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2.
J Infect Dis ; 2021 Apr 02.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1665993

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Our laboratory previously examined the influence of environmental conditions on the stability of an early isolate of SARS-CoV-2 (hCoV-19/USA/WA-1/2020) in aerosols generated from culture medium or simulated saliva. However, genetic differences have emerged among SARS-CoV-2 lineages, and it is possible that these differences may affect environmental stability and the potential for aerosol transmission. METHODS: The influence of temperature, relative humidity, and simulated sunlight on the decay of four SARS-CoV-2 isolates in aerosols, including one belonging to the recently emerged B.1.1.7 lineage, were compared in a rotating drum chamber. Aerosols were generated from simulated respiratory tract lining fluid to represent aerosols originating from the deep lung. RESULTS: No differences in the stability of the isolates were observed in the absence of simulated sunlight at either 20°C or 40°C. However, a small but statistically significant difference in the stability was observed between some isolates in simulated sunlight at 20°C and 20% relative humidity. . CONCLUSIONS: The stability of SARS-CoV-2 in aerosols does not vary greatly among currently circulating lineages, including B.1.1.7, suggesting that the increased transmissibility associated with recent SARS-CoV-2 lineages is not due to enhanced survival in the environment.

3.
Clin Infect Dis ; 73(11): 2045-2054, 2021 12 06.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1560351

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Immunity after dengue virus (DENV) infection has been suggested to cross-protect from severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) infection and mortality. METHODS: We tested whether serologically proven prior DENV infection diagnosed in September-October 2019, before the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic, reduced the risk of SARS-CoV-2 infection and clinically apparent COVID-19 over the next 13 months in a population-based cohort in Amazonian Brazil. Mixed-effects multiple logistic regression analysis was used to identify predictors of infection and disease, adjusting for potential individual and household-level confounders. Virus genomes from 14 local SARS-CoV-2 isolates were obtained using whole-genome sequencing. RESULTS: Anti-DENV immunoglobulin G (IgG) was found in 37.0% of 1285 cohort participants (95% confidence interval [CI]: 34.3% to 39.7%) in 2019, with 10.4 (95% CI: 6.7-15.5) seroconversion events per 100 person-years during the follow-up. In 2020, 35.2% of the participants (95% CI: 32.6% to 37.8%) had anti-SARS-CoV-2 IgG and 57.1% of the 448 SARS-CoV-2 seropositives (95% CI: 52.4% to 61.8%) reported clinical manifestations at the time of infection. Participants aged >60 years were twice more likely to have symptomatic COVID-19 than children under 5 years. Locally circulating SARS-CoV-2 isolates were assigned to the B.1.1.33 lineage. Contrary to the cross-protection hypothesis, prior DENV infection was associated with twice the risk of clinically apparent COVID-19 upon SARS-CoV-2 infection, with P values between .025 and .039 after adjustment for identified confounders. CONCLUSIONS: Higher risk of clinically apparent COVID-19 among individuals with prior dengue has important public health implications for communities sequentially exposed to DENV and SARS-CoV-2 epidemics.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Dengue , Brazil/epidemiology , Child , Child, Preschool , Cohort Studies , Dengue/epidemiology , Humans , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2
4.
J Virol ; 95(16): e0061721, 2021 07 26.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1486509

ABSTRACT

The current pandemic of COVID-19 is caused by a novel coronavirus, severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2). The SARS-CoV-2 spike protein receptor-binding domain (RBD) is the critical determinant of viral tropism and infectivity. To investigate whether naturally occurring RBD mutations during the early transmission phase have altered the receptor binding affinity and infectivity, we first analyzed in silico the binding dynamics between SARS-CoV-2 RBD mutants and the human angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2) receptor. Among 32,123 genomes of SARS-CoV-2 isolates (December 2019 through March 2020), 302 nonsynonymous RBD mutants were identified and clustered into 96 mutant types. The six dominant mutations were analyzed applying molecular dynamics simulations (MDS). The mutant type V367F continuously circulating worldwide displayed higher binding affinity to human ACE2 due to the enhanced structural stabilization of the RBD beta-sheet scaffold. The MDS also indicated that it would be difficult for bat SARS-like CoV to infect humans. However, the pangolin CoV is potentially infectious to humans. The increased infectivity of V367 mutants was further validated by performing receptor-ligand binding enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (ELISA), surface plasmon resonance, and pseudotyped virus assays. Phylogenetic analysis of the genomes of V367F mutants showed that during the early transmission phase, most V367F mutants clustered more closely with the SARS-CoV-2 prototype strain than the dual-mutation variants (V367F+D614G), which may derivate from recombination. The analysis of critical RBD mutations provides further insights into the evolutionary trajectory of early SARS-CoV-2 variants of zoonotic origin under negative selection pressure and supports the continuing surveillance of spike mutations to aid in the development of new COVID-19 drugs and vaccines. IMPORTANCE A novel coronavirus, severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), has caused the pandemic of COVID-19. The origin of SARS-CoV-2 was associated with zoonotic infections. The spike protein receptor-binding domain (RBD) is identified as the critical determinant of viral tropism and infectivity. Thus, whether mutations in the RBD of the circulating SARS-CoV-2 isolates have altered the receptor binding affinity and made them more infectious has been the research hot spot. Given that SARS-CoV-2 is a novel coronavirus, the significance of our research is in identifying and validating the RBD mutant types emerging during the early transmission phase and increasing human angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2) receptor binding affinity and infectivity. Our study provides insights into the evolutionary trajectory of early SARS-CoV-2 variants of zoonotic origin. The continuing surveillance of RBD mutations with increased human ACE2 affinity in human or other animals is critical to the development of new COVID-19 drugs and vaccines against these variants during the sustained COVID-19 pandemic.


Subject(s)
Amino Acid Substitution , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/genetics , COVID-19/transmission , Mutation , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/chemistry , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/metabolism , Binding Sites , COVID-19/pathology , COVID-19/virology , Gene Expression , Host-Pathogen Interactions/genetics , Humans , Kinetics , Molecular Dynamics Simulation , Phenylalanine/chemistry , Phenylalanine/metabolism , Phylogeny , Protein Binding , Protein Conformation, alpha-Helical , Protein Conformation, beta-Strand , Protein Interaction Domains and Motifs , SARS-CoV-2/classification , SARS-CoV-2/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/chemistry , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/metabolism , Thermodynamics , Valine/chemistry , Valine/metabolism , Virulence , Virus Attachment
6.
J Vet Res ; 65(1): 1-5, 2021 Mar.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1389093

ABSTRACT

INTRODUCTION: Since April 2020, when the first SARS-CoV-2 infection was reported in mink and subsequently in mink farm workers in the Netherlands, it has been confirmed that human-to-mink and mink-to-human transmission can occur. Later, SARS-CoV-2 infections in mink were reported in many European and North American countries. MATERIAL AND METHODS: Samples from 590 mink from a total of 28 farms were tested by real-time RT-PCR. Whole genome sequences from one positive farm were generated and genetic relatedness was established. RESULTS: SARS-CoV-2 RNA was detected on a breeder farm with stock of 5,850 mink. Active viraemia was confirmed in individually tested samples with Ct values respectively between 19.4 and 29.6 for E and N gene fragments. Further testing of samples from culled animals revealed 70% positivity in throat swabs and 30% seropositivity in blood samples. Phylogenetic analysis of full-length nucleotide sequences of two SARS-CoV-2 isolates revealed that they belong to the 20B Nextstrain clade. Several nucleotide mutations were found in analysed samples compared to the reference Wuhan HU-1 strain and some of them were nonsynonymous. CONCLUSION: We report the infection of mink with SARS-CoV-2 on one farm in Poland and the results of subsequent analysis of virus sequences from two isolates. These data can be useful for assessment of the epidemiological situation of SARS-CoV-2 in Poland and how it endangers public health.

7.
Infect Genet Evol ; 89: 104724, 2021 04.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1386286

ABSTRACT

Clades are monophyletic groups composed of a common ancestor and all its lineal descendants. As the propensity of virulence of a disease depends upon the type of clade the virus belongs to and it causes different fatality rates of disease in different countries, so the clade-wise analysis of SARS-CoV-2 isolates collected from different countries can illuminate the actual evolutionary relationships between them. In this study, 1566 SARS-CoV-2 genome sequences across ten Asian countries are collected, clustered, and characterized based on the clade they belong to. The isolates are compared to the Wuhan reference sequence" hCoV-19/Wuhan/WIV04/19″ to identify the mutations that occurred at different protein regions. Structural changes in amino acids due to mutations lead to functional instability of the proteins. Detailed clade-wise functional assessments are carried out to quantify the stability and vulnerability of the mutations occurring in SARS-CoV-2 genomes which can shade light on personalized prevention and treatment of the disease and encourage towards the invention of clade-specific vaccines.


Subject(s)
Polymorphism, Single Nucleotide , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Asia , Mutation , Phylogeny , SARS-CoV-2/classification , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification
8.
Vaccines (Basel) ; 8(3)2020 Jul 20.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1389560

ABSTRACT

The efficacy of SARS-CoV-2 nucleic acid-based vaccines may be limited by proteolysis of the translated product due to anomalous protein folding. This may be the case for vaccines employing linear SARS-CoV-2 B-cell epitopes identified in previous studies since most of them participate in secondary structure formation. In contrast, we have employed a consensus of predictors for epitopic zones plus a structural filter for identifying 20 unstructured B-cell epitope-containing loops (uBCELs) in S, M, and N proteins. Phylogenetic comparison suggests epitope switching with respect to SARS-CoV in some of the identified uBCELs. Such events may be associated with the reported lack of serum cross-protection between the 2003 and 2019 pandemic strains. Incipient variability within a sample of 1639 SARS-CoV-2 isolates was also detected for 10 uBCELs which could cause vaccine failure. Intermediate stages of the putative epitope switch events were observed in bat coronaviruses in which additive mutational processes possibly facilitating evasion of the bat immune system appear to have taken place prior to transfer to humans. While there was some overlap between uBCELs and previously validated SARS-CoV B-cell epitopes, multiple uBCELs had not been identified in prior studies. Overall, these uBCELs may facilitate the development of biomedical products for SARS-CoV-2.

9.
Int J Mol Sci ; 21(13)2020 Jul 07.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1389380

ABSTRACT

The SARS-CoV-2 virus is a recently-emerged zoonotic pathogen already well adapted to transmission and replication in humans. Although the mutation rate is limited, recently introduced mutations in SARS-CoV-2 have the potential to alter viral fitness. In addition to amino acid changes, mutations could affect RNA secondary structure critical to viral life cycle, or interfere with sequences targeted by host miRNAs. We have analysed subsets of genomes from SARS-CoV-2 isolates from around the globe and show that several mutations introduce changes in Watson-Crick pairing, with resultant changes in predicted secondary structure. Filtering to targets matching miRNAs expressed in SARS-CoV-2-permissive host cells, we identified ten separate target sequences in the SARS-CoV-2 genome; three of these targets have been lost through conserved mutations. A genomic site targeted by the highly abundant miR-197-5p, overexpressed in patients with cardiovascular disease, is lost by a conserved mutation. Our results are compatible with a model that SARS-CoV-2 replication within the human host is constrained by host miRNA defences. The impact of these and further mutations on secondary structures, miRNA targets or potential splice sites offers a new context in which to view future SARS-CoV-2 evolution, and a potential platform for engineering conditional attenuation to vaccine development, as well as providing a better understanding of viral tropism and pathogenesis.


Subject(s)
Betacoronavirus/genetics , Genome, Viral , MicroRNAs/metabolism , RNA, Viral/chemistry , 3' Untranslated Regions , Base Sequence , COVID-19 , Coronavirus Infections/pathology , Coronavirus Infections/virology , Databases, Genetic , Humans , MicroRNAs/chemistry , MicroRNAs/genetics , Mutation , Nucleic Acid Conformation , Pandemics , Pneumonia, Viral/pathology , Pneumonia, Viral/virology , RNA Splice Sites , RNA Splicing , SARS-CoV-2 , Sequence Alignment , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/genetics , Viral Proteins/chemistry , Viral Proteins/genetics , Viral Proteins/metabolism
10.
Front Microbiol ; 12: 599562, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1259351

ABSTRACT

The mutation pattern of severe acute respiratory syndrome-coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) has changed constantly during worldwide community transmission of this virus. However, the reasons for the changes in mutation patterns are still unclear. Accordingly, in this study, we present a comprehensive analysis of over 300 million peptides derived from 13,432 SARS-CoV-2 strains harboring 4,420 amino acid mutations to analyze the potential selective pressure of the host immune system and reveal the driver of mutations in circulating SARS-CoV-2 isolates. The results showed that the nonstructural protein ORF1ab and the structural protein Spike were most susceptible to mutations. Furthermore, mutations in cross-reactive T-cell epitopes between SARS-CoV-2 and seasonal human coronavirus may help SARS-CoV-2 to escape cellular immunity under long-term and large-scale community transmission. Additionally, through homology modeling and protein docking, mutations in Spike protein may enhance the ability of SARS-CoV-2 to invade host cells and escape antibody-mediated B-cell immunity. Our research provided insights into the potential mutation patterns of SARS-CoV-2 under natural selection, improved our understanding of the evolution of the virus, and established important guidance for potential vaccine design.

11.
PLoS Pathog ; 17(6): e1009619, 2021 06.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1259252

ABSTRACT

We aimed to investigate novel emerging severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) lineages in Japan that harbor variants in the spike protein receptor-binding domain (RBD). The total nucleic acid contents of samples from 159 patients with coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) were subjected to whole genome sequencing. The SARS-CoV-2 genome sequences from these patients were examined for variants in spike protein RBD. In January 2021, three family members (one aged in their 40s and two aged under 10 years old) were found to be infected with SARS-CoV-2 harboring W152L/E484K/G769V mutations. These three patients were living in Japan and had no history of traveling abroad. After identifying these cases, we developed a TaqMan assay to screen for the above hallmark mutations and identified an additional 14 patients with the same mutations. The associated virus strain was classified into the GR clade (Global Initiative on Sharing Avian Influenza Data [GISAID]), 20B clade (Nextstrain), and R.1 lineage (Phylogenetic Assignment of Named Global Outbreak [PANGO] Lineages). As of April 22, 2021, R.1 lineage SARS-CoV-2 has been identified in 2,388 SARS-CoV-2 entries in the GISAID database, many of which were from Japan (38.2%; 913/2,388) and the United States (47.1%; 1,125/2,388). Compared with that in the United States, the percentage of SARS-CoV-2 isolates belonging to the R.1 lineage in Japan increased more rapidly over the period from October 24, 2020 to April 18, 2021. R.1 lineage SARS-CoV-2 has potential escape mutations in the spike protein RBD (E484K) and N-terminal domain (W152L); therefore, it will be necessary to continue to monitor the R.1 lineage as it spreads around the world.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/virology , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Adult , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/transmission , Child , Humans , Japan , Mutation , Phylogeny , SARS-CoV-2/classification
12.
Sci Rep ; 11(1): 11046, 2021 05 26.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1246388

ABSTRACT

Among the therapies against the pandemic SARS-CoV-2 virus, monoclonal Antibodies (mAbs) targeting the Spike glycoprotein represent good candidates to interfere in the Spike/ACE2 interaction, preventing virus cell entry. Since anti-spike mAbs, used individually, might be unable to block the virus entry in the case of resistant mutations, we designed an innovative strategy for the isolation of multiple novel human scFvs specific for the binding domain (RBD) of Spike. By panning a large phage display antibody library on immobilized RBD, we obtained specific binders by eluting with ACE2 in order to identify those scFvs recognizing the epitope of Spike interacting with its receptor. We converted the novel scFvs into full size IgG4, differently from the previously isolated IgG1 mAbs, to avoid unwanted potential side effects of IgG1 potent effector functions on immune system. The novel antibodies specifically bind to RBD in a nanomolar range and interfere in the interaction of Spike with ACE2 receptor, either used as purified protein or when expressed on cells in its native conformation. Furthermore, some of them have neutralizing activity for virus infection in cell cultures by using two different SARS-CoV-2 isolates including the highly contagious VOC 202012/01 variant and could become useful therapeutic tools to fight against the SARS-CoV-2 virus.


Subject(s)
Antibodies, Neutralizing/metabolism , Antibodies, Viral/metabolism , COVID-19/therapy , Immunoglobulin G/metabolism , Immunotherapy/methods , SARS-CoV-2/physiology , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/metabolism , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/metabolism , Antibodies, Monoclonal , Antibodies, Neutralizing/genetics , Antibodies, Neutralizing/immunology , Antibodies, Viral/genetics , Antibodies, Viral/immunology , COVID-19/immunology , Cells, Cultured , Epitopes , Humans , Immunoglobulin G/immunology , Pandemics , Protein Binding , Protein Domains/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/immunology
13.
Mol Biol Evol ; 38(6): 2547-2565, 2021 05 19.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1238217

ABSTRACT

Effective systems for the analysis of molecular data are fundamental for monitoring the spread of infectious diseases and studying pathogen evolution. The rapid identification of emerging viral strains, and/or genetic variants potentially associated with novel phenotypic features is one of the most important objectives of genomic surveillance of human pathogens and represents one of the first lines of defense for the control of their spread. During the COVID 19 pandemic, several taxonomic frameworks have been proposed for the classification of SARS-Cov-2 isolates. These systems, which are typically based on phylogenetic approaches, represent essential tools for epidemiological studies as well as contributing to the study of the origin of the outbreak. Here, we propose an alternative, reproducible, and transparent phenetic method to study changes in SARS-CoV-2 genomic diversity over time. We suggest that our approach can complement other systems and facilitate the identification of biologically relevant variants in the viral genome. To demonstrate the validity of our approach, we present comparative genomic analyses of more than 175,000 genomes. Our method delineates 22 distinct SARS-CoV-2 haplogroups, which, based on the distribution of high-frequency genetic variants, fall into four major macrohaplogroups. We highlight biased spatiotemporal distributions of SARS-CoV-2 genetic profiles and show that seven of the 22 haplogroups (and of all of the four haplogroup clusters) showed a broad geographic distribution within China by the time the outbreak was widely recognized-suggesting early emergence and widespread cryptic circulation of the virus well before its isolation in January 2020. General patterns of genomic variability are remarkably similar within all major SARS-CoV-2 haplogroups, with UTRs consistently exhibiting the greatest variability, with s2m, a conserved secondary structure element of unknown function in the 3'-UTR of the viral genome showing evidence of a functional shift. Although several polymorphic sites that are specific to one or more haplogroups were predicted to be under positive or negative selection, overall our analyses suggest that the emergence of novel types is unlikely to be driven by convergent evolution and independent fixation of advantageous substitutions, or by selection of recombined strains. In the absence of extensive clinical metadata for most available genome sequences, and in the context of extensive geographic and temporal biases in the sampling, many questions regarding the evolution and clinical characteristics of SARS-CoV-2 isolates remain open. However, our data indicate that the approach outlined here can be usefully employed in the identification of candidate SARS-CoV-2 genetic variants of clinical and epidemiological importance.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/genetics , Evolution, Molecular , Genome, Viral , Genomics , Phylogeny , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Humans
14.
Infect Genet Evol ; 93: 104933, 2021 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1237810

ABSTRACT

A severe respiratory pneumonia COVID-19 has raged all over the world, and a coronavirus named SARS-CoV-2 is blamed for this global pandemic. Despite intensive research into the origins of the COVID-19 pandemic, the evolutionary history of its agent SARS-CoV-2 remains unclear, which is vital to control the pandemic and prevent another round of outbreak. Coronaviruses are highly recombinogenic, which are not well handled with alignment-based method. In addition, deletions have been found in the genomes of several SARS-CoV-2, which cannot be resolved with current phylogenetic methods. Therefore, the k-mer natural vector is proposed to explore hosts and transmission traits for SARS-CoV-2 using strict phylogenetic reconstruction. SARS-CoV-2 clustering with bat-origin coronaviruses strongly suggests bats to be the natural reservoir of SARS-CoV-2. By building bat-to-human transmission route, pangolin is identified as an intermediate host, and civet is predicted as a possible candidate. We speculate that SARS-CoV-2 undergoes cross-species recombination between bat and pangolin coronaviruses. This study also demonstrates transmission mode and features of SARS-CoV-2 in the COVID-19 pandemic when it broke out early around the world.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/transmission , Host-Pathogen Interactions , Phylogeny , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity , Animals , Biological Evolution , COVID-19/epidemiology , China , Chiroptera/virology , Coronavirus/genetics , Genome, Viral , Pangolins/virology , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Viral Zoonoses/transmission , Viverridae/virology
15.
Metabolites ; 11(5)2021 May 19.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1234777

ABSTRACT

Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) is a contagious respiratory disease that is causing significant global morbidity and mortality. Understanding the impact of the Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2) infection on the host metabolism is still in its infancy but of great importance. Herein, we investigated the metabolic response during viral shedding and post-shedding in an asymptomatic SARS-CoV-2 ferret model (n = 6) challenged with two SARS-CoV-2 isolates. Virological and metabolic analyses were performed on (minimally invasive) collected oral swabs, rectal swabs, and nasal washes. Fragments of SARS-CoV-2 RNA were only found in the nasal wash samples in four of the six ferrets, and in the samples collected 3 to 9 days post-infection (referred to as viral shedding). Central carbon metabolism metabolites were analyzed during viral shedding and post-shedding periods using a dynamic Multiple Reaction Monitoring (dMRM) database and method. Subsequent untargeted metabolomics and lipidomics of the same samples were performed using a Liquid Chromatography Quadrupole Time-of-Flight Mass Spectrometry (LC-QToF-MS) methodology, building upon the identified differentiated central carbon metabolism metabolites. Multivariate analysis of the acquired data identified 29 significant metabolites and three lipids that were subjected to pathway enrichment and impact analysis. The presence of viral shedding coincided with the challenge dose administered and significant changes in the citric acid cycle, purine metabolism, and pentose phosphate pathways, amongst others, in the host nasal wash samples. An elevated immune response in the host was also observed between the two isolates studied. These results support other metabolomic-based findings in clinical observational studies and indicate the utility of metabolomics applied to ferrets for further COVID-19 research that advances early diagnosis of asymptomatic and mild clinical COVID-19 infections, in addition to assessing the effectiveness of new or repurposed drug therapies.

16.
Microorganisms ; 9(5)2021 May 12.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1227044

ABSTRACT

Virus evolution and mutation analyses are crucial for tracing virus transmission, the potential variants, and other pathogenic determinants. Despite continuing circulation of the SARS-CoV-2, very limited studies have been conducted on genetic evolutionary analysis of the virus in Bangladesh. In this study, a total of 791 complete genome sequences of SARS-CoV-2 from Bangladesh deposited in the GISAID database during March 2020 to January 2021 were analyzed. Phylogenetic analysis revealed circulation of seven GISAID clades G, GH, GR, GRY, L, O, and S or five Nextstrain clades 20A, 20B, 20C, 19A, and 19B in the country during the study period. The GISAID clade GR or the Nextstrain clade 20B or lineage B.1.1.25 is predominant in Bangladesh and closely related to the sequences from India, USA, Canada, UK, and Italy. The GR clade or B.1.1.25 lineage is likely to be responsible for the widespread community transmission of SARS-CoV-2 in the country during the first wave of infection. Significant amino acid diversity was observed among Bangladeshi SARS-CoV-2 isolates, where a total of 1023 mutations were detected. In particular, the D614G mutation in the spike protein (S_D614G) was found in 97% of the sequences. However, the introduction of lineage B.1.1.7 (UK variant/S_N501Y) and S_E484K mutation in lineage B.1.1.25 in a few sequences reported in late December 2020 is of particular concern. The wide genomic diversity indicated multiple introductions of SARS-CoV-2 into Bangladesh through various routes. Therefore, a continuous and extensive genome sequence analysis would be necessary to understand the genomic epidemiology of SARS-CoV-2 in Bangladesh.

17.
J Public Health (Oxf) ; 43(3): e482-e486, 2021 09 22.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1218994

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: To analyze the infectious extent of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-COV-2) in different settings where prevention strategies are critical to limit infection spread, we evaluated SARS-COV-2 viability to guide public health policies regarding isolation criteria and infection control. METHODS: We attempted viral isolation in 82 nasopharyngeal swabs from 72 patients with confirmed SARS-COV-2 infection. Study population was divided into four groups: (i) Patients during the first week of symptoms; (ii) Patients with prolonged positive PCR; (iii) Healthcare workers from a hospital participating of an outbreak investigation, with SARS-COV-2 infection confirmed by reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reaction (RT-PCR) and (iv) Recipients of convalescent immune plasma (CIP).Vero Cl76 cell-line (ATCC CRL-587) was used in assays for virus isolation. Plasma samples of CIP recipients were also tested with plaque-reduction neutralization test. RESULTS: We obtained infectious SARS-COV-2 isolates from 15/84 nasopharyngeal swabs. The virus could not be isolated from upper respiratory tract samples collected 10-day after onset of symptoms (AOS) in patients with mild-moderate disease. CONCLUSION: The knowledge of the extent of SARS-CoV-2 infectivity AOS is relevant for effective prevention measures. This allows to discuss criteria for end isolation despite persistence of positive PCR and improve timing for hospital discharge with consequent availability of critical beds.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Cohort Studies , Health Personnel , Humans
18.
J Infect Dev Ctries ; 15(4): 470-477, 2021 04 30.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1218644

ABSTRACT

INTRODUCTION: Coronaviruses which are single-stranded RNAs, are members of a large family of viruses that may be important pathogens for humans. SARS-CoV-2 was found to cause the severe respiratory syndrome, and on January 22, 2020 first human-to-human transmission was reported. We aimed to reveal the complete genomes of 19 SARS-CoV-2 isolates from Denizli province and identify Turkish patients' genetic similarities. METHODOLOGY: 15 samples with the highest viral loads resulting from RT-PCR were selected for NGS analysis. Fifteen SARS-CoV-2 complete genome sequences were then subjected to phylogenetic analysis and uploaded to the GISAID database. Phylogenetic trees were constructed by the Neighbor-Joining method using MEGAX software. RESULTS: Whole-genome sequencing of the viral RNA samples revealed 32 missense, 21 synonymous, and 4 non-coding alleles. In all samples c.1-25C>T (5'UTR), c.14144C>T (ORF1ab), c.2772C>T (ORF1ab) and c.1841A>G(S) mutations were detected. Phylogenetic analysis revealed that most of the present study's genomes are in 20B clade while the two are in 20A. The phylogenetic tree constructed with all complete SARS-CoV-2 genomes of Turkey showed that the viruses were spread nearly homogenous on eastern (around Kars) and western (around Istanbul) sides. CONCLUSIONS: Here, we reported the viral genomes in Denizli comprehensively for the first time. We identified 11 rare missense mutations in the virus compared to the reference genome. Phylogenetic analysis revealed that while most of our isolates were similar to European sequences, some had different sublineages depending on their genomic variants.


Subject(s)
Phylogeny , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , COVID-19/virology , Genome, Viral , Humans , Mutation , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Whole Genome Sequencing
19.
Bioconjug Chem ; 32(5): 1034-1046, 2021 05 19.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1217668

ABSTRACT

SARS-CoV-2 caused the COVID-19 pandemic that lasted for more than a year. Globally, there is an urgent need to use safe and effective vaccines for immunization to achieve comprehensive protection against SARS-CoV-2 infection. Focusing on developing a rapid vaccine platform with significant immunogenicity as well as broad and high protection efficiency, we designed a SARS-CoV-2 spike protein receptor-binding domain (RBD) displayed on self-assembled ferritin nanoparticles. In a 293i cells eukaryotic expression system, this candidate vaccine was prepared and purified. After rhesus monkeys are immunized with 20 µg of RBD-ferritin nanoparticles three times, the vaccine can elicit specific humoral immunity and T cell immune response, and the neutralizing antibodies can cross-neutralize four SARS-CoV-2 strains from different sources. In the challenge protection test, after nasal infection with 2 × 105 CCID50 SARS-CoV-2 virus, compared with unimmunized control animals, virus replication in the vaccine-immunized rhesus monkeys was significantly inhibited, and respiratory pathology observations also showed only slight pathological damage. These analyses will benefit the immunization program of the RBD-ferritin nanoparticle vaccine in the clinical trial design and the platform construction to present a specific antigen domain in the self-assembling nanoparticle in a short time to harvest stable, safe, and effective vaccine candidates for new SARS-CoV-2 isolates.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Vaccines/immunology , COVID-19/prevention & control , Nanoparticles/chemistry , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/metabolism , T-Lymphocytes/immunology , Animals , Antibodies, Neutralizing/immunology , Binding Sites , CD8-Positive T-Lymphocytes/immunology , COVID-19/immunology , Ferritins/chemistry , Ferritins/metabolism , Immunity, Humoral , Macaca mulatta , Male , Nanoparticles/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , SARS-CoV-2/physiology , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/immunology , T-Lymphocytes/metabolism , Ultracentrifugation
20.
J Med Virol ; 93(4): 2115-2131, 2021 04.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1217370

ABSTRACT

The global outbreak of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) urgently requires an effective vaccine for prevention. In this study, 66 epitopes containing pentapeptides of SARS-CoV-2 spike protein in the IEDB database were compared with the amino acid sequence of SARS-CoV-2 spike protein, and 66 potentially immune-related peptides of SARS-CoV-2 spike protein were obtained. Based on the single-nucleotide polymorphisms analysis of spike protein of 1218 SARS-CoV-2 isolates, 52 easily mutated sites were identified and used for vaccine epitope screening. The best vaccine candidate epitopes in the 66 peptides of SARS-CoV-2 spike protein were screened out through mutation and immunoinformatics analysis. The best candidate epitopes were connected by different linkers in silico to obtain vaccine candidate sequences. The results showed that 16 epitopes were relatively conservative, immunological, nontoxic, and nonallergenic, could induce the secretion of cytokines, and were more likely to be exposed on the surface of the spike protein. They were both B- and T-cell epitopes, and could recognize a certain number of HLA molecules and had high coverage rates in different populations. Moreover, epitopes 897-913 were predicted to have possible cross-immunoprotection for SARS-CoV and SARS-CoV-2. The results of vaccine candidate sequences screening suggested that sequences (without linker, with linker GGGSGGG, EAAAK, GPGPG, and KK, respectively) were the best. The proteins translated by these sequences were relatively stable, with a high antigenic index and good biological activity. Our study provided vaccine candidate epitopes and sequences for the research of the SARS-CoV-2 vaccine.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Vaccines/immunology , COVID-19/virology , Epitopes, B-Lymphocyte/immunology , Epitopes, T-Lymphocyte/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/immunology , Amino Acid Sequence , Computational Biology , Humans , Immunogenicity, Vaccine
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