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1.
J Am Chem Soc ; 143(47): 19794-19801, 2021 12 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1521695

ABSTRACT

Effective screening of infectious diseases requires a fast, cheap, and population-scale testing. Antigen pool testing can increase the test rate and shorten the screening time, thus being a valuable approach for epidemic prevention and control. However, the overall percent agreement (OPA) with polymerase chain reaction (PCR) is one-half to three-quarters, hampering it from being a comprehensive method, especially pool testing, beyond the gold-standard PCR. Here, a multiantibodies transistor assay is developed for sensitive and highly precise antigen pool testing. The multiantibodies capture SARS-CoV-2 spike S1 proteins with different configurations, resulting in an antigen-binding affinity down to 0.34 fM. The limit of detection reaches 3.5 × 10-17 g mL-1SARS-CoV-2 spike S1 protein in artificial saliva, 4-5 orders of magnitude lower than existing transistor sensors. The testing of 60 nasopharyngeal swabs exhibits ∼100% OPA with PCR within an average diagnoses time of 38.9 s. Owing to its highly precise feature, a portable integrated platform is fabricated, which achieves 10-in-1 pooled screening for high testing throughput. This work solves the long-standing problem of antigen pool testing, enabling it to be a valuable tool in precise diagnoses and population-wide screening of COVID-19 or other epidemics in the future.


Subject(s)
Antibodies/immunology , Immunoassay/methods , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/immunology , Transistors, Electronic , COVID-19/diagnosis , COVID-19/virology , Immunoassay/instrumentation , Limit of Detection , Nasopharynx/virology , Polymerase Chain Reaction , Protein Subunits/genetics , Protein Subunits/immunology , Protein Subunits/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , SARS-CoV-2/metabolism , Saliva/virology , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/metabolism
2.
Immunity ; 54(12): 2877-2892.e7, 2021 12 14.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1499988

ABSTRACT

Adjuvants are critical for improving the quality and magnitude of adaptive immune responses to vaccination. Lipid nanoparticle (LNP)-encapsulated nucleoside-modified mRNA vaccines have shown great efficacy against severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), but the mechanism of action of this vaccine platform is not well-characterized. Using influenza virus and SARS-CoV-2 mRNA and protein subunit vaccines, we demonstrated that our LNP formulation has intrinsic adjuvant activity that promotes induction of strong T follicular helper cell, germinal center B cell, long-lived plasma cell, and memory B cell responses that are associated with durable and protective antibodies in mice. Comparative experiments demonstrated that this LNP formulation outperformed a widely used MF59-like adjuvant, AddaVax. The adjuvant activity of the LNP relies on the ionizable lipid component and on IL-6 cytokine induction but not on MyD88- or MAVS-dependent sensing of LNPs. Our study identified LNPs as a versatile adjuvant that enhances the efficacy of traditional and next-generation vaccine platforms.


Subject(s)
B-Lymphocytes/immunology , COVID-19 Vaccines/immunology , COVID-19/immunology , Germinal Center/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/physiology , T-Lymphocytes, Helper-Inducer/immunology , /immunology , Adaptor Proteins, Signal Transducing/genetics , Adaptor Proteins, Signal Transducing/metabolism , Adjuvants, Immunologic , Animals , HEK293 Cells , Humans , Immunity, Humoral , Interleukin-6/genetics , Interleukin-6/metabolism , Liposomes/administration & dosage , Mice , Mice, Inbred BALB C , Nanoparticles/administration & dosage , Protein Subunits/genetics , /genetics
3.
Signal Transduct Target Ther ; 5(1): 220, 2020 10 06.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1387194
4.
Microbiol Spectr ; 9(1): e0003021, 2021 09 03.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1341308

ABSTRACT

Monitoring and strategic response to variants in severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) represent a considerable challenge in the current pandemic and for future viral outbreaks. Mutations/deletions of the virion's prefusion Spike protein may have significant impact on vaccines and therapeutics that utilize this key structural protein in their mitigation strategies. In this study, we have demonstrated how dominant energetic landscape mappings ("glue points") based on ab inito all-atom force fields coupled with phylogenetic sequence alignment information can identify key residue mutations and deletions associated with variants. We also found several examples of excellent homology of stabilizing residue glue points across the lineages of betacoronavirus Spike proteins that we have called "sequence homologous glue points." SARS-CoV-2 demonstrates the least number of stabilizing glue points associated with interchain interactions among Down-state protomers across lineages. Additionally, we computationally studied variants among the trimeric Spike protein of SARS-CoV-2 using all-atom molecular dynamics to ascertain structural and energetic changes among variants. We examined both a theoretically based triple mutant and the UK or B.1.1.7 variant. For the theoretical triple mutant, we demonstrated through alanine substitutions that three key residues could cause the transition of Down-to-Up protomer states, where the transition is characterized by the "arm" length of the receptor-binding domain (RBD) rather than the hinge angle. For the B.1.1.7 variant, we demonstrated the critical importance of mutations D614G and N501Y on the structure and binding, respectively, of the Spike protein. We note that these same two key mutations are also found in the South African B.1.351 variant. IMPORTANCE Viral variants represent a major challenge to monitoring viral outbreaks and formulating strategic health care responses. Variants represent transmitting viruses that have specific mutations and deletions associated with their genome. In the case of SARS-CoV-2 and other related viruses (betacoronaviruses), many of these mutations and deletions are associated with the Spike protein that the virus uses to infect cells. Here, we have analyzed both SARS-CoV-2 variants and related viruses, such as Middle Eastern respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV), in order to understand not only differences, but also key similarities between them. Understanding similarities can be as important as differences in determining key functional features of a class of viruses, such as the betacoronaviruses. We have used both phylogenetic analysis, which traces genetic similarities and differences, along with independent biophysics analysis, which adds function or behavior, in order to determine possible functional differences and hence possible transmission and infection differences among variants and lineages.


Subject(s)
Protein Subunits/genetics , Protein Subunits/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/chemistry , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/metabolism , Base Sequence , COVID-19/virology , Humans , Molecular Dynamics Simulation , Mutation , Phylogeny , Protein Binding , Protein Conformation , SARS-CoV-2/classification , Sequence Alignment , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/classification , United Kingdom
5.
Int J Mol Sci ; 21(20)2020 Oct 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1298152

ABSTRACT

Nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) are pentameric ligand-gated ion channels responsible for rapid neural and neuromuscular signal transmission. Although it is well documented that 16 subunits are encoded by the human genome, their presence in airway epithelial cells (AECs) remains poorly understood, and contribution to pathology is mainly discussed in the context of cancer. We analysed nAChR subunit expression in the human lungs of smokers and non-smokers using transcriptomic data for whole-lung tissues, isolated large AECs, and isolated small AECs. We identified differential expressions of nAChRs in terms of detection and repartition in the three modalities. Smoking-associated alterations were also unveiled. Then, we identified an nAChR transcriptomic print at the single-cell level. Finally, we reported the localizations of detectable nAChRs in bronchi and large bronchioles. Thus, we compiled the first complete atlas of pulmonary nAChR subunits to open new avenues to further unravel the involvement of these receptors in lung homeostasis and respiratory diseases.


Subject(s)
Lung/metabolism , Protein Subunits/metabolism , Receptors, Nicotinic/metabolism , Adult , Age Factors , Cell Cycle , Epithelial Cells/metabolism , Gene Expression Regulation , Humans , Protein Subunits/chemistry , Protein Subunits/genetics , Receptors, Nicotinic/chemistry , Receptors, Nicotinic/genetics , Respiratory Mucosa/metabolism , Respiratory Mucosa/pathology , Signal Detection, Psychological , Smoking , Transcription, Genetic
6.
J Biol Chem ; 296: 100346, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1056842

ABSTRACT

Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), has developed into a global pandemic since its first outbreak in the winter of 2019. An extensive investigation of SARS-CoV-2 is critical for disease control. Various recombinant monoclonal antibodies of human origin that neutralize SARS-CoV-2 infection have been isolated from convalescent patients and will be applied as therapies and prophylaxis. However, the need for dedicated monoclonal antibodies suitable for molecular pathology research is not fully addressed. Here, we produced six mouse anti-SARS-CoV-2 spike monoclonal antibodies that not only exhibit robust performance in immunoassays including western blotting, ELISA, immunofluorescence, and immunoprecipitation, but also demonstrate neutralizing activity against SARS-CoV-2 infection to VeroE6/TMPRSS2 cells. Due to their mouse origin, our monoclonal antibodies are compatible with the experimental immunoassay setups commonly used in basic molecular biology research laboratories, providing a useful tool for future research. Furthermore, in the hope of applying the antibodies of clinical setting, we determined the variable regions of the antibodies and used them to produce recombinant human/mouse chimeric antibodies.


Subject(s)
Antibodies, Monoclonal/biosynthesis , Antibodies, Neutralizing/biosynthesis , Antibodies, Viral/biosynthesis , COVID-19/prevention & control , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Animals , Antibodies, Monoclonal/chemistry , Antibodies, Monoclonal/isolation & purification , Antibodies, Neutralizing/chemistry , Antibodies, Neutralizing/isolation & purification , Antibodies, Viral/chemistry , Antibodies, Viral/isolation & purification , Binding Sites , COVID-19/immunology , COVID-19/virology , Cloning, Molecular , Escherichia coli/genetics , Escherichia coli/metabolism , Gene Expression , Genetic Vectors/chemistry , Genetic Vectors/metabolism , Humans , Mice , Neutralization Tests , Protein Binding , Protein Interaction Domains and Motifs , Protein Subunits/administration & dosage , Protein Subunits/genetics , Protein Subunits/immunology , Recombinant Fusion Proteins/administration & dosage , Recombinant Fusion Proteins/genetics , Recombinant Fusion Proteins/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/administration & dosage , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/immunology , Vaccination
7.
PLoS One ; 15(11): e0241168, 2020.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-917991

ABSTRACT

The SARS-CoV-2 virion responsible for the current world-wide pandemic COVID-19 has a characteristic Spike protein (S) on its surface that embellishes both a prefusion state and fusion state. The prefusion Spike protein (S) is a large trimeric protein where each protomer may be in a so-called Up state or Down state, depending on the configuration of its receptor binding domain (RBD) within its distal, prefusion S1 domain. The Up state is believed to allow binding of the virion to ACE-2 receptors on human epithelial cells, whereas the Down state is believed to be relatively inactive or reduced in its binding behavior. We have performed detailed all-atom, dominant energy landscape mappings for noncovalent interactions (charge, partial charge, and van der Waals) of the SARS-CoV-2 Spike protein in its static prefusion state based on two recent and independent experimental structure publications. We included both interchain interactions and intrachain (domain) interactions in our mappings in order to determine any telling differences (different so-called "glue" points) between residues in the Up and Down state protomers. The S2 proximal, fusion domain demonstrated no appreciable energetic differences between Up and Down protomers, including interchain as well as each protomer's intrachain, S1-S2 interactions. However, the S1 domain interactions across neighboring protomers, which include the RBD-NTD cross chain interactions, showed significant energetic differences between Up-Down and Down-Down neighboring protomers. This included, for example, a key RBD residue ARG357 in the Up-Down interaction and a three residue sequence ALA520-PRO521-ALA522, associated with a turn structure in the RBD of the Up state protomer, acting as a stabilizing interaction with the NTD of its neighbor protomer. Additionally, our intra chain dominant energy mappings within each protomer, identified a significant "glue" point or possible "latch" for the Down state protomer between the S1 subdomain, SD1, and the RBD domain of the same protomer that was completely missing in the Up state protomer analysis. Ironically, this dominant energetic interaction in the Down state protomer involved the backbone atoms of the same three residue sequence ALA520-PRO521-ALA522 of the RBD with the amino acid R-group of GLN564 in the SD1 domain. Thus, this same three residue sequence acts as a stabilizer of the RBD in the Up conformation through its interactions with its neighboring NTD chain and a kind of latch in the Down state conformation through its interactions with its own SD1 domain. The dominant interaction energy residues identified here are also conserved across reported variations of SARS-CoV-2, as well as the closely related virions SARS-Cov and the bat corona virus RatG13. We conducted preliminary molecular dynamics simulations across 0.1 µ seconds to see if this latch provided structural stability and indeed found that a single point mutation (Q564G) resulted in the latch releasing transforming the protomer from the Down to the Up state conformation. Full trimeric Spike protein studies of the same mutation across all protomers, however, did not exhibit latch release demonstrating the critical importance of interchain interactions across the S1 domain, including RBD-NTD neighboring chain interactions. Therapies aimed at disrupting these noncovalent interactions could be a viable route for the physico-chemical mitigation of this deadly virion.


Subject(s)
Betacoronavirus/metabolism , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/metabolism , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2 , Betacoronavirus/isolation & purification , COVID-19 , Coronavirus Infections/pathology , Coronavirus Infections/virology , Humans , Molecular Dynamics Simulation , Pandemics , Peptidyl-Dipeptidase A/chemistry , Peptidyl-Dipeptidase A/metabolism , Pneumonia, Viral/pathology , Pneumonia, Viral/virology , Point Mutation , Protein Binding , Protein Domains , Protein Stability , Protein Subunits/chemistry , Protein Subunits/genetics , Protein Subunits/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2 , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/chemistry , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Thermodynamics
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