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1.
Front Immunol ; 12: 789905, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1581321

ABSTRACT

Facing the imminent need for vaccine candidates with cross-protection against globally circulating severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) mutants, we present a conserved antigenic peptide RBD9.1 with both T-cell and B-cell epitopes. RBD9.1 can be recognized by coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) convalescent serum, particularly for those with high neutralizing potency. Immunization with RBD9.1 can successfully induce the production of the receptor-binding domain (RBD)-specific antibodies in Balb/c mice. Importantly, the immunized sera exhibit sustained neutralizing efficacy against multiple dominant SARS-CoV-2 variant strains, including B.1.617.2 that carries a point mutation (SL452R) within the sequence of RBD9.1. Specifically, SY451 and SY454 are identified as the key amino acids for the binding of the induced RBD-specific antibodies to RBD9.1. Furthermore, we have confirmed that the RBD9.1 antigenic peptide can induce a S448-456 (NYNYLYRLF)-specific CD8+ T-cell response. Both RBD9.1-specific B cells and the S448-456-specific T cells can still be activated more than 3 months post the last immunization. This study provides a potential vaccine candidate that can generate long-term protective efficacy over SARS-CoV-2 variants, with the unique functional mechanism of activating both humoral and cellular immunity.


Subject(s)
Antibodies, Viral/immunology , COVID-19 Vaccines/immunology , COVID-19/prevention & control , Immunity, Cellular/immunology , Immunity, Humoral/immunology , Animals , Antibodies, Neutralizing/immunology , COVID-19 Vaccines/pharmacology , Epitopes, B-Lymphocyte/immunology , Epitopes, T-Lymphocyte/immunology , Humans , Mice , Mice, Inbred BALB C , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Vaccines, Subunit/immunology
2.
PLoS One ; 16(11): e0258645, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1518355

ABSTRACT

All approved coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) vaccines in current use are safe, effective, and reduce the risk of severe illness. Although data on the immunological presentation of patients with COVID-19 is limited, increasing experimental evidence supports the significant contribution of B and T cells towards the resolution of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) infection. Despite the availability of several COVID-19 vaccines with high efficacy, more effective vaccines are still needed to protect against the new variants of SARS-CoV-2. Employing a comprehensive immunoinformatic prediction algorithm and leveraging the genetic closeness with SARS-CoV, we have predicted potential immune epitopes in the structural proteins of SARS-CoV-2. The S and N proteins of SARS-CoV-2 and SARS-CoVs are main targets of antibody detection and have motivated us to design four multi-epitope vaccines which were based on our predicted B- and T-cell epitopes of SARS-CoV-2 structural proteins. The cardinal epitopes selected for the vaccine constructs are predicted to possess antigenic, non-allergenic, and cytokine-inducing properties. Additionally, some of the predicted epitopes have been experimentally validated in published papers. Furthermore, we used the C-ImmSim server to predict effective immune responses induced by the epitope-based vaccines. Taken together, the immune epitopes predicted in this study provide a platform for future experimental validations which may facilitate the development of effective vaccine candidates and epitope-based serological diagnostic assays.


Subject(s)
Computational Biology , Epitope Mapping , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Viral Structural Proteins/immunology , Amino Acid Sequence , COVID-19 Vaccines/chemistry , COVID-19 Vaccines/immunology , Databases as Topic , Epitopes, B-Lymphocyte/chemistry , Epitopes, B-Lymphocyte/immunology , Epitopes, T-Lymphocyte/chemistry , Epitopes, T-Lymphocyte/immunology , Histocompatibility Antigens Class I/metabolism , Humans , Models, Molecular , Protein Conformation , Reproducibility of Results , Viral Structural Proteins/chemistry
3.
Molecules ; 26(20)2021 Oct 13.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1470934

ABSTRACT

Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2, the causative agent of coronavirus disease (COVID-19)) has caused relatively high mortality rates in humans throughout the world since its first detection in late December 2019, leading to the most devastating pandemic of the current century. Consequently, SARS-CoV-2 therapeutic interventions have received high priority from public health authorities. Despite increased COVID-19 infections, a vaccine or therapy to cover all the population is not yet available. Herein, immunoinformatics and custommune tools were used to identify B and T-cells epitopes from the available SARS-CoV-2 sequences spike (S) protein. In the in silico predictions, six B cell epitopes QTGKIADYNYK, TEIYQASTPCNGVEG, LQSYGFQPT, IRGDEVRQIAPGQTGKIADYNYKLPD, FSQILPDPSKPSKRS and PFAMQMAYRFNG were cross-reacted with MHC-I and MHC-II T-cells binding epitopes and selected for vaccination in experimental animals for evaluation as candidate vaccine(s) due to their high antigenic matching and conserved score. The selected six peptides were used individually or in combinations to immunize female Balb/c mice. The immunized mice raised reactive antibodies against SARS-CoV-2 in two different short peptides located in receptor binding domain and S2 region. In combination groups, an additive effect was demonstrated in-comparison with single peptide immunized mice. This study provides novel epitope-based peptide vaccine candidates against SARS-CoV-2.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Vaccines/chemistry , COVID-19/prevention & control , Epitopes, B-Lymphocyte/chemistry , Epitopes, T-Lymphocyte/chemistry , SARS-CoV-2/metabolism , Amino Acid Sequence , Animals , Antibodies, Viral/blood , Antibodies, Viral/immunology , COVID-19/virology , COVID-19 Vaccines/administration & dosage , Epitopes, B-Lymphocyte/immunology , Epitopes, B-Lymphocyte/metabolism , Epitopes, T-Lymphocyte/immunology , Epitopes, T-Lymphocyte/metabolism , Female , Humans , Immunization , Mice , Mice, Inbred BALB C , Peptides/chemistry , Peptides/immunology , Peptides/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/chemistry , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/metabolism
4.
Sci Rep ; 11(1): 20383, 2021 10 14.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1469988

ABSTRACT

SARS-CoV-2 continues to infect an ever-expanding number of people, resulting in an increase in the number of deaths globally. With the emergence of new variants, there is a corresponding decrease in the currently available vaccine efficacy, highlighting the need for greater insights into the viral epitope profile for both vaccine design and assessment. In this study, three immunodominant linear B cell epitopes in the SARS-CoV-2 spike receptor-binding domain (RBD) were identified by immunoinformatics prediction, and confirmed by ELISA with sera from Macaca fascicularis vaccinated with a SARS-CoV-2 RBD subunit vaccine. Further immunoinformatics analyses of these three epitopes gave rise to a method of linear B cell epitope prediction and selection. B cell epitopes in the spike (S), membrane (M), and envelope (E) proteins were subsequently predicted and confirmed using convalescent sera from COVID-19 infected patients. Immunodominant epitopes were identified in three regions of the S2 domain, one region at the S1/S2 cleavage site and one region at the C-terminus of the M protein. Epitope mapping revealed that most of the amino acid changes found in variants of concern are located within B cell epitopes in the NTD, RBD, and S1/S2 cleavage site. This work provides insights into B cell epitopes of SARS-CoV-2 as well as immunoinformatics methods for B cell epitope prediction, which will improve and enhance SARS-CoV-2 vaccine development against emergent variants.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/immunology , Epitopes, B-Lymphocyte/immunology , Immunodominant Epitopes/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/immunology , Viral Matrix Proteins/immunology , Animals , COVID-19/prevention & control , COVID-19 Vaccines/chemistry , COVID-19 Vaccines/immunology , Computational Biology , Coronavirus Envelope Proteins/chemistry , Coronavirus Envelope Proteins/immunology , Epitopes, B-Lymphocyte/chemistry , Humans , Immunoassay , Immunodominant Epitopes/chemistry , Macaca , Models, Molecular , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/chemistry , Viral Matrix Proteins/chemistry
5.
Cell Rep ; 37(4): 109881, 2021 10 26.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1458602

ABSTRACT

The severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) pandemic has necessitated the rapid development of antibody-based therapies and vaccines as countermeasures. Here, we use cryoelectron microscopy (cryo-EM) to characterize two protective anti-SARS-CoV-2 murine monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) in complex with the spike protein, revealing similarities between epitopes targeted by human and murine B cells. The more neutralizing mAb, 2B04, binds the receptor-binding motif (RBM) of the receptor-binding domain (RBD) and competes with angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2). By contrast, 2H04 binds adjacent to the RBM and does not compete for ACE2 binding. Naturally occurring sequence variants of SARS-CoV-2 and corresponding neutralization escape variants selected in vitro map to our structurally defined epitopes, suggesting that SARS-CoV-2 might evade therapeutic antibodies with a limited set of mutations, underscoring the importance of combination mAb therapeutics. Finally, we show that 2B04 neutralizes SARS-CoV-2 infection by preventing ACE2 engagement, whereas 2H04 reduces host cell attachment without directly disrupting ACE2-RBM interactions, providing distinct inhibitory mechanisms used by RBD-specific mAbs.


Subject(s)
Antibodies, Neutralizing/immunology , Antibodies, Viral/immunology , COVID-19/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/immunology , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/metabolism , Animals , Antibodies, Monoclonal/chemistry , Antibodies, Monoclonal/immunology , Antibodies, Neutralizing/chemistry , Antibodies, Viral/chemistry , Cryoelectron Microscopy , Epitopes, B-Lymphocyte/chemistry , Epitopes, B-Lymphocyte/immunology , Humans , Mice , Protein Interaction Domains and Motifs/immunology , Protein Structure, Quaternary , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/chemistry
6.
Biomed Res Int ; 2021: 7251119, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1455778

ABSTRACT

Background: B.1.617.1, a variant of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2) causing respiratory illness is responsible for the second wave of COVID-19 and associated with a high incidence of infectivity and mortality. To mitigate the B.1.617.1 variant of SARS-CoV-2, deciphering the protein structure and immunological responses by employing bioinformatics tools for data mining and analysis is pivotal. Objectives: Here, an in silico approach was employed for deciphering the structure and immune function of the subunit of spike (S) protein of SARS-CoV-2 B.1.617.1 variant. Methods: The partial amino acid sequence of SARS-CoV-2 B.1.617.1 variant S protein was analyzed, and its putative secondary and tertiary structure was predicted. Immunogenic analyses including B- and T-cell epitopes, interferon-gamma (IFN-γ) response, chemokine, and protective antigens for SARS-CoV 2 S proteins were predicted using appropriate tools. Results: B.1.617.1 variant S protein sequence was found to be highly stable and amphipathic. ABCpred and CTLpred analyses led to the identification of two potential antigenic B cell and T cell epitopes with starting amino acid positions at 60 and 82 (for B cell epitopes) and 54 and 98 (for T cell epitopes) having prediction scores > 0.8. Further, RAMPAGE tool was used for determining the allowed and disallowed regions of the three-dimensional predicted structure of SARS-CoV-2 B.1.617.1 variant S protein. Conclusion: Together, the in silico analysis revealed the predicted structure of partial S protein, immunogenic properties, and possible regions for S protein of SARS-CoV-2 and provides a valuable prelude for engineering the targeted vaccine or drug against B.1.617.1 variant of SARS-CoV-2.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Vaccines/immunology , COVID-19/virology , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/immunology , Algorithms , Amino Acid Sequence , COVID-19/immunology , COVID-19/metabolism , Computational Biology/methods , Epitopes, B-Lymphocyte/immunology , Epitopes, T-Lymphocyte/immunology , Humans , Immunogenicity, Vaccine , Protein Binding , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/metabolism , Structure-Activity Relationship , Viral Vaccines/immunology
7.
Virus Res ; 305: 198579, 2021 11.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1433887

ABSTRACT

The SARS-CoV2 mediated Covid-19 pandemic has impacted humankind at an unprecedented scale. While substantial research efforts have focused towards understanding the mechanisms of viral infection and developing vaccines/ therapeutics, factors affecting the susceptibility to SARS-CoV2 infection and manifestation of Covid-19 remain less explored. Given that the Human Leukocyte Antigen (HLA) system is known to vary among ethnic populations, it is likely to affect the recognition of the virus, and in turn, the susceptibility to Covid-19. To understand this, we used bioinformatic tools to probe all SARS-CoV2 peptides which could elicit T-cell response in humans. We also tried to answer the intriguing question of whether these potential epitopes were equally immunogenic across ethnicities, by studying the distribution of HLA alleles among different populations and their share of cognate epitopes. Results indicate that the immune recognition potential of SARS-CoV2 epitopes tend to vary between different ethnic groups. While the South Asians are likely to recognize higher number of CD8-specific epitopes, Europeans are likely to identify higher number of CD4-specific epitopes. We also hypothesize and provide clues that the newer mutations in SARS-CoV2 are unlikely to alter the T-cell mediated immunogenic responses among the studied ethnic populations. The work presented herein is expected to bolster our understanding of the pandemic, by providing insights into differential immunological response of ethnic populations to the virus as well as by gaging the possible effects of mutations in SARS-CoV2 on efficacy of potential epitope-based vaccines through evaluating ∼40,000 viral genomes.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/immunology , Epitopes, B-Lymphocyte/immunology , Epitopes, T-Lymphocyte/immunology , Genome, Viral , HLA Antigens/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Africa/epidemiology , Alleles , Amino Acid Sequence , Asia/epidemiology , CD4-Positive T-Lymphocytes/immunology , CD4-Positive T-Lymphocytes/virology , CD8-Positive T-Lymphocytes/immunology , CD8-Positive T-Lymphocytes/virology , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/genetics , COVID-19/pathology , Computational Biology/methods , Disease Susceptibility , Epitopes, B-Lymphocyte/classification , Epitopes, B-Lymphocyte/genetics , Epitopes, T-Lymphocyte/classification , Epitopes, T-Lymphocyte/genetics , Europe/epidemiology , HLA Antigens/classification , HLA Antigens/genetics , Humans , Middle East/epidemiology , Oceania/epidemiology , Principal Component Analysis , RNA, Viral/genetics , RNA, Viral/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity
8.
Immunogenetics ; 73(6): 459-477, 2021 12.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1427234

ABSTRACT

Since 2019, the world was involved with SARS-CoV-2 and consequently, with the announcement by the World Health Organization that COVID-19 was a pandemic, scientific were an effort to obtain the best approach to combat this global dilemma. The best way to prevent the pandemic from spreading further is to use a vaccine against COVID-19. Here, we report the design of a recombinant multi-epitope vaccine against the four proteins spike or crown (S), membrane (M), nucleocapsid (N), and envelope (E) of SARS-CoV-2 using immunoinformatics tools. We evaluated the most antigenic epitopes that bind to HLA class 1 subtypes, along with HLA class 2, as well as B cell epitopes. Beta-defensin 3 and PADRE sequence were used as adjuvants in the structure of the vaccine. KK, GPGPG, and AAY linkers were used to fuse the selected epitopes. The nucleotide sequence was cloned into pET26b(+) vector using restriction enzymes XhoI and NdeI, and HisTag sequence was considered in the C-terminal of the construct. The results showed that the proposed candidate vaccine is a 70.87 kDa protein with high antigenicity and immunogenicity as well as non-allergenic and non-toxic. A total of 95% of the selected epitopes have conservancy with similar sequences. Molecular docking showed a strong binding between the vaccine structure and tool-like receptor (TLR) 7/8. The docking, molecular dynamics, and MM/PBSA analysis showed that the vaccine established a stable interaction with both structures of TLR7 and TLR8. Simulation of immune stimulation by this vaccine showed that it evokes immune responses related to humoral and cellular immunity.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Vaccines/immunology , Epitopes, B-Lymphocyte/immunology , Epitopes, T-Lymphocyte/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Amino Acid Sequence , Base Sequence , COVID-19/prevention & control , COVID-19 Vaccines/genetics , COVID-19 Vaccines/metabolism , Computational Biology , Epitopes, B-Lymphocyte/chemistry , Epitopes, B-Lymphocyte/genetics , Epitopes, T-Lymphocyte/chemistry , Epitopes, T-Lymphocyte/genetics , HLA Antigens/immunology , Humans , Immunogenicity, Vaccine , Molecular Docking Simulation , Molecular Dynamics Simulation , Molecular Weight , Recombinant Fusion Proteins/chemistry , Recombinant Fusion Proteins/genetics , Recombinant Fusion Proteins/immunology , Toll-Like Receptor 7/chemistry , Toll-Like Receptor 8/chemistry , Vaccines, Subunit/genetics , Vaccines, Subunit/immunology , Vaccines, Subunit/metabolism , Vaccinology , Viral Proteins/chemistry , Viral Proteins/genetics , Viral Proteins/immunology
9.
Front Immunol ; 12: 692937, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1403473

ABSTRACT

Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) kills thousands of people worldwide every day, thus necessitating rapid development of countermeasures. Immunoinformatics analyses carried out here in search of immunodominant regions in recently identified SARS-CoV-2 unannotated open reading frames (uORFs) have identified eight linear B-cell, one conformational B-cell, 10 CD4+ T-cell, and 12 CD8+ T-cell promising epitopes. Among them, ORF9b B-cell and T-cell epitopes are the most promising followed by M.ext and ORF3c epitopes. ORF9b40-48 (CD8+ T-cell epitope) is found to be highly immunogenic and antigenic with the highest allele coverage. Furthermore, it has overlap with four potent CD4+ T-cell epitopes. Structure-based B-cell epitope prediction has identified ORF9b61-68 to be immunodominant, which partially overlaps with one of the linear B-cell epitopes (ORF9b65-69). ORF3c CD4+ T-cell epitopes (ORF3c2-16, ORF3c3-17, and ORF3c4-18) and linear B-cell epitope (ORF3c14-22) have also been identified as the candidate epitopes. Similarly, M.ext and 7a.iORF1 (overlap with M and ORF7a) proteins have promising immunogenic regions. By considering the level of antigen expression, four ORF9b and five M.ext epitopes are finally shortlisted as potent epitopes. Mutation analysis has further revealed that the shortlisted potent uORF epitopes are resistant to recurrent mutations. Additionally, four N-protein (expressed by canonical ORF) epitopes are found to be potent. Thus, SARS-CoV-2 uORF B-cell and T-cell epitopes identified here along with canonical ORF epitopes may aid in the design of a promising epitope-based polyvalent vaccine (when connected through appropriate linkers) against SARS-CoV-2. Such a vaccine can act as a bulwark against SARS-CoV-2, especially in the scenario of emergence of variants with recurring mutations in the spike protein.


Subject(s)
Antigens, Viral/immunology , COVID-19 Vaccines/immunology , COVID-19/prevention & control , Coronavirus Nucleocapsid Proteins/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Amino Acid Sequence/genetics , Antigens, Viral/genetics , COVID-19/immunology , COVID-19/virology , COVID-19 Vaccines/genetics , COVID-19 Vaccines/therapeutic use , Computational Biology , Coronavirus Nucleocapsid Proteins/genetics , Drug Design , Epitope Mapping , Epitopes, B-Lymphocyte/genetics , Epitopes, B-Lymphocyte/immunology , Epitopes, T-Lymphocyte/genetics , Epitopes, T-Lymphocyte/immunology , Humans , Open Reading Frames/genetics , Open Reading Frames/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Sequence Analysis, Protein , Vaccines, Combined/genetics , Vaccines, Combined/immunology
10.
Sci Rep ; 11(1): 17626, 2021 09 02.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1392887

ABSTRACT

Antigen identification is an important step in the vaccine development process. Computational approaches including deep learning systems can play an important role in the identification of vaccine targets using genomic and proteomic information. Here, we present a new computational system to discover and analyse novel vaccine targets leading to the design of a multi-epitope subunit vaccine candidate. The system incorporates reverse vaccinology and immuno-informatics tools to screen genomic and proteomic datasets of several pathogens such as Trypanosoma cruzi, Plasmodium falciparum, and Vibrio cholerae to identify potential vaccine candidates (PVC). Further, as a case study, we performed a detailed analysis of the genomic and proteomic dataset of T. cruzi (CL Brenner and Y strain) to shortlist eight proteins as possible vaccine antigen candidates using properties such as secretory/surface-exposed nature, low transmembrane helix (< 2), essentiality, virulence, antigenic, and non-homology with host/gut flora proteins. Subsequently, highly antigenic and immunogenic MHC class I, MHC class II and B cell epitopes were extracted from top-ranking vaccine targets. The designed vaccine construct containing 24 epitopes, 3 adjuvants, and 4 linkers was analysed for its physicochemical properties using different tools, including docking analysis. Immunological simulation studies suggested significant levels of T-helper, T-cytotoxic cells, and IgG1 will be elicited upon administration of such a putative multi-epitope vaccine construct. The vaccine construct is predicted to be soluble, stable, non-allergenic, non-toxic, and to offer cross-protection against related Trypanosoma species and strains. Further, studies are required to validate safety and immunogenicity of the vaccine.


Subject(s)
Computational Biology/methods , Vaccines/immunology , Vaccinology/methods , Bacterial Vaccines/immunology , Chagas Disease/immunology , Chagas Disease/prevention & control , Cholera/immunology , Cholera/prevention & control , Epitopes, B-Lymphocyte/immunology , Epitopes, T-Lymphocyte/immunology , Humans , Malaria, Falciparum/immunology , Malaria, Falciparum/prevention & control , Plasmodium falciparum/immunology , Protozoan Vaccines/immunology , Trypanosoma cruzi/immunology , Vibrio cholerae/immunology
11.
Infect Genet Evol ; 89: 104729, 2021 04.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1386287

ABSTRACT

In recent years, a total of seven human pathogenic coronaviruses (HCoVs) strains were identified, i.e., SARS-CoV, SARS-CoV-2, MERS-CoV, HCoV-OC43, HCoV-229E, HCoV-NL63, and HCoV-HKU1. Here, we performed an analysis of the protease recognition sites and antigenic variation of the S-protein of these HCoVs. We showed tissue-specific expression pattern, functions, and a number of recognition sites of proteases in S-proteins from seven strains of HCoVs. In the case of SARS-CoV-2, we found two new protease recognition sites, each of calpain-2, pepsin-A, and caspase-8, and one new protease recognition site each of caspase-6, caspase-3, and furin. Our antigenic mapping study of the S-protein of these HCoVs showed that the SARS-CoV-2 virus strain has the most potent antigenic epitopes (highest antigenicity score with maximum numbers of epitope regions). Additionally, the other six strains of HCoVs show common antigenic epitopes (both B-cell and T-cell), with low antigenicity scores compared to SARS-CoV-2. We suggest that the molecular evolution of structural proteins of human CoV can be classified, such as (i) HCoV-NL63 and HCoV-229E, (ii) SARS-CoV-2, and SARS-CoV and (iii) HCoV-OC43 and HCoV-HKU1. In conclusion, we can presume that our study might help to prepare the interventions for the possible HCoVs outbreaks in the future.


Subject(s)
Coronavirus/metabolism , Peptide Hydrolases/metabolism , Phylogeny , SARS-CoV-2/metabolism , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/metabolism , Antigenic Variation , Binding Sites , Coronavirus/classification , Coronavirus/immunology , Epitopes, B-Lymphocyte/immunology , Epitopes, T-Lymphocyte/immunology , Humans , SARS-CoV-2/classification , SARS-CoV-2/immunology
12.
Sci Adv ; 6(28): eabb8097, 2020 07.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1388430

ABSTRACT

The prevalence of respiratory illness caused by the novel SARS-CoV-2 virus associated with multiple organ failures is spreading rapidly because of its contagious human-to-human transmission and inadequate globalhealth care systems. Pharmaceutical repurposing, an effective drug development technique using existing drugs, could shorten development time and reduce costs compared to those of de novo drug discovery. We carried out virtual screening of antiviral compounds targeting the spike glycoprotein (S), main protease (Mpro), and the SARS-CoV-2 receptor binding domain (RBD)-angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2) complex of SARS-CoV-2. PC786, an antiviral polymerase inhibitor, showed enhanced binding affinity to all the targets. Furthermore, the postfusion conformation of the trimeric S protein RBD with ACE2 revealed conformational changes associated with PC786 drug binding. Exploiting immunoinformatics to identify T cell and B cell epitopes could guide future experimental studies with a higher probability of discovering appropriate vaccine candidates with fewer experiments and higher reliability.


Subject(s)
Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , Betacoronavirus/immunology , Coronavirus Infections/prevention & control , Cysteine Endopeptidases/chemistry , Drug Design , Pandemics/prevention & control , Peptidyl-Dipeptidase A/chemistry , Pneumonia, Viral/prevention & control , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/chemistry , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/chemistry , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2 , Benzamides , Benzazepines , Betacoronavirus/drug effects , Betacoronavirus/metabolism , Binding Sites , COVID-19 , Coronavirus 3C Proteases , Coronavirus Infections/immunology , Coronavirus Infections/virology , Cysteine Endopeptidases/immunology , Cysteine Endopeptidases/metabolism , Drug Evaluation, Preclinical , Epitopes, B-Lymphocyte/drug effects , Epitopes, B-Lymphocyte/immunology , Epitopes, T-Lymphocyte/drug effects , Epitopes, T-Lymphocyte/immunology , Humans , Molecular Docking Simulation , Peptidyl-Dipeptidase A/immunology , Peptidyl-Dipeptidase A/metabolism , Pneumonia, Viral/immunology , Pneumonia, Viral/virology , Protein Binding , Protein Conformation , Protein Domains , Protein Interaction Domains and Motifs , SARS-CoV-2 , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/immunology , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/metabolism , Spiro Compounds/pharmacology , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/immunology , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/metabolism
13.
Front Immunol ; 12: 705772, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1376700

ABSTRACT

Autoimmune diseases (ADs) could occur due to infectious diseases and vaccination programs. Since millions of people are expected to be infected with SARS-CoV-2 and vaccinated against it, autoimmune consequences seem inevitable. Therefore, we have investigated the whole proteome of the SARS-CoV-2 for its ability to trigger ADs. In this regard, the entire proteome of the SARS-CoV-2 was chopped into more than 48000 peptides. The produced peptides were searched against the entire human proteome to find shared peptides with similar experimentally confirmed T-cell and B-cell epitopes. The obtained peptides were checked for their ability to bind to HLA molecules. The possible population coverage was calculated for the most potent peptides. The obtained results indicated that the SARS-CoV-2 and human proteomes share 23 peptides originated from ORF1ab polyprotein, nonstructural protein NS7a, Surface glycoprotein, and Envelope protein of SARS-CoV-2. Among these peptides, 21 peptides had experimentally confirmed equivalent epitopes. Amongst, only nine peptides were predicted to bind to HLAs with known global allele frequency data, and three peptides were able to bind to experimentally confirmed HLAs of equivalent epitopes. Given the HLAs which have already been reported to be associated with ADs, the ESGLKTIL, RYPANSIV, NVAITRAK, and RRARSVAS were determined to be the most harmful peptides of the SARS-CoV-2 proteome. It would be expected that the COVID-19 pandemic and the vaccination against this pathogen could significantly increase the ADs incidences, especially in populations harboring HLA-B*08:01, HLA-A*024:02, HLA-A*11:01 and HLA-B*27:05. The Southeast Asia, East Asia, and Oceania are at higher risk of AD development.


Subject(s)
Autoimmunity , COVID-19 Vaccines/immunology , COVID-19/immunology , Proteome/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Viral Proteins/immunology , Autoimmune Diseases/etiology , Autoimmune Diseases/immunology , COVID-19/complications , COVID-19 Vaccines/adverse effects , Computer Simulation , Epitopes, B-Lymphocyte/immunology , HLA Antigens/immunology , Humans , Peptide Fragments/immunology , Peptide Library
14.
Nature ; 596(7873): 565-569, 2021 08.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1356565

ABSTRACT

Vaccine-induced immune thrombotic thrombocytopaenia (VITT) is a rare adverse effect of COVID-19 adenoviral vector vaccines1-3. VITT resembles heparin-induced thrombocytopaenia (HIT) in that it is associated with platelet-activating antibodies against platelet factor 4 (PF4)4; however, patients with VITT develop thrombocytopaenia and thrombosis without exposure to heparin. Here we sought to determine the binding site on PF4 of antibodies from patients with VITT. Using alanine-scanning mutagenesis5, we found that the binding of anti-PF4 antibodies from patients with VITT (n = 5) was restricted to eight surface amino acids on PF4, all of which were located within the heparin-binding site, and that the binding was inhibited by heparin. By contrast, antibodies from patients with HIT (n = 10) bound to amino acids that corresponded to two different sites on PF4. Biolayer interferometry experiments also revealed that VITT anti-PF4 antibodies had a stronger binding response to PF4 and PF4-heparin complexes than did HIT anti-PF4 antibodies, albeit with similar dissociation rates. Our data indicate that VITT antibodies can mimic the effect of heparin by binding to a similar site on PF4; this allows PF4 tetramers to cluster and form immune complexes, which in turn causes Fcγ receptor IIa (FcγRIIa; also known as CD32a)-dependent platelet activation. These results provide an explanation for VITT-antibody-induced platelet activation that could contribute to thrombosis.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Vaccines/adverse effects , COVID-19 Vaccines/immunology , Epitopes, B-Lymphocyte/immunology , Thrombocytopenia/chemically induced , Thrombocytopenia/immunology , Thrombosis/chemically induced , Thrombosis/immunology , Adult , Aged , Amino Acid Sequence , Antibodies/immunology , Binding Sites, Antibody , Female , Heparin/chemistry , Heparin/immunology , Heparin/metabolism , Humans , Kinetics , Male , Middle Aged , Models, Molecular , Platelet Activation , Platelet Factor 4/immunology , Receptors, IgG/immunology
15.
Brief Bioinform ; 22(2): 1309-1323, 2021 03 22.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1352112

ABSTRACT

The recurrent and recent global outbreak of the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2) has turned into a global concern which has infected more than 42 million people all over the globe, and this number is increasing in hours. Unfortunately, no vaccine or specific treatment is available, which makes it more deadly. A vaccine-informatics approach has shown significant breakthrough in peptide-based epitope mapping and opens the new horizon in vaccine development. In this study, we have identified a total of 15 antigenic peptides [including thymus cells (T-cells) and bone marrow or bursa-derived cells] in the surface glycoprotein (SG) of SARS-CoV-2 which is nontoxic and nonallergenic in nature, nonallergenic, highly antigenic and non-mutated in other SARS-CoV-2 virus strains. The population coverage analysis has found that cluster of differentiation 4 (CD4+) T-cell peptides showed higher cumulative population coverage over cluster of differentiation 8 (CD8+) peptides in the 16 different geographical regions of the world. We identified 12 peptides ((LTDEMIAQY, WTAGAAAYY, WMESEFRVY, IRASANLAA, FGAISSVLN, VKQLSSNFG, FAMQMAYRF, FGAGAALQI, YGFQPTNGVGYQ, LPDPSKPSKR, QTQTNSPRRARS and VITPGTNTSN) that are $80\hbox{--} 90\%$ identical with experimentally determined epitopes of SARS-CoV, and this will likely be beneficial for a quick progression of the vaccine design. Moreover, docking analysis suggested that the identified peptides are tightly bound in the groove of human leukocyte antigen molecules which can induce the T-cell response. Overall, this study allows us to determine potent peptide antigen targets in the SG on intuitive grounds, which opens up a new horizon in the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) research. However, this study needs experimental validation by in vitro and in vivo.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/prevention & control , Epitopes, B-Lymphocyte/immunology , Epitopes, T-Lymphocyte/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Vaccines, Subunit/immunology , Amino Acid Sequence , COVID-19/immunology , Computational Biology , Epitopes, B-Lymphocyte/chemistry , Epitopes, T-Lymphocyte/chemistry , HLA Antigens/chemistry , Humans , Molecular Docking Simulation , Vaccines, Subunit/chemistry
16.
Sci Rep ; 11(1): 15431, 2021 07 29.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1332853

ABSTRACT

Currently, no approved vaccine is available against the Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV), which causes severe respiratory disease. The spike glycoprotein is typically considered a suitable target for MERS-CoV vaccine candidates. A computational strategy can be used to design an antigenic vaccine against a pathogen. Therefore, we used immunoinformatics and computational approaches to design a multi-epitope vaccine that targets the spike glycoprotein of MERS-CoV. After using numerous immunoinformatics tools and applying several immune filters, a poly-epitope vaccine was constructed comprising cytotoxic T-cell lymphocyte (CTL)-, helper T-cell lymphocyte (HTL)-, and interferon-gamma (IFN-γ)-inducing epitopes. In addition, various physicochemical, allergenic, and antigenic profiles were evaluated to confirm the immunogenicity and safety of the vaccine. Molecular interactions, binding affinities, and the thermodynamic stability of the vaccine were examined through molecular docking and dynamic simulation approaches, during which we identified a stable and strong interaction with Toll-like receptors (TLRs). In silico immune simulations were performed to assess the immune-response triggering capabilities of the vaccine. This computational analysis suggested that the proposed vaccine candidate would be structurally stable and capable of generating an effective immune response to combat viral infections; however, experimental evaluations remain necessary to verify the exact safety and immunogenicity profile of this vaccine.


Subject(s)
Epitopes/immunology , Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus/immunology , Vaccines/immunology , Computational Biology , Coronavirus Infections/immunology , Coronavirus Infections/prevention & control , Epitopes, B-Lymphocyte/genetics , Epitopes, B-Lymphocyte/immunology , Epitopes, T-Lymphocyte/genetics , Epitopes, T-Lymphocyte/immunology , Humans , Immunogenicity, Vaccine/immunology , Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus/genetics , Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus/pathogenicity , Models, Molecular , Molecular Docking Simulation , Phylogeny , Protein Binding , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/immunology , T-Lymphocytes, Cytotoxic/immunology , T-Lymphocytes, Helper-Inducer/immunology , Vaccines/pharmacology , Vaccines, DNA , Vaccines, Subunit/immunology , Viral Vaccines/immunology
17.
Nature ; 597(7874): 97-102, 2021 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1309448

ABSTRACT

An ideal therapeutic anti-SARS-CoV-2 antibody would resist viral escape1-3, have activity against diverse sarbecoviruses4-7, and be highly protective through viral neutralization8-11 and effector functions12,13. Understanding how these properties relate to each other and vary across epitopes would aid the development of therapeutic antibodies and guide vaccine design. Here we comprehensively characterize escape, breadth and potency across a panel of SARS-CoV-2 antibodies targeting the receptor-binding domain (RBD). Despite a trade-off between in vitro neutralization potency and breadth of sarbecovirus binding, we identify neutralizing antibodies with exceptional sarbecovirus breadth and a corresponding resistance to SARS-CoV-2 escape. One of these antibodies, S2H97, binds with high affinity across all sarbecovirus clades to a cryptic epitope and prophylactically protects hamsters from viral challenge. Antibodies that target the angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2) receptor-binding motif (RBM) typically have poor breadth and are readily escaped by mutations despite high neutralization potency. Nevertheless, we also characterize a potent RBM antibody (S2E128) with breadth across sarbecoviruses related to SARS-CoV-2 and a high barrier to viral escape. These data highlight principles underlying variation in escape, breadth and potency among antibodies that target the RBD, and identify epitopes and features to prioritize for therapeutic development against the current and potential future pandemics.


Subject(s)
Broadly Neutralizing Antibodies/immunology , COVID-19/virology , Cross Reactions/immunology , Immune Evasion , SARS-CoV-2/classification , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/chemistry , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/immunology , Adult , Aged , Animals , Antibodies, Monoclonal/chemistry , Antibodies, Monoclonal/immunology , Antibodies, Viral/chemistry , Antibodies, Viral/immunology , Antibody Affinity , Broadly Neutralizing Antibodies/chemistry , COVID-19/drug therapy , COVID-19/immunology , COVID-19 Vaccines/chemistry , COVID-19 Vaccines/immunology , Cell Line , Cricetinae , Epitopes, B-Lymphocyte/chemistry , Epitopes, B-Lymphocyte/genetics , Epitopes, B-Lymphocyte/immunology , Female , Humans , Immune Evasion/genetics , Immune Evasion/immunology , Male , Mesocricetus , Middle Aged , Models, Molecular , SARS-CoV-2/chemistry , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Vaccinology
18.
Int J Mol Sci ; 22(14)2021 Jul 10.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1308361

ABSTRACT

The emergence of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) presents significant social, economic and political challenges worldwide. SARS-CoV-2 has caused over 3.5 million deaths since late 2019. Mutations in the spike (S) glycoprotein are of particular concern because it harbours the domain which recognises the angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2) receptor and is the target for neutralising antibodies. Mutations in the S protein may induce alterations in the surface spike structures, changing the conformational B-cell epitopes and leading to a potential reduction in vaccine efficacy. Here, we summarise how the more important variants of SARS-CoV-2, which include cluster 5, lineages B.1.1.7 (Alpha variant), B.1.351 (Beta), P.1 (B.1.1.28/Gamma), B.1.427/B.1.429 (Epsilon), B.1.526 (Iota) and B.1.617.2 (Delta) confer mutations in their respective spike proteins which enhance viral fitness by improving binding affinity to the ACE2 receptor and lead to an increase in infectivity and transmission. We further discuss how these spike protein mutations provide resistance against immune responses, either acquired naturally or induced by vaccination. This information will be valuable in guiding the development of vaccines and other therapeutics for protection against the ongoing coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/transmission , COVID-19/virology , Immune Evasion , Mutation , SARS-CoV-2/physiology , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/chemistry , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/genetics , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/metabolism , Antibodies, Neutralizing/immunology , COVID-19/genetics , COVID-19/immunology , Epitopes, B-Lymphocyte/immunology , Humans , SARS-CoV-2/chemistry , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/metabolism , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/immunology , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/metabolism
19.
Viruses ; 13(5)2021 04 28.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1302473

ABSTRACT

One of the most effective strategies for eliminating new and emerging infectious diseases is effective immunization. The pandemic caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) warrants the need for a maximum coverage vaccine. Moreover, mutations that arise within the virus have a significant impact on the vaccination strategy. Here, we built a comprehensive in silico workflow pipeline to identify B-cell- and T-cell-stimulating antigens of SARS-CoV-2 viral proteins. Our in silico reverse vaccinology (RV) approach consisted of two parts: (1) analysis of the selected viral proteins based on annotated cellular location, antigenicity, allele coverage, epitope density, and mutation density and (2) analysis of the various aspects of the epitopes, including antigenicity, allele coverage, IFN-γ induction, toxicity, host homology, and site mutational density. After performing a mutation analysis based on the contemporary mutational amino acid substitutions observed in the viral variants, 13 potential epitopes were selected as subunit vaccine candidates. Despite mutational amino acid substitutions, most epitope sequences were predicted to retain immunogenicity without toxicity and host homology. Our RV approach using an in silico pipeline may potentially reduce the time required for effective vaccine development and can be applicable for vaccine development for other pathogenic diseases as well.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Vaccines/immunology , COVID-19/virology , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Antigens, Viral/chemistry , Antigens, Viral/immunology , Epitopes, B-Lymphocyte/immunology , Epitopes, T-Lymphocyte/immunology , Humans , Immunogenicity, Vaccine , Molecular Docking Simulation , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/immunology , Vaccines, Subunit/immunology , Vaccinology/methods , Viral Proteins/genetics , Viral Proteins/immunology
20.
Front Immunol ; 12: 659071, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1302109

ABSTRACT

SARS-CoV-2 is a newly emerged betacoronavirus and the causative agent for the COVID-19 pandemic. Antibodies recognizing the viral spike protein are instrumental in natural and vaccine-induced immune responses to the pathogen and in clinical diagnostic and therapeutic applications. Unlike conventional immunoglobulins, the variable lymphocyte receptor antibodies of jawless vertebrates are structurally distinct, indicating that they may recognize different epitopes. Here we report the isolation of monoclonal variable lymphocyte receptor antibodies from immunized sea lamprey larvae that recognize the spike protein of SARS-CoV-2 but not of other coronaviruses. We further demonstrate that these monoclonal variable lymphocyte receptor antibodies can efficiently neutralize the virus and form the basis of a rapid, single step SARS-CoV-2 detection system. This study provides evidence for monoclonal variable lymphocyte receptor antibodies as unique biomedical research and potential clinical diagnostic reagents targeting SARS-CoV-2.


Subject(s)
Antibodies, Monoclonal/immunology , Antibodies, Neutralizing/immunology , Antibodies, Viral/immunology , COVID-19/immunology , Fish Proteins/immunology , Petromyzon/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/physiology , Animals , Antibodies, Monoclonal/genetics , Antibodies, Neutralizing/genetics , Antibodies, Viral/genetics , Biological Evolution , Cross Reactions , Epitopes, B-Lymphocyte/immunology , Fish Proteins/genetics , Humans
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