They detect antibodies against the coronavirus that could replace booster doses

They detect antibodies against the coronavirus that could replace booster doses

As the coronavirus is still circulating, booster vaccinations are essential to protect against serious illnesses (Getty Images)

The coronavirus pandemic is still affecting humanity. Although the number of cases has recently decreased, there are people who can still catch the virus. Until now, 64% of the world’s population received the primary vaccination course. 31% agreed to booster doses, which are applied because protection from the primary regimen wanes over time.

With the possibility of new variants emerging in the future, there are Israeli researchers they made a Advance which can become an option for booster doses are no longer needed in the future. For now, and as long as this option continues to develop, reinforcements should be applied.

Overall, the number of weekly COVID-19 cases decreased by 12% during the week of August 29 to September 4 compared to the previous week, with just under 4.2 million new cases reported according to the World Health Organization. The number of weekly deaths was down 5% from the previous week, with more than 13,700 victims reported. To prepare for the future, a great deal of research is underway. On the one hand, specific booster doses against Omicron have been developed. There are also four vaccines administered orally or nasally. Additionally, there is now the possibility of developing an intervention that could work against all current or emerging variants.

Scientist Natalia Freund and her team have successfully isolated two antibodies that neutralize all known variants of COVID-19, including Ómicron (Tel Aviv University)
Scientist Natalia Freund and her team have successfully isolated two antibodies that neutralize all known variants of COVID-19, including Ómicron (Tel Aviv University)

This possibility stems from a survey of Tel Aviv University. Scientists from this institution, led by Nathalie Freund, successfully isolated two antibodies that neutralize all known variants of COVID-19, including Ómicron, which is predominant this year. It works with an efficiency of up to 95%.

Targeted treatment with antibodies and their delivery to the body in high concentrations could serve as an effective substitute for vaccines, especially for at-risk populations and those with weakened immune systems. With antibody treatment, it is possible to eliminate the need for repeated reminders of the whole population each time a new variant emerges, the scientists believe.

Researchers have demonstrated that antibodies isolated from the immune system of recovered COVID-19 patients are effective in neutralizing all known variants of the virus, including variants Delta and Omicron. According to the researchersthis discovery could eliminate the need for repeated booster vaccinations and strengthen the immune system of at-risk populations.

Antibody discovery could eliminate the need for repeated booster vaccinations and boost the immune system of at-risk populations
Antibody discovery could eliminate the need for repeated booster vaccinations and boost the immune system of at-risk populations

Doctoral students also participated in the research. Michael More Yes Ruofan Lee, from the Department of Clinical Microbiology and Immunology at the Sackler School of Medicine. The study was conducted in collaboration with Dr. Ben Crocker, from the University of California, San Diego. Teacher Ye Xiang from Tsinghua University in Beijing. Teacher Meital Gal-Tanamy and the doctor Moshe Dessau from Bar-Ilan University also participated in the study. The study was published in the journal Nature Communication Biology.

The study is a continuation of the preliminary work that was carried out in October 2020, in the midst of the COVID-19 crisis. At that time, Dr. Freund and his colleagues sequenced all of the immune system B cells in the blood of people who had recovered from the original strain of the coronavirus in Israel, and isolated nine antibodies produced by the patients. Researchers have now found that some of these antibodies are very effective at neutralizing the novel coronavirus variants, Delta and Omicron. Clinical trials evaluating the efficacy and safety of antibodies as therapies will be needed.

According to Freund, “In the previous study, we showed that the different antibodies that form in response to infection by the parent virus are directed against different sites on the virus. The most effective antibodies were those that bound to the virus’ Spike protein, the same place where the Spike binds to the ACE2 cell receptor. Of course, we weren’t the only ones to isolate these antibodies, and the global health system made extensive use of them until the arrival of different variants of the coronavirus, which effectively rendered most of these antibodies useless.

Two antibodies, TAU-1109 and TAU-2310, are actually very good at neutralizing Delta and Omicron variants.
Two antibodies, TAU-1109 and TAU-2310, are actually very good at neutralizing Delta and Omicron variants.

“In the current study, we show that two other antibodies, TAU-1109 and TAU-2310, bind to the Spike protein of the virus in an area different from the region where most antibodies have been concentrated until now. (and therefore less effective in neutralizing the original strain) they are actually very effective at neutralizing the Delta and Omicron variants. According to our results, the efficiency of the first antibody, TAU-1109, to neutralize the Omicron variant is 92%, and to neutralize the Delta variant, 90%. The second antibody, TAU-2310, neutralizes the Omicron variant with 84% efficiency, and the Delta variant with 97% efficiency”.

According to Dr. Freund, the surprising effectiveness of these antibodies could be linked to the evolution of the virus: “The infectivity of the virus increased with each variant because each time the amino acid sequence of the part of the Spike protein that binds to the ACE2 receptor changed., thus increasing its infectivity and at the same time avoiding the natural antibodies created after vaccinations. In contrast, the TAU-1109 and TAU-2310 antibodies do not bind to the ACE2 receptor binding site, but to another region of the Spike protein – an area that for some reason does not undergo many mutations – and therefore, they are effective in neutralizing more viral variants. These findings came when we tested all known variants of the coronavirus to date. »

The two antibodies, cloned in Dr. Freund’s lab at Tel Aviv University, were sent to test their effectiveness against live viruses in cultures. at the University of California, San Diego, and against pseudoviruses at Bar-Ilan University Medical School laboratories in the Galilee. The results were identical and equally encouraging in both tests.

The level of antibodies against COVID-19 decreases significantly after three months.  This creates a risk of re-infection, even after being vaccinated three times (REUTERS/Hannah Beier)
The level of antibodies against COVID-19 decreases significantly after three months. This creates a risk of re-infection, even after being vaccinated three times (REUTERS/Hannah Beier)

Freund believes that antibodies can be a real revolution in the fight against COVID-19: “We must consider the COVID-19 pandemic in the context of previous epidemics that humanity has experienced. People who were vaccinated against smallpox at birth and are now in their 50s still have antibodies, so they are likely at least partially protected against the monkeypox virus we recently heard about.he pointed.

Unfortunately, this protection against the smallpox vaccine has not also been granted with regard to the vaccines against the coronavirus. “For reasons we don’t yet fully understand, the level of antibodies to COVID-19 drops significantly after three months, which is why you see people getting infected again and again, even after being vaccinated three times,” warned the researcher.

“In our view, selective antibody treatment and delivery to the body at high concentrations can serve as an effective substitute for repeated booster doses, particularly for at-risk populations and those with compromised immune systems. COVID-19 infection can cause serious illness, and we know that providing antibodies in the first days after infection can stop the spread of the virus. Therefore, it is possible that By using effective antibody therapy, we don’t have to give the whole population a booster dose every time there’s a new variant,” he said.

César Milstein, the Nobel Prize-winning scientist from Argentina, was already recommending the
César Milstein, the Nobel Prize-winning scientist from Argentina, already recommended “screening”: tests to select the most effective antibodies to achieve the proposed goal / File

viewed by Infobaedoctor Laura Bover, An Argentine scientist and director of monoclonal antibodies at the MD Anderson Center in the United States evaluated the research results published in the journal Nature Communication Biology. “When antibodies are generated, the most important step, as Caesar Milstein himself recommended, is the screening. In other words, the tests are essential to select the most effective antibodies to achieve the proposed goal., either therapeutic or for use in diagnosis or localization of the “target” molecule of study in the tissues”, he explained.

The group led by a scientist from Israel – noted Dr. Bover “Antibody genetic material isolated from antibody-producing plasma cells, constructed the recombinant antibodies and tested them against receptor binding domain of all the variants mentioned in the study. They selected those that bound with greater affinity and further neutralized viral particles and pseudoviruses, also introducing specific mutations present in the different variants and measuring how these parameters are affected. This selection process is what allows them to choose the best candidates to join and neutralize known variants.

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