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1.
Diagn Microbiol Infect Dis ; 102(2): 115591, 2022 Feb.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1596631

ABSTRACT

Testing for SARS-CoV-2 in resource-poor settings remains a considerable challenge. Gold standard nucleic acid tests are expensive and depend on availability of expensive equipment and highly trained laboratory staff. More affordable and easier rapid antigen tests are an attractive alternative. This study assessed field performance of such a test in western Kenya. We conducted a prospective multi-facility field evaluation study of NowCheck COVID-19 Ag-RDT compared to gold standard PCR. Two pairs of oropharyngeal and nasopharyngeal swabs were collected for comparative analysis. With 997 enrolled participants the Ag-RDT had a sensitivity 71.5% (63.2-78.6) and specificity of 97.5% (96.2-98.5) at cycle threshold value <40. Highest sensitivity of 87.7% (77.2-94.5) was observed in samples with cycle threshold values ≤30. NowCheck COVID-19 Ag-RDT performed well at multiple healthcare facilities in an African field setting. Operational specificity and sensitivity were close to WHO-recommended thresholds.


Subject(s)
Antigens, Viral/analysis , COVID-19 Serological Testing/methods , COVID-19/diagnosis , Nasopharynx/virology , Oropharynx/virology , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Adult , Child , Cross-Sectional Studies , Developing Countries , Diagnostic Tests, Routine , Female , Humans , Kenya , Male , Middle Aged , Point-of-Care Testing , Prospective Studies , Sensitivity and Specificity
2.
Lab Med ; 52(6): e154-e158, 2021 Nov 02.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1559980

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVE: This study aims to evaluate the performance of an antigen-based rapid diagnostic test (RDT) for the detection of the SARS-CoV-2 virus. METHODS: A cross-sectional study was conducted on 677 patients. Two nasopharyngeal swabs and 1 oropharyngeal swab were collected from patients. The RDT was performed onsite by a commercially available immune-chromatographic assay on the nasopharyngeal swab. The nasopharyngeal and oropharyngeal swabs were examined for SARS-CoV-2 RNA by real-time reverse-transcription quantitative polymerase chain reaction (RT-qPCR) assay. RESULTS: The overall sensitivity of the SARS-CoV-2 RDT was 34.5% and the specificity was 99.8%. The positive predictive value and negative predictive value of the test were 96.6% and 91.5%, respectively. The detection rate of RDT in RT-qPCR positive results was high (45%) for cycle threshold values <25. CONCLUSION: The utility of RDT is in diagnosing symptomatic patients and may not be particularly suited as a screening tool for patients with low viral load. The low sensitivity of RDT does not qualify its use as a single test in patients who test negative; RT-qPCR continues to be the gold standard test.


Subject(s)
Antigens, Viral/genetics , COVID-19 Serological Testing/standards , COVID-19/diagnosis , Chromatography, Affinity/methods , RNA, Viral/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Adolescent , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , Automation, Laboratory , COVID-19/immunology , COVID-19/virology , COVID-19 Serological Testing/methods , Cross-Sectional Studies , Female , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Nasopharynx/virology , Oropharynx/virology , Reagent Kits, Diagnostic , Reverse Transcriptase Polymerase Chain Reaction/methods , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Sensitivity and Specificity , Viral Load/genetics
3.
Ann Intern Med ; 174(9): 1261-1269, 2021 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1547664

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: New treatment modalities are urgently needed for patients with COVID-19. The World Health Organization (WHO) Solidarity trial showed no effect of remdesivir or hydroxychloroquine (HCQ) on mortality, but the antiviral effects of these drugs are not known. OBJECTIVE: To evaluate the effects of remdesivir and HCQ on all-cause, in-hospital mortality; the degree of respiratory failure and inflammation; and viral clearance in the oropharynx. DESIGN: NOR-Solidarity is an independent, add-on, randomized controlled trial to the WHO Solidarity trial that included biobanking and 3 months of clinical follow-up (ClinicalTrials.gov: NCT04321616). SETTING: 23 hospitals in Norway. PATIENTS: Eligible patients were adults hospitalized with confirmed SARS-CoV-2 infection. INTERVENTION: Between 28 March and 4 October 2020, a total of 185 patients were randomly assigned and 181 were included in the full analysis set. Patients received remdesivir (n = 42), HCQ (n = 52), or standard of care (SoC) (n = 87). MEASUREMENTS: In addition to the primary end point of WHO Solidarity, study-specific outcomes were viral clearance in oropharyngeal specimens, the degree of respiratory failure, and inflammatory variables. RESULTS: No significant differences were seen between treatment groups in mortality during hospitalization. There was a marked decrease in SARS-CoV-2 load in the oropharynx during the first week overall, with similar decreases and 10-day viral loads among the remdesivir, HCQ, and SoC groups. Remdesivir and HCQ did not affect the degree of respiratory failure or inflammatory variables in plasma or serum. The lack of antiviral effect was not associated with symptom duration, level of viral load, degree of inflammation, or presence of antibodies against SARS-CoV-2 at hospital admittance. LIMITATION: The trial had no placebo group. CONCLUSION: Neither remdesivir nor HCQ affected viral clearance in hospitalized patients with COVID-19. PRIMARY FUNDING SOURCE: National Clinical Therapy Research in the Specialist Health Services, Norway.


Subject(s)
Adenosine Monophosphate/analogs & derivatives , Alanine/analogs & derivatives , Antiviral Agents/therapeutic use , COVID-19/drug therapy , COVID-19/virology , Hydroxychloroquine/therapeutic use , Viral Load/drug effects , Adenosine Monophosphate/therapeutic use , Alanine/therapeutic use , Antibodies, Viral/blood , Biomarkers/blood , COVID-19/complications , COVID-19/mortality , Cause of Death , Female , Hospital Mortality , Humans , Inflammation/virology , Male , Middle Aged , Norway/epidemiology , Oropharynx/virology , Respiratory Insufficiency/virology , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Severity of Illness Index , Standard of Care , Treatment Outcome
4.
J Med Virol ; 93(12): 6837-6840, 2021 12.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1544319

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Gargle samples have been proposed as a noninvasive method for detection of SARS-CoV-2 RNA. The clinical performance of gargle specimens diluted in Cobas® PCR Media and in Cobas® Omni Lysis Reagent was compared to oropharyngeal/nasopharyngeal swab (ONPS) for the detection of SARS-CoV-2 RNA. STUDY DESIGN: Participants were recruited prospectively in two COVID-19 screening clinics. In addition to the ONPS, participants gargled with 5 ml of natural spring water split in the laboratory as follows: 1 ml was added to 4.3 ml of polymerase chain reaction (PCR) media and 400 µl was added to 200 µl of lysis buffer. Testing was performed with the Cobas® SARS-CoV-2 test on the Cobas® 6800 or 8800 platforms. RESULTS: Overall, 134/647 (20.7%) participants were considered infected because the ONPS or at least one gargle test was positive. ONPS had, respectively, a sensitivity of 96.3% (95% confidence interval [CI]: 91.3-98.5); both gargle processing methods were slightly less but equally sensitive (90.3% [95% CI: 83.9-94.3]). When ONPS and gargle specimens were both positive, the mean cycle threshold (Ct ) was significantly higher for gargles, suggesting lower viral loads. CONCLUSION: Gargle specimens directly added in PCR Media provide a similar clinical sensitivity to chemical lysis, both having a slightly, not significantly, lower sensitivity to ONPS.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Nucleic Acid Testing/methods , COVID-19/diagnosis , COVID-19/virology , Nasopharynx/virology , Oropharynx/virology , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Diagnostic Tests, Routine/methods , Humans , Mass Screening/methods , Prospective Studies , RNA, Viral/genetics , Saliva/virology , Specimen Handling/methods , Viral Load/genetics
5.
Emerg Microbes Infect ; 10(1): 2090-2097, 2021 Dec.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1479918

ABSTRACT

Since December 2019, coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) caused by SARS coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) has spread and threatens public health worldwide. The recurrence of SARS-CoV-2 RNA detection in patients after discharge from hospital signals a risk of transmission from such patients to the community and challenges the current discharge criteria of COVID-19 patients. A wide range of clinical specimens has been used to detect SARS-CoV-2. However, to date, a consensus has not been reached regarding the most appropriate specimens to use for viral RNA detection in assessing COVID-19 patients for discharge. An anal swab sample was proposed as the standard because of prolonged viral detection. In this retrospective longitudinal study of viral RNA detection in 60 confirmed COVID-19 patients, we used saliva, oropharyngeal/nasopharyngeal swab (O/N swab) and anal swab procedures from admission to discharge. The conversion times of saliva and anal swab were longer than that of O/N swab. The conversion time of hyper sensitive-CRP was the shortest and correlated with that of CT scanning and viral detection. Some patients were found to be RNA-positive in saliva while RNA-negative in anal swab while the reverse was true in some other patients, which indicated that false negatives were inevitable if only the anal swab is used for evaluating suitability for discharge. These results indicated that double-checking for viral RNA using multiple and diverse specimens was essential, and saliva could be a candidate to supplement anal swabs to reduce false-negative results and facilitate pandemic control.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Nucleic Acid Testing/methods , COVID-19/diagnosis , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Saliva/virology , Adult , Anal Canal/virology , False Negative Reactions , Female , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Nasopharynx/virology , Oropharynx/virology , Patient Discharge , RNA, Viral/analysis , Retrospective Studies , Young Adult
6.
Int J Lab Hematol ; 43(6): 1334-1340, 2021 Dec.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1443280

ABSTRACT

INTRODUCTION: Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) caused by SARS-CoV2 can present from mild flu-like symptoms to acute respiratory distress syndrome. There is multi-organ involvement; particularly, hematopoietic system can be associated with morphological changes in blood cells of COVID-19 patients. METHOD: We conducted a cross-sectional study on a cohort of 50 COVID-19 patients, confirmed on RT-PCR with documented cycle threshold (Ct) value. Peripheral blood sample of these patients was collected and examined for complete blood counts (CBC) on automated haematological analyser as well as Leishman-stained blood smears to look for morphological changes in blood cells. Morphological changes were evaluated with reference to clinical severity and Ct value. Additionally, association between Ct value and clinical severity was also performed. Statistical tests were performed, and P value <.05 was considered significant. RESULTS: Mean age of our study group was 42.16 ± 15.55 years, with male preponderance. Most commonly observed peripheral blood changes were hypolobation (P value = .002) and toxic granules (P value = .005) in neutrophils, atypical granules with nucleolar prominence in lymphocytes, cytoplasmic granulation with clumped nuclear chromatin in monocytes, giant platelets and thrombocytopenia and normocytic normochromic anaemia. CONCLUSION: No association was found between clinical severity and Ct value as well as peripheral blood morphological changes with Ct value. We conclude that examination of peripheral smear coupled with complete blood count (CBC) is only partially supportive of disease pathogenesis and to assess the viral load other parameters should be utilised instead of relying solely on Ct value.


Subject(s)
Blood Cells/ultrastructure , COVID-19 Nucleic Acid Testing/methods , COVID-19/blood , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Viral Load , Viremia/blood , Adult , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , Blood Cell Count , COVID-19/virology , Cell Shape , Cell Size , Cross-Sectional Studies , Cytoplasmic Granules/ultrastructure , Female , Hematopoiesis , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Nasopharynx/virology , Oropharynx/virology , Prospective Studies , RNA, Viral/blood , Severity of Illness Index , Young Adult
7.
PLoS One ; 16(9): e0257350, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1435609

ABSTRACT

SARS-CoV-2 has spread worldwide and has become a global health problem. As a result, the demand for inputs for diagnostic tests rose dramatically, as did the cost. Countries with inadequate infrastructure experience difficulties in expanding their qPCR testing capacity. Therefore, the development of sensitive and specific alternative methods is essential. This study aimed to develop, standardize, optimize, and validate conventional RT-PCR targeting the N gene of SARS-CoV-2 in naso-oropharyngeal swab samples compared to qPCR. Using bioinformatics tools, specific primers were determined, with a product expected to be 519 bp. The reaction conditions were optimized using a commercial positive control, and the detection limit was determined to be 100 fragments. To validate conventional RT-PCR, we determined a representative sampling of 346 samples from patients with suspected infection whose diagnosis was made in parallel with qPCR. A sensitivity of 92.1% and specificity of 100% were verified, with an accuracy of 95.66% and correlation coefficient of 0.913. Under current Brazilian conditions, this method generates approximately 60% savings compared to qPCR costs. Conventional RT-PCR, validated herein, showed sufficient results for the detection of SARS-CoV-2 and can be used as an alternative for epidemiological studies and interspecies correlations.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Nucleic Acid Testing/methods , COVID-19/diagnosis , Nose/virology , Nucleocapsid Proteins/genetics , Oropharynx/virology , Real-Time Polymerase Chain Reaction/methods , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Adolescent , Brazil , COVID-19/virology , DNA Primers/genetics , Female , Humans , Male , Molecular Diagnostic Techniques/methods , RNA, Viral/genetics , Reference Standards , Sensitivity and Specificity , Specimen Handling/methods
8.
Mikrochim Acta ; 188(10): 335, 2021 Sep 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1411927

ABSTRACT

A practical colorimetric assay was developed for the detection of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2). For this purpose, magnetic γ Fe2O3 nanoparticles were synthesized and used as a peroxidase-like mimic activity molecule. In the presence of γ Fe2O3 nanoparticles, the color change of H2O2 included 3,3',5,5'-tetramethylbenzidine was monitored at the wavelength of 654 nm when spike protein interacted with angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 receptor. This oxidation-reduction reaction was examined both spectroscopically and by using electrochemical techniques. The experimental parameters were optimized and the analytical characteristics investigated. The developed assay was applied to real SARS-CoV-2 samples, and very good results that were in accordance with the real time polymerase chain reaction were obtained.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Testing/methods , COVID-19/diagnosis , Colorimetry/methods , Magnetic Iron Oxide Nanoparticles/chemistry , SARS-CoV-2/chemistry , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/chemistry , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/metabolism , Benzidines/chemistry , Biosensing Techniques/methods , COVID-19 Testing/instrumentation , Catalysis , Chromogenic Compounds/chemistry , Cysteine/chemistry , Humans , Hydrogen Peroxide/chemistry , Limit of Detection , Nasopharynx/virology , Oropharynx/virology , Oxidation-Reduction , Peroxidase/chemistry , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/metabolism
10.
Med Hypotheses ; 146: 110436, 2021 Jan.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1386311

ABSTRACT

Dental professionals work closely with patients and present an increased risk of person-to-person transmission of SARS-CoV-2. Moreover, the use of ultrasonic scalers, air-water syringes, and slow and high-speed handpieces, which are common in the dental office, generate spatter and aerosol. The use of preprocedural mouthrinses has been proposed to reduce the viral load in saliva and oropharyngeal tissues, thus decreasing viral load in dental aerosol. Although some mouthrinses demonstrates an antiviral effect, there is limited evidence about the clinical efficacy of any mouthrinse in the reduction of SARS-CoV-2 in the dental aerosol. We hypothesized that mouthrinses may reduce SARS-CoV-2 viral load in the oropharynx and its fluids reducing viral load in dental aerosol. The potential use of mouthrinses is discussed, along with proposal of in vitro and clinical studies, in order to evaluate this hypothesis. If this hypothesis holds true, dental professionals and patients may benefit from the routine use of preprocedural mouthrinses.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/transmission , COVID-19/virology , Infectious Disease Transmission, Patient-to-Professional/prevention & control , Models, Biological , Mouthwashes/therapeutic use , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Viral Load , Aerosols , Antiviral Agents/therapeutic use , COVID-19/prevention & control , Dental Auxiliaries , Dentists , Disease Reservoirs/virology , Humans , In Vitro Techniques , Mouthwashes/chemistry , Oropharynx/virology , Pandemics/prevention & control , Randomized Controlled Trials as Topic/methods , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity , Saliva/virology
11.
Diagn Microbiol Infect Dis ; 101(4): 115519, 2021 Dec.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1370491

ABSTRACT

To improve laboratory safety we thermally treated naso-oropharyngeal samples before testing with the cobas SARS-CoV-2 assay. This study aimed to determine if thermal treatment significantly affects the qualitative detection of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) and the quantitative measurement of cobas SARS-CoV-2 ORF1a and E-gene target copy number using an in-house quantitative method. A collection of positive (n = 238) and negative samples (n = 196) was tested in parallel comparing thermal treatment (75 °C for 15 minutes) to room-temperature. There were no significant differences in the final qualitative outcomes for thermal treatment versus room-temperature (99.8% agreement) despite a statistically significant reduction (P < 0.05) in target copy number following thermal treatment. The median ORF1a and E-gene reduction in target copy number was -0.07 (1.6%) and -0.22 (4.2%) log10 copies/mL respectively. The standard curves for both ORF1a and E-gene targets were highly linear (r2 = 0.99). Good correlation was observed for ORF1a (r2 = 0.96) and E-gene (r2 = 0.98) comparing thermal treatment to room-temperature control.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Testing/methods , COVID-19/diagnosis , Nasopharynx/virology , Oropharynx/virology , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Specimen Handling/methods , Hot Temperature , Humans , RNA, Viral/isolation & purification , Virus Inactivation
12.
PLoS One ; 16(8): e0256316, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1362092

ABSTRACT

Efficient and effective viral detection methodologies are a critical piece in the global response to COVID-19, with PCR-based nasopharyngeal and oropharyngeal swab testing serving as the current gold standard. With over 100 million confirmed cases globally, the supply chains supporting these PCR testing efforts are under a tremendous amount of stress, driving the need for innovative and accurate diagnostic solutions. Herein, the utility of a direct-to-PCR method of SARS-CoV-2 detection grounded in mechanical homogenization is examined for reducing resources needed for testing while maintaining a comparable sensitivity to the current gold standard workflow of nasopharyngeal and oropharyngeal swab testing. In a head-to-head comparison of 30 patient samples, this initial clinical validation study of the proposed homogenization-based workflow demonstrated significant agreeability with the current extraction-based method utilized while cutting the total resources needed in half.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Nucleic Acid Testing/methods , COVID-19/diagnosis , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Specimen Handling/instrumentation , COVID-19 Nucleic Acid Testing/instrumentation , Feasibility Studies , Humans , Nasopharynx/virology , Oropharynx/virology , Prospective Studies , RNA, Viral/genetics , Real-Time Polymerase Chain Reaction , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Sensitivity and Specificity , Workflow
13.
J Med Microbiol ; 70(8)2021 Aug.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1348099

ABSTRACT

Introduction. The current severe acute respiratory syndrome-associated coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2) pandemic has stressed the global supply chain for specialized equipment, including flocked swabs.Hypothesis. Saliva could be a potential alternative specimen source for diagnosis of SARS-CoV-2 infection by reverse-transcriptase PCR (RT-PCR).Aim. To compare the detection efficiency of SARS-CoV-2 RNA in saliva and oro-nasopharyngeal swab (ONPS) specimens.Methodology. Patients recruited from hospital provided paired saliva and ONPS specimens. We performed manual or automated RT-PCR with prior proteinase K treatment without RNA extraction using the Seegene Allplex 2019 nCoV assay.Results. Of the 773 specimen pairs, 165 (21.3 %) had at least one positive sample. Additionally, 138 specimens tested positive by both sampling methods. Fifteen and 12 cases were detected only by nasopharyngeal swab and saliva, respectively. The sensitivity of ONPS (153/165; 92.7 %; 95 % CI: 88.8-96.7) was similar to that of saliva (150/165; 90.9 %; 95 % CI: 86.5-95.3; P=0.5). In patients with symptoms for ≤ 10 days, the sensitivity of ONPS (118/126; 93.7 %; 95 % CI: 89.4-97.9) was similar to that of saliva (122/126; 96.8 %; 95 % CI: 93.8-99.9 %; P=0.9). However, the sensitivity of ONPS (20/22; 95.2 %; 95 % CI: 86.1-100) was higher than that of saliva (16/22; 71.4 %; 95 % CI: 52.1-90.8) in patients with symptoms for more than 10 days.Conclusions. Saliva sampling is an acceptable alternative to ONPS for diagnosing SARS-CoV-2 infection in symptomatic individuals displaying symptoms for ≤ 10 days. These results reinforce the need to expand the use of saliva samples, which are self-collected and do not require swabs.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Nucleic Acid Testing , COVID-19/diagnosis , Nasopharynx/virology , Oropharynx/virology , Saliva/virology , Adult , Aged , Child , Female , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Prospective Studies , RNA, Viral/analysis , Reverse Transcriptase Polymerase Chain Reaction , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Specimen Handling
15.
Viruses ; 13(8)2021 07 26.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1325792

ABSTRACT

Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) has affected millions of people globally since its first detection in late 2019. Besides humans, cats and, to some extent, dogs were shown to be susceptible to SARS-CoV-2, highlighting the need for surveillance in a One Health context. Seven veterinary clinics from regions with high incidences of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) were recruited during the early pandemic (March to July 2020) for the screening of patients. A total of 2257 oropharyngeal and nasal swab specimen from 877 dogs and 260 cats (including 18 animals from COVID-19-affected households and 92 animals with signs of respiratory disease) were analyzed for the presence of SARS-CoV-2 RNA using reverse transcriptase real-time polymerase chain reaction (RT-qPCR) targeting the viral envelope (E) and RNA dependent RNA polymerase (RdRp) genes. One oropharyngeal swab from an Italian cat, living in a COVID-19-affected household in Piedmont, tested positive in RT-qPCR (1/260; 0.38%, 95% CI: 0.01-2.1%), and SARS-CoV-2 infection of the animal was serologically confirmed six months later. One oropharyngeal swab from a dog was potentially positive (1/877; 0.1%, 95% CI: 0.002-0.63%), but the result was not confirmed in a reference laboratory. Analyses of convenience sera from 118 animals identified one dog (1/94; 1.1%; 95% CI: 0.02-5.7%) from Lombardy, but no cats (0/24), as positive for anti-SARS-CoV-2 receptor binding domain (RBD) antibodies and neutralizing activity. These findings support the hypothesis that the prevalence of SARS-CoV-2 infection in pet cat and dog populations, and hence, the risk of zoonotic transmission to veterinary staff, was low during the first wave of the pandemic, even in hotspot areas.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/veterinary , Cat Diseases/virology , Dog Diseases/virology , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Animals , COVID-19/diagnosis , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/virology , Cat Diseases/diagnosis , Cat Diseases/epidemiology , Cats , Dog Diseases/diagnosis , Dog Diseases/epidemiology , Dogs , Female , Germany/epidemiology , Italy/epidemiology , Male , Oropharynx/virology , Pandemics , RNA, Viral/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/genetics
16.
Med J Aust ; 215(6): 273-278, 2021 09 20.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1319820

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVE: To compare the concordance and acceptability of saliva testing with standard-of-care oropharyngeal and bilateral deep nasal swab testing for severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2) in children and in general practice. DESIGN: Prospective multicentre diagnostic validation study. SETTING: Royal Children's Hospital, and two general practices (cohealth, West Melbourne; Cirqit Health, Altona North) in Melbourne, July-October 2020. PARTICIPANTS: 1050 people who provided paired saliva and oropharyngeal-nasal swabs for SARS-CoV-2 testing. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Numbers of cases in which SARS-CoV-2 was detected in either specimen type by real-time polymerase chain reaction; concordance of results for paired specimens; positive percent agreement (PPA) for virus detection, by specimen type. RESULTS: SARS-CoV-2 was detected in 54 of 1050 people with assessable specimens (5%), including 19 cases (35%) in which both specimens were positive. The overall PPA was 72% (95% CI, 58-84%) for saliva and 63% (95% CI, 49-76%) for oropharyngeal-nasal swabs. For the 35 positive specimens from people aged 10 years or more, PPA was 86% (95% CI, 70-95%) for saliva and 63% (95% CI, 45-79%) for oropharyngeal-nasal swabs. Adding saliva testing to standard-of-care oropharyngeal-nasal swab testing increased overall case detection by 59% (95% CI, 29-95%). Providing saliva was preferred to an oropharyngeal-nasal swab by most participants (75%), including 141 of 153 children under 10 years of age (92%). CONCLUSION: In children over 10 years of age and adults, saliva testing alone may be suitable for SARS-CoV-2 detection, while for children under 10, saliva testing may be suitable as an adjunct to oropharyngeal-nasal swab testing for increasing case detection.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Nucleic Acid Testing/methods , COVID-19/diagnosis , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Specimen Handling/methods , Adolescent , Adult , Age Factors , Aged , COVID-19/virology , Child , Child, Preschool , Female , Humans , Infant , Male , Middle Aged , Nasopharynx/virology , Oropharynx/virology , Prospective Studies , RNA, Viral/isolation & purification , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Saliva/virology , Young Adult
17.
Eur J Clin Microbiol Infect Dis ; 40(12): 2489-2496, 2021 Dec.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1293388

ABSTRACT

Easy access to screening for timely identification and isolation of infectious COVID-19 patients remains crucial in sustaining the international efforts to control COVID-19 spread. A major barrier limiting broad-based screening is the lack of a simple, rapid, and cost-effective COVID-19 testing method. We evaluated the feasibility and utility of facemask sampling in a cohort of 42 COVID-19-positive and 36 COVID-19-negative patients. We used a prototype of Steri-Strips™ (3 M) applied to the inner surface of looped surgical facemasks (Assure), which was worn by patients for a minimum wear time of 3 h, then removed and sent for SARS-CoV-2 PCR testing. Baseline demographics and symptomatology were also collected. Facemask sampling positivity was highest within the first 5 days of symptomatic presentation. Patients with nasopharyngeal and/or oropharyngeal swab SARS-CoV-2 PCR Ct values < 25.09 had SARS-CoV-2 detected on facemask sampling, while patients with Ct values ≥ 25.2 had no SARS-CoV-2 detected on facemask sampling. Facemask sampling can identify patients with COVID-19 during the early symptomatic phase or those with high viral loads, hence allowing timely identification and isolation of those with the highest transmission risk. Given the widespread use of facemasks, this method can potentially be easily applied to achieve broad-based, or even continuous, population screening.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Nucleic Acid Testing/methods , COVID-19/virology , Masks/virology , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Adult , Aged , COVID-19/diagnosis , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19 Nucleic Acid Testing/instrumentation , Cohort Studies , Feasibility Studies , Female , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Nasopharynx/virology , Oropharynx/virology , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2/classification , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Young Adult
18.
J Clin Virol ; 138: 104817, 2021 05.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1279625

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Diagnostic assays for severe acute respiratory syndrome Coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2) that are easy to perform and produce fast results are essential for timely decision making regarding the isolation of contagious individuals. OBJECTIVE: We evaluated the CE-approved eazyplex® SARS-CoV-2, a ready-to-use real time RT-LAMP assay for identification of the SARS-CoV-2 N and ORF8 genes from swabs in less than 30 min without RNA extraction. STUDY DESIGN: Oropharyngeal and nasal swabs from 100 positive and 50 negative patients were inoculated into 0.9 % saline and tested by NeuMoDx™ RT-PCR. An aliquot was diluted fivefold in Copan sputum liquefying (SL) solution and directly analyzed by eazyplex® SARS-CoV-2. In addition, 130 patient swabs were prospectively tested with both methods in parallel. Analytical sensitivity of the assay was determined using virus stock dilutions. RESULTS: Positive percent agreement (PPA) between the eazyplex® SARS-CoV-2 and RT-PCR was 74 % for samples with Ct values < 35. When using a Ct cut-off ≤ 28 the PPA increased to 97.4 %. In the prospective part of the study overall PPA of the eazyplex® kit was 66.7 % but increased to 100 % when only Ct values ≤ 28 were considered. There were no false positive results. The median time to positivity was 12.5 min for the N gene and 16.75 min for ORF8. Analytical sensitivity was 3.75 TCID50/mL. 105 virus copies/mL were reproducibly detected. CONCLUSION: The eazyplex® SARS-CoV-2 is a rapid assay that accurately identifies samples with high viral loads. It may be useful for near-patient testing outside of a molecular diagnostic laboratory.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Nucleic Acid Testing/methods , COVID-19/diagnosis , Nasopharynx/virology , Oropharynx/virology , RNA, Viral/isolation & purification , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Diagnostic Tests, Routine , Humans , Point-of-Care Testing
19.
Int J Biol Sci ; 17(8): 2080-2088, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1271049

ABSTRACT

Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), an infectious disease caused by Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), has posed a persistent global threat. The transmission of SARS-CoV-2 is wide and swift. Rapid detection of the viral RNA and effective therapy are imperative to prevent the worldwide spread of the new infectious disease. Clustered Regularly-Interspaced Short Palindromic Repeats (CRISPR)- CRISPR-associated protein (Cas) system is an RNA-directed adaptive immune system, and it has been transformed into a gene editing tool. Applications of CRISPR-Cas system involves in many fields, such as human gene therapy, drug discovery and disease diagnosis. Under the background of COVID-19 pandemic, CRISPR-Cas system shows hidden capacity to fight the emergency in many aspects. This review will focus on the role of gene editing in COVID-19 diagnosis and treatment. We will describe the potential use of CRISPR-Cas-based system in combating COVID-19, from diagnosis to treatment. Furthermore, the limitation and perspectives of this novel technology are also evaluated.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Nucleic Acid Testing/methods , COVID-19/diagnosis , COVID-19/therapy , CRISPR-Cas Systems , Gene Editing/methods , Gene Expression Regulation, Viral/genetics , RNA, Viral/analysis , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Animals , Fluorometry/methods , Forecasting , Gene Knockout Techniques , High-Throughput Nucleotide Sequencing , Host-Pathogen Interactions , Humans , Mice , Mice, Transgenic , Models, Animal , Molecular Targeted Therapy , Nasopharynx/virology , Oropharynx/virology , RNA, Viral/genetics , RNA, Viral/metabolism , Real-Time Polymerase Chain Reaction , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Sensitivity and Specificity
20.
Biomed Res Int ; 2021: 6653950, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1263958

ABSTRACT

The study is aimed at establishing the optimal parameters for RNA purification of pooled specimens, in SARS-CoV-2 assay. This research work evaluates the difference of extracted RNA purity of pooled samples with and without treatment with isopropyl alcohol and its effect on real-time RT-PCR. As per the protocol of the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR), 5 sample pools were analysed using qRT-PCR. A total of 100 pooled samples were selected for the study by mixing 50 µL of one COVID-19 positive nasopharyngeal/oropharyngeal (NP/OP) specimen and 50 µL each of 4 known negative specimens. Pool RNA was extracted using the column-based method, and 1 set of pooled extracted RNA was tested as such, while RNA of the second set was treated additionally with chilled isopropyl alcohol (modified protocol). Further, the purity of extracted RNA in both the groups was checked using Microvolume Spectrophotometers (Nanodrop) followed by RT-PCR targeting E-gene and RNaseP target. The results showed that the purity index of extracted RNA of untreated pooled specimens was inferior to isopropyl alcohol-treated templates, which was observed to be 85% sensitivity and 100% specificity. The average Cq (E gene) in the unpurified and purified pool RNA group was 34.66 and 31.48, respectively. The nanodrop data suggested that purified RNA concentration was significantly increased with an average value of 24.73 ± 1.49 ng/uL, which might be the reason for high sensitivity and specificity. Thus, this group testing of SARS-CoV-2 cases using pools of 5 individual samples would be the best alternative for saving molecular reagents, personnel time, and can increase the overall testing capacity. However, purity of RNA is one of the important determinants to procure unfailing results, thus, this additional purification step must be included in the protocol after RNA has been extracted using commercially available kit before performing qRT-PCR.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/diagnosis , Coronavirus Envelope Proteins/genetics , RNA, Viral/isolation & purification , Real-Time Polymerase Chain Reaction/methods , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , 2-Propanol/chemistry , Biomarkers/analysis , COVID-19/virology , DNA Primers/chemical synthesis , DNA Primers/genetics , Humans , Nasopharynx/virology , Oropharynx/virology , RNA, Viral/genetics , Real-Time Polymerase Chain Reaction/economics , Real-Time Polymerase Chain Reaction/standards , Reproducibility of Results , Sensitivity and Specificity
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