Evaluation of cellular and serological responses to acute sars-cov-2 infection demonstrates the functional importance of the receptor-binding domain

Grace Mantus, Lindsay E. Nyhoff, Robert C. Kauffman, Venkata Viswanadh Edara, Lilin Lai, Katharine Floyd, Pei Yong Shi, Vineet D. Menachery, Srilatha Edupuganti, Erin M. Scherer, Ariel Kay, Nina McNair, Evan J. Anderson, Nadine Rouphael, Rafi Ahmed, Mehul S. Suthar, Jens Wrammert

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Scopus citations

Abstract

The factors that control the development of an effective immune response to the recently emerged SARS-CoV-2 virus are poorly understood. In this study, we provide a cross-sectional analysis of the dynamics of B cell responses to SARS-CoV-2 infection in hospitalized COVID-19 patients. We observe changes in B cell subsets consistent with a robust humoral immune response, including significant expansion of plasmablasts and activated receptor-binding domain (RBD)_specific memory B cell populations. We observe elevated titers of Abs to SARS-CoV-2 RBD, full-length Spike, and nucleoprotein over the course of infection, with higher levels of RBD-specific IgG correlating with increased serum neutralization. Depletion of RBD-specific Abs from serum removed a major portion of neutralizing activity in most individuals. Some donors did retain significant residual neutralization activity, suggesting a potential Ab subset targeting non-RBD epitopes. Taken together, these findings are instructive for future vaccine design and mAb strategies.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2605-2613
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Immunology
Volume206
Issue number11
DOIs
StatePublished - Jun 1 2021

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Immunology and Allergy
  • Immunology

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