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1.
J Virol ; 94(12)2020 06 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1723543

ABSTRACT

The novel coronavirus severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) that recently emerged in China is thought to have a bat origin, as its closest known relative (BatCoV RaTG13) was described previously in horseshoe bats. We analyzed the selective events that accompanied the divergence of SARS-CoV-2 from BatCoV RaTG13. To this end, we applied a population genetics-phylogenetics approach, which leverages within-population variation and divergence from an outgroup. Results indicated that most sites in the viral open reading frames (ORFs) evolved under conditions of strong to moderate purifying selection. The most highly constrained sequences corresponded to some nonstructural proteins (nsps) and to the M protein. Conversely, nsp1 and accessory ORFs, particularly ORF8, had a nonnegligible proportion of codons evolving under conditions of very weak purifying selection or close to selective neutrality. Overall, limited evidence of positive selection was detected. The 6 bona fide positively selected sites were located in the N protein, in ORF8, and in nsp1. A signal of positive selection was also detected in the receptor-binding motif (RBM) of the spike protein but most likely resulted from a recombination event that involved the BatCoV RaTG13 sequence. In line with previous data, we suggest that the common ancestor of SARS-CoV-2 and BatCoV RaTG13 encoded/encodes an RBM similar to that observed in SARS-CoV-2 itself and in some pangolin viruses. It is presently unknown whether the common ancestor still exists and, if so, which animals it infects. Our data, however, indicate that divergence of SARS-CoV-2 from BatCoV RaTG13 was accompanied by limited episodes of positive selection, suggesting that the common ancestor of the two viruses was poised for human infection.IMPORTANCE Coronaviruses are dangerous zoonotic pathogens; in the last 2 decades, three coronaviruses have crossed the species barrier and caused human epidemics. One of these is the recently emerged SARS-CoV-2. We investigated how, since its divergence from a closely related bat virus, natural selection shaped the genome of SARS-CoV-2. We found that distinct coding regions in the SARS-CoV-2 genome evolved under conditions of different degrees of constraint and are consequently more or less prone to tolerate amino acid substitutions. In practical terms, the level of constraint provides indications about which proteins/protein regions are better suited as possible targets for the development of antivirals or vaccines. We also detected limited signals of positive selection in three viral ORFs. However, we warn that, in the absence of knowledge about the chain of events that determined the human spillover, these signals should not be necessarily interpreted as evidence of an adaptation to our species.


Subject(s)
Betacoronavirus/genetics , Evolution, Molecular , Selection, Genetic , Amino Acid Sequence , Animals , Betacoronavirus/classification , COVID-19 , Chiroptera/virology , Coronavirus Infections/virology , Genome, Viral/genetics , Humans , Models, Molecular , Open Reading Frames/genetics , Pandemics , Phylogeny , Pneumonia, Viral/virology , SARS-CoV-2 , Viral Proteins/chemistry , Viral Proteins/genetics
2.
J Med Virol ; 94(4): 1670-1688, 2022 04.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1718413

ABSTRACT

Bangladesh is experiencing a second wave of COVID-19 since March 2021, despite the nationwide vaccination drive with ChAdOx1 (Oxford-AstraZeneca) vaccine from early February 2021. Here, we characterized 19 nasopharyngeal swab (NPS) samples from COVID-19 suspect patients using genomic and metagenomic approaches. Screening for SARS-CoV-2 by reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reaction and metagenomic sequencing revealed 17 samples of COVID-19 positive (vaccinated = 10, nonvaccinated = 7) and 2 samples of COVID-19 negative. We did not find any significant correlation between associated factors including vaccination status, age or sex of the patients, diversity or abundance of the coinfected organisms/pathogens, and the abundance of SARS-CoV-2. Though the first wave of the pandemic was dominated by clade 20B, Beta, V2 (South African variant) dominated the second wave (January 2021 to May 2021), while the third wave (May 2021 to September 2021) was responsible for Delta variants of the epidemic in Bangladesh including both vaccinated and unvaccinated infections. Noteworthily, the receptor binding domain (RBD) region of S protein of all the isolates harbored similar substitutions including K417N, E484K, and N501Y that signify the Beta, while D614G, D215G, D80A, A67V, L18F, and A701V substitutions were commonly found in the non-RBD region of Spike proteins. ORF7b and ORF3a genes underwent a positive selection (dN/dS ratio 1.77 and 1.24, respectively), while the overall S protein of the Bangladeshi SARS-CoV-2 isolates underwent negative selection pressure (dN/dS = 0.621). Furthermore, we found different bacterial coinfections like Streptococcus agalactiae, Neisseria meningitidis, Elizabethkingia anophelis, Stenotrophomonas maltophilia, Klebsiella pneumoniae, and Pseudomonas plecoglossicida, expressing a number of antibiotic resistance genes such as tetA and tetM. Overall, this approach provides valuable insights on the SARS-CoV-2 genomes and microbiome composition from both vaccinated and nonvaccinated patients in Bangladesh.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/virology , Metagenomics , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Adolescent , Adult , Aged , Bacteria/classification , Bacteria/genetics , Bacterial Infections/epidemiology , Bacterial Infections/microbiology , Bacterial Infections/virology , Bangladesh/epidemiology , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/microbiology , COVID-19/prevention & control , Coinfection/epidemiology , Coinfection/microbiology , Coinfection/virology , Drug Resistance, Bacterial/genetics , Female , Genome, Bacterial/genetics , Genome, Viral/genetics , Humans , Male , Microbiota/genetics , Middle Aged , Mutation , Phylogeny , SARS-CoV-2/classification , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Selection, Genetic , Vaccination , Viral Proteins/genetics , Young Adult
3.
PLoS Pathog ; 17(12): e1010106, 2021 12.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1598647

ABSTRACT

The development of safe and effective vaccines in a record time after the emergence of the Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) is a remarkable achievement, partly based on the experience gained from multiple viral outbreaks in the past decades. However, the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) crisis also revealed weaknesses in the global pandemic response and large gaps that remain in our knowledge of the biology of coronaviruses (CoVs) and influenza viruses, the 2 major respiratory viruses with pandemic potential. Here, we review current knowns and unknowns of influenza viruses and CoVs, and we highlight common research challenges they pose in 3 areas: the mechanisms of viral emergence and adaptation to humans, the physiological and molecular determinants of disease severity, and the development of control strategies. We outline multidisciplinary approaches and technological innovations that need to be harnessed in order to improve preparedeness to the next pandemic.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/virology , Influenza, Human/virology , Orthomyxoviridae/physiology , SARS-CoV-2/physiology , Animals , Antiviral Agents , COVID-19/therapy , COVID-19/transmission , Drug Development , Evolution, Molecular , Humans , Influenza, Human/therapy , Influenza, Human/transmission , Orthomyxoviridae/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Selection, Genetic , Viral Load , Viral Vaccines
4.
Infect Genet Evol ; 97: 105188, 2022 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1568934

ABSTRACT

The best and most effective way to combat pandemics is to use effective vaccines and live attenuated vaccines are among the most effective vaccines. However, one of the major problems is the length of time it takes to get the attenuated vaccines. Today, the CRISPR toolkit (Clustered Regularly Inerspaced Short Palindromic Repeats) has made it possible to make changes with high efficiency and speed. Using this toolkit to make point mutations on the RNA virus's genome in a coculture of permissive and nonpermissive cells and under controlled conditions can accelerate changes in the genome and accelerate natural selection to obtain live attenuated vaccines.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Vaccines/genetics , COVID-19/prevention & control , CRISPR-Cas Systems , Gene Editing/methods , Mutation Rate , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Viral Proteins/genetics , APOBEC Deaminases/genetics , APOBEC Deaminases/immunology , Adenosine Deaminase/genetics , Adenosine Deaminase/immunology , Bacterial Proteins/genetics , Bacterial Proteins/immunology , COVID-19/immunology , COVID-19 Vaccines/biosynthesis , Endonucleases/genetics , Endonucleases/immunology , Gene Expression , Genome, Viral , Humans , RNA-Binding Proteins/genetics , RNA-Binding Proteins/immunology , Recombinant Fusion Proteins/genetics , Recombinant Fusion Proteins/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Selection, Genetic , Vaccines, Attenuated , Viral Proteins/immunology
5.
PLoS Comput Biol ; 17(11): e1009560, 2021 11.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1523396

ABSTRACT

Severe acute respiratory coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), the causative agent of COVID-19, is of zoonotic origin. Evolutionary analyses assessing whether coronaviruses similar to SARS-CoV-2 infected ancestral species of modern-day animal hosts could be useful in identifying additional reservoirs of potentially dangerous coronaviruses. We reasoned that if a clade of species has been repeatedly exposed to a virus, then their proteins relevant for viral entry may exhibit adaptations that affect host susceptibility or response. We perform comparative analyses across the mammalian phylogeny of angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2), the cellular receptor for SARS-CoV-2, in order to uncover evidence for selection acting at its binding interface with the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein. We uncover that in rodents there is evidence for adaptive amino acid substitutions at positions comprising the ACE2-spike interaction interface, whereas the variation within ACE2 proteins in primates and some other mammalian clades is not consistent with evolutionary adaptations. We also analyze aminopeptidase N (APN), the receptor for the human coronavirus 229E, a virus that causes the common cold, and find evidence for adaptation in primates. Altogether, our results suggest that the rodent and primate lineages may have had ancient exposures to viruses similar to SARS-CoV-2 and HCoV-229E, respectively.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/genetics , COVID-19/virology , Coronavirus Infections/genetics , Coronavirus Infections/virology , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Adaptation, Physiological/genetics , Amino Acid Substitution , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/genetics , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/physiology , Animals , CD13 Antigens/genetics , CD13 Antigens/physiology , Common Cold/genetics , Common Cold/virology , Computational Biology , Coronavirus 229E, Human/genetics , Coronavirus 229E, Human/physiology , Evolution, Molecular , Genomics , Host Microbial Interactions/genetics , Host Microbial Interactions/physiology , Host Specificity/genetics , Host Specificity/physiology , Humans , Mammals/genetics , Mammals/virology , Phylogeny , Protein Interaction Domains and Motifs/genetics , Receptors, Virus/genetics , Receptors, Virus/physiology , SARS-CoV-2/physiology , Selection, Genetic , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/physiology , Virus Internalization
6.
J Infect Dev Ctries ; 15(10): 1384-1387, 2021 10 31.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1518650

ABSTRACT

Occurrence and recurrence of COVID-19 cases have been observed globally. The complex relationship of host-pathogen and the environment plays a vital role in understanding the widespread recurrence of the SARS-CoV-2 among humans. Though the pathobiology of the disease is not completely understood, it is well established that COVID-19 poses a greater threat to individuals with co-morbidities and a weakened immune system. The article deals with the notion of innate immunity, natural selection, and the survival of the fittest during the COVID-19 outbreak. The article also attempts to introduce the concept of "lifestyle and cultural immunity" that needs to be addressed and incorporated at an early stage of childhood to boost up the human immune system. The communication further discusses the role of vaccination and micro-organisms pre-existing in the environment which are required to enhance the immunity of an individual.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/immunology , COVID-19/mortality , Immunity, Innate , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity , Selection, Genetic/genetics , COVID-19/prevention & control , Disease Outbreaks , Disease Susceptibility/immunology , Host-Pathogen Interactions , Humans , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Selection, Genetic/immunology , Vaccination
7.
Viruses ; 13(11)2021 11 08.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1512695

ABSTRACT

The COVID-19 pandemic is a global challenge that impacted 200+ countries. India ranks in the second and third positions in terms of number of reported cases and deaths. Being a populous country with densely packed cities, SARS-CoV-2 spread exponentially. India sequenced ≈0.14% isolates from confirmed cases for pandemic surveillance and contributed ≈1.58% of complete genomes sequenced globally. This study was designed to map the circulating lineage diversity and to understand the evolution of SARS-CoV-2 in India using comparative genomics and population genetics approaches. Despite varied sequencing coverage across Indian States and Union Territories, isolates belonging to variants of concern (VoC) and variants of interest (VoI) circulated, persisted, and diversified during the first seventeen months of the pandemic. Delta and Kappa lineages emerged in India and spread globally. The phylogenetic tree shows lineage-wise monophyletic clusters of VoCs/VoIs and diversified tree topologies for non-VoC/VoI lineages designated as 'Others' in this study. Evolutionary dynamics analyses substantiate a lack of spatio-temporal clustering, which is indicative of multiple global and local introductions. Sites under positive selection and significant variations in spike protein corroborate with the constellation of mutations to be monitored for VoC/VoI as well as substitutions that are characteristic of functions with implications in virus-host interactions, differential glycosylation, immune evasion, and escape from neutralization.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/virology , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , COVID-19/epidemiology , Evolution, Molecular , Genome, Viral , Humans , India/epidemiology , Models, Molecular , Mutation , Phylogeny , Protein Conformation , Protein Domains , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Selection, Genetic , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/chemistry , Whole Genome Sequencing
8.
Cell Host Microbe ; 29(12): 1788-1801.e6, 2021 12 08.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1509671

ABSTRACT

Previous work found that the co-occurring mutations R203K/G204R on the SARS-CoV-2 nucleocapsid (N) protein are increasing in frequency among emerging variants of concern or interest. Through a combination of in silico analyses, this study demonstrates that R203K/G204R are adaptive, while large-scale phylogenetic analyses indicate that R203K/G204R associate with the emergence of the high-transmissibility SARS-CoV-2 lineage B.1.1.7. Competition experiments suggest that the 203K/204R variants possess a replication advantage over the preceding R203/G204 variants, possibly related to ribonucleocapsid (RNP) assembly. Moreover, the 203K/204R virus shows increased infectivity in human lung cells and hamsters. Accordingly, we observe a positive association between increased COVID-19 severity and sample frequency of 203K/204R. Our work suggests that the 203K/204R mutations contribute to the increased transmission and virulence of select SARS-CoV-2 variants. In addition to mutations in the spike protein, mutations in the nucleocapsid protein are important for viral spreading during the pandemic.


Subject(s)
Amino Acid Substitution , COVID-19/pathology , Coronavirus Nucleocapsid Proteins/genetics , Genome, Viral , Mutation , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Animals , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/virology , Cell Line , Coronavirus Nucleocapsid Proteins/chemistry , Coronavirus Nucleocapsid Proteins/metabolism , Cricetulus , Epithelial Cells/pathology , Epithelial Cells/virology , Gene Expression , Genetic Fitness , Humans , Models, Molecular , Mutagenesis , Phosphoproteins/chemistry , Phosphoproteins/genetics , Phosphoproteins/metabolism , Phylogeny , Protein Conformation , SARS-CoV-2/classification , SARS-CoV-2/growth & development , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity , Selection, Genetic , Severity of Illness Index , Virion/genetics , Virion/growth & development , Virion/pathogenicity , Virulence , Virus Replication
9.
Microb Genom ; 7(11)2021 11.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1501253

ABSTRACT

Since the beginning of the SARS-CoV-2 spread in Brazil, few studies have been published analysing the variability of viral genome. Herein, we described the dynamic of SARS-CoV-2 strains circulating in Brazil from May to September 2020, to better understand viral changes that may affect the ongoing pandemic. Our data demonstrate that some of the mutations identified are currently observed in variants of interest and variants of concern, and emphasize the importance of studying previous periods in order to comprehend the emergence of new variants. From 720 SARS-CoV-2 genome sequences, we found few sites under positive selection pressure, such as the D614G (98.5 %) in the spike, that has replaced the old variant; the V1167F in the spike (41 %), identified in the P.2 variant that emerged from Brazil during the period of analysis; and I292T (39 %) in the N protein. There were a few alterations in the UTRs, which was expected, however, our data suggest that the emergence of new variants was not influenced by mutations in UTR regions, since it maintained its conformational structure in most analysed sequences. In phylogenetic analysis, the spread of SARS-CoV-2 from the large urban centres to the countryside during these months could be explained by the flexibilization of social isolation measures and also could be associated with possible new waves of infection. These results allow a better understanding of SARS-CoV-2 strains that have circulated in Brazil, and thus, with relevant infomation, provide the potential viral changes that may have affected and/or contributed to the current and future scenario of the COVID-19 pandemic.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/virology , Genome, Viral , Mutation , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , 5' Untranslated Regions/genetics , Adolescent , Adult , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , Amino Acid Substitution , Brazil/epidemiology , COVID-19/epidemiology , Child , Child, Preschool , Female , Humans , Infant , Infant, Newborn , Male , Middle Aged , Nucleic Acid Conformation , RNA, Viral/chemistry , RNA, Viral/genetics , Selection, Genetic , Young Adult
10.
Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A ; 118(44)2021 11 02.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1493339

ABSTRACT

SARS-CoV-2 spillback from humans into domestic and wild animals has been well documented, and an accumulating number of studies illustrate that human-to-animal transmission is widespread in cats, mink, deer, and other species. Experimental inoculations of cats, mink, and ferrets have perpetuated transmission cycles. We sequenced full genomes of Vero cell-expanded SARS-CoV-2 inoculum and viruses recovered from cats (n = 6), dogs (n = 3), hamsters (n = 3), and a ferret (n = 1) following experimental exposure. Five nonsynonymous changes relative to the USA-WA1/2020 prototype strain were near fixation in the stock used for inoculation but had reverted to wild-type sequences at these sites in dogs, cats, and hamsters within 1- to 3-d postexposure. A total of 14 emergent variants (six in nonstructural genes, six in spike, and one each in orf8 and nucleocapsid) were detected in viruses recovered from animals. This included substitutions in spike residues H69, N501, and D614, which also vary in human lineages of concern. Even though a live virus was not cultured from dogs, substitutions in replicase genes were detected in amplified sequences. The rapid selection of SARS-CoV-2 variants in vitro and in vivo reveals residues with functional significance during host switching. These observations also illustrate the potential for spillback from animal hosts to accelerate the evolution of new viral lineages, findings of particular concern for dogs and cats living in households with COVID-19 patients. More generally, this glimpse into viral host switching reveals the unrealized rapidity and plasticity of viral evolution in experimental animal model systems.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/virology , Evolution, Molecular , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Selection, Genetic , Animals , COVID-19/veterinary , Cats , Chlorocebus aethiops , Dogs , Ferrets , Gene Frequency , Pets/virology , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity , Vero Cells , Viral Proteins/genetics
11.
Clin Microbiol Infect ; 28(1): 139.e5-139.e8, 2022 Jan.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1415296

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVES: To evaluate the impact of neutralizing monoclonal antibody (mAb) treatment and to determine whether the selective pressure of mAbs could facilitate the proliferation of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) variants with spike protein mutations that might attenuate mAb effectiveness. PATIENTS AND METHODS: We evaluated the impact of mAbs on the nasopharyngeal (NP) viral load and virus quasispecies of mAb-treated patients using single-molecule real-time sequencing. The mAbs used were: Bamlanivimab alone (four patients), Bamlanivimab/Etesevimab (23 patients) and Casirivimab/Imdevimab (five patients). RESULTS: The NP SARS-CoV-2 viral load of mAb-treated patients decreased from 8.2 log10 copies/mL before administration to 4.3 log10 copies/mL 7 days after administration. Five immunocompromised patients given Bamlanivimab/Etesevimab were found to have mAb activity-reducing spike mutations. Two patients harboured SARS-CoV-2 variants with a Q493R spike mutation 7 days after administration, as did a third patient 14 days after administration. The fourth patient harboured a variant with a Q493K spike mutation 7 days post-treatment, and the fifth patient had a variant with a E484K spike mutation on day 21. The emergence of the spike mutation was accompanied by stabilization or rebound of the NP viral load in three of five patients. CONCLUSION: Two-mAb therapy can drive the selection of resistant SARS-CoV-2 variants in immunocompromised patients. Patients given mAbs should be closely monitored and measures to limit virus spread should be reinforced.


Subject(s)
Antibodies, Monoclonal/therapeutic use , Antineoplastic Agents, Immunological , COVID-19 , Evolution, Molecular , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Viral Load , Antibodies, Monoclonal, Humanized , Antibodies, Neutralizing/therapeutic use , Antibodies, Viral , Antineoplastic Agents, Immunological/therapeutic use , COVID-19/therapy , Humans , Mutation , Quasispecies , Selection, Genetic
12.
Viruses ; 13(9)2021 09 10.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1411076

ABSTRACT

The Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) is the third human-emerged virus of the 21st century from the Coronaviridae family, causing the ongoing coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic. Due to the high zoonotic potential of coronaviruses, it is critical to unravel their evolutionary history of host species breadth, host-switch potential, adaptation and emergence, to identify viruses posing a pandemic risk in humans. We present here a comprehensive analysis of the composition and codon usage bias of the 82 Orthocoronavirinae members, infecting 47 different avian and mammalian hosts. Our results clearly establish that synonymous codon usage varies widely among viruses, is only weakly dependent on their primary host, and is dominated by mutational bias towards AU-enrichment and by CpG avoidance. Indeed, variation in GC3 explains around 34%, while variation in CpG frequency explains around 14% of total variation in codon usage bias. Further insight on the mutational equilibrium within Orthocoronavirinae revealed that most coronavirus genomes are close to their neutral equilibrium, the exception being the three recently infecting human coronaviruses, which lie further away from the mutational equilibrium than their endemic human coronavirus counterparts. Finally, our results suggest that, while replicating in humans, SARS-CoV-2 is slowly becoming AU-richer, likely until attaining a new mutational equilibrium.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/virology , Codon Usage , Genome, Viral , Mutation , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Selection, Genetic , Evolution, Molecular , Host-Pathogen Interactions/genetics , Humans , Pandemics
13.
Genome Biol Evol ; 13(8)2021 08 03.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1390355

ABSTRACT

Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) has been posing an unprecedented challenge to global public health. SARS-CoV-2 and several other coronaviruses utilize angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2) as their entry receptors. The ACE2 gene has been found to experience episodic positive selection across mammals. However, much remains unknown about how the ACE2 gene evolved in human populations. Here, we use population genetics approaches to investigate the evolution of the ACE2 gene in 26 human populations sampled globally. We find the ACE2 gene exhibits an extremely low nucleotide diversity in the East Asian populations. Strong signals of selective sweep are detected in the East Asian populations, but not in the other human populations. The selective sweep in ACE2 is estimated to begin in East Asian populations ∼23,600 years ago. Our study provides novel insights into the evolution of the ACE2 gene within human populations.


Subject(s)
Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/genetics , Evolution, Molecular , Adaptation, Physiological , DNA, Ancient , Haplotypes , Humans , Selection, Genetic
14.
Cell Host Microbe ; 29(7): 1093-1110, 2021 07 14.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1385270

ABSTRACT

Humanity is currently facing the challenge of two devastating pandemics caused by two very different RNA viruses: HIV-1, which has been with us for decades, and SARS-CoV-2, which has swept the world in the course of a single year. The same evolutionary strategies that drive HIV-1 evolution are at play in SARS-CoV-2. Single nucleotide mutations, multi-base insertions and deletions, recombination, and variation in surface glycans all generate the variability that, guided by natural selection, enables both HIV-1's extraordinary diversity and SARS-CoV-2's slower pace of mutation accumulation. Even though SARS-CoV-2 diversity is more limited, recently emergent SARS-CoV-2 variants carry Spike mutations that have important phenotypic consequences in terms of both antibody resistance and enhanced infectivity. We review and compare how these mutational patterns manifest in these two distinct viruses to provide the variability that fuels their evolution by natural selection.


Subject(s)
HIV-1/genetics , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , COVID-19/immunology , Evolution, Molecular , Genome, Viral , Humans , Immune Evasion , Mutation , Receptors, Virus/genetics , Recombination, Genetic , Selection, Genetic , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/chemistry , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Viral Proteins/chemistry , Viral Proteins/genetics
15.
Mol Biol Evol ; 38(5): 1966-1979, 2021 05 04.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1387957

ABSTRACT

SARS-CoV-2 epidemics quickly propagated worldwide, sorting virus genomic variants in newly established propagules of infections. Stochasticity in transmission within and between countries or an actual selective advantage could explain the global high frequency reached by some genomic variants. Using statistical analyses, demographic reconstructions, and molecular dynamics simulations, we show that the globally invasive G614 spike variant 1) underwent a significant demographic expansion in most countries explained neither by stochastic effects nor by overrepresentation in clinical samples, 2) increases the spike S1/S2 furin-like site conformational plasticity (short-range effect), and 3) modifies the internal motion of the receptor-binding domain affecting its cross-connection with other functional domains (long-range effect). Our results support the hypothesis of a selective advantage at the basis of the spread of the G614 variant, which we suggest may be due to structural modification of the spike protein at the S1/S2 proteolytic site, and provide structural information to guide the design of variant-specific drugs.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/genetics , Mutation, Missense , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Selection, Genetic , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , COVID-19/epidemiology , Humans
19.
Genome Biol Evol ; 13(10)2021 10 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1370777

ABSTRACT

Owing to a lag between a deleterious mutation's appearance and its selective removal, gold-standard methods for mutation rate estimation assume no meaningful loss of mutations between parents and offspring. Indeed, from analysis of closely related lineages, in SARS-CoV-2, the Ka/Ks ratio was previously estimated as 1.008, suggesting no within-host selection. By contrast, we find a higher number of observed SNPs at 4-fold degenerate sites than elsewhere and, allowing for the virus's complex mutational and compositional biases, estimate that the mutation rate is at least 49-67% higher than would be estimated based on the rate of appearance of variants in sampled genomes. Given the high Ka/Ks one might assume that the majority of such intrahost selection is the purging of nonsense mutations. However, we estimate that selection against nonsense mutations accounts for only ∼10% of all the "missing" mutations. Instead, classical protein-level selective filters (against chemically disparate amino acids and those predicted to disrupt protein functionality) account for many missing mutations. It is less obvious why for an intracellular parasite, amino acid cost parameters, notably amino acid decay rate, is also significant. Perhaps most surprisingly, we also find evidence for real-time selection against synonymous mutations that move codon usage away from that of humans. We conclude that there is common intrahost selection on SARS-CoV-2 that acts on nonsense, missense, and possibly synonymous mutations. This has implications for methods of mutation rate estimation, for determining times to common ancestry and the potential for intrahost evolution including vaccine escape.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/virology , Mutation , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Codon Usage , Codon, Nonsense , Evolution, Molecular , Humans , Models, Genetic , Mutation Rate , Mutation, Missense , Polymorphism, Single Nucleotide , Selection, Genetic , Silent Mutation
20.
Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A ; 118(29)2021 07 20.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1307383

ABSTRACT

Understanding the trends in severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) evolution is paramount to control the COVID-19 pandemic. We analyzed more than 300,000 high-quality genome sequences of SARS-CoV-2 variants available as of January 2021. The results show that the ongoing evolution of SARS-CoV-2 during the pandemic is characterized primarily by purifying selection, but a small set of sites appear to evolve under positive selection. The receptor-binding domain of the spike protein and the region of the nucleocapsid protein associated with nuclear localization signals (NLS) are enriched with positively selected amino acid replacements. These replacements form a strongly connected network of apparent epistatic interactions and are signatures of major partitions in the SARS-CoV-2 phylogeny. Virus diversity within each geographic region has been steadily growing for the entirety of the pandemic, but analysis of the phylogenetic distances between pairs of regions reveals four distinct periods based on global partitioning of the tree and the emergence of key mutations. The initial period of rapid diversification into region-specific phylogenies that ended in February 2020 was followed by a major extinction event and global homogenization concomitant with the spread of D614G in the spike protein, ending in March 2020. The NLS-associated variants across multiple partitions rose to global prominence in March to July, during a period of stasis in terms of interregional diversity. Finally, beginning in July 2020, multiple mutations, some of which have since been demonstrated to enable antibody evasion, began to emerge associated with ongoing regional diversification, which might be indicative of speciation.


Subject(s)
Adaptation, Physiological/genetics , Evolution, Molecular , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Amino Acid Substitution , COVID-19/diagnosis , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/prevention & control , COVID-19/virology , COVID-19 Testing , Coronavirus Nucleocapsid Proteins/genetics , Epistasis, Genetic , Genome, Viral/genetics , Humans , Immune Evasion/genetics , Mutation , Nuclear Localization Signals/genetics , Phosphoproteins/genetics , Phylogeny , Protein Interaction Domains and Motifs/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/classification , Selection, Genetic , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Vaccination
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