REVIEW | doi:10.20944/preprints202006.0278.v1
Subject: Medicine And Pharmacology, Pulmonary And Respiratory Medicine Keywords: COVID-19; serological diagnostic test; performance evaluation
Online: 21 June 2020 (14:58:20 CEST)
In only a few months after initial discovery in Wuhan, China, SARS-CoV-2 and the associated COVID-19 disease has become a global pandemic causing significant mortality and morbidity. In the absence of vaccines and effective therapeutics, reliable serological testing can be a key element of public health policy to control further spread of the disease and gradually ease quarantine measures. However, prior to launch of large-scale seroprevalence studies to assess herd immunity, it is critical to understand the limits and potential of current SARS-CoV-2 serological tests on the market. In this study, we provide an overview of serological testing and conduct a systematic review of independent evaluations of SARS-CoV-2 serological tests performance. Our findings show significant variability in the accuracy of marketed tests and highlight several lab-based and point-of-care rapid diagnostic tests with high performance level in detecting SRAS-CoV-2 specific antibodies. The findings of this review highlight the need for ongoing independent evaluations of commercialized COVID-19 diagnostic tests.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202301.0457.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Virology Keywords: COVID-19; serological markers (IgM/IgG); Prevalence; private universities; Cameroon
Online: 25 January 2023 (11:27:36 CET)
Background: COVID-19 remains a rapidly evolving and deadly pandemic worldwide. This necessitates the continuous assessment of existing diagnostic tools for robust, up-to-date and cost-effective pandemic response strategy. We sought to determine the infection rate (PCR-positivity) and degree of spread (IgM/IgG) of SARS-CoV-2 in three university settings in Cameroon Method: Study volunteers were recruited from November 2020 to July 2021 among COVID-19 non-vaccinated students in three Universities from two regions of Cameroon (West and Centre). Molecular testing was performed by RT-qPCR on nasopharyngeal swabs and IgM/IgG antibodies in plasma were detected using the Abbott Panbio IgM/IgG rapid diagnostic test (RDT) at the Virology Laboratory of CREMER/IMPM/MINRESI. The molecular and serological profiles were compared and, p<0.05 considered statistically significant. Results: Amongst the 291 participants enrolled (mean age 22.59±10.43 years), 19.59% (57/291) were symptomatic and 80.41 %(234/2691) asymptomatic. Overall COVID-19 PCR-positivity rate was 21.31% (62/291), distributed as follows: 25.25% from UdM-Bangangte; 27.27% from ISSBA-Yaounde and 5% from IUEs/INSAM-Yaounde. Women were more affected than men (28.76% [44/153] vs. 13.04% [18/138], p<0.0007) and they significantly expressed more IgM+/IgG+ (15.69% [24/153] vs. 7.25% [10/138], p<0.01). Participants from Bangangté, the nomadic, and the “non-contact cases” mainly presented an active infection compared to those from Yaoundé (p= 0.05; p=0.05 and p=0.01 respectively). Overall IgG seropositivity (IgM-/IgG+ and IgM+/IgG+) was 24.4% (71/291). A proportion of 26.92% (7/26) presenting COVID-19 IgM+/IgG- had negative PCR versus 73.08% (19/26) with positive PCR, p<0.0001. Furthermore, 17.65% (6/34) with COVID-19 IgM+/IgG+ had negative PCR as compared to 82.35% positive PCR (28/34), p<0.0001. Lastly, 7.22% (14/194) with IgM-/IgG- had a positive PCR. Conclusion: This study calls for a rapid preparedness and response strategy in higher institutes in case of any future pathogen with pandemic or epidemic potentials. The observed disparity between IgG/IgM and viral profile supports prioritizing assays targeting the virus (nucleic acid or antigen) for diagnosis and antibody screening for sero-surveys
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202208.0437.v1
Subject: Public Health And Healthcare, Public Health And Health Services Keywords: COVID-19; LaLiga; sports; spatial and temporal analysis; serological status
Online: 26 August 2022 (02:59:56 CEST)
Objectives: COVID-19 pandemic interrupted the Spanish professional football competition until May 2020, when it was restarted following a surveillance protocol established by LaLiga. The aims were to describe the infective and serological status of professional football players (PLY) and staff (STF) between May 5th 2020 until April 22nd 2021, to analyze the spatial-temporal distribution of the COVID-19 disease in this cohort and its comparison to the Spanish population. Methods: a prospective observational cohort study was carried out. Differences between PLY and STF were assessed by Chi-squared test and test of equality of proportions. Pearson correlation test was used to measure the presence of an association between the percentages of positivity in population and LaLiga cohort. Results: 137,420 RT-PCR and 20,376 IgG serology tests were performed in 7,112 professionals. Positive baseline serology was detected in 10.57% of PLY and 6.38% of STF. Among those who started the follow-up as not infected and before STF vaccination, 11.87% of PLY and 5.03% of STF became positive. Before summer 2020 the prevalence of infection was similar than the observed at national level. The percentage of positivity in the Spanish population was higher than in LaLiga cohort, but both series showed a similar decreasing trend.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202104.0534.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Virology Keywords: COVID-19, SARS-CoV-2, Serological test, Sensitivity, Specificity, Serosurveillance.
Online: 20 April 2021 (11:36:09 CEST)
Background: Flow-through dot-blot assay (FT-DBA) for SARS-CoV-2 specific IgG detection will provide a reliable and affordable immunoassay for the rapid serosurveillance against COVID-19. Method: SARS-CoV-2 antigens were immobilized on nitrocellulose membrane to capture IgG immunoglobulins, which were then detected with AuNP anti-human IgG. A total of 181 samples were characterized with in-house and commercial immunoassay. The positive panel consisted of RT-PCR positive samples from patients with both <14 days and >14 days from the onset of symptoms, while the negative panel contained samples collected either from the pre-pandemic era dengue patients from healthy donors during the pandemic period. Results: In-house ELISA selected a total of 79 true seropositive and 100 seronegative samples. The sensitivity of samples with <14 days using FT-DBA was 94.7% which increased to 100% for samples >14 days. The overall detection sensitivity and specificity were 98.8% and 98%, respectively, whereas the overall PPV and NPV were 97.6% and 99%. Moreover, comparative analysis between ELISA and FT-DBA revealed clinical agreement of Cohen’s Kappa value of 0.944. Conclusion: The assay can confirm past SARS-CoV-2 infection with high accuracy within 2 minutes compared to ELISA. It can help track SARS-CoV-2 disease progression, population screening, and vaccination response.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202005.0379.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Virology Keywords: Coronaviruses; MERS-CoV; SARS-CoV-2; Serological assay; VSV pseudovirus
Online: 23 May 2020 (16:46:15 CEST)
Emerging highly pathogenic human coronaviruses (CoVs) represent a serious ongoing threat to the public health worldwide. The spike (S) proteins of CoVs are surface glycoproteins that facilitate viral entry into host cells via attachment to their respective cellular receptors. The S protein is believed to be a major immunogenic component of CoVs and a target for neutralizing antibodies (nAbs) and most candidate vaccines. Development of a safe and convenient assay is thus urgently needed to determine the prevalence of CoVs nAbs in the population, to study immune response in infected individuals, and to aid in vaccines and viral entry inhibitors evaluation. While live virus-based neutralization assays are used as gold standard serological methods to detect and measure nAbs, handling of highly pathogenic live CoVs requires strict bio-containment conditions in biosafety level-3 laboratories. On the other hand, use of replication-incompetent pseudoviruses bearing CoVs S proteins could represent a safe and useful method to detect nAbs in serum samples under biosafety level-2 conditions. Here, we describe a detailed protocol of a safe and convenient assay to generate vesicular stomatitis virus (VSV)-based pseudoviruses to evaluate and measure nAbs against highly pathogenic CoVs. The protocol covers methods to produce VSV pseudovirus bearing the S protein of the Middle East respiratory syndrome-CoV (MERS-CoV) and the severe acute respiratory syndrome-CoV-2 (SARS-CoV-2), pseudovirus titration, and pseudovirus neutralizing assay. Such assay could be adapted by different laboratories and researchers working on highly pathogenic CoVs without the need to handle live viruses in biosafety level-3 environment.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202103.0292.v1
Subject: Medicine And Pharmacology, Immunology And Allergy Keywords: cancer; COVID-19; symptoms; healthcare workers; anosmia; dysgeusia; ageusia; France; serological test; RT-PCR
Online: 10 March 2021 (16:17:48 CET)
Background: Cancer patients may fail to distinguish COVID-19 symptoms such as anosmia, dysgeusia/ageusia, anorexia, headache, and fatigue, which are frequent after cancer treatments. We aimed to identify symptoms associated with COVID-19 and to assess the strength of their association in cancer and cancer-free populations. Methods: The prospective multicenter cohort study PAPESCO-19 included 878 cancer patients and 940 healthcare workers (HCWs) systematically tested for SARS-CoV-2-specific antibodies. Participants reported the results of routine screening RT-PCR and thirteen COVID-19 symptoms. Backward logistic regression identified the symptom combinations significantly associated with COVID-19. Results: COVID+ proportions were similar in patients (8%) and HCWs (9.5%, p=0.26), whereas symptomatic proportions were lower in patients (32%) than HCWs (52%, p<0.001). Anosmia, anorexia, fever, headache, and rhinorrhea together accurately discriminated (c-statistic=0.7027) COVID-19 cases in patients. Anosmia, dysgeusia/ageusia, muscle pain, intense fatigue, headache, and chest pain better discriminated (c-statistic=0.8830) COVID-19 cases in HCWs. Anosmia had the strongest association in patients (OR=7.48, 95% CI: 2.96–18.89) and HCWs (OR=5.71, 95% CI: 2.21–14.75). Conclusions: COVID-19 symptoms and their diagnostic performance differ in cancer patients and HCWs. Anosmia is associated with COVID-19 for patients, while dysgeusia/ageusia are not. Cancer patients deserve tailored preventive measures due to their particular COVID-19 symptom pattern.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202101.0024.v1
Subject: Medicine And Pharmacology, Immunology And Allergy Keywords: SARS-CoV-2 antibodies; COVID-19; infertility; lockdown; IVF; SARS-CoV-2 serological testing
Online: 4 January 2021 (12:07:44 CET)
The COVID-19 pandemic had profound negative effects on millions of couples affected by infertility and in need to resort to assisted reproductive technologies. There is no consensus over the optimal way and moment of screening triage-negative asymptomatic patients and staff. We present SARS-CoV-2 antibodies’ (IgM, IgG) seroprevalence in 516 triage-negative patients and 30 fertility care providers. The sampling for SARS-CoV-2 serological assays took place from the lockdown release throughout the second half of 2020 (17.05 - 01.12.2020). It revealed an increased seroprevalence of antibodies that closely followed the local epidemiology of COVID-19, with the highest rate of seropositivity coincident with the peak of the second wave. From 546 triage-negative individuals whose blood samples were assessed for SARS-CoV-2 antibodies, 6% yielded positive results. The overall seroconversion rate was 2.8% for IgG and 5.1% for IgM. In the group with positive IgM, we observed a negative predictive value for IgM of 98.36% (95% CI: 88.79 – 99.78%), which is clinically meaningful. Serological testing of triage-negative patients up to seven days prior to the actual fertility procedure might avoid the more expensive and not more sensitive molecular testing currently being used for patient screening in most fertility units.
BRIEF REPORT | doi:10.20944/preprints202005.0515.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Virology Keywords: Covid-19; Herd Immunity Threshold; Corona Virus; Innate immunity; flattening the curve; serological survey
Online: 31 May 2020 (21:14:05 CEST)
We have analysed the death and recovery rate of Covid-19 disease progression. From the analysis, we have argued that the pandemic is over in certain countries (labelled as group-A) and for other countries (labelled as group-B) the disease appears to remain as endemic. Taking into account the serological survey (sero-survey) test results obtained by certain groups and comparing it with herd immunity threshold value one can infer that the low number of infection for group-B is either due to acquired immunity by some previous infection by other coronavirus or due to innate immunity towards this infection. This effect is stronger for group-B to slow the progress of the disease to such an extent resulting in flattening of the disease progression curve compared to group-A.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202208.0042.v1
Subject: Medicine And Pharmacology, Oncology And Oncogenics Keywords: HbA1c biomarker; type 2 diabetes; cancer risk profiling; serological diagnosis; oncoinformatic screening; genetic overexpression; promoter methylation
Online: 2 August 2022 (06:04:42 CEST)
This research aimed to figure out the applications of HbA1c protein and HbA1 gene as the prognostic biomarkers for assessing the risks of different cancers among male T2D patients in Bangladesh considering their serological and oncoinformatic parameters. Depending on the concentrations of HbA1c (%) of the T2D patients (n=300), their individual FBS (mmol/L); THABF (mmol/L); creatinine (mg/dl); SC (mg/dl); STGs (mg/dl); HDLC (mg/dl); and LDLC (mg/dl) were estimated. The values of the patients were compared with the control (n=60) group as the serological analysis. Besides, HbA1 gene (encoding hBA1c protein) overexpression and promotor methylation responsible for BLCA, BRCA, CHOL, COAD, LUAD, LUSC, PAAD, and PRAD cancers in the male T2D patients were profiled as the oncoinformatic parameters based on the sample types; caner stages; racial footprints; gender; age; nodal metastasis; p53 methylations; pancreatitis; diabetes status; smoking behaviors; and overall/disease-free survivability. Finally, the ‘HbA1 gene strings’ responsible for genetic coexpression; endophytic vesicle regulation; antioxidant regulation; oxygen species metabolic regulation; and gene-mediated response to the reactive oxygen molecules were studied comprehensively. A strong correlation between BMI and FBS was observed in both the patients and the control (P<0.0001). Similarly, the values of FBS, THABF, and creatinine resulted in equal significance (P<0.0001) as compared to the HbA1c concentrations of all the T2D and control individuals. The SC, STGs, HDLC, and LDLC concentrations regulated ardently in both the control (P<0.0001), and patients group (P<0.0001), while HbA1c ranged from 3.8-5.8%, and 5.11-15.8% respectively. HbA1 gene is found downregulating with cancer progressed in most of the oncoinformatic parameters. According to the DA, CS, EI, CE, PC, NC, GF, H, and AT profiles; the HbA1 gene interacts with 8 other genes responsible for creating a protein cluster comprising- AHSP, HBA1, HBA2, HBB, HBD, HBE1, HBG2, RPS12, and RPS19 proteins for cancer formation. To recapitulate, HbA1c protein and HbA1 gene can be used as the prognostic serological and molecular biomarkers respectively for determining the risks of cancers among male chronic T2D patients.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202110.0007.v1
Subject: Medicine And Pharmacology, Pharmacology And Toxicology Keywords: TSH disorder; IDA; TIBC; ferritin; FT4; Calcitriol mediated regulation; reproductive and non-reproductive women; quantitative serological assessment
Online: 1 October 2021 (11:32:58 CEST)
Anemia and thyroid disorders are global health issues that affect all ages but are more apparent in women. In this case, some serological components responsible for IDA and TSH disorders in women have been found actively regulated through a complex steroidal-calcitriol mediated pathway. This research has been investigated the correlation between Calcitriol and the serological components responsible for IDA and TSH disorders in childbearing and non-child-bearing women of different health conditions. Experimental sampling from 452 women suffering from both IDA and TSH disorders were taken, aged between 0 and 70 years. Serological parameters, such as iron, total iron-binding capacity and ferritin, were assessed for IDA profiling, whereas thyroid-stimulating hormone and free thyroxin were for TSH profiling based on the individual’s serum calcitriol status. The resulted serological data were interpreted using sophisticated computer programming language and algorithms for quantitative biochemical analysis. The study resulted in a significant correlation between FT4 and Calcitriol (P<0.0001) for all age groups. TSH also showed strong interactions with the fluctuation of calcitriol level (P<0.0001), except for the children aged below 10 years (P<0.063). The iron, TIBC, TSH, and FT4 showed phenomenal regulation with the steroidal-calcitriol concentration for congenital patients. Unlike the others, ferritin has a substantial connection with Calcitriol (P<0.0064) fluctuation in the serum. To ratify, the concentrations of TSH, FT4, iron, TIBC, and ferritin were found to be significantly interconnected in terms of serum calcitriol level in women suffering from IDA and TSH disorders simultaneously. To understand the accuracy and efficacy of the Calcitriol in IDA and TSH disorders, some other inflammatory markers and parathyroid hormone analysis are need in future studies, besides a large number of samples.
ARTICLE | doi:10.20944/preprints202303.0132.v1
Subject: Biology And Life Sciences, Ecology, Evolution, Behavior And Systematics Keywords: Toxoplasma gondii; rodents; rodent-borne diseases; environment contamination; biomonitoring; wildlife; molecular detection; PCR assay; nested-PCR assay prevalence; serological detection; agglutination test; ELISA method; seroprevalence
Online: 7 March 2023 (09:38:21 CET)
Rodents are known to be reservoirs of Toxoplasma gondii and keep the parasite circulation in the environment. We conducted biomonitoring to assess the role of sylvatic rodents in maintaining T. gondii and to analyse the prevalence and seroprevalence of the parasite in seven wild rodent species. Rodents were collected in our study sites (woodland and open grasslands) located in northeastern Poland and dissected. We collected brain, spleen, blood and serum samples. We applied both molecular (PCR assay, nested-PCR assay) and serological (ELISA and agglutination tests) methods to indicate the best approach for application in the biomonitoring of T. gondii in small mammals. We screened samples from 95 individuals sing PCR assays and found no T. gondii DNA. The agglutination test showed no signal. We found antibodies against T. gondii in 6 sera samples out of 74 analysed (seroprevalence = 8.11% [4.0-17.1]). Our results confirm that rodents participate in the life cycle of T. gondii as reservoirs of this parasite in the sylvatic environment. However, biomonitoring should be performed with the ELISA tests to search for T. gondii antigens, rather than a molecular approach only.