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1.
Nat Commun ; 13(1): 1018, 2022 02 23.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1702467

ABSTRACT

The antiviral immune response to SARS-CoV-2 infection can limit viral spread and prevent development of pneumonic COVID-19. However, the protective immunological response associated with successful viral containment in the upper airways remains unclear. Here, we combine a multi-omics approach with longitudinal sampling to reveal temporally resolved protective immune signatures in non-pneumonic and ambulatory SARS-CoV-2 infected patients and associate specific immune trajectories with upper airway viral containment. We see a distinct systemic rather than local immune state associated with viral containment, characterized by interferon stimulated gene (ISG) upregulation across circulating immune cell subsets in non-pneumonic SARS-CoV2 infection. We report reduced cytotoxic potential of Natural Killer (NK) and T cells, and an immune-modulatory monocyte phenotype associated with protective immunity in COVID-19. Together, we show protective immune trajectories in SARS-CoV2 infection, which have important implications for patient prognosis and the development of immunomodulatory therapies.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/immunology , Adult , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , Ambulatory Care , Cytokines/blood , Female , Gene Expression Regulation , Gene Regulatory Networks , Humans , Interferons/immunology , Killer Cells, Natural/immunology , Longitudinal Studies , Male , Middle Aged , Monocytes/immunology , Nasopharynx/immunology , Nasopharynx/virology , SARS-CoV-2/physiology , T-Lymphocytes/immunology
2.
Nat Immunol ; 23(1): 23-32, 2022 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1585822

ABSTRACT

Systemic immune cell dynamics during coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) are extensively documented, but these are less well studied in the (upper) respiratory tract, where severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) replicates1-6. Here, we characterized nasal and systemic immune cells in individuals with COVID-19 who were hospitalized or convalescent and compared the immune cells to those seen in healthy donors. We observed increased nasal granulocytes, monocytes, CD11c+ natural killer (NK) cells and CD4+ T effector cells during acute COVID-19. The mucosal proinflammatory populations positively associated with peripheral blood human leukocyte antigen (HLA)-DRlow monocytes, CD38+PD1+CD4+ T effector (Teff) cells and plasmablasts. However, there was no general lymphopenia in nasal mucosa, unlike in peripheral blood. Moreover, nasal neutrophils negatively associated with oxygen saturation levels in blood. Following convalescence, nasal immune cells mostly normalized, except for CD127+ granulocytes and CD38+CD8+ tissue-resident memory T cells (TRM). SARS-CoV-2-specific CD8+ T cells persisted at least 2 months after viral clearance in the nasal mucosa, indicating that COVID-19 has both transient and long-term effects on upper respiratory tract immune responses.


Subject(s)
CD4-Positive T-Lymphocytes/immunology , CD8-Positive T-Lymphocytes/immunology , Nasopharynx/immunology , Nose/cytology , Respiratory Mucosa/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Antibodies, Viral/blood , COVID-19/immunology , COVID-19/pathology , Granulocytes/immunology , HLA-DR Antigens/metabolism , Humans , Killer Cells, Natural/immunology , Monocytes/immunology , Nasopharynx/cytology , Nasopharynx/virology , Neutrophils/immunology , Nose/immunology , Nose/virology , Prospective Studies , Respiratory Mucosa/cytology , Respiratory Mucosa/virology
4.
Front Immunol ; 12: 750279, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1551505

ABSTRACT

SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus infection induces heterogeneous symptoms, ranging from asymptomatic to lethal forms. Severe forms usually occur in the elderly and/or individuals with comorbidities. Children generally remain asymptomatic to primary infection, suggesting that they may have an effective local innate immune response. IFN-I and -III have non-redundant protective roles against SARS-CoV-2, although sometimes damaging the host. The expression and role of anti-viral peptides during SARS-CoV-2 infection have thus far been little studied. We aimed to identify the innate immune molecules present at the SARS-CoV-2 entry point. We analyzed the mRNA levels of type I (IFN-α and -ß) and type III (IFN-λ1-3) interferons and selected antiviral peptides (i.e., ß-defensins 1-3, α-defensins [HNP1-3, HD5] pentraxin-3, surfactant protein D, the cathelicidin LL-37 and interleukin-26) in nasopharyngeal swabs from 226 individuals of various ages, either infected with SARS-CoV-2 (symptomatic or asymptomatic) or negative for the virus. We observed that infection induced selective upregulation of IFN-λ1 expression in pediatric subjects (≤15 years), whereas IFN-α, IFN-ß, IFN-λ2/λ3, and ß-defensin 1-3 expression was unaffected. Conversely, infection triggered upregulation of IFN-α, IFN-ß, IFN-λ2/λ3, and ß-defensin 1-3 mRNA expression in adults (15-65 years) and the elderly (≥ 65 years), but without modulation of IFN-λ1. The expression of these innate molecules was not associated with gender or symptoms. Expression of the interferon-stimulated genes IFITM1 and IFITM3 was upregulated in SARS-CoV-2-positive subjects and reached similar levels in the three age groups. Finally, age-related differences in nasopharyngeal innate immunity were also observed in SARS-CoV-2-negative subjects. This study shows that the expression patterns of IFN-I/-III and certain anti-viral molecules in the nasopharyngeal mucosa of SARS-CoV-2-infected subjects differ with age and suggests that susceptibility to SARS-CoV-2 may be related to intrinsic differences in the nature of mucosal anti-viral innate immunity.


Subject(s)
/analysis , Interferon Type I/biosynthesis , Interferon-gamma/biosynthesis , Nasal Mucosa/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , beta-Defensins/biosynthesis , Adolescent , Adult , Age Factors , Aged , COVID-19/immunology , Cells, Cultured , Female , Humans , Immunity, Innate/immunology , Interferon Type I/immunology , Interferon-gamma/immunology , Interferons/biosynthesis , Interferons/immunology , Interleukins/biosynthesis , Interleukins/immunology , Male , Middle Aged , Nasopharynx/immunology , Young Adult , beta-Defensins/immunology
5.
J Med Virol ; 93(12): 6803-6807, 2021 12.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1544308

ABSTRACT

We evaluated the Panbio™ COVID-19 Ag Rapid Test Device as a point-of-care diagnostic tool for COVID-19 in 357 patients at a pediatric emergency department. Thirty-four patients tested positive by reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction, of which 24 were positive by the antigen assay. The sensitivity and specificity of the assay were 70.5% and 100%, respectively.


Subject(s)
Antigens, Viral/immunology , COVID-19/diagnosis , COVID-19/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , COVID-19 Nucleic Acid Testing/methods , COVID-19 Serological Testing/methods , Child , Child, Preschool , Emergency Service, Hospital , Female , Humans , Immunologic Tests/methods , Infant , Male , Nasopharynx/immunology , Nasopharynx/virology , Point-of-Care Testing , Prospective Studies , Sensitivity and Specificity
6.
J Med Virol ; 93(12): 6778-6781, 2021 Dec.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1544295

ABSTRACT

A high-throughput, fully automated antigen detection test for SARS-CoV-2 is a viable alternative to reverse-transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-qPCR) for mass screening during outbreaks. In this study, we compared RT-qPCR for viral load and the VITROS® SARS-CoV-2 Antigen Test with reference to the results of the LUMIPULSE® SARS-CoV-2 Ag Test. Of 128 nasopharyngeal swab specimens taken from patients suspected of being infected with SARS-CoV-2, 49 were positive and 79 were negative according to RT-qPCR. Consistent dose-dependent detection with VITROS® assay was successfully achieved when using nasopharyngeal swab specimens with Ct values of 32.0 or lesser, whereas the CLEIA-based LUMIPULSE® assay was able to detect lower viral loads compared with the VITROS® assay. Our results show that the performance of the VITROS® assay was satisfactory for the diagnosis of contagious COVID-19 patients in the clinical setting. Highlights The performance of the VITROS® SARS-CoV-2 Antigen Test was sufficient for the diagnosis of contagious COVID-19. This test showed high sensitivity and specificity in the detection of SARS-CoV-2 in samples with a Ct value of 32 or less.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Serological Testing/methods , COVID-19 Testing/methods , COVID-19/diagnosis , COVID-19/immunology , Immunoenzyme Techniques/methods , Immunologic Tests/methods , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Antigens, Viral/genetics , Antigens, Viral/immunology , COVID-19/virology , Humans , Mass Screening/methods , Nasopharynx/immunology , Nasopharynx/virology , RNA, Viral/genetics , RNA, Viral/immunology , Real-Time Polymerase Chain Reaction/methods , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Sensitivity and Specificity , Viral Load/genetics , Viral Load/immunology
7.
Nat Immunol ; 22(11): 1428-1439, 2021 11.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1392873

ABSTRACT

Coordinated local mucosal and systemic immune responses following severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) infection either protect against coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pathologies or fail, leading to severe clinical outcomes. To understand this process, we performed an integrated analysis of SARS-CoV-2 spike-specific antibodies, cytokines, viral load and bacterial communities in paired nasopharyngeal swabs and plasma samples from a cohort of clinically distinct patients with COVID-19 during acute infection. Plasma viral load was associated with systemic inflammatory cytokines that were elevated in severe COVID-19, and also with spike-specific neutralizing antibodies. By contrast, nasopharyngeal viral load correlated with SARS-CoV-2 humoral responses but inversely with interferon responses, the latter associating with protective microbial communities. Potential pathogenic microorganisms, often implicated in secondary respiratory infections, were associated with mucosal inflammation and elevated in severe COVID-19. Our results demonstrate distinct tissue compartmentalization of SARS-CoV-2 immune responses and highlight a role for the nasopharyngeal microbiome in regulating local and systemic immunity that determines COVID-19 clinical outcomes.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/immunology , Microbiota/immunology , Nasopharynx/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/physiology , Acute Disease , Adolescent , Adult , Aged , Antibodies, Viral/blood , Cohort Studies , Female , Humans , Immunity, Humoral , Immunity, Mucosal , Interferons/blood , Male , Middle Aged , Nasopharynx/microbiology , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/immunology , Viral Load , Young Adult
8.
Int J Mol Sci ; 22(17)2021 Aug 26.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1374426

ABSTRACT

The current spreading coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 is highly infectious and pathogenic. In this study, we screened the gene expression of three host receptors (ACE2, DC-SIGN and L-SIGN) of SARS coronaviruses and dendritic cells (DCs) status in bulk and single cell transcriptomic datasets of upper airway, lung or blood of COVID-19 patients and healthy controls. In COVID-19 patients, DC-SIGN gene expression was interestingly decreased in lung DCs but increased in blood DCs. Within DCs, conventional DCs (cDCs) were depleted while plasmacytoid DCs (pDCs) were augmented in the lungs of mild COVID-19. In severe cases, we identified augmented types of immature DCs (CD22+ or ANXA1+ DCs) with MHCII downregulation. In this study, our observation indicates that DCs in severe cases stimulate innate immune responses but fail to specifically present SARS-CoV-2. It provides insights into the profound modulation of DC function in severe COVID-19.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/immunology , Cell Adhesion Molecules/genetics , Dendritic Cells/immunology , Gene Expression Regulation/immunology , Lectins, C-Type/genetics , Receptors, Cell Surface/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/genetics , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/metabolism , COVID-19/diagnosis , COVID-19/pathology , COVID-19/virology , Cell Adhesion Molecules/metabolism , Datasets as Topic , Dendritic Cells/metabolism , Genome-Wide Association Study , Host-Pathogen Interactions/genetics , Host-Pathogen Interactions/immunology , Humans , Immunity, Innate , Lectins, C-Type/metabolism , Lung/immunology , Lung/pathology , Lung/virology , Mendelian Randomization Analysis , Nasopharynx/immunology , Nasopharynx/pathology , Nasopharynx/virology , RNA-Seq , Receptors, Cell Surface/metabolism , Severity of Illness Index , Single-Cell Analysis
9.
Int J Mol Sci ; 22(15)2021 Jul 24.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1325682

ABSTRACT

Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), as with the influenza virus, has been shown to spread more rapidly during winter. Severe coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), which can follow SARS-CoV-2 infection, disproportionately affects older persons and males as well as people living in temperate zone countries with a tropical ancestry. Recent evidence on the importance of adequately warming and humidifying (conditioning) inhaled air in the nasal cavity for reducing SARS-CoV-2 infectivity in the upper respiratory tract (URT) is discussed, with particular reference to: (i) the relevance of air-borne SARS-CoV-2 transmission, (ii) the nasal epithelium as the initial site of SARS-CoV-2 infection, (iii) the roles of type 1 and 3 interferons for preventing viral infection of URT epithelial cells, (iv) weaker innate immune responses to respiratory viral infections in URT epithelial cells at suboptimal temperature and humidity, and (v) early innate immune responses in the URT for limiting and eliminating SARS-CoV-2 infections. The available data are consistent with optimal nasal air conditioning reducing SARS-CoV-2 infectivity of the URT and, as a consequence, severe COVID-19. Further studies on SARS-CoV-2 infection rates and viral loads in the nasal cavity and nasopharynx in relation to inhaled air temperature, humidity, age, gender, and genetic background are needed in this context. Face masks used for reducing air-borne virus transmission can also promote better nasal air conditioning in cold weather. Masks can, thereby, minimise SARS-CoV-2 infectivity and are particularly relevant for protecting more vulnerable persons from severe COVID-19.


Subject(s)
Air , COVID-19/immunology , COVID-19/virology , Nasopharynx/immunology , Nasopharynx/virology , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity , Age Factors , COVID-19/genetics , Humans , Humidity , Inhalation , Sex Factors , Temperature
10.
Biosensors (Basel) ; 11(7)2021 Jul 06.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1302155

ABSTRACT

The availability of antigen tests for SARS-CoV-2 represents a major step for the mass surveillance of the incidence of infection, especially regarding COVID-19 asymptomatic and/or early-stage patients. Recently, we reported the development of a Bioelectric Recognition Assay-based biosensor able to detect the SARS-CoV-2 S1 spike protein expressed on the surface of the virus in just three minutes, with high sensitivity and selectivity. The working principle was established by measuring the change of the electric potential of membrane-engineered mammalian cells bearing the human chimeric spike S1 antibody after attachment of the respective viral protein. In the present study, we applied the novel biosensor to patient-derived nasopharyngeal samples in a clinical set-up, with absolutely no sample pretreatment. More importantly, membrane-engineered cells were pre-immobilized in a proprietary biomatrix, thus enabling their long-term preservation prior to use as well as significantly increasing their ease-of-handle as test consumables. The plug-and-apply novel biosensor was able to detect the virus in positive samples with a 92.8% success rate compared to RT-PCR. No false negative results were recorded. These findings demonstrate the potential applicability of the biosensor for the early, routine mass screening of SARS-CoV-2 on a scale not yet realized.


Subject(s)
Biosensing Techniques/methods , COVID-19/diagnosis , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/analysis , COVID-19/immunology , COVID-19 Nucleic Acid Testing , COVID-19 Serological Testing , Cell Line , Early Diagnosis , Humans , Limit of Detection , Nasopharynx/immunology , Nasopharynx/virology , Population Surveillance , SARS-CoV-2/immunology
11.
PLoS One ; 16(6): e0253321, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1282300

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Antigen-detecting rapid diagnostic tests (Ag-RDTs) for the detection of SARS-CoV-2 offer new opportunities for testing in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic. Nasopharyngeal swabs (NPS) are the reference sample type, but oropharyngeal swabs (OPS) may be a more acceptable sample type in some patients. METHODS: We conducted a prospective study in a single screening center to assess the diagnostic performance of the Panbio™ COVID-19 Ag Rapid Test (Abbott) on OPS compared with reverse-transcription quantitative PCR (RT-qPCR) using NPS during the second pandemic wave in Switzerland. RESULTS: 402 outpatients were enrolled in a COVID-19 screening center, of whom 168 (41.8%) had a positive RT-qPCR test. The oropharyngeal Ag-RDT clinical sensitivity compared to nasopharyngeal RT-qPCR was 81% (95%CI: 74.2-86.6). Two false positives were noted out of the 234 RT-qPCR negative individuals, which resulted in a clinical specificity of 99.1% (95%CI: 96.9-99.9) for the Ag-RDT. For cycle threshold values ≤ 26.7 (≥ 1E6 SARS-CoV-2 genomes copies/mL, a presumed cut-off for infectious virus), 96.3% sensitivity (95%CI: 90.7-99.0%) was obtained with the Ag-RDT using OPS. INTERPRETATION: Based on our findings, the diagnostic performance of the Panbio™ Covid-19 RDT with OPS samples, if taken by a trained person and high requirements regarding quality of the specimen, meet the criteria required by the WHO for Ag-RDTs (sensitivity ≥80% and specificity ≥97%) in a high incidence setting in symptomatic individuals.


Subject(s)
Antigens, Viral/immunology , COVID-19 Serological Testing , COVID-19 , Nasopharynx , SARS-CoV-2 , Antigens, Viral/genetics , COVID-19/diagnosis , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/genetics , COVID-19/immunology , COVID-19 Nucleic Acid Testing , Humans , Nasopharynx/immunology , Nasopharynx/virology , Prospective Studies , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Switzerland/epidemiology
12.
J Med Virol ; 93(12): 6778-6781, 2021 Dec.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1281221

ABSTRACT

A high-throughput, fully automated antigen detection test for SARS-CoV-2 is a viable alternative to reverse-transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-qPCR) for mass screening during outbreaks. In this study, we compared RT-qPCR for viral load and the VITROS® SARS-CoV-2 Antigen Test with reference to the results of the LUMIPULSE® SARS-CoV-2 Ag Test. Of 128 nasopharyngeal swab specimens taken from patients suspected of being infected with SARS-CoV-2, 49 were positive and 79 were negative according to RT-qPCR. Consistent dose-dependent detection with VITROS® assay was successfully achieved when using nasopharyngeal swab specimens with Ct values of 32.0 or lesser, whereas the CLEIA-based LUMIPULSE® assay was able to detect lower viral loads compared with the VITROS® assay. Our results show that the performance of the VITROS® assay was satisfactory for the diagnosis of contagious COVID-19 patients in the clinical setting. Highlights The performance of the VITROS® SARS-CoV-2 Antigen Test was sufficient for the diagnosis of contagious COVID-19. This test showed high sensitivity and specificity in the detection of SARS-CoV-2 in samples with a Ct value of 32 or less.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Serological Testing/methods , COVID-19 Testing/methods , COVID-19/diagnosis , COVID-19/immunology , Immunoenzyme Techniques/methods , Immunologic Tests/methods , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Antigens, Viral/genetics , Antigens, Viral/immunology , COVID-19/virology , Humans , Mass Screening/methods , Nasopharynx/immunology , Nasopharynx/virology , RNA, Viral/genetics , RNA, Viral/immunology , Real-Time Polymerase Chain Reaction/methods , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Sensitivity and Specificity , Viral Load/genetics , Viral Load/immunology
13.
Nephron ; 145(4): 363-370, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1201313

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND/AIMS: The coronavirus disease 2019 (CO-VID-19) pandemic is the major current health emergency worldwide, adding a significant burden also to the community of nephrologists for the management of their patients. Here, we analyzed the impact of COVID-19 infection in renal patients to assess the time to viral clearance, together with the production and persistence of IgG and IgM antibody response, in consideration of the altered immune capacity of this fragile population. METHODS: Viral clearance and antibody kinetics were investigated in 49 renal patients recovered from COVID-19 infection: 7 of them with chronic decompensated renal failure, 31 under dialysis treatment, and 11 kidney transplant recipients. RESULTS: The time span between the diagnosis of infection and recovery based on laboratory testing (2 negative nasopharyngeal swabs in consecutive days) was 31.7 ± 13.3 days. Three new positive cases were detected from 8 to 13 days following recovery. At the first serological determination after swab negativization, all the patients developed IgG and IgM antibodies. The semiquantitative analysis showed a progressive increase in IgG and a slow reduction in IgM. DISCUSSION/CONCLUSION: In subjects with decompensated chronic kidney disease, under dialysis and in transplant recipients, viral clearance is lengthened compared to the general population. However, in spite of their common status of immunodepression, all of them were able to produce specific antibodies. These data might provide useful insights for monitoring and planning health-care activities in the weak category of patients with compromised renal function recovered from COVID-19.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/immunology , COVID-19/virology , Kidney Transplantation , Renal Dialysis , Adult , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , Antibodies, Viral/analysis , COVID-19/epidemiology , Female , Glomerular Filtration Rate , Humans , Immunoglobulin G/analysis , Immunoglobulin M/analysis , Kidney Failure, Chronic/complications , Kidney Failure, Chronic/immunology , Kidney Failure, Chronic/therapy , Kinetics , Male , Middle Aged , Nasopharynx/immunology , Nasopharynx/virology , Retrospective Studies , Transplant Recipients , Treatment Outcome
14.
PLoS One ; 16(4): e0249972, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1172885

ABSTRACT

We evaluated the diagnostic accuracy of two newly developed, point-of-care, rapid antigen tests (RATs) for detecting SARS-CoV-2, the AFIAS COVID-19 Ag and the ichromaTM COVID-19 Ag, and investigated antigen kinetics. A total of 200 serially collected nasopharyngeal (NP) specimens from 38 COVID-19 patients and 122 specimens from negative controls were analyzed. Diagnostic sensitivity and specificity were assessed in comparison to molecular test results and subdivided according to targeted genes (E, RdRP, and N) and days post-symptom onset (PSO). For the kinetics evaluation, cut-off-indices from serial NP specimens were used according to the number of days PSO. Both RATs showed sensitivity of 91.3‒100% for specimens with cycle threshold (Ct) < 25. The specificity of AFIAS was 98.7‒98.9% and that of ichromaTM was 100.0%. The kappa values of AFIAS and ichromaTM for the molecular testing of specimens with Ct < 25 (RdRP) were 0.97 and 1.00, respectively. The sensitivity of AFIAS and ichromaTM for all genes was lower for specimens collected at 8‒14 PSO than for those collected before 7-days PSO. The kinetics profiles showed that antigen levels gradually decreased from ≤ 7-days PSO to > 22-days PSO. Both RATs showed excellent specificity and acceptable sensitivity for NP specimens with higher viral loads and for specimens collected within 7-days PSO. Hence, they have the potential to become useful tools for the early detection of SARS-CoV-2. However, because of concerns about false negativity, RATs should be used in conjunction with molecular tests.


Subject(s)
Antigens, Viral/immunology , COVID-19 Serological Testing , COVID-19 , Nasopharynx , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Adult , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , COVID-19/diagnosis , COVID-19/immunology , Female , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Nasopharynx/immunology , Nasopharynx/virology , Sensitivity and Specificity
15.
Biosci Trends ; 15(2): 93-99, 2021 May 11.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1154737

ABSTRACT

As the COVID-19 epidemic is still ongoing, a more rapid detection of SARS-CoV-2 infection such as viral antigen-detection needs to be evaluated for early diagnosis of COVID-19 disease. Here, we report the dynamic changes of SARS-CoV-2 viral antigens in nasopharyngeal swabs of COVID-19 patients and its association with the viral nucleic acid clearance and clinical outcomes. Eighty-five COVID-19 patients were enrolled for detection of SARS-CoV-2 viral antigens, including 57 anti-SARS-CoV-2 antibody negative cases and 28 antibody positive cases. The viral antigen could be detected in 52.63% (30/57) patients with SARS-CoV-2 antibody negative at the early stage of SARS-CoV-2 infection, especially in the first 5 days after disease onset (p = 0.0018) and disappeared in about 8 days after disease onset. Viral antigens were highly detectable in patients with low Ct value (less than 30) of SARS-CoV-2 nucleic acid RT-PCT assay, suggesting the expression of viral antigen was associated with high viral load. Furthermore, positive antigen detection indicated disease progression, nine cases with positive antigen (9/30, 30.0%), in contrast to two cases (2/27, 7.40%) (p = 0.0444) with negative antigen, which progressed into severe disease. Thus, the viral antigens were persistent in early stages of infection when virus was in highly replicating status, and viral antigen detection promises to rapidly screen positive patients in the early stage of SARS-CoV-2 infection.


Subject(s)
Antigens, Viral/analysis , COVID-19 Testing/methods , COVID-19/diagnosis , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Adolescent , Adult , Aged , Antigens, Viral/blood , COVID-19/immunology , COVID-19/virology , COVID-19 Nucleic Acid Testing , COVID-19 Serological Testing , COVID-19 Testing/trends , China/epidemiology , Disease Progression , Early Diagnosis , False Negative Reactions , Female , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Nasopharynx/immunology , Nasopharynx/virology , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Time Factors , Viral Load , Young Adult
16.
PLoS One ; 16(2): e0247606, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1094070

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Since COVID-19 pandemic is a global crisis, tests with high sensitivity and specificity are crucial for the identification and management of COVID-19 patients. There is an urgent need for low-cost rapid antigen COVID-19 test with a good diagnostic performance. Although various antigen rapid detection tests are widely available, strong evidence of their usefulness in clinical practice are still limited. Therefore, our aim was to evaluate clinical performance of STANDARD Q COVID-19 Ag Test (SD Biosensor, Gyeonggi-do, South Korea). METHODS: The performance of the STANDARD Q COVID-19 Ag Test for the detection of SARS-CoV-2 antigen was evaluated in comparison to RT-qPCR results in 120 symptomatic patients (median age 49, IQR 36-70) who presented to health care facility in Novi Sad, Vojvodina, Serbia. RESULTS: Twenty five out of 120 samples have been tested positive using STANDARD Q COVID-19 Ag Test, and all of them were also positive on RT-qPCR. Overall, the STANDARD Q COVID-19 Ag Test showed sensitivity of 58.1% (95% CI 42.1-73.0) but it was higher in the early days of disease, when the highest viral loads were detected. During the first five days after the symptom onset, the sensitivity ranged from 66.7% to 100% and the pooled accuracy and Kappa values were high (0.92 and 0.852). CONCLUSIONS: A strong agreement between performance of STANDARD Q COVID-19 Ag Test and RT-qPCR was observed during the first five days of illness, suggesting that this rapid antigenic test can be very useful for COVID-19 diagnosis in the early phase of disease.


Subject(s)
Antigens, Viral/analysis , COVID-19 Serological Testing/methods , COVID-19/diagnosis , Nasopharynx , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Early Diagnosis , Humans , Middle Aged , Nasopharynx/immunology , Nasopharynx/virology , Sensitivity and Specificity , Serbia/epidemiology
17.
Diagnosis (Berl) ; 8(3): 322-326, 2021 08 26.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1069653

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVES: Novel point-of-care antigen assays present a promising opportunity for rapid screening of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) infections. The purpose of this study was the clinical assessment of the new Roche SARS-CoV-2 Rapid Antigen Test. METHODS: The clinical performance of Roche SARS-CoV-2 Rapid Antigen Test was evaluated vs. a reverse transcription polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) laboratory-based assay (Seegene AllplexTM2019-nCoV) in nasopharyngeal swabs collected from a series of consecutive patients referred for SARS-CoV-2 diagnostics to the Pederzoli Hospital (Peschiera del Garda, Verona, Italy) over a 2-week period. RESULTS: The final study population consisted of 321 consecutive patients (mean age, 46 years and IQR, 32-56 years; 181 women, 56.4%), with 149/321 (46.4%) positive for SARS-CoV-2 RNA via the Seegene AllplexTM2019-nCoV Assay, and 109/321 (34.0%) positive with Roche SARS-CoV-2 Rapid Antigen Test, respectively. The overall accuracy of Roche SARS-CoV-2 Rapid Antigen Test compared to molecular testing was 86.9%, with 72.5% sensitivity and 99.4% specificity. Progressive decline in performance was observed as cycle threshold (Ct) values of different SARS-CoV-2 gene targets increased. The sensitivity was found to range between 97-100% in clinical samples with Ct values <25, between 50-81% in those with Ct values between 25 and <30, but low as 12-18% in samples with Ct values between 30 and <37. CONCLUSIONS: The clinical performance of Roche SARS-CoV-2 Rapid Antigen Test is excellent in nasopharyngeal swabs with Ct values <25, which makes it a reliable screening test in patients with high viral load. However, mass community screening would require the use of more sensitive techniques.


Subject(s)
Antigens, Viral/analysis , COVID-19 Serological Testing/standards , COVID-19/diagnosis , COVID-19/virology , Molecular Diagnostic Techniques/standards , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Adult , Antigens, Viral/immunology , COVID-19/immunology , COVID-19 Nucleic Acid Testing/standards , Female , Humans , Italy , Male , Middle Aged , Nasopharynx/immunology , Nasopharynx/virology , Point-of-Care Systems , Sensitivity and Specificity , Viral Load
18.
J Transl Med ; 19(1): 32, 2021 01 07.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1015879

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Although it is becoming evident that individual's immune system has a decisive influence on SARS-CoV-2 disease progression, pathogenesis is largely unknown. In this study, we aimed to profile the host transcriptome of COVID-19 patients from nasopharyngeal samples along with virus genomic features isolated from respective host, and a comparative analyses of differential host responses in various SARS-CoV-2 infection systems. RESULTS: Unique and rare missense mutations in 3C-like protease observed in all of our reported isolates. Functional enrichment analyses exhibited that the host induced responses are mediated by innate immunity, interferon, and cytokine stimulation. Surprisingly, induction of apoptosis, phagosome, antigen presentation, hypoxia response was lacking within these patients. Upregulation of immune and cytokine signaling genes such as CCL4, TNFA, IL6, IL1A, CCL2, CXCL2, IFN, and CCR1 were observed in lungs. Lungs lacked the overexpression of ACE2 as suspected, however, high ACE2 but low DPP4 expression was observed in nasopharyngeal cells. Interestingly, directly or indirectly, viral proteins specially non-structural protein mediated overexpression of integrins such as ITGAV, ITGA6, ITGB7, ITGB3, ITGA2B, ITGA5, ITGA6, ITGA9, ITGA4, ITGAE, and ITGA8 in lungs compared to nasopharyngeal samples suggesting the possible way of enhanced invasion. Furthermore, we found comparatively highly expressed transcription factors such as CBP, CEBP, NFAT, ATF3, GATA6, HDAC2, TCF12 which have pivotal roles in lung injury. CONCLUSIONS: Even though this study incorporates a limited number of cases, our data will provide valuable insights in developing potential studies to elucidate the differential host responses on the viral pathogenesis in COVID-19, and incorporation of further data will enrich the search of an effective therapeutics.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/genetics , COVID-19/immunology , Host Microbial Interactions/genetics , Host Microbial Interactions/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Adult , Aged, 80 and over , COVID-19/virology , Coronavirus 3C Proteases/genetics , Coronavirus 3C Proteases/immunology , Cytokines/genetics , Female , Genetic Variation , Humans , Immunity, Innate/genetics , Integrins/genetics , Lung/immunology , Male , Middle Aged , Models, Immunological , Mutation, Missense , Nasopharynx/immunology , Nasopharynx/virology , Pandemics , RNA-Seq , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Signal Transduction/genetics , Signal Transduction/immunology , Transcriptome
19.
Mucosal Immunol ; 14(2): 305-316, 2021 03.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-947522

ABSTRACT

The novel coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 enters into the human body mainly through the ACE2 + TMPRSS2+ nasal epithelial cells. The initial host response to this pathogen occurs in a peculiar immune microenvironment that, starting from the Nasopharynx-Associated Lymphoid Tissue (NALT) system, is the product of a long evolutionary process that is aimed to first recognize exogenous airborne agents. In the present work, we want to critically review the latest molecular and cellular findings on the mucosal response to SARS-CoV-2 in the nasal cavity and in NALT, and to analyze its impact in the subsequent course of COVID-19. Finally, we want to explore the possibility that the regulation of the systemic inflammatory network against the virus can be modulated starting from the initial phases of the nasal and nasopharyngeal response and this may have several clinical and epidemiological implications starting from a mucosal vaccine development.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/immunology , Nasopharynx/virology , SARS-CoV-2/physiology , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/metabolism , Animals , COVID-19/pathology , COVID-19/transmission , COVID-19 Vaccines/immunology , Humans , Immune Evasion , Lymphoid Tissue/immunology , Nasopharynx/immunology , Serine Endopeptidases/metabolism , Virus Internalization
20.
Nat Commun ; 11(1): 5854, 2020 11 17.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-933683

ABSTRACT

SARS-CoV-2 infection is characterized by peak viral load in the upper airway prior to or at the time of symptom onset, an unusual feature that has enabled widespread transmission of the virus and precipitated a global pandemic. How SARS-CoV-2 is able to achieve high titer in the absence of symptoms remains unclear. Here, we examine the upper airway host transcriptional response in patients with COVID-19 (n = 93), other viral (n = 41) or non-viral (n = 100) acute respiratory illnesses (ARIs). Compared with other viral ARIs, COVID-19 is characterized by a pronounced interferon response but attenuated activation of other innate immune pathways, including toll-like receptor, interleukin and chemokine signaling. The IL-1 and NLRP3 inflammasome pathways are markedly less responsive to SARS-CoV-2, commensurate with a signature of diminished neutrophil and macrophage recruitment. This pattern resembles previously described distinctions between symptomatic and asymptomatic viral infections and may partly explain the propensity for pre-symptomatic transmission in COVID-19. We further use machine learning to build 27-, 10- and 3-gene classifiers that differentiate COVID-19 from other ARIs with AUROCs of 0.981, 0.954 and 0.885, respectively. Classifier performance is stable across a wide range of viral load, suggesting utility in mitigating false positive or false negative results of direct SARS-CoV-2 tests.


Subject(s)
Betacoronavirus/physiology , Coronavirus Infections/immunology , Coronavirus Infections/virology , Immunity, Innate/genetics , Pneumonia, Viral/immunology , Pneumonia, Viral/virology , COVID-19 , COVID-19 Testing , Clinical Laboratory Techniques , Coronavirus Infections/diagnosis , Diagnosis, Differential , Gene Expression , Host-Pathogen Interactions/immunology , Humans , Immunity, Innate/immunology , Nasopharynx/immunology , Nasopharynx/virology , Pandemics , Pneumonia, Viral/diagnosis , Respiratory Tract Infections/diagnosis , Respiratory Tract Infections/immunology , Respiratory Tract Infections/virology , SARS-CoV-2 , Sensitivity and Specificity , Viral Load
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