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1.
Commun Biol ; 5(1): 1179, 2022 Nov 04.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2106510

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
2.
Commun Biol ; 5(1): 1170, 2022 Nov 03.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2106509

ABSTRACT

The trimeric spike (S) glycoprotein, which protrudes from the SARS-CoV-2 viral envelope, binds to human ACE2, initiated by at least one protomer's receptor binding domain (RBD) switching from a "down" (closed) to an "up" (open) state. Here, we used large-scale molecular dynamics simulations and two-dimensional replica exchange umbrella sampling calculations with more than a thousand windows and an aggregate total of 160 µs of simulation to investigate this transition with and without glycans. We find that the glycosylated spike has a higher barrier to opening and also energetically favors the down state over the up state. Analysis of the S-protein opening pathway reveals that glycans at N165 and N122 interfere with hydrogen bonds between the RBD and the N-terminal domain in the up state, while glycans at N165 and N343 can stabilize both the down and up states. Finally, we estimate how epitope exposure for several known antibodies changes along the opening path. We find that the BD-368-2 antibody's epitope is continuously exposed, explaining its high efficacy.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Humans , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/chemistry , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2 , Peptidyl-Dipeptidase A , Polysaccharides , Epitopes
3.
Immunol Rev ; 310(1): 76-92, 2022 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2097772

ABSTRACT

The COVID-19 pandemic has caused an unprecedented health crisis and economic burden worldwide. Its etiological agent SARS-CoV-2, a new virus in the coronavirus family, has infected hundreds of millions of people worldwide. SARS-CoV-2 has evolved over the past 2 years to increase its transmissibility as well as to evade the immunity established by previous infection and vaccination. Nevertheless, strong immune responses can be elicited by viral infection and vaccination, which have proved to be protective against the emergence of variants, particularly with respect to hospitalization or severe disease. Here, we review our current understanding of how the virus enters the host cell and how our immune system is able to defend against cell entry and infection. Neutralizing antibodies are a major component of our immune defense and have been extensively studied for SARS-CoV-2 and its variants. Structures of these neutralizing antibodies have provided valuable insights into epitopes that are protective against the original ancestral virus and the variants that have emerged. The molecular characterization of neutralizing epitopes as well as epitope conservation and resistance are important for design of next-generation vaccines and antibody therapeutics.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Antibodies, Neutralizing , Antibodies, Viral , Epitopes , Humans , Pandemics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus
4.
Int J Mol Sci ; 23(21)2022 Oct 30.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2090211

ABSTRACT

Porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome virus is a positive-stranded RNA virus of the family Arteriviridae. The Gp5/M dimer, the major component of the viral envelope, is required for virus budding and is an antibody target. We used alphafold2, an artificial-intelligence-based system, to predict a credible structure of Gp5/M. The short disulfide-linked ectodomains lie flat on the membrane, with the exception of the erected N-terminal helix of Gp5, which contains the antibody epitopes and a hypervariable region with a changing number of carbohydrates. The core of the dimer consists of six curved and tilted transmembrane helices, and three are from each protein. The third transmembrane regions extend into the cytoplasm as amphiphilic helices containing the acylation sites. The endodomains of Gp5 and M are composed of seven ß-strands from each protein, which interact via ß-strand seven. The area under the membrane forms an open cavity with a positive surface charge. The M and Orf3a proteins of coronaviruses have a similar structure, suggesting that all four proteins are derived from the same ancestral gene. Orf3a, like Gp5/M, is acylated at membrane-proximal cysteines. The role of Gp5/M during virus replication is discussed, in particular the mechanisms of virus budding and models of antibody-dependent virus neutralization.


Subject(s)
Porcine Reproductive and Respiratory Syndrome , Porcine respiratory and reproductive syndrome virus , Swine , Animals , Porcine respiratory and reproductive syndrome virus/genetics , Viral Envelope Proteins/metabolism , Epitopes , Virus Replication
5.
Front Immunol ; 13: 967972, 2022.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2080147

ABSTRACT

Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) remains a serious pandemic. COVID-19 vaccination is urgent needed for limiting SARS-CoV-2 outbreaks by herd immunity. Simultaneously, post-marketing surveillance to assess vaccine safety is important, and collection of vaccine-related adverse events has been in progress. Vision-threatening ophthalmic adverse events of COVID-19 vaccines are rare but are a matter of concern. We report a 45-year-old Japanese male with positive for HLA-DR4/HLA-DRB1*0405, who developed bilateral panuveitis resembling Vogt-Koyanagi-Harada (VKH) disease after the second dose of Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 mRNA (BNT162b2) vaccine. Glucocorticosteroid (GC) therapy combined with cyclosporine A (CsA) readily improved the panuveitis. The immune profile at the time of onset was analyzed using CyTOF technology, which revealed activations of innate immunity mainly consisting of natural killer cells, and acquired immunity predominantly composed of B cells and CD8+ T cells. On the other hand, the immune profile in the remission phase was altered by GC therapy with CsA to a profile composed primarily of CD4+ cells, which was considerably similar to that of the healthy control before the vaccination. Our results indicate that BNT162b2 vaccine may trigger an accidental immune cross-reactivity to melanocyte epitopes in the choroid, resulting in the onset of panuveitis resembling VKH disease.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Panuveitis , Uveomeningoencephalitic Syndrome , BNT162 Vaccine , CD8-Positive T-Lymphocytes , COVID-19 Vaccines/adverse effects , Cyclosporine/therapeutic use , Epitopes , HLA-DR4 Antigen , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Panuveitis/diagnosis , Panuveitis/drug therapy , Panuveitis/etiology , RNA, Messenger/therapeutic use , SARS-CoV-2 , Uveomeningoencephalitic Syndrome/diagnosis , Uveomeningoencephalitic Syndrome/drug therapy , Uveomeningoencephalitic Syndrome/etiology
6.
PLoS One ; 17(10): e0276241, 2022.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2079762

ABSTRACT

Class I- and Class II-restricted epitopes have been identified across the SARS-CoV-2 structural proteome. Vaccine-induced and post-infection SARS-CoV-2 T-cell responses are associated with COVID-19 recovery and protection, but the precise role of T-cell responses remains unclear, and how post-infection vaccination ('hybrid immunity') further augments this immunity To accomplish these goals, we studied healthy adult healthcare workers who were (a) uninfected and unvaccinated (n = 12), (b) uninfected and vaccinated with Pfizer-BioNTech BNT162b2 vaccine (2 doses n = 177, one dose n = 1) or Moderna mRNA-1273 vaccine (one dose, n = 1), and (c) previously infected with SARS-CoV-2 and vaccinated (BNT162b2, two doses, n = 6, one dose n = 1; mRNA-1273 two doses, n = 1). Infection status was determined by repeated PCR testing of participants. We used FluoroSpot Interferon-gamma (IFN-γ) and Interleukin-2 (IL-2) assays, using subpools of 15-mer peptides covering the S (10 subpools), N (4 subpools) and M (2 subpools) proteins. Responses were expressed as frequencies (percent positive responders) and magnitudes (spot forming cells/106 cytokine-producing peripheral blood mononuclear cells [PBMCs]). Almost all vaccinated participants with no prior infection exhibited IFN-γ, IL-2 and IFN-γ+IL2 responses to S glycoprotein subpools (89%, 93% and 27%, respectively) mainly directed to the S2 subunit and were more robust than responses to the N or M subpools. However, in previously infected and vaccinated participants IFN-γ, IL-2 and IFN-γ+IL2 responses to S subpools (100%, 100%, 88%) were substantially higher than vaccinated participants with no prior infection and were broader and directed against nine of the 10 S glycoprotein subpools spanning the S1 and S2 subunits, and all the N and M subpools. 50% of uninfected and unvaccinated individuals had IFN-γ but not IL2 or IFN-γ+IL2 responses against one S and one M subpools that were not increased after vaccination of uninfected or SARS-CoV-2-infected participants. Summed IFN-γ, IL-2, and IFN-γ+IL2 responses to S correlated with IgG responses to the S glycoprotein. These studies demonstrated that vaccinations with BNT162b2 or mRNA-1273 results in T cell-specific responses primarily against epitopes in the S2 subunit of the S glycoprotein, and that individuals that are vaccinated after SARS-CoV-2 infection develop broader and greater T cell responses to S1 and S2 subunits as well as the N and M proteins.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Interferon-gamma , Interleukin-2 , Adult , Humans , 2019-nCoV Vaccine mRNA-1273 , Antibodies, Viral , BNT162 Vaccine , COVID-19/prevention & control , Epitopes , Immunoglobulin G , Interferon-gamma/immunology , Interleukin-2/immunology , Leukocytes, Mononuclear , Proteome , SARS-CoV-2 , Vaccination
7.
Viruses ; 14(10)2022 10 16.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2071841

ABSTRACT

Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) is associated with increased incidence of neurological diseases and neuropsychiatric disorders after infection, but how it contributes to their development remains under investigation. Here, we investigate the possible relationship between COVID-19 and the development of ten neurological disorders and three neuropsychiatric disorders by exploring two pathological mechanisms: (i) dysregulation of host biological processes via virus-host protein-protein interactions (PPIs), and (ii) autoreactivity of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) epitopes with host "self" proteins via molecular mimicry. We also identify potential genetic risk factors which in combination with SARS-CoV-2 infection might lead to disease development. Our analysis indicated that neurodegenerative diseases (NDs) have a higher number of disease-associated biological processes that can be modulated by SARS-CoV-2 via virus-host PPIs than neuropsychiatric disorders. The sequence similarity analysis indicated the presence of several matching 5-mer and/or 6-mer linear motifs between SARS-CoV-2 epitopes with autoreactive epitopes found in Alzheimer's Disease (AD), Parkinson's Disease (PD), Myasthenia Gravis (MG) and Multiple Sclerosis (MS). The results include autoreactive epitopes that recognize amyloid-beta precursor protein (APP), microtubule-associated protein tau (MAPT), acetylcholine receptors, glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP), neurofilament light polypeptide (NfL) and major myelin proteins. Altogether, our results suggest that there might be an increased risk for the development of NDs after COVID-19 both via autoreactivity and virus-host PPIs.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Neurodegenerative Diseases , Humans , SARS-CoV-2 , Glial Fibrillary Acidic Protein , Computational Biology , Neurodegenerative Diseases/etiology , Epitopes , Receptors, Cholinergic , Microtubule-Associated Proteins
8.
Int J Mol Sci ; 23(20)2022 Oct 14.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2071507

ABSTRACT

Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus 2 is the causal pathogen of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). The emergence of new variants with different mutational patterns has limited the therapeutic options available and complicated the development of effective neutralizing antibodies targeting the spike (S) protein. Variable New Antigen Receptors (VNARs) constitute a neutralizing antibody technology that has been introduced into the list of possible therapeutic options against SARS-CoV-2. The unique qualities of VNARs, such as high affinities for target molecules, capacity for paratope reformatting, and relatively high stability, make them attractive molecules to counteract the emerging SARS-CoV-2 variants. In this study, we characterized a VNAR antibody (SP240) that was isolated from a synthetic phage library of VNAR domains. In the phage display, a plasma with high antibody titers against SARS-CoV-2 was used to selectively displace the VNAR antibodies bound to the antigen SARS-CoV-2 receptor binding domain (RBD). In silico data suggested that the SP240 binding epitopes are located within the ACE2 binding interface. The neutralizing ability of SP240 was tested against live Delta and Omicron SARS-CoV-2 variants and was found to clear the infection of both variants in the lung cell line A549-ACE2-TMPRSS2. This study highlights the potential of VNARs to act as neutralizing antibodies against emerging SARS-CoV-2 variants.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Single-Domain Antibodies , Humans , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/chemistry , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/genetics , Neutralization Tests , Antibodies, Viral , Antibodies, Neutralizing , Epitopes
9.
PLoS One ; 17(10): e0275838, 2022.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2065150

ABSTRACT

The World Health Organization (WHO) emphasizes that tuberculosis (TB) in children and adolescents is often overlooked by healthcare providers and difficult to diagnose. As childhood TB cases rise, finding a diagnostic high in sensitivity and specificity is critical. In this study 91 urine samples from children aged 1-10 years were analyzed for tuberculostearic acid (TBSA) by gas chromatography/mass spectrometry (GC/MS) and capture ELISA (C-ELISA). In C-ELISA the CS35/A194-01 antibody performed very poorly with both curve-based and model-based cutoffs. The area under the ROC curve (AUC) of the CS35 OD450 values was only 0.60. Replacing the capture antibody with BJ76 gave a better performance in both sensitivity and specificity (AUC = 0.95). When these samples were analyzed by GC/MS, 41 classified as 'probable/possible' for TB were distinctly TBSA positive with ten samples having <3 ng/mL LAM. However, from the 50 samples with 'unlikely' TB classification, 36 were negative but 7 had >3 ng/mL and were designated as LAM positive. This experimental assay assessment study signifies that i) the antibody pair CS35/A194-01 that has been successful for adult active TB diagnosis is not adequate when LAM level is low as in pediatric TB; ii) no one mAb appears to recognize all TB-specific LAM epitopes.


Subject(s)
HIV Infections , Mycobacterium tuberculosis , Tuberculosis , Adolescent , Adult , Antibodies , Child , Epitopes , Humans , Limit of Detection , Lipopolysaccharides , Sensitivity and Specificity , Tuberculosis/diagnosis
10.
Sci Adv ; 8(40): eabn3777, 2022 10 07.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2063966

ABSTRACT

Patients infected with the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) can experience life-threatening respiratory distress, blood pressure dysregulation, and thrombosis. This is thought to be associated with an impaired activity of angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2), which is the main entry receptor of SARS-CoV-2 and which also tightly regulates blood pressure by converting the vasoconstrictive peptide angiotensin II (AngII) to a vasopressor peptide. Here, we show that a significant proportion of hospitalized patients with COVID-19 developed autoantibodies against AngII, whose presence correlates with lower blood oxygenation, blood pressure dysregulation, and overall higher disease severity. Anti-AngII antibodies can develop upon specific immune reaction to the SARS-CoV-2 proteins Spike or receptor-binding domain (RBD), to which they can cross-bind, suggesting some epitope mimicry between AngII and Spike/RBD. These results provide important insights on how an immune reaction against SARS-CoV-2 can impair blood pressure regulation.


Subject(s)
Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2 , COVID-19 , Angiotensin II , Autoantibodies , Blood Pressure , Epitopes/metabolism , Humans , Peptidyl-Dipeptidase A/metabolism , Protein Binding , SARS-CoV-2 , Severity of Illness Index , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus
11.
Commun Biol ; 5(1): 1081, 2022 Oct 10.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2062279

ABSTRACT

SARS-CoV-2 worldwide spread and evolution has resulted in variants containing mutations resulting in immune evasive epitopes that decrease vaccine efficacy. We acquired SARS-CoV-2 positive clinical samples and compared the worldwide emerged spike mutations from Variants of Concern/Interest, and developed an algorithm for monitoring the evolution of SARS-CoV-2 in the context of vaccines and monoclonal antibodies. The algorithm partitions logarithmic-transformed prevalence data monthly and Pearson's correlation determines exponential emergence of amino acid substitutions (AAS) and lineages. The SARS-CoV-2 genome evaluation indicated 49 mutations, with 44 resulting in AAS. Nine of the ten most worldwide prevalent (>70%) spike protein changes have Pearson's coefficient r > 0.9. The tenth, D614G, has a prevalence >99% and r-value of 0.67. The resulting algorithm is based on the patterns these ten substitutions elucidated. The strong positive correlation of the emerged spike protein changes and algorithmic predictive value can be harnessed in designing vaccines with relevant immunogenic epitopes. Monitoring, next-generation vaccine design, and mAb clinical efficacy must keep up with SARS-CoV-2 evolution, as the virus is predicted to remain endemic.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Vaccines , COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Algorithms , Antibodies, Monoclonal , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/prevention & control , Epitopes , Humans , Membrane Glycoproteins/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Viral Envelope Proteins/genetics
12.
Sci Rep ; 12(1): 17058, 2022 Oct 12.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2062275

ABSTRACT

The emergence of Omicron variant raises great concerns because of its rapid transmissibility and its numerous mutations in spike protein (S-protein). S-protein can act as a pathogen-associated molecular pattern and complement activator as well as antigen. We compared some immune characteristics of trimer S-proteins for wild type (WT-S) and B.1.1.529 Omicron (Omicron-S) to investigate whether the mutations have affected its pathogenicity and antigenic shift. The results indicated that WT-S and Omicron-S directly activated nuclear factor-κB (NF-κB) and induced the release of pro-inflammatory cytokines in macrophages, but the actions of Omicron-S were weaker. These inflammatory reactions could be abrogated by a Toll-like receptor 4 antagonist TAK-242. Two S-proteins failed to induce the production of antiviral molecular interferon-ß. In contrast to pro-inflammatory effects, the ability of two S-proteins to activate complement was comparable. We also compared the binding ability of two S-proteins to a high-titer anti-WT-receptor-binding domain antibody. The data showed that WT-S strongly bound to this antibody, while Omicron-S was completely off-target. Collectively, the mutations of Omicron have a great impact on the pro-inflammatory ability and epitopes of S-protein, but little effect on its ability to activate complement. Addressing these issues can be helpful for more adequate understanding of the pathogenicity of Omicron and the vaccine breakthrough infection.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Vaccines , Antiviral Agents , Cytokines , Epitopes , Humans , Interferon-beta/genetics , Membrane Glycoproteins/genetics , NF-kappa B , Pathogen-Associated Molecular Pattern Molecules , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Toll-Like Receptor 4/genetics , Viral Envelope Proteins/genetics
13.
Sci Rep ; 12(1): 16817, 2022 Oct 07.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2062256

ABSTRACT

Immunity to previously encountered viruses can alter response to unrelated pathogens. We reasoned that similar mechanism may also involve SARS-CoV-2 and thereby affect the specificity and the quality of the immune response against the virus. Here, we employed high-throughput next generation phage display method to explore the link between antibody immune response to previously encountered antigens and spike (S) glycoprotein. By profiling the antibody response in COVID-19 naïve individuals with a diverse clinical history (including cardiovascular, neurological, or oncological diseases), we identified 15 highly antigenic epitopes on spike protein that showed cross-reactivity with antigens of seasonal, persistent, latent or chronic infections from common human viruses. We observed varying degrees of cross-reactivity of different viral antigens with S in an epitope-specific manner. The data show that pre-existing SARS-CoV-2 S1 and S2 cross-reactive serum antibody is readily detectable in pre-pandemic cohort. In the severe COVID-19 cases, we found differential antibody response to the 15 defined antigenic and cross-reactive epitopes on spike. We also noted that despite the high mutation rates of Omicron (B.1.1.529) variants of SARS-CoV-2, some of the epitopes overlapped with the described mutations. Finally, we propose that the resolved epitopes on spike if targeted by re-called antibody response from SARS-CoV-2 infections or vaccinations can function in chronically ill COVID-19 naïve/unvaccinated individuals as immunogenic targets to boost antibodies augmenting the chronic conditions. Understanding the relationships between prior antigen exposure at the antibody epitope level and the immune response to subsequent infections with viruses from a different strain is paramount to guiding strategies to exit the COVID-19 pandemic.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus , Antibodies, Neutralizing , Antibodies, Viral , Antibody Formation , Antigens, Viral , Chronic Disease , Epitopes , Humans , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2
14.
Int J Biol Macromol ; 222(Pt B): 2467-2478, 2022 Dec 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2061253

ABSTRACT

SARS-CoV-2 spike (S) protein mediates virus attachment to the cells and fusion between viral and cell membranes. Membrane fusion is driven by mutual interaction between the highly conserved heptad-repeat regions 1 and 2 (HR1 and HR2) of the S2 subunit of the spike. For this reason, these S2 regions are interesting therapeutic targets for COVID-19. Although HR1 and HR2 have been described as transiently exposed during the fusion process, no significant antibody responses against these S2 regions have been reported. Here we designed chimeric proteins that imitate highly stable HR1 helical trimers and strongly bind to HR2. The proteins have broad inhibitory activity against WT B.1 and BA.1 viruses. Sera from COVID-19 convalescent donors showed significant levels of reactive antibodies (IgG and IgA) against the HR1 mimetic proteins, whereas these antibody responses were absent in sera from uninfected donors. Moreover, both inhibitory activity and antigenicity of the proteins correlate positively with their structural stability but not with the number of amino acid changes in their HR1 sequences, indicating a conformational and conserved nature of the involved epitopes. Our results reveal previously undetected spike epitopes that may guide the design of new robust COVID-19 vaccines and therapies.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Humans , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/chemistry , Viral Envelope Proteins/chemistry , Epitopes , COVID-19 Vaccines , Membrane Glycoproteins/chemistry , Recombinant Fusion Proteins/genetics
15.
Cell Rep ; 41(3): 111512, 2022 10 18.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2060516

ABSTRACT

The SARS-CoV-2 Omicron variant evades most neutralizing vaccine-induced antibodies and is associated with lower antibody titers upon breakthrough infections than previous variants. However, the mechanism remains unclear. Here, we find using a geometric deep-learning model that Omicron's extensively mutated receptor binding site (RBS) features reduced antigenicity compared with previous variants. Mice immunization experiments with different recombinant receptor binding domain (RBD) variants confirm that the serological response to Omicron is drastically attenuated and less potent. Analyses of serum cross-reactivity and competitive ELISA reveal a reduction in antibody response across both variable and conserved RBD epitopes. Computational modeling confirms that the RBS has a potential for further antigenicity reduction while retaining efficient receptor binding. Finally, we find a similar trend of antigenicity reduction over decades for hCoV229E, a common cold coronavirus. Thus, our study explains the reduced antibody titers associated with Omicron infection and reveals a possible trajectory of future viral evolution.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Viral Vaccines , Mice , Animals , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus , Neutralization Tests , Antibodies, Viral/chemistry , SARS-CoV-2 , Antibodies, Neutralizing/chemistry , Epitopes/chemistry
16.
Methods Mol Biol ; 2574: 309-366, 2022.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2059679

ABSTRACT

Paired- and single-chain T cell receptor (TCR) sequencing are now commonly used techniques for interrogating adaptive immune responses. TCRs targeting the same epitope frequently share motifs consisting of critical contact residues. Here we illustrate the key features of tcrdist3, a new Python package for distance-based TCR analysis through a series of three interactive examples. In the first example, we illustrate how tcrdist3 can integrate sequence similarity networks, gene-usage plots, and background-adjusted CDR3 logos to identify TCR sequence features conferring antigen specificity among sets of peptide-MHC-multimer sorted receptors. In the second example, we show how the TCRjoin feature in tcrdist3 can be used to flexibly query receptor sequences of interest against bulk repertoires or libraries of previously annotated TCRs based on matching of similar sequences. In the third example, we show how the TCRdist metric can be leveraged to identify candidate polyclonal receptors under antigenic selection in bulk repertoires based on sequence neighbor enrichment testing, a statistical approach similar to TCRNET and ALICE algorithms, but with added flexibility in how the neighborhood can be defined.


Subject(s)
Antigens , Receptors, Antigen, T-Cell , Algorithms , Epitopes
17.
Hepatology ; 76(4): 1190-1202, 2022 10.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2059410

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND AND AIMS: A prophylactic vaccine targeting multiple HCV genotypes (gt) is urgently required to meet World Health Organization elimination targets. Neutralizing antibodies (nAbs) and CD4+ and CD8+ T cells are associated with spontaneous clearance of HCV, and each may contribute to protective immunity. However, current vaccine candidates generate either nAbs or T cells targeting genetically variable epitopes and have failed to show efficacy in human trials. We have previously shown that a simian adenovirus vector (ChAdOx1) encoding conserved sequences across gt1-6 (ChAd-Gt1-6), and separately gt-1a E2 protein with variable regions deleted (E2Δ123HMW ), generates pan-genotypic T cells and nAbs, respectively. We now aim to develop a vaccine to generate both viral-specific B- and T-cell responses concurrently. APPROACH AND RESULTS: We show that vaccinating with ChAd-Gt1-6 and E2Δ123HMW sequentially in mice generates T-cell and antibody (Ab) responses comparable to either vaccine given alone. We encoded E2Δ123 in ChAdOx1 (ChAd-E2Δ123) and show that this, given with an E2Δ123HMW protein boost, induces greater CD81-E2 inhibitory and HCV-pseudoparticle nAb titers compared to the E2Δ123HMW prime boost. We developed bivalent viral vector vaccines (ChAdOx1 and modified vaccinia Ankara [MVA]) encoding both Gt1-6 and E2Δ123 immunogens (Gt1-6-E2Δ123) generating polyfunctional CD4+ and CD8+ T cells and nAb titers in prime/boost strategies. This approach generated nAb responses comparable to monovalent E2Δ123 ChAd/MVA vaccines and superior to three doses of recombinant E2Δ123HMW protein, while also generating high-magnitude T-cell responses. CONCLUSIONS: These data are an important step forward for the development of a pan-genotype HCV vaccine to elicit T cells and nAbs for future assessment in humans.


Subject(s)
Hepatitis C , Vaccines , Animals , Antibodies, Neutralizing , Antibodies, Viral , CD8-Positive T-Lymphocytes , Epitopes , Genotype , Hepacivirus/genetics , Hepatitis C/prevention & control , Hepatitis C Antibodies , Humans , Mice , Vaccinia virus/genetics
18.
Front Immunol ; 13: 926279, 2022.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2055016

ABSTRACT

Dendritic cells (DCs) are professional antigen-presenting cells that can recognize, capture, and process antigens. Fusing molecules targeting DCs with antigens can effectively improve the efficiency with which antigens are recognized and captured by DCs. This targeting strategy can be used for vaccine development to effectively improve the efficiency of antigen recognition and capture by DCs. The targeting sequence of porcine cytotoxic T-lymphocyte associated protein 4 (CTLA4), which binds porcine DCs, was identified in this study. Recombinant Lactobacillus reuteri (L. reuteri) expressing CTLA4-6aa (LYPPPY) and CTLA4-87aa fused to the porcine epidemic diarrhea virus (PEDV) protective antigen core neutralizing epitope (COE) were used to evaluate the ability of the two targeting motifs to bind the B7 molecule on DCs. Our results demonstrate that CTLA4-6aa could bind porcine DCs, and recombinant Lactobacillus expressing the CTLA4-6aa captured by porcine DCs was more efficient than those expressing CTLA4-87aa. In addition, the expression of DC markers, toll-like receptors, and cytokines was significantly higher in the 6aa-COE/L. reuteri-stimulated porcine DCs compared to DCs treated with 87aa-COE/L. reuteri (p<0.01) and recombinant Lactobacillus expressing CTLA4-6aa enhanced the ability of porcine DCs to activate T-cell proliferation. Our analysis of the protein structure revealed that CTLA4-87aa contains intramolecular hydrogen bonds, which may have weakened the intermolecular force between the residues on porcine CTLA4 and that on B7. In conclusion, recombinant Lactobacillus expressing CTLA4-6aa were more efficiently captured by porcine DCs and had a stronger ability to promote DC maturation and enhance T-cell proliferation. The LYPPPY motif is the optimal sequence for binding to porcine DCs. Piglets immunized with recombinant Lactobacillus showed that recombinant Lactobacillus expressing CTLA4-6aa induced significant levels of anti-PEDV-specific IgG and IgA antibody responses. Our study may promote research on DC-targeting strategies to enhance the effectiveness of porcine vaccines.


Subject(s)
Dendritic Cells , Animals , B7 Antigens , CTLA-4 Antigen , Cytokines , Epitopes , Immunoglobulin A , Immunoglobulin G , Lactobacillus , Peptides , Swine
19.
Sci Adv ; 8(40): eadd2032, 2022 10 07.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2053092

ABSTRACT

In this study, by characterizing several human monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) isolated from single B cells of the COVID-19-recovered individuals in India who experienced ancestral Wuhan strain (WA.1) of SARS-CoV-2 during early stages of the pandemic, we found a receptor binding domain (RBD)-specific mAb 002-S21F2 that has rare gene usage and potently neutralized live viral isolates of SARS-CoV-2 variants including Alpha, Beta, Gamma, Delta, and Omicron sublineages (BA.1, BA.2, BA.2.12.1, BA.4, and BA.5) with IC50 ranging from 0.02 to 0.13 µg/ml. Structural studies of 002-S21F2 in complex with spike trimers of Omicron and WA.1 showed that it targets a conformationally conserved epitope on the outer face of RBD (class 3 surface) outside the ACE2-binding motif, thereby providing a mechanistic insights for its broad neutralization activity. The discovery of 002-S21F2 and the broadly neutralizing epitope it targets have timely implications for developing a broad range of therapeutic and vaccine interventions against SARS-CoV-2 variants including Omicron sublineages.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2 , Antibodies, Monoclonal/chemistry , Antibodies, Viral , Epitopes , Humans , Neutralization Tests , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus
20.
Sci Adv ; 8(38): eabq2422, 2022 09 23.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2053090

ABSTRACT

Myalgic encephalomyelitis/chronic fatigue syndrome (ME/CFS) is a debilitating disease with an unclear etiology and pathogenesis. Both an involvement of the immune system and gut microbiota dysbiosis have been implicated in its pathophysiology. However, potential interactions between adaptive immune responses and the microbiota in ME/CFS have been incompletely characterized. Here, we profiled antibody responses of patients with severe ME/CFS and healthy controls against microbiota and viral antigens represented as a phage-displayed 244,000 variant library. Patients with severe ME/CFS exhibited distinct serum antibody epitope repertoires against flagellins of Lachnospiraceae bacteria. Training machine learning algorithms on this antibody-binding data demonstrated that immune responses against gut microbiota represent a unique layer of information beyond standard blood tests, providing improved molecular diagnostics for ME/CFS. Together, our results point toward an involvement of the microbiota-immune axis in ME/CFS and lay the foundation for comparative studies with inflammatory bowel diseases and illnesses characterized by long-term fatigue symptoms, including post-COVID-19 syndrome.


Subject(s)
Antibody Formation , Fatigue Syndrome, Chronic , Flagellin , Gastrointestinal Microbiome , Epitopes , Fatigue Syndrome, Chronic/diagnosis , Fatigue Syndrome, Chronic/immunology , Flagellin/immunology , Humans
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