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Article

Unique Aggregation of Retroviral Particles Pseudotyped with the Delta Variant SARS-CoV-2 Spike Protein

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Section on Integrative Biophysics, Division of Basic and Translational Biophysics, Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, MD 20892, USA
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Codex BioSolutions, Inc., Department of Research and Development, Cell Biology, 12358 Parklawn Dr., Suite 250, North Bethesda, MD 20852, USA
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Section on Intercellular Interactions, Division of Basic and Translational Biophysics, Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, MD 20892, USA
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Unit on Structural Biology, Division of Basic and Translational Biophysics, Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, MD 20892, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Yong-Hui Zheng
Viruses 2022, 14(5), 1024; https://doi.org/10.3390/v14051024
Received: 14 April 2022 / Revised: 2 May 2022 / Accepted: 5 May 2022 / Published: 11 May 2022
(This article belongs to the Section SARS-CoV-2 and COVID-19)
Individuals infected with the SARS-CoV-2 Delta variant, lineage B.1.617.2, exhibit faster initial infection with a higher viral load than prior variants, and pseudotyped viral particles bearing the SARS-CoV-2 Delta variant spike protein induce a faster initial infection rate of target cells compared to those bearing other SARS-CoV-2 variant spikes. Here, we show that pseudotyped viral particles bearing the Delta variant spike form unique aggregates, as evidenced by negative stain and cryogenic electron microscopy (EM), flow cytometry, and nanoparticle tracking analysis. Viral particles pseudotyped with other SARS-CoV-2 spike variants do not show aggregation by any of these criteria. The contribution to infection kinetics of the Delta spike’s unique property to aggregate is discussed with respect to recent evidence for collective infection by other viruses. Irrespective of this intriguing possibility, spike-dependent aggregation is a new functional parameter of spike-expressing viral particles to evaluate in future spike protein variants. View Full-Text
Keywords: coronavirus; SARS-CoV-2; pseudotyped viral particle; spike protein; variant; aggregation coronavirus; SARS-CoV-2; pseudotyped viral particle; spike protein; variant; aggregation
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MDPI and ACS Style

Petersen, J.D.; Lu, J.; Fitzgerald, W.; Zhou, F.; Blank, P.S.; Matthies, D.; Zimmerberg, J. Unique Aggregation of Retroviral Particles Pseudotyped with the Delta Variant SARS-CoV-2 Spike Protein. Viruses 2022, 14, 1024. https://doi.org/10.3390/v14051024

AMA Style

Petersen JD, Lu J, Fitzgerald W, Zhou F, Blank PS, Matthies D, Zimmerberg J. Unique Aggregation of Retroviral Particles Pseudotyped with the Delta Variant SARS-CoV-2 Spike Protein. Viruses. 2022; 14(5):1024. https://doi.org/10.3390/v14051024

Chicago/Turabian Style

Petersen, Jennifer D., Jianming Lu, Wendy Fitzgerald, Fei Zhou, Paul S. Blank, Doreen Matthies, and Joshua Zimmerberg. 2022. "Unique Aggregation of Retroviral Particles Pseudotyped with the Delta Variant SARS-CoV-2 Spike Protein" Viruses 14, no. 5: 1024. https://doi.org/10.3390/v14051024

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