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Characterization of a Novel SARS-CoV-2 Genetic Variant with Distinct Spike Protein Mutations
Article

Different Neutralization Sensitivity of SARS-CoV-2 Cell-to-Cell and Cell-Free Modes of Infection to Convalescent Sera

1
Center for Precision Genome Editing and Genetic Technologies for Biomedicine, Institute of Gene Biology RAS, 119334 Moscow, Russia
2
N.F. Gamaleya National Research Center for Epidemiology and Microbiology, Ministry of Health of the Russian Federation, 123098 Moscow, Russia
3
Department of Molecular Neuroimmune Signalling, Shemyakin-Ovchinnikov Institute of Bioorganic Chemistry, Russian Academy of Sciences, 117997 Moscow, Russia
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Larisa Rudenko
Viruses 2021, 13(6), 1133; https://doi.org/10.3390/v13061133
Received: 14 May 2021 / Revised: 1 June 2021 / Accepted: 9 June 2021 / Published: 12 June 2021
(This article belongs to the Special Issue State-of-the-Art Respiratory Viruses Research in Russia)
The COVID-19 pandemic caused by SARS-CoV-2 has posed a global threat to human lives and economics. One of the best ways to determine protection against the infection is to quantify the neutralizing activity of serum antibodies. Multiple assays have been developed to validate SARS-CoV-2 neutralization; most of them utilized lentiviral or vesicular stomatitis virus-based particles pseudotyped with the spike (S) protein, making them safe and acceptable to work with in many labs. However, these systems are only capable of measuring infection with purified particles. This study has developed a pseudoviral assay with replication-dependent reporter vectors that can accurately quantify the level of infection directly from the virus producing cell to the permissive target cell. Comparative analysis of cell-free and cell-to-cell infection revealed that the neutralizing activity of convalescent sera was more than tenfold lower in cell cocultures than in the cell-free mode of infection. As the pseudoviral system could not properly model the mechanisms of SARS-CoV-2 transmission, similar experiments were performed with replication-competent coronavirus, which detected nearly complete SARS-CoV-2 cell-to-cell infection resistance to neutralization by convalescent sera. These findings suggest that the cell-to-cell mode of SARS-CoV-2 transmission, for which the mechanisms are largely unknown, could be of great importance for treatment and prevention of COVID-19. View Full-Text
Keywords: SARS-CoV-2; cell-to-cell infection; serum neutralization; intron-containing reporter SARS-CoV-2; cell-to-cell infection; serum neutralization; intron-containing reporter
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MDPI and ACS Style

Kruglova, N.; Siniavin, A.; Gushchin, V.; Mazurov, D. Different Neutralization Sensitivity of SARS-CoV-2 Cell-to-Cell and Cell-Free Modes of Infection to Convalescent Sera. Viruses 2021, 13, 1133. https://doi.org/10.3390/v13061133

AMA Style

Kruglova N, Siniavin A, Gushchin V, Mazurov D. Different Neutralization Sensitivity of SARS-CoV-2 Cell-to-Cell and Cell-Free Modes of Infection to Convalescent Sera. Viruses. 2021; 13(6):1133. https://doi.org/10.3390/v13061133

Chicago/Turabian Style

Kruglova, Natalia, Andrei Siniavin, Vladimir Gushchin, and Dmitriy Mazurov. 2021. "Different Neutralization Sensitivity of SARS-CoV-2 Cell-to-Cell and Cell-Free Modes of Infection to Convalescent Sera" Viruses 13, no. 6: 1133. https://doi.org/10.3390/v13061133

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