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1.
Anal Bioanal Chem ; 413(22): 5619-5632, 2021 Sep.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2174032

ABSTRACT

In the face of the COVID-19 pandemic, the need for rapid serological tests that allow multiplexing emerged, as antibody seropositivity can instruct about individual immunity after an infection with SARS-CoV-2 or after vaccination. As many commercial antibody tests are either time-consuming or tend to produce false negative or false positive results when only one antigen is considered, we developed an automated, flow-based chemiluminescence microarray immunoassay (CL-MIA) that allows for the detection of IgG antibodies to SARS-CoV-2 receptor-binding domain (RBD), spike protein (S1 fragment), and nucleocapsid protein (N) in human serum and plasma in less than 8 min. The CoVRapid CL-MIA was tested with a set of 65 SARS-CoV-2 serology positive or negative samples, resulting in 100% diagnostic specificity and 100% diagnostic sensitivity, thus even outcompeting commercial tests run on the same sample set. Additionally, the prospect of future quantitative assessments (i.e., quantifying the level of antibodies) was demonstrated. Due to the fully automated process, the test can easily be operated in hospitals, medical practices, or vaccination centers, offering a valuable tool for COVID-19 serosurveillance. Graphical abstract.


Subject(s)
Antibodies, Viral/blood , COVID-19 Serological Testing/methods , Immunoassay/methods , Immunoglobulin G/blood , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Antigens, Viral/chemistry , Antigens, Viral/immunology , Automation, Laboratory , Coronavirus Nucleocapsid Proteins/immunology , Humans , Immobilized Proteins/chemistry , Immobilized Proteins/immunology , Immune Sera , Immunoassay/instrumentation , Lab-On-A-Chip Devices , Luminescent Measurements , Phosphoproteins/immunology , Sensitivity and Specificity , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/immunology , Time Factors
2.
Front Cell Infect Microbiol ; 12: 1009328, 2022.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2198710

ABSTRACT

Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) was first reported in Wuhan, China in December 2019 and caused a global pandemic resulting in millions of deaths and tens of millions of patients positive tests. While studies have shown a D614G mutation in the viral spike protein are more transmissible, the effects of this and other mutations on the host response, especially at the cellular level, are yet to be fully elucidated. In this experiment we infected normal human bronchial epithelial (NHBE) cells with the Washington (D614) strain or the New York (G614) strains of SARS-CoV-2. We generated RNA sequencing data at 6, 12, and 24 hours post-infection (hpi) to improve our understanding of how the intracellular host response differs between infections with these two strains. We analyzed these data with a bioinformatics pipeline that identifies differentially expressed genes (DEGs), enriched Gene Ontology (GO) terms and dysregulated signaling pathways. We detected over 2,000 DEGs, over 600 GO terms, and 29 affected pathways between the two infections. Many of these entities play a role in immune signaling and response. A comparison between strains and time points showed a higher similarity between matched time points than across different time points with the same strain in DEGs and affected pathways, but found more similarity between strains across different time points when looking at GO terms. A comparison of the affected pathways showed that the 24hpi samples of the New York strain were more similar to the 12hpi samples of the Washington strain, with a large number of pathways related to translation being inhibited in both strains. These results suggest that the various mutations contained in the genome of these two viral isolates may cause distinct effects on the host transcriptional response in infected host cells, especially relating to how quickly translation is dysregulated after infection. This comparison of the intracellular host response to infection with these two SARS-CoV-2 isolates suggest that some of the mechanisms associated with more severe disease from these viruses could include virus replication, metal ion usage, host translation shutoff, host transcript stability, and immune inhibition.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Humans , New York , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Viral Proteins , Washington
3.
Cell Host Microbe ; 30(11): 1540-1555.e15, 2022 11 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2130372

ABSTRACT

The SARS-CoV-2 Omicron BA.2.75 variant emerged in May 2022. BA.2.75 is a BA.2 descendant but is phylogenetically distinct from BA.5, the currently predominant BA.2 descendant. Here, we show that BA.2.75 has a greater effective reproduction number and different immunogenicity profile than BA.5. We determined the sensitivity of BA.2.75 to vaccinee and convalescent sera as well as a panel of clinically available antiviral drugs and antibodies. Antiviral drugs largely retained potency, but antibody sensitivity varied depending on several key BA.2.75-specific substitutions. The BA.2.75 spike exhibited a profoundly higher affinity for its human receptor, ACE2. Additionally, the fusogenicity, growth efficiency in human alveolar epithelial cells, and intrinsic pathogenicity in hamsters of BA.2.75 were greater than those of BA.2. Our multilevel investigations suggest that BA.2.75 acquired virological properties independent of BA.5, and the potential risk of BA.2.75 to global health is greater than that of BA.5.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Humans , Antibodies, Neutralizing , Antibodies, Viral , Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , Antiviral Agents/therapeutic use , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics
4.
Immun Inflamm Dis ; 10(12): e748, 2022 Dec.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2127751

ABSTRACT

INTRODUCTION: Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) is ongoing as a global epidemic and there is still a need to develop much safer and more effective new vaccines that can also be easily adapted to important variants of the pathogen. In the present study in this direction, we developed a new COVID-19 vaccine, composed of two critical antigenic fragments of the S1 and S2 region of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 as well as the whole nucleocapsid protein (N), which was formulated with either alum or alum plus monophosphoryl lipid A (MPLA) adjuvant combinations. METHODS: From within the spike protein S1 region, a fragmented protein P1 (MW:33 kDa) which includes the receptor-binding domain (RBD), another fragment protein P2 (MW:17.6) which contains important antigenic epitopes within the spike protein S2 region, and N protein (MW:46 kDa) were obtained after recombinant expression of the corresponding gene regions in Escherichia coli BL21. For use in immunization studies, three proteins were adsorbed with aluminum hydroxide gel and with the combination of aluminum hydroxide gel plus MPLA. RESULTS: Each of the three protein antigens produced strong reactions in enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays and Western blot analysis studies performed with convalescent COVID-19 patient sera. In mice, these combined protein vaccine candidates elicited high titer anti-P1, anti-P2, and anti-N IgG and IgG2a responses. These also induced highly neutralizing antibodies and elicited significant cell-mediated immunity as demonstrated by enhanced antigen-specific levels of interferon-γ (INF-γ) in the splenocytes of immunized mice. CONCLUSION: The results of this study showed that formulations of the three proteins with Alum or Alum + MPLA are effective in terms of humoral and cellular responses. However, since the Alum + MPLA formulation appears to be superior in Th1 response, this vaccine candidate may be recommended mainly for the elderly and immunocompromised individuals. We also believe that the alum-only formulation will provide great benefits for adults, young adolescents, and children.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Vaccines , COVID-19 , Mice , Animals , Humans , Nucleocapsid Proteins , COVID-19/prevention & control , Aluminum Hydroxide , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Vaccines, Subunit
5.
Viruses ; 14(9)2022 09 14.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2143631

ABSTRACT

In this retrospective, single-center study, we conducted an analysis of 13,699 samples from different individuals obtained from the Federal Research Center of Fundamental and Translational Medicine, from 1 April to 30 May 2020 in Novosibirsk region (population 2.8 million people). We identified 6.49% positive for SARS-CoV-2 cases out of the total number of diagnostic tests, and 42% of them were from asymptomatic people. We also detected two asymptomatic people, who had no confirmed contact with patients with COVID-19. The highest percentage of positive samples was observed in the 80+ group (16.3%), while among the children and adults it did not exceed 8%. Among all the people tested, 2423 came from a total of 80 different destinations and only 27 of them were positive for SARS-CoV-2. Out of all the positive samples, 15 were taken for SARS-CoV-2 sequencing. According to the analysis of the genome sequences, the SARS-CoV-2 variants isolated in the Novosibirsk region at the beginning of the pandemic belonged to three phylogenetic lineages according to the Pangolin classification: B.1, B.1.1, and B.1.1.129. All Novosibirsk isolates contained the D614G substitution in the Spike protein, two isolates werecharacterized by an additional M153T mutation, and one isolate wascharacterized by the L5F mutation.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Adult , COVID-19/epidemiology , Child , Genome, Viral , Genomics , Humans , Mutation , Pandemics , Phylogeny , Retrospective Studies , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics
6.
Front Immunol ; 13: 946318, 2022.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2141971

ABSTRACT

Background and Methods: The SARS-CoV-2 (severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2) Omicron (B.1.1.529) variant is the antigenically most distinct variant to date. As the heavily mutated spike protein enables neutralization escape, we studied serum-neutralizing activities of naïve and vaccinated individuals after Omicron BA.1 or BA.2 sub-lineage infections in live virus neutralization tests with Omicron BA.1, Omicron BA.2, wildtype (WT, B1.1), and Delta (B.1.617.2) strains. Serum samples obtained after WT infections and three-dose mRNA vaccinations with and without prior infection were included as controls. Results: Primary BA.1 infections yielded reduced neutralizing antibody levels against WT, Delta, and Omicron BA.2, while samples from BA.2-infected individuals showed almost no cross-neutralization against the other variants. Serum neutralization of Omicron BA.1 and BA.2 variants was detectable after three-dose mRNA vaccinations, but with reduced titers. Vaccination-breakthrough infections with either Omicron BA.1 or BA.2, however, generated equal cross-neutralizing antibody levels against all SARS-CoV-2 variants tested. Conclusions: Our study demonstrates that although Omicron variants are able to enhance cross-neutralizing antibody levels in pre-immune individuals, primary infections with BA.1 or BA.2 induced mostly variant-specific neutralizing antibodies, emphasizing the differently shaped humoral immunity induced by the two Omicron variants. These data thus contribute substantially to the understanding of antibody responses induced by primary Omicron infections or multiple exposures to different SARS-CoV-2 variants and are of particular importance for developing vaccination strategies in the light of future emerging variants.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Antibodies, Neutralizing , Antibodies, Viral , Broadly Neutralizing Antibodies , Humans , Membrane Glycoproteins , Neutralization Tests , RNA, Messenger , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Viral Envelope Proteins
7.
J Biomed Sci ; 29(1): 37, 2022 Jun 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2139298

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Calls for the coronavirus to be treated as an endemic illness, such as the flu, are increasing. After achieving high coverage of COVID-19 vaccination, therapeutic drugs have become important for future SARS-CoV-2 variant outbreaks. Although many monoclonal antibodies have been approved for emergency use as treatments for SARS-CoV-2 infection, some monoclonal antibodies are not authorized for variant treatment. Broad-spectrum monoclonal antibodies are unmet medical needs. METHODS: We used a DNA prime-protein boost approach to generate high-quality monoclonal antibodies. A standard ELISA was employed for the primary screen, and spike protein-human angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 blocking assays were used for the secondary screen. The top 5 blocking clones were selected for further characterization, including binding ability, neutralization potency, and epitope mapping. The therapeutic effects of the best monoclonal antibody against SARS-CoV-2 infection were evaluated in a hamster infection model. RESULTS: Several monoclonal antibodies were selected that neutralize different SARS-CoV-2 variants of concern (VOCs). These VOCs include Alpha, Beta, Gamma, Delta, Kappa and Lambda variants. The high neutralizing antibody titers against the Beta variant would be important to treat Beta-like variants. Among these monoclonal antibodies, mAb-S5 displays the best potency in terms of binding affinity and neutralizing capacity. Importantly, mAb-S5 protects animals from SARS-CoV-2 challenge, including the Wuhan strain, D614G, Alpha and Delta variants, although mAb-S5 exhibits decreased neutralization potency against the Delta variant. Furthermore, the identified neutralizing epitopes of monoclonal antibodies are all located in the receptor-binding domain (RBD) of the spike protein but in different regions. CONCLUSIONS: Our approach generates high-potency monoclonal antibodies against a broad spectrum of VOCs. Multiple monoclonal antibody combinations may be the best strategy to treat future SARS-CoV-2 variant outbreaks.


Subject(s)
Antibodies, Monoclonal , COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Animals , Antibodies, Monoclonal/therapeutic use , Antibodies, Neutralizing/therapeutic use , Antibodies, Viral/therapeutic use , COVID-19/drug therapy , COVID-19 Vaccines , Cricetinae , Humans , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics
8.
Sci Adv ; 8(47): eadc9179, 2022 11 25.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2137353

ABSTRACT

As coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) persists, severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) variants of concern (VOCs) emerge, accumulating spike (S) glycoprotein mutations. S receptor binding domain (RBD) comprises a free fatty acid (FFA)-binding pocket. FFA binding stabilizes a locked S conformation, interfering with virus infectivity. We provide evidence that the pocket is conserved in pathogenic ß-coronaviruses (ß-CoVs) infecting humans. SARS-CoV, MERS-CoV, SARS-CoV-2, and VOCs bind the essential FFA linoleic acid (LA), while binding is abolished by one mutation in common cold-causing HCoV-HKU1. In the SARS-CoV S structure, LA stabilizes the locked conformation, while the open, infectious conformation is devoid of LA. Electron tomography of SARS-CoV-2-infected cells reveals that LA treatment inhibits viral replication, resulting in fewer deformed virions. Our results establish FFA binding as a hallmark of pathogenic ß-CoV infection and replication, setting the stage for FFA-based antiviral strategies to overcome COVID-19.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus , Humans , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/metabolism , Fatty Acids, Nonesterified , SARS-CoV-2
9.
J Infect Dis ; 226(11): 1909-1912, 2022 Nov 28.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2135323

ABSTRACT

We investigated antibody titers and avidity after heterologous versus homologous coronavirus disease 2019 vaccination over 6 months after the second dose. We found a significantly higher avidity in regimens including at least 1 dose of the adenoviral vector vaccine ChAdOx1-S compared with 2 doses of the mRNA vaccine BNT162b2.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Viral Vaccines , Humans , Antibody Affinity , Kinetics , COVID-19/prevention & control , BNT162 Vaccine , Vaccination , Adenoviridae , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics
10.
Commun Biol ; 5(1): 1179, 2022 Nov 04.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2133651

ABSTRACT

Understanding the antigenic signatures of all human coronaviruses (HCoVs) Spike (S) proteins is imperative for pan-HCoV epitopes identification and broadly effective vaccine development. To depict the currently elusive antigenic signatures of α-HCoVs S proteins, we isolated a panel of antibodies against the HCoV-229E S protein and characterized their epitopes and neutralizing potential. We found that the N-terminal domain of HCoV-229E S protein is antigenically dominant wherein an antigenic supersite is present and appears conserved in HCoV-NL63, which holds potential to serve as a pan-α-HCoVs epitope. In the receptor binding domain, a neutralizing epitope is captured in the end distal to the receptor binding site, reminiscent of the locations of the SARS-CoV-2 RBD cryptic epitopes. We also identified a neutralizing antibody that recognizes the connector domain, thus representing the first S2-directed neutralizing antibody against α-HCoVs. The unraveled HCoVs S proteins antigenic similarities and variances among genera highlight the challenges faced by pan-HCoV vaccine design while supporting the feasibility of broadly effective vaccine development against a subset of HCoVs.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Coronavirus 229E, Human , Humans , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , SARS-CoV-2 , Antigens, Viral , Epitopes , Antibodies, Neutralizing
11.
Nature ; 593(7857): 136-141, 2021 05.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2114170

ABSTRACT

Transmission of SARS-CoV-2 is uncontrolled in many parts of the world; control is compounded in some areas by the higher transmission potential of the B.1.1.7 variant1, which has now been reported in 94 countries. It is unclear whether the response of the virus to vaccines against SARS-CoV-2 on the basis of the prototypic strain will be affected by the mutations found in B.1.1.7. Here we assess the immune responses of individuals after vaccination with the mRNA-based vaccine BNT162b22. We measured neutralizing antibody responses after the first and second immunizations using pseudoviruses that expressed the wild-type spike protein or a mutated spike protein that contained the eight amino acid changes found in the B.1.1.7 variant. The sera from individuals who received the vaccine exhibited a broad range of neutralizing titres against the wild-type pseudoviruses that were modestly reduced against the B.1.1.7 variant. This reduction was also evident in sera from some patients who had recovered from COVID-19. Decreased neutralization of the B.1.1.7 variant was also observed for monoclonal antibodies that target the N-terminal domain (9 out of 10) and the receptor-binding motif (5 out of 31), but not for monoclonal antibodies that recognize the receptor-binding domain that bind outside the receptor-binding motif. Introduction of the mutation that encodes the E484K substitution in the B.1.1.7 background to reflect a newly emerged variant of concern (VOC 202102/02) led to a more-substantial loss of neutralizing activity by vaccine-elicited antibodies and monoclonal antibodies (19 out of 31) compared with the loss of neutralizing activity conferred by the mutations in B.1.1.7 alone. The emergence of the E484K substitution in a B.1.1.7 background represents a threat to the efficacy of the BNT162b2 vaccine.


Subject(s)
Antibodies, Neutralizing/immunology , Antibodies, Viral/immunology , COVID-19 Vaccines/immunology , COVID-19/immunology , COVID-19/therapy , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/immunology , Vaccines, Synthetic/immunology , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/metabolism , Antibodies, Monoclonal/immunology , Antibodies, Monoclonal/isolation & purification , Antibodies, Neutralizing/isolation & purification , Antibodies, Viral/isolation & purification , COVID-19/metabolism , COVID-19/virology , Female , HEK293 Cells , Humans , Immune Evasion/genetics , Immune Evasion/immunology , Immunization, Passive , Male , Middle Aged , Models, Molecular , Mutation , Neutralization Tests , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/chemistry , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/metabolism , Vaccines, Synthetic/administration & dosage
12.
Int J Infect Dis ; 111: 347-353, 2021 Oct.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2113590

ABSTRACT

AIMS: To explore the contagiousness and new SARS-CoV-2 mutations in pediatric COVID-19. METHODS: This cohort study enrolled all pediatric patients admitted to 8 hospitals in Zhejiang Province of China between 21 January and 29 February 2020, their family members and close-contact classmates. Epidemiological, demographic, clinical and laboratory data were collected. Bioinformatics was used to analyze the features of SARS-CoV-2. Individuals were divided into 3 groups by the first-generation case: Groups 1 (unclear), 2 (adult), and 3 (child). The secondary attack rate (SAR) and R0 were compared among the groups. RESULTS: The infection rate among 211 individuals was 64% (135/211). The SAR in Groups 2 and 3 was 71% (73/103) and 3% (1/30), respectively; the median R0 in Groups 2 and 3 was 2 (range: 1-8) and 0 (range: 0-1), respectively. Compared with adult cases, the SAR and R0 of pediatric cases were significantly lower (p<0.05). We obtained SARS-CoV-2 sequences from the same infant's throat and fecal samples at a two-month interval and found that the new spike protein A958D mutation detected in the stool improved thermostability theoretically. CONCLUSIONS: Children have lower ability to spread SARS-CoV-2. The new A958D mutation is a potential reason for its long residence in the intestine.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Adult , COVID-19/virology , Child , China/epidemiology , Cohort Studies , Humans , Incidence , Infant , Mutation , SARS-CoV-2/genetics
13.
J Med Virol ; 94(7): 3421-3430, 2022 07.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2114172

ABSTRACT

The SARS-CoV-2 21K/BA.1, 21L/BA.2, and BA.3 Omicron variants have recently emerged worldwide. To date, the 21L/BA.2 Omicron variant has remained very minority globally but became predominant in Denmark instead of the 21K/BA.1 variant. Here, we describe the first cases diagnosed with this variant in south-eastern France. We identified 13 cases using variant-specific qPCR and next-generation sequencing between 28/11/2021 and 31/01/2022, the first two cases being diagnosed in travelers returning from Tanzania. Overall, viral genomes displayed a mean (±standard deviation) number of 65.9 ± 2.5 (range, 61-69) nucleotide substitutions and 31.0 ± 8.3 (27-50) nucleotide deletions, resulting in 49.6 ± 2.2 (45-52) amino acid substitutions (including 28 in the spike protein) and 12.4 ± 1.1 (12-15) amino acid deletions. Phylogeny showed the distribution in three different clusters of these genomes, which were most closely related to genomes from England and South Africa, from Singapore and Nepal, or from France and Denmark. Structural predictions highlighted a significant enlargement and flattening of the surface of the 21L/BA.2 N-terminal domain of the spike protein compared to that of the 21K/BA.1 Omicron variant, which may facilitate initial viral interactions with lipid rafts. Close surveillance is needed at global, country, and center scales to monitor the incidence and clinical outcome of the 21L/BA.2 Omicron variant.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , COVID-19/diagnosis , COVID-19/epidemiology , Humans , Mutation , Nucleotides , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/metabolism
14.
Cell Host Microbe ; 30(11): 1512-1517.e4, 2022 11 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2118001

ABSTRACT

The severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) Omicron subvariant BA.2.75 emerged recently and appears to be spreading. It has nine mutations in spike compared with the currently circulating BA.2, raising concerns that it may further evade vaccine-elicited and therapeutic antibodies. We found BA.2.75 to be moderately more neutralization resistant to sera from vaccinated/boosted individuals than BA.2 (1.8-fold), similar to BA.2.12.1 (1.1-fold), but more neutralization sensitive than BA.4/5 (0.6-fold). Relative to BA.2, BA.2.75 showed heightened resistance to class 1 and class 3 monoclonal antibodies targeting the spike-receptor-binding domain while gaining sensitivity to class 2 antibodies. Resistance was largely conferred by G446S and R460K mutations. BA.2.75 was slightly resistant (3.7-fold) to bebtelovimab, a therapeutic antibody with potent activity against all Omicron subvariants. BA.2.75 also exhibited a higher binding affinity to host receptor ACE2 than other Omicron subvariants. BA.2.75 provides further insight into SARS-CoV-2 evolution as it gains transmissibility while incrementally evading antibody neutralization.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Humans , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Neutralization Tests , Antibodies, Monoclonal , Antibodies, Viral , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Antibodies, Neutralizing
15.
Cell Host Microbe ; 30(11): 1518-1526.e4, 2022 11 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2117599

ABSTRACT

The newly emerged BA.2.75 severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) variant contains 9 additional mutations in its spike (S) protein compared to the ancestral BA.2 variant. Here, we examine the neutralizing antibody escape of BA.2.75 in mRNA-vaccinated and BA.1-infected individuals, as well as the molecular basis underlying functional changes in S. Notably, BA.2.75 exhibits enhanced neutralization resistance over BA.2 but less than the BA.4/5 variant. The G446S and N460K mutations of BA.2.75 are primarily responsible for its enhanced resistance to neutralizing antibodies. The R493Q mutation, a reversion to the prototype sequence, reduces BA.2.75 neutralization resistance. The impact of these mutations is consistent with their locations in common neutralizing antibody epitopes. Further, BA.2.75 shows enhanced cell-cell fusion over BA.2, driven largely by the N460K mutation, which enhances S processing. Structural modeling reveals enhanced receptor contacts introduced by N460K, suggesting a mechanism of potentiated receptor utilization and syncytia formation.


Subject(s)
Antibodies, Neutralizing , COVID-19 , Humans , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Neutralization Tests , Antibodies, Viral , Viral Envelope Proteins
16.
Nat Commun ; 13(1): 7011, 2022 Nov 16.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2117393

ABSTRACT

The Omicron BA.1 variant emerged in late 2021 and quickly spread across the world. Compared to the earlier SARS-CoV-2 variants, BA.1 has many mutations, some of which are known to enable antibody escape. Many of these antibody-escape mutations individually decrease the spike receptor-binding domain (RBD) affinity for ACE2, but BA.1 still binds ACE2 with high affinity. The fitness and evolution of the BA.1 lineage is therefore driven by the combined effects of numerous mutations. Here, we systematically map the epistatic interactions between the 15 mutations in the RBD of BA.1 relative to the Wuhan Hu-1 strain. Specifically, we measure the ACE2 affinity of all possible combinations of these 15 mutations (215 = 32,768 genotypes), spanning all possible evolutionary intermediates from the ancestral Wuhan Hu-1 strain to BA.1. We find that immune escape mutations in BA.1 individually reduce ACE2 affinity but are compensated by epistatic interactions with other affinity-enhancing mutations, including Q498R and N501Y. Thus, the ability of BA.1 to evade immunity while maintaining ACE2 affinity is contingent on acquiring multiple interacting mutations. Our results implicate compensatory epistasis as a key factor driving substantial evolutionary change for SARS-CoV-2 and are consistent with Omicron BA.1 arising from a chronic infection.


Subject(s)
Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2 , COVID-19 , Humans , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/metabolism , Peptidyl-Dipeptidase A/metabolism , Epistasis, Genetic , COVID-19/genetics
17.
Nat Commun ; 13(1): 6792, 2022 Nov 10.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2117248

ABSTRACT

Few live attenuated severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) vaccines are in pre-clinical or clinical development. We seek to attenuate SARS-CoV-2 (isolate WA1/2020) by removing the polybasic insert within the spike protein and the open reading frames (ORFs) 6-8, and by introducing mutations that abolish non-structural protein 1 (Nsp1)-mediated toxicity. The derived virus (WA1-ΔPRRA-ΔORF6-8-Nsp1K164A/H165A) replicates to 100- to 1000-fold-lower titers than the ancestral virus and induces little lung pathology in both K18-human ACE2 (hACE2) transgenic mice and Syrian hamsters. Immunofluorescence and transcriptomic analyses of infected hamsters confirm that three-pronged genetic modifications attenuate the proinflammatory pathways more than the removal of the polybasic cleavage site alone. Finally, intranasal administration of just 100 PFU of the WA1-ΔPRRA-ΔORF6-8-Nsp1K164A/H165A elicits robust antibody responses in Syrian hamsters and protects against SARS-CoV-2-induced weight loss and pneumonia. As a proof-of-concept study, we demonstrate that live but sufficiently attenuated SARS-CoV-2 vaccines may be attainable by rational design.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Cricetinae , Mice , Animals , Humans , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Mesocricetus , Antibody Formation , Administration, Intranasal , COVID-19 Vaccines , COVID-19/prevention & control , Lung/pathology , Mice, Transgenic , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics
18.
Int J Mol Sci ; 23(22)2022 Nov 14.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2115955

ABSTRACT

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


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus , Humans , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Viral Envelope Proteins/genetics , BNT162 Vaccine , Membrane Glycoproteins/metabolism
19.
Viruses ; 14(11)2022 Nov 10.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2110273

ABSTRACT

The wild-type SARS-CoV-2 Spike-based vaccines authorized so far have reduced COVID-19 severity, but periodic boosts are required to counteract the decline in immunity. An accelerated rate of immune escape to vaccine-elicited immunity has been associated with Spike protein antigenic shifts, as seen in the Omicron variant of concern and its sublineages, demanding the development of Omicron Spike-based vaccines. Herein, we review the evidence in animal models and topline results from ongoing clinical trials with such updated vaccines, discussing the pros and cons for their deployment.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Vaccines , Animals , Humans , COVID-19 Vaccines , Viral Envelope Proteins/metabolism , Antibodies, Viral/metabolism , COVID-19/prevention & control , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Antibodies, Neutralizing/metabolism , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics
20.
BMC Vet Res ; 18(1): 392, 2022 Nov 08.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2108779

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Porcine epidemic diarrhea virus (PEDV), an enteric coronavirus, has become the major causative agent of acute gastroenteritis in piglets since 2010 in China. RESULTS: In the current study, 91 complete spike (S) gene sequences were obtained from PEDV positive samples collected from 17 provinces in China from March 2020 to March 2021. A phylogenetic analysis showed that 92.3% (84 out of 91) of the identified strains belonged to GII subtype, while 7.7% (7 out of 91) were categorized as S-INDEL like strains and grouped within GI-c clade. Based on a recombination analysis, six of S-INDEL like strains were recombinant strains originated from S-INDEL strain FR/001/2014 and virulent strain AJ1102. In addition, PEDV variant strains (CH/GDMM/202012, CH/GXDX/202010 et al) carrying novel insertions (360QGRKS364 and 1278VDVF1281) in the S protein were observed. Furthermore, the deduced amino acid sequences for the S protein showed that multiple amino acid substitutions in the antigenic epitopes in comparison with the vaccine strains. CONCLUSIONS: In conclusion, these data provide novel molecular evidence on the epidemiology and molecular diversity of PEDV in 2020-2021. This information may help design a strategy for controlling and preventing the prevalence of PEDV variant strains in China.


Subject(s)
Coronavirus Infections , Porcine epidemic diarrhea virus , Swine Diseases , Animals , Swine , Phylogeny , Swine Diseases/epidemiology , Coronavirus Infections/epidemiology , Coronavirus Infections/veterinary , Amino Acid Sequence , China/epidemiology , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics
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