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1.
Int J Mol Sci ; 23(17)2022 Aug 28.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2227368

ABSTRACT

Since the first COVID-19 reports back in December of 2019, this viral infection caused by SARS-CoV-2 has claimed millions of lives. To control the COVID-19 pandemic, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and/or European Agency of Medicines (EMA) have granted Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) to nine therapeutic antibodies. Nonetheless, the natural evolution of SARS-CoV-2 has generated numerous variants of concern (VOCs) that have challenged the efficacy of the EUA antibodies. Here, we review the most relevant characteristics of these therapeutic antibodies, including timeline of approval, neutralization profile against the VOCs, selection methods of their variable regions, somatic mutations, HCDR3 and LCDR3 features, isotype, Fc modifications used in the therapeutic format, and epitope recognized on the receptor-binding domain (RBD) of SARS-CoV-2. One of the conclusions of the review is that the EUA therapeutic antibodies that still retain efficacy against new VOCs bind an epitope formed by conserved residues that seem to be evolutionarily conserved as thus, critical for the RBD:hACE-2 interaction. The information reviewed here should help to design new and more efficacious antibodies to prevent and/or treat COVID-19, as well as other infectious diseases.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Drug Treatment , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus , Antibodies, Neutralizing/therapeutic use , Antibodies, Viral/therapeutic use , Epitopes , Humans , Membrane Glycoproteins/metabolism , Neutralization Tests , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2 , United States , Viral Envelope Proteins/genetics
2.
Int J Mol Sci ; 23(24)2022 Dec 07.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2155129

ABSTRACT

Since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, considerable efforts have been made to develop protective vaccines against SARS-CoV-2 infection. However, immunity tends to decline within a few months, and new virus variants are emerging with increased transmissibility and capacity to evade natural or vaccine-acquired immunity. Therefore, new robust strategies are needed to combat SARS-CoV-2 infection. The viral spike composed of S1 and S2 subunits mediates viral attachment and membrane fusion to infect the host cell. In this process, interaction between the highly conserved heptad repeat 1 and 2 regions (HR1 and HR2) of S2 is crucial and for this reason; these regions are promising targets to fight SARS-CoV-2. Here, we describe the design and characterization of chimeric proteins that structurally imitate the S2 HR1 region in a trimeric coiled-coil conformation. We biophysically characterized the proteins and determined their capacity to bind the HR2 region, as well as their inhibitory activity of SARS-CoV-2 infection in vitro. HR1 mimetic proteins showed conformational heterogeneity and a propensity to form oligomers. Moreover, their structure is composed of subdomains with varied stability. Interestingly, the full HR1 proteins showed high affinity for HR2-derived peptides and SARS-CoV-2 inhibitory activity, whereas smaller proteins mimicking HR1 subdomains had a decreased affinity for their complementary HR2 region and did not inhibit the virus. The results provide insight into effective strategies to create mimetic proteins with broad inhibitory activity and therapeutic potential against SARS-CoV-2.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Humans , SARS-CoV-2/metabolism , Viral Envelope Proteins/chemistry , Membrane Glycoproteins/metabolism , Amino Acid Sequence , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/metabolism , Pandemics , COVID-19 Vaccines , Recombinant Fusion Proteins
3.
Front Immunol ; 13: 981693, 2022.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2142011

ABSTRACT

Objectives: Emergence of new variants of SARS-CoV-2 might affect vaccine efficacy. Therefore, assessing the capacity of sera to neutralize variants of concern (VOCs) in BSL-2 conditions will help evaluating the immune status of population following vaccination or infection. Methods: Pseudotyped viruses bearing SARS-CoV-2 spike protein from Wuhan-Hu-1/D614G strains (wild type, WT), B.1.617.2 (Delta), or B.1.1.529 (Omicron) VOCs were generated to assess the neutralizing antibodies (nAbs) activity by a pseudovirus-based neutralization assay (PVNA). PVNA performance was assessed in comparison to the micro-neutralization test (MNT) based on live viruses. Sera collected from COVID-19 convalescents and vaccinees receiving mRNA (BNT16b2 or mRNA-1273) or viral vector (AZD1222 or Ad26.COV2.S) vaccines were used to measure nAbs elicited by two-dose BNT16b2, mRNA-1273, AZD1222 or one-dose Ad26.CO2.S, at different times from completed vaccination, ~ 1.5 month and ~ 4-6 months. Sera from pre-pandemic and unvaccinated individuals were analyzed as controls. Neutralizing activity following booster vaccinations against VOCs was also determined. Results: PVNA titers correlated with the gold standard MNT assay, validating the reliability of PVNA. Sera analyzed late from the second dose showed a reduced neutralization activity compared to sera collected earlier. Ad26.CO2.S vaccination led to very low or absent nAbs. Neutralization of Delta and Omicron BA.1 VOCs showed significant reduction of nAbs respect to WT strain. Importantly, booster doses enhanced Omicron BA.1 nAbs, with persistent levels at 3 months from boosting. Conclusions: PVNA is a reliable tool for assessing anti-SARS-CoV-2 nAbs helping the establishment of a correlate of protection and the management of vaccination strategies.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , RNA Viruses , Ad26COVS1 , Antibodies, Neutralizing , COVID-19/prevention & control , Carbon Dioxide , ChAdOx1 nCoV-19 , Humans , Membrane Glycoproteins/metabolism , RNA, Messenger , Reproducibility of Results , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus , Viral Envelope Proteins
4.
Int J Mol Sci ; 23(22)2022 Nov 14.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2115955

ABSTRACT

Recently, a recombinant SARS-CoV-2 lineage, XD, emerged that harbors a spike gene that is largely derived from the Omicron variant BA.1 in the genetic background of the Delta variant. This finding raised concerns that the recombinant virus might exhibit altered biological properties as compared to the parental viruses and might pose an elevated threat to human health. Here, using pseudotyped particles, we show that ACE2 binding and cell tropism of XD mimics that of BA.1. Further, XD and BA.1 displayed comparable sensitivity to neutralization by antibodies induced upon vaccination with BNT162b2/Comirnaty (BNT) or BNT vaccination followed by breakthrough infection. Our findings reveal important biological commonalities between XD and Omicron BA.1 host cell entry and its inhibition by antibodies.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus , Humans , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Viral Envelope Proteins/genetics , BNT162 Vaccine , Membrane Glycoproteins/metabolism
5.
Front Immunol ; 13: 960094, 2022.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2119706

ABSTRACT

The pandemic of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) has posed serious threats to global health and economy and calls for the development of safe treatments and effective vaccines. The receptor-binding domain in the spike protein (SRBD) of SARS-CoV-2 is responsible for its binding to angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2) receptor. It contains multiple dominant neutralizing epitopes and serves as an important antigen for the development of COVID-19 vaccines. Here, we showed that dimeric SRBD-Fc and tetrameric 2xSRBD-Fc fusion proteins bind ACE2 with different affinity and block SARS-CoV-2 pseudoviral infection. Immunization of mice with SRBD-Fc fusion proteins elicited high titer of RBD-specific antibodies with robust neutralizing activity against pseudoviral infections. As such, our study indicates that the polymeric SRBD-Fc fusion protein can serve as a treatment agent as well as a vaccine for fighting COVID-19.


Subject(s)
Antibodies, Neutralizing , COVID-19 , Humans , Mice , Animals , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2 , SARS-CoV-2 , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus , Viral Envelope Proteins , COVID-19 Vaccines , Membrane Glycoproteins/metabolism
6.
J Neuroinflammation ; 19(1): 267, 2022 Nov 04.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2108803

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Triggering receptor expressed on myeloid cells 2 (Trem2) plays a protective role in neurodegenerative diseases. By contrast, Trem2 functions can exacerbate tissue damage during respiratory viral or liver infections. We, therefore, investigated the role of Trem2 in a viral encephalomyelitis model associated with prominent Th1 mediated antiviral immunity leading to demyelination. METHODS: Wild-type (WT) and Trem2 deficient (Trem2-/-) mice were infected with a sublethal glia tropic murine coronavirus (MHV-JHM) intracranially. Disease progression and survival were monitored daily. Leukocyte accumulation and pathological features including demyelination and axonal damage in spinal cords (SC) were determined by flow cytometry and tissue section immunofluorescence analysis. Expression of select inflammatory cytokines and chemokines was measured by RT-PCR and global myeloid cell gene expression in SC-derived microglia and infiltrated bone-marrow-derived macrophages (BMDM) were determined using the Nanostring nCounter platform. RESULTS: BMDM recruited to SCs in response to infection highly upregulated Trem2 mRNA compared to microglia coincident with viral control. Trem2 deficiency did not alter disease onset or severity, but impaired clinical recovery after onset of demyelination. Disease progression in Trem2-/- mice could not be attributed to altered virus control or an elevated proinflammatory response. A prominent difference was increased degenerated myelin not associated with the myeloid cell markers IBA1 and/or CD68. Gene expression profiles of SC-derived microglia and BMDM further revealed that Trem2 deficiency resulted in impaired upregulation of phagocytosis associated genes Lpl and Cd36 in microglia, but a more complex pattern in BMDM. CONCLUSIONS: Trem2 deficiency during viral-induced demyelination dysregulates expression of other select genes regulating phagocytic pathways and lipid metabolism, with distinct effects on microglia and BMDM. The ultimate failure to remove damaged myelin is reminiscent of toxin or autoimmune cell-induced demyelination models and supports that Trem2 function is regulated by sensing tissue damage including a dysregulated lipid environment in very distinct inflammatory environments.


Subject(s)
Brain , Demyelinating Diseases , Animals , Mice , Brain/metabolism , Phagocytosis/genetics , Microglia/metabolism , Demyelinating Diseases/chemically induced , Disease Progression , Gene Expression , Membrane Glycoproteins/genetics , Membrane Glycoproteins/metabolism , Receptors, Immunologic/genetics , Receptors, Immunologic/metabolism
7.
Front Immunol ; 13: 919815, 2022.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2080131

ABSTRACT

Since first reported in 2019, severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) is rapidly acquiring mutations, particularly in the spike protein, that can modulate pathogenicity, transmission and antibody evasion leading to successive waves of COVID19 infections despite an unprecedented mass vaccination necessitating continuous adaptation of therapeutics. Small animal models can facilitate understanding host-pathogen interactions, target selection for therapeutic drugs, and vaccine development, but availability and cost of studies in BSL3 facilities hinder progress. To generate a BSL2-compatible in vivo system that specifically recapitulates spike protein mediated disease we used replication competent, GFP tagged, recombinant Vesicular Stomatitis Virus where the VSV glycoprotein was replaced by the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein (rVSV-SARS2-S). We show that infection requires hACE2 and challenge of neonatal but not adult, K18-hACE2 transgenic mice (hACE2tg) leads to productive infection of the lungs and brains. Although disease progression was faster in SARS-CoV-2 infected mice, infection with both viruses resulted in neuronal infection and encephalitis with increased expression of Interferon-stimulated Irf7, Bst2, Ifi294, as well as CxCL10, CCL5, CLC2, and LILRB4, and both models were uniformly lethal. Further, prophylactic treatment targeting the Spike protein (Receptor Binding Domain) with antibodies resulted in similar levels of protection from lethal infection against rVSV-SARS2-S and SARS-CoV-2 viruses. Strikingly, challenge of neonatal hACE2tg mice with SARS-CoV-2 Variants of Concern (SARS-CoV-2-α, -ß, ϒ, or Δ) or the corresponding rVSV-SARS2-S viruses (rVSV-SARS2-Spike-α, rVSV-SARS2-Spike-ß, rVSV-SARS2-Spike-ϒ or rVSV-SARS2-Spike-Δ) resulted in increased lethality, suggesting that the Spike protein plays a key role in determining the virulence of each variant. Thus, we propose that rVSV-SARS2-S virus can be used to understand the effect of changes to SARS-CoV-2 spike protein on infection and to evaluate existing or experimental therapeutics targeting spike protein of current or future VOC of SARS-CoV-2 under BSL-2 conditions.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus , Animals , Disease Models, Animal , Humans , Membrane Glycoproteins/metabolism , Mice , Receptors, Immunologic , SARS-CoV-2 , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics
8.
Front Immunol ; 13: 960195, 2022.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2071093

ABSTRACT

Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) vaccination regimens contribute to limiting the spread of severe acute respiratory syndrome Coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2). However, the emergence and rapid transmission of the SARS-CoV-2 variant Omicron raise a concern about the efficacy of the current vaccination strategy. Here, we expressed monomeric and dimeric receptor-binding domains (RBDs) of the spike protein of prototype SARS-CoV-2 and Omicron variant in E. coli and investigated the reactivity of anti-sera from Chinese subjects immunized with SARS-CoV-2 vaccines to these recombinant RBDs. In 106 human blood samples collected from 91 participants from Jiangxi, China, 26 sera were identified to be positive for SARS-CoV-2 spike protein antibodies by lateral flow dipstick (LFD) assays, which were enriched in the ones collected from day 7 to 1 month post-boost (87.0%) compared to those harvested within 1 week post-boost (23.8%) (P < 0.0001). A higher positive ratio was observed in the child group (40.8%) than adults (13.6%) (P = 0.0073). ELISA results showed that the binding activity of anti-SARS-CoV-2 antibody-positive sera to Omicron RBDs dropped by 1.48- to 2.07-fold compared to its homogeneous recombinant RBDs. Thus, our data indicate that current SARS-CoV-2 vaccines provide restricted humoral protection against the Omicron variant.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Viral Vaccines , COVID-19/prevention & control , COVID-19 Vaccines , Child , Escherichia coli , Humans , Membrane Glycoproteins/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2 , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus , Viral Envelope Proteins
9.
Drug Dev Ind Pharm ; 48(10): 539-551, 2022 Oct.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2069979

ABSTRACT

Spike glycoprotein of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2) binds angiotensin-converting enzyme-2 (ACE-2) receptors via its receptor-binding domain (RBD) and mediates virus-to-host cell fusion. Recently emerged omicron variant of SARS-CoV-2 possesses around 30 mutations in spike protein where N501Y tremendously increases viral infectivity and transmission. Lectins interact with glycoproteins and mediate innate immunity displaying antiviral, antibacterial, and anticarcinogenic properties. In this study, we analyzed the potential of lectin, and lectin-antibody (spike-specific) complex to inhibit the ACE-2 binding site of wild and N501Y mutated spike protein by utilizing in silico molecular docking and simulation approach. Docking of lectin at reported ACE-2 binding spike-RBD residues displayed the ZDock scores of 1907 for wild and 1750 for N501Y mutated spike-RBD. Binding of lectin with antibody to form proposed dyad complex gave ZDock score of 1174 revealing stable binding. Docking of dyad complex with wild and N501Y mutated spike-RBD, at lectin and antibody individually, showed high efficiency binding hence, effective structural inhibition of spike-RBD. MD simulation of 100 ns of each complex proved high stability of complexes with RMSD values ranging from 0.2 to 1.5 nm. Consistent interactions of lead ACE-2 binding spike residues with lectin during simulation disclosed efficient structural inhibition by lectin against formation of spike RBD-ACE-2 complex. Hence, lectins along with their ability to induce innate immunity against spike glycoprotein can structurally inhibit the spike-RBD when given as lectin-antibody dyad system and thus can be developed into a dual effect treatment against COVID-19. Moreover, the high binding specificity of this system with spike-RBD can be exploited for development of diagnostic and drug-delivery systems.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Drug Treatment , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus , Humans , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2 , Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , Lectins/metabolism , Molecular Docking Simulation , Viral Envelope Proteins/genetics , Viral Envelope Proteins/metabolism , Membrane Glycoproteins/genetics , Membrane Glycoproteins/metabolism , Protein Structure, Tertiary , Binding Sites , Protein Binding , Antibodies/metabolism
10.
Commun Biol ; 5(1): 1081, 2022 Oct 10.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2062279

ABSTRACT

SARS-CoV-2 worldwide spread and evolution has resulted in variants containing mutations resulting in immune evasive epitopes that decrease vaccine efficacy. We acquired SARS-CoV-2 positive clinical samples and compared the worldwide emerged spike mutations from Variants of Concern/Interest, and developed an algorithm for monitoring the evolution of SARS-CoV-2 in the context of vaccines and monoclonal antibodies. The algorithm partitions logarithmic-transformed prevalence data monthly and Pearson's correlation determines exponential emergence of amino acid substitutions (AAS) and lineages. The SARS-CoV-2 genome evaluation indicated 49 mutations, with 44 resulting in AAS. Nine of the ten most worldwide prevalent (>70%) spike protein changes have Pearson's coefficient r > 0.9. The tenth, D614G, has a prevalence >99% and r-value of 0.67. The resulting algorithm is based on the patterns these ten substitutions elucidated. The strong positive correlation of the emerged spike protein changes and algorithmic predictive value can be harnessed in designing vaccines with relevant immunogenic epitopes. Monitoring, next-generation vaccine design, and mAb clinical efficacy must keep up with SARS-CoV-2 evolution, as the virus is predicted to remain endemic.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Vaccines , COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Algorithms , Antibodies, Monoclonal , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/prevention & control , Epitopes , Humans , Membrane Glycoproteins/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Viral Envelope Proteins/genetics
11.
Mikrochim Acta ; 189(10): 386, 2022 09 20.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2035078

ABSTRACT

A new detection strategy was developed to improve the sensitivity of a lateral flow immunoassay platform utilizing a delayed hydrophobic barrier fabricated with trimethylsilyl cellulose (TMSC). The SARS-CoV-2 spike receptor-binding domain (SARS-CoV-2 SP RBD) antigen was chosen as a model analyte to demonstrate the superior detectability of this scheme. The novel device consists of 2 separate layers, so-called delayed lateral flow immunoassay (d-LFIA). The upper layer is intended for the analyte or sample flow path, where the test solution flows freely straight to the detection zone to bind with the primary antibody. The lower layer, located just underneath, is designed for the SARS-CoV-2 spike receptor-binding domain-conjugated gold nanoparticles (SARS-CoV-2 SP RBD-AuNPs) used for producing a colorimetric signal. This layer is fabricated with a TMSC barrier to time-delay the movement of SARS-CoV-2 SP RBD-AuNPs, thus allowing the antigen to bind with the primary antibody more efficiently. This platform exhibited a 2.6-fold enhancement in the sensitivity and 9.1-fold improvement in the limit of detection (LOD) as compared with the conventional LFIA. In addition, this d-LFIA device was satisfactorily applied to accurate screening of COVID-19 patients.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Metal Nanoparticles , Antibodies , COVID-19/diagnosis , Cellulose , Gold , Humans , Immunoassay , Membrane Glycoproteins/chemistry , Membrane Glycoproteins/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2 , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus , Viral Envelope Proteins/chemistry , Viral Envelope Proteins/metabolism
12.
Sci Rep ; 12(1): 15496, 2022 09 15.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2028728

ABSTRACT

Since late 2019, the outbreak of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) and the resultant spread of COVID-19 have given rise to a worldwide health crisis that is posing great challenges to public health and clinical treatment, in addition to serving as a formidable threat to the global economy. To obtain an effective tool to prevent and diagnose viral infections, we attempted to obtain human antibody fragments that can effectively neutralize viral infection and be utilized for rapid virus detection. To this end, several human monoclonal antibodies were isolated by bio-panning a phage-displayed human antibody library, Tomlinson I. The selected clones were demonstrated to bind to the S1 domain of the spike glycoprotein of SARS-CoV-2. Moreover, clone A7 in Fab and IgG formats were found to effectively neutralize the binding of S protein to angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 in the low nM range. In addition, this clone was successfully converted to quench-based fluorescent immunosensors (Quenchbodies) that allowed antigen detection within a few minutes, with the help of a handy fluorometer.


Subject(s)
Bacteriophages , Biosensing Techniques , COVID-19 , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2 , Antibodies, Monoclonal , Antibodies, Neutralizing , Antibodies, Viral , Bacteriophages/metabolism , COVID-19/diagnosis , Humans , Immunoassay , Immunoglobulin Fragments , Immunoglobulin G , Membrane Glycoproteins/metabolism , Peptide Library , SARS-CoV-2 , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus , Viral Envelope Proteins/metabolism
13.
Microbiol Spectr ; 10(5): e0212922, 2022 Oct 26.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2019796

ABSTRACT

The SARS-CoV-2 Omicron variant is characterized by substantial changes in the antigenic structure of the Spike (S) protein. Therefore, antibodies induced by primary Omicron infection lack neutralizing activity against earlier variants. In this study, we analyzed whether these antigenic changes impact the sensitivity of commercial anti-SARS-CoV-2 antibody assays. Sera from 37 unvaccinated, convalescent individuals after putative primary Omicron infection were tested with a panel of 20 commercial anti-SARS-CoV-2 immunoassays. As controls, we used samples from 43 individuals after primary infection with the SARS-CoV-2 ancestral wild-type strain. In addition, variant-specific live-virus neutralization assays were used as a reference for the presence of SARS-CoV-2-specific antibodies in the samples. Notably, in Omicron convalescents, there was a statistically significant reduction in the sensitivity of all antibody assays containing S or its receptor-binding-domain (RBD) as antigens. Furthermore, antibody levels quantified by these assays displayed a weaker correlation with Omicron-specific neutralizing antibody titers than with those against the wild type. In contrast, the sensitivity of nucleocapsid-protein-specific immunoassays was similar in wild-type and Omicron-infected subjects. In summary, the antigenic changes in the Omicron S lead to reduced immunoreactivity in the current commercial S- and RBD-specific antibody assays, impairing their diagnostic performance. IMPORTANCE This study demonstrates that the antigenic changes of the SARS-CoV-2 Omicron variant affect test results from commercial Spike- and RBD-specific antibody assays, significantly diminishing their sensitivities and diagnostic abilities to assess neutralizing antibodies.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus , Humans , Neutralization Tests , Viral Envelope Proteins/chemistry , Viral Envelope Proteins/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2 , Membrane Glycoproteins/chemistry , Membrane Glycoproteins/metabolism , COVID-19/diagnosis , Antibodies, Viral , Antibodies, Neutralizing
14.
Commun Biol ; 5(1): 903, 2022 09 02.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2008332

ABSTRACT

The SARS-CoV-2 Omicron variant has rapidly replaced the Delta variant of concern. This new variant harbors worrisome mutations on the spike protein, which are able to escape the immunity elicited by vaccination and/or natural infection. To evaluate the impact and susceptibility of different serum samples to the Omicron variant BA.1, samples from COVID-19 patients and vaccinated individuals were tested for their ability to bind and neutralize the original SARS-CoV-2 virus and the Omicron variant BA.1. COVID-19 patients show the most drastic reduction in Omicron-specific antibody response in comparison with the response to the wild-type virus. Antibodies elicited by a triple homologous/heterologous vaccination regimen or following natural SARS-CoV-2 infection combined with a two-dose vaccine course, result in highest neutralization capacity against the Omicron variant BA.1. Overall, these findings confirm that vaccination of COVID-19 survivors and booster dose to vaccinees with mRNA vaccines is the correct strategy to enhance the antibody cross-protection against Omicron variant BA.1.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Antibody Formation , COVID-19/prevention & control , Humans , Membrane Glycoproteins/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Vaccination , Viral Envelope Proteins/genetics
15.
Nat Commun ; 13(1): 3716, 2022 07 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1984382

ABSTRACT

The COVID-19 pandemic triggered the development of numerous diagnostic tools to monitor infection and to determine immune response. Although assays to measure binding antibodies against SARS-CoV-2 are widely available, more specific tests measuring neutralization activities of antibodies are immediately needed to quantify the extent and duration of protection that results from infection or vaccination. We previously developed a 'Serological Assay based on a Tri-part split-NanoLuc® (SATiN)' to detect antibodies that bind to the spike (S) protein of SARS-CoV-2. Here, we expand on our previous work and describe a reconfigured version of the SATiN assay, called Neutralization SATiN (Neu-SATiN), which measures neutralization activity of antibodies directly from convalescent or vaccinated sera. The results obtained with our assay and other neutralization assays are comparable but with significantly shorter preparation and run time for Neu-SATiN. As the assay is modular, we further demonstrate that Neu-SATiN enables rapid assessment of the effectiveness of vaccines and level of protection against existing SARS-CoV-2 variants of concern and can therefore be readily adapted for emerging variants.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Antibodies, Viral , Humans , Luciferases , Membrane Glycoproteins/metabolism , Neutralization Tests , Pandemics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus , Viral Envelope Proteins
16.
Commun Biol ; 5(1): 766, 2022 07 29.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1967631

ABSTRACT

Studying the antibody response to SARS-CoV-2 informs on how the human immune system can respond to antigenic variants as well as other SARS-related viruses. Here, we structurally identified a YYDRxG motif encoded by IGHD3-22 in CDR H3 that facilitates antibody targeting to a functionally conserved epitope on the SARS-CoV-2 receptor binding domain. A computational search for a YYDRxG pattern in publicly available sequences uncovered 100 such antibodies, many of which can neutralize SARS-CoV-2 variants and SARS-CoV. Thus, the YYDRxG motif represents a common convergent solution for the human humoral immune system to target sarbecoviruses including the Omicron variant. These findings suggest an epitope-targeting strategy to identify potent and broadly neutralizing antibodies for design of pan-sarbecovirus vaccines and antibody therapeutics.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Antibodies, Viral , Epitopes/genetics , Humans , Membrane Glycoproteins/metabolism , Neutralization Tests , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Viral Envelope Proteins/metabolism
17.
Front Cell Infect Microbiol ; 12: 899546, 2022.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1952264

ABSTRACT

Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), is a global pandemic that has currently infected over 430 million individuals worldwide. With the variant strains of SARS-CoV-2 emerging, a region of high mutation rates in ORF8 was identified during the early pandemic, which resulted in a mutation from leucine (L) to serine (S) at amino acid 84. A typical feature of ORF8 is the immune evasion by suppressing interferon response; however, the mechanisms by which the two variants of ORF8 antagonize the type I interferon (IFN-I) pathway have not yet been clearly investigated. Here, we reported that SARS-CoV-2 ORF8L and ORF8S with no difference inhibit the production of IFN-ß, MDA5, RIG-I, ISG15, ISG56, IRF3, and other IFN-related genes induced by poly(I:C). In addition, both ORF8L and ORF8S proteins were found to suppress the nuclear translocation of IRF3. Mechanistically, the SARS-CoV-2 ORF8 protein interacts with HSP90B1, which was later investigated to induce the production of IFN-ß and IRF3. Taken together, these results indicate that SARS-CoV-2 ORF8 antagonizes the RIG-I/MDA-5 signaling pathway by targeting HSP90B1, which subsequently exhibits an inhibitory effect on the production of IFN-I. These functions appeared not to be influenced by the genotypes of ORF8L and ORF8S. Our study provides an explanation for the antiviral immune suppression of SARS-CoV-2 and suggests implications for the pathogenic mechanism and treatment of COVID-19.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Interferon Type I , Membrane Glycoproteins , Viral Proteins , COVID-19/virology , Humans , Immune Evasion , Interferon Type I/metabolism , Interferon-beta/genetics , Membrane Glycoproteins/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2 , Signal Transduction , Viral Proteins/metabolism
18.
Commun Biol ; 5(1): 409, 2022 05 03.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1947504

ABSTRACT

RaTG13 is a close relative of SARS-CoV-2, the virus responsible for the COVID-19 pandemic, sharing 96% sequence similarity at the genome-wide level. The spike receptor binding domain (RBD) of RaTG13 contains a number of amino acid substitutions when compared to SARS-CoV-2, likely impacting affinity for the ACE2 receptor. Antigenic differences between the viruses are less well understood, especially whether RaTG13 spike can be efficiently neutralised by antibodies generated from infection with, or vaccination against, SARS-CoV-2. Using RaTG13 and SARS-CoV-2 pseudotypes we compared neutralisation using convalescent sera from previously infected patients or vaccinated healthcare workers. Surprisingly, our results revealed that RaTG13 was more efficiently neutralised than SARS-CoV-2. In addition, neutralisation assays using spike mutants harbouring single and combinatorial amino acid substitutions within the RBD demonstrated that both spike proteins can tolerate multiple changes without dramatically reducing neutralisation. Moreover, introducing the 484 K mutation into RaTG13 resulted in increased neutralisation, in contrast to the same mutation in SARS-CoV-2 (E484K). This is despite E484K having a well-documented role in immune evasion in variants of concern (VOC) such as B.1.351 (Beta). These results indicate that the future spill-over of RaTG13 and/or related sarbecoviruses could be mitigated using current SARS-CoV-2-based vaccination strategies.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Chiroptera , Animals , COVID-19/therapy , Chiroptera/metabolism , Humans , Immunization, Passive , Membrane Glycoproteins/metabolism , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Viral Envelope Proteins/genetics , COVID-19 Serotherapy
19.
J Exp Med ; 219(9)2022 09 05.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1922148

ABSTRACT

Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) continues to be a global problem in part because of the emergence of variants of concern that evade neutralization by antibodies elicited by prior infection or vaccination. Here we report on human neutralizing antibody and memory responses to the Gamma variant in a cohort of hospitalized individuals. Plasma from infected individuals potently neutralized viruses pseudotyped with Gamma SARS-CoV-2 spike protein, but neutralizing activity against Wuhan-Hu-1-1, Beta, Delta, or Omicron was significantly lower. Monoclonal antibodies from memory B cells also neutralized Gamma and Beta pseudoviruses more effectively than Wuhan-Hu-1. 69% and 34% of Gamma-neutralizing antibodies failed to neutralize Delta or Wuhan-Hu-1. Although Class 1 and 2 antibodies dominate the response to Wuhan-Hu-1 or Beta, 54% of antibodies elicited by Gamma infection recognized Class 3 epitopes. The results have implications for variant-specific vaccines and infections, suggesting that exposure to variants generally provides more limited protection to other variants.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Antibodies, Neutralizing , Antibodies, Viral , Antibody Formation , Humans , Membrane Glycoproteins/metabolism , Neutralization Tests , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus , Viral Envelope Proteins
20.
Commun Biol ; 5(1): 669, 2022 07 06.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1921727

ABSTRACT

We are amid the historic coronavirus infectious disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic. Imbalances in the accessibility of vaccines, medicines, and diagnostics among countries, regions, and populations, and those in war crises, have been problematic. Nanobodies are small, stable, customizable, and inexpensive to produce. Herein, we present a panel of nanobodies that can detect the spike proteins of five SARS-CoV-2 variants of concern (VOCs) including Omicron. Here we show via ELISA, lateral flow, kinetic, flow cytometric, microscopy, and Western blotting assays that our nanobodies can quantify the spike variants. This panel of nanobodies broadly neutralizes viral infection caused by pseudotyped and authentic SARS-CoV-2 VOCs. Structural analyses show that the P86 clone targets epitopes that are conserved yet unclassified on the receptor-binding domain (RBD) and contacts the N-terminal domain (NTD). Human antibodies rarely access both regions; consequently, the clone buries hidden crevasses of SARS-CoV-2 spike proteins that go undetected by conventional antibodies.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Single-Domain Antibodies , Antibodies, Viral , Humans , Membrane Glycoproteins/metabolism , Neutralization Tests , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Single-Domain Antibodies/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Viral Envelope Proteins/metabolism
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