods , Nucleocapsid/immunology , Nucleocapsid/metabolism , Protein Binding/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/physiology , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/metabolism , Time Factors
2.
Front Immunol ; 12: 750386, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1515534

ABSTRACT

Antibodies targeting Receptor Binding Domain (RBD) of SARS-CoV-2 have been suggested to account for the majority of neutralizing activity in COVID-19 convalescent sera and several neutralizing antibodies (nAbs) have been isolated, characterized and proposed as emergency therapeutics in the form of monoclonal antibodies (mAbs). However, SARS-CoV-2 variants are rapidly spreading worldwide from the sites of initial identification. The variants of concern (VOC) B.1.1.7 (Alpha), B.1.351 (Beta), P.1 (Gamma) and B.1.167.2 (Delta) showed mutations in the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein potentially able to cause escape from nAb responses with a consequent reduction of efficacy of vaccines and mAbs-based therapy. We produced the recombinant RBD (rRBD) of SARS-CoV-2 spike glycoprotein from the Wuhan-Hu 1 reference sequence in a mammalian system, for mice immunization to isolate new mAbs with neutralizing activity. Here we describe four mAbs that were able to bind the rRBD in Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay and the transmembrane full-length spike protein expressed in HEK293T cells by flow cytometry assay. Moreover, the mAbs recognized the RBD in supernatants of SARS-CoV-2 infected VERO E6 cells by Western Blot under non-reducing condition or in supernatants of cells infected with lentivirus pseudotyped for spike protein, by immunoprecipitation assay. Three out of four mAbs lost their binding efficiency to completely N-deglycosylated rRBD and none was able to bind the same recombinant protein expressed in Escherichia coli, suggesting that the epitopes recognized by three mAbs are generated by the conformational structure of the glycosylated native protein. Of particular relevance, three mAbs were able to inhibit Wuhan SARS-CoV-2 infection of VERO E6 cells in a plaque-reduction neutralization test and the Wuhan SARS-CoV-2 as well as the Alpha, Beta, Gamma and Delta VOC in a pseudoviruses-based neutralization test. These mAbs represent important additional tools for diagnosis and therapy of COVID-19 and may contribute to the understanding of the functional structure of SARS-CoV-2 RBD.


Subject(s)
Antibodies, Monoclonal/pharmacology , Antibodies, Neutralizing/pharmacology , Antibodies, Viral/pharmacology , Epitopes/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/drug effects , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/immunology , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/genetics , Animals , Binding Sites, Antibody/immunology , COVID-19/drug therapy , Cell Line, Tumor , Chlorocebus aethiops , Female , Glycosylation , HEK293 Cells , Humans , Mice, Inbred BALB C , Neutralization Tests , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Vero Cells
3.
Microbiol Spectr ; 9(2): e0141621, 2021 10 31.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1495015

ABSTRACT

The rapid worldwide spread of SARS-CoV-2 has accelerated research and development for controlling the COVID-19 pandemic. A multi-coronavirus protein microarray was created containing full-length proteins, overlapping protein fragments of various lengths, and peptide libraries from SARS-CoV-2 and four other human coronaviruses. Sera from confirmed COVID-19 patients as well as unexposed individuals were applied to multicoronavirus arrays to identify specific antibody reactivity. High-level IgG, IgM, and IgA reactivity to structural proteins S, M, and N of SARS-CoV-2, as well as accessory proteins such as ORF3a and ORF7a, were observed that were specific to COVID-19 patients. Antibody reactivity against overlapping 100-, 50-, and 30-amino acid fragments of SARS-CoV-2 proteins was used to identify antigenic regions. Numerous proteins of SARS-CoV, Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV), and the endemic human coronaviruses HCoV-NL63 and HCoV-OC43 were also more reactive with IgG, IgM, and IgA in COVID-19 patient sera than in unexposed control sera, providing further evidence of immunologic cross-reactivity between these viruses. Whereas unexposed individuals had minimal reactivity against SARS-CoV-2 proteins that poorly correlated with reactivity against HCoV-NL63 and HCoV-OC43 S2 and N proteins, COVID-19 patient sera had higher correlation between SARS-CoV-2 and HCoV responses, suggesting that de novo antibodies against SARS-CoV-2 cross-react with HCoV epitopes. Array responses were compared with validated spike protein-specific IgG enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays (ELISAs), showing agreement between orthologous methods. SARS-CoV-2 microneutralization titers were low in the COVID-19 patient sera but correlated with array responses against S and N proteins. The multi-coronavirus protein microarray is a useful tool for mapping antibody reactivity in COVID-19 patients. IMPORTANCE With novel mutant SARS-CoV-2 variants of concern on the rise, knowledge of immune specificities against SARS-CoV-2 proteins is increasingly important for understanding the impact of structural changes in antibody-reactive protein epitopes on naturally acquired and vaccine-induced immunity, as well as broader topics of cross-reactivity and viral evolution. A multi-coronavirus protein microarray used to map the binding of COVID-19 patient antibodies to SARS-CoV-2 proteins and protein fragments as well as to the proteins of four other coronaviruses that infect humans has shown specific regions of SARS-CoV-2 proteins that are highly reactive with patient antibodies and revealed cross-reactivity of these antibodies with other human coronaviruses. These data and the multi-coronavirus protein microarray tool will help guide further studies of the antibody response to COVID-19 and to vaccination against this worldwide pandemic.


Subject(s)
Antibodies, Viral/immunology , Coronavirus NL63, Human/immunology , Coronavirus OC43, Human/immunology , Epitopes/immunology , Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Antibodies, Viral/blood , Binding Sites, Antibody/immunology , COVID-19/immunology , Coronavirus Nucleocapsid Proteins/immunology , Cross Reactions/immunology , Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay , Humans , Immunoglobulin A/immunology , Immunoglobulin G/immunology , Immunoglobulin M/immunology , Phosphoproteins/immunology , Protein Array Analysis , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/immunology , Viral Proteins/immunology , Viroporin Proteins/immunology
4.
Viruses ; 13(10)2021 10 06.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1463832

ABSTRACT

The evolution of mutations in SARS-CoV-2 at antigenic sites that impact neutralizing antibody responses in humans poses a risk to immunity developed through vaccination and natural infection. The highly successful RNA-based vaccines have enabled rapid vaccine updates that incorporate mutations from current variants of concern (VOCs). It is therefore important to anticipate future antigenic mutations as the virus navigates the heterogeneous global landscape of host immunity. Toward this goal, we survey epitope-paratope interfaces of anti-SARS-CoV-2 antibodies to map an antigenic space that captures the role of each spike protein residue within the polyclonal antibody response directed against the ACE2-receptor binding domain (RBD) or the N-terminal domain (NTD). In particular, the antigenic space map builds on recently published epitope definitions by annotating epitope overlap and orthogonality at the residue level. We employ the antigenic space map as a framework to understand how mutations on nine major variants contribute to each variant's evasion of neutralizing antibodies. Further, we identify constellations of mutations that span the orthogonal epitope regions of the RBD and NTD on the variants with the greatest antibody escape. Finally, we apply the antigenic space map to predict which regions of antigenic space-should they mutate-may be most likely to complementarily augment antibody evasion for the most evasive and transmissible VOCs.


Subject(s)
Antibodies, Neutralizing/immunology , Antibodies, Viral/immunology , Binding Sites, Antibody/immunology , Immune Evasion/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/metabolism , COVID-19/immunology , Epitopes/immunology , Humans , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/immunology , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/metabolism
5.
Nat Commun ; 11(1): 5337, 2020 10 21.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1387319

ABSTRACT

The CR3022 antibody, selected from a group of SARS-CoV monoclonal antibodies for its ability to cross-react with SARS-CoV-2, has been examined for its ability to bind to the ectodomain of the SARS-CoV-2 spike glycoprotein. Using cryo-electron microscopy we show that antibody binding requires rearrangements in the S1 domain that result in dissociation of the spike.


Subject(s)
Antibodies, Monoclonal/immunology , Antibodies, Viral/immunology , Betacoronavirus/immunology , Binding Sites, Antibody/immunology , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/immunology , Animals , COVID-19 , Cell Line , Chlorocebus aethiops , Coronavirus Infections/virology , Cryoelectron Microscopy , Humans , Neutralization Tests , Pandemics , Pneumonia, Viral/virology , Protein Domains/immunology , SARS-CoV-2 , Vero Cells
6.
Int Immunopharmacol ; 99: 108020, 2021 Oct.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1330896

ABSTRACT

The spike protein of the SARS-CoV-2 virus is the foremost target for the designing of vaccines and therapeutic antibodies and also acts as a crucial antigen in the assessment of COVID-19 immune responses. The enveloped viruses; such as SARS-CoV-2, Human Immunodeficiency Virus-1 (HIV-1) and influenza, often hijack host-cell glycosylation pathways and influence pathobiology and immune selection. These glycan motifs can lead to either immune evasion or viral neutralization by the production of cross-reactive antibodies that can lead to antibody-dependent enhancement (ADE) of infection. Potential cross-protection from influenza vaccine has also been reported in COVID-19 infected individuals in several epidemiological studies recently; however, the scientific basis for these observations remains elusive. Herein, we show that the anti-SARS-CoV2 antibodies cross-reacts with the Hemagglutinin (HA) protein. This phenomenon is common to both the sera from convalescent SARS-CoV-2 donors and spike immunized mice, although these antibodies were unable to cross-neutralize, suggesting the presence of a non-neutralizing antibody response. Epitope mapping suggests that the cross-reactive antibodies are targeted towards glycan epitopes of the SARS-CoV-2 spike and HA. Overall, our findings address the cross-reactive responses, although non-neutralizing, elicited against RNA viruses and warrant further studies to investigate whether such non-neutralizing antibody responses can contribute to effector functions such as antibody-dependent cellular cytotoxicity (ADCC) or ADE.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/immunology , Cross Reactions/immunology , Hemagglutinin Glycoproteins, Influenza Virus/immunology , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/immunology , Animals , Antibodies, Neutralizing , Antigen-Antibody Reactions , Binding Sites, Antibody/immunology , Cell Culture Techniques , Chlorocebus aethiops , Dogs , Epitope Mapping , Epitopes/immunology , Glycosylation , Humans , Influenza Vaccines/immunology , Madin Darby Canine Kidney Cells , Membrane Glycoproteins/metabolism , Mice , Mice, Inbred C57BL , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Vero Cells
7.
Sci Rep ; 10(1): 22370, 2020 12 22.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-997940

ABSTRACT

There are currently few approved effective treatments for SARS-CoV-2, the virus responsible for the COVID-19 pandemic. Nanobodies are 12-15 kDa single-domain antibody fragments that can be delivered by inhalation and are amenable to relatively inexpensive large scale production compared to other biologicals. We have isolated nanobodies that bind to the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein receptor binding domain and block spike protein interaction with the angiotensin converting enzyme 2 (ACE2) with 1-5 nM affinity. The lead nanobody candidate, NIH-CoVnb-112, blocks SARS-CoV-2 spike pseudotyped lentivirus infection of HEK293 cells expressing human ACE2 with an EC50 of 0.3 µg/mL. NIH-CoVnb-112 retains structural integrity and potency after nebulization. Furthermore, NIH-CoVnb-112 blocks interaction between ACE2 and several high affinity variant forms of the spike protein. These nanobodies and their derivatives have therapeutic, preventative, and diagnostic potential.


Subject(s)
Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/metabolism , Antibodies, Viral/immunology , Antibody Affinity , COVID-19/metabolism , Drug Discovery/methods , Protein Interaction Domains and Motifs/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/chemistry , Single-Domain Antibodies/immunology , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/chemistry , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/genetics , Animals , Antibodies, Neutralizing/immunology , Binding Sites, Antibody/immunology , COVID-19/therapy , COVID-19/virology , Camelids, New World , HEK293 Cells , Humans , Immunization/methods , Male , Protein Binding , Signal Transduction/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Transduction, Genetic , Transfection
8.
Cell Rep ; 33(4): 108322, 2020 10 27.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-888426

ABSTRACT

Biotin-labeled molecular probes, comprising specific regions of the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) spike, would be helpful in the isolation and characterization of antibodies targeting this recently emerged pathogen. Here, we design constructs incorporating an N-terminal purification tag, a site-specific protease-cleavage site, the probe region of interest, and a C-terminal sequence targeted by biotin ligase. Probe regions include full-length spike ectodomain as well as various subregions, and we also design mutants that eliminate recognition of the angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2) receptor. Yields of biotin-labeled probes from transient transfection range from ∼0.5 mg/L for the complete ectodomain to >5 mg/L for several subregions. Probes are characterized for antigenicity and ACE2 recognition, and the structure of the spike ectodomain probe is determined by cryoelectron microscopy. We also characterize antibody-binding specificities and cell-sorting capabilities of the biotinylated probes. Altogether, structure-based design coupled to efficient purification and biotinylation processes can thus enable streamlined development of SARS-CoV-2 spike ectodomain probes.


Subject(s)
Antibodies, Neutralizing/immunology , Antibodies, Viral/immunology , Coronavirus Infections/immunology , Molecular Probes/immunology , Pneumonia, Viral/immunology , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/immunology , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2 , Antibody Specificity/immunology , Binding Sites, Antibody/immunology , Biotinylation , COVID-19 , Cryoelectron Microscopy , Humans , Pandemics , Peptidyl-Dipeptidase A/metabolism , Receptors, Virus/metabolism
9.
Nat Chem Biol ; 17(1): 113-121, 2021 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-882912

ABSTRACT

Neutralizing agents against SARS-CoV-2 are urgently needed for the treatment and prophylaxis of COVID-19. Here, we present a strategy to rapidly identify and assemble synthetic human variable heavy (VH) domains toward neutralizing epitopes. We constructed a VH-phage library and targeted the angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2) binding interface of the SARS-CoV-2 Spike receptor-binding domain (Spike-RBD). Using a masked selection approach, we identified VH binders to two non-overlapping epitopes and further assembled these into multivalent and bi-paratopic formats. These VH constructs showed increased affinity to Spike (up to 600-fold) and neutralization potency (up to 1,400-fold) on pseudotyped SARS-CoV-2 virus when compared to standalone VH domains. The most potent binder, a trivalent VH, neutralized authentic SARS-CoV-2 with a half-maximal inhibitory concentration (IC50) of 4.0 nM (180 ng ml-1). A cryo-EM structure of the trivalent VH bound to Spike shows each VH domain engaging an RBD at the ACE2 binding site, confirming our original design strategy.


Subject(s)
Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/chemistry , Antibodies, Neutralizing/chemistry , Antibodies, Viral/chemistry , Single-Chain Antibodies/chemistry , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/chemistry , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/antagonists & inhibitors , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/genetics , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/immunology , Animals , Antibodies, Neutralizing/genetics , Antibodies, Neutralizing/immunology , Antibodies, Viral/genetics , Antibodies, Viral/immunology , Binding Sites, Antibody/genetics , Binding Sites, Antibody/immunology , Chlorocebus aethiops , Cryoelectron Microscopy , HEK293 Cells , Humans , Models, Molecular , Peptide Library , Protein Binding , Protein Conformation, alpha-Helical , Protein Conformation, beta-Strand , Protein Interaction Domains and Motifs , SARS-CoV-2 , Single-Chain Antibodies/genetics , Single-Chain Antibodies/immunology , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/antagonists & inhibitors , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/immunology , Vero Cells
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