Landscape of Public T Cell Receptors Associated with Recovery from COVID-19
21 Pages Posted: 30 Sep 2020 Publication Status: Under ReviewMore...
T cells play an essential role in COVID-19, but characteristics of beneficial clones remain unclear. By analysis of clonal trajectories, we identified recovery-associated expanding T cell clones many of which carrying public T cell receptors (TCRs). Mining the immune repertoires of unrelated COVID-19 cases for these sequences revealed T cells with exact TCR complementarity-determining region 3 identity that were more abundant in recovering than in fatal cases. These TCRs were also found in subjects not previously exposed to the virus, with lower representation in repertoires from risk groups like aged individuals or cancer patients. Together, our data indicate that a significant part of the recovery-associated T cell response in COVID-19 may be mediated by public TCRs that are present in repertoires of unexposed individuals. The lower representation of these clones in repertoires of risk groups or failure to expand such clones may contribute to more unfavorable clinical COVID-19 courses.
Funding: This project was partially funded by the CRC 841 of the German Research Foundation (to
MB) as well as by the Martin-Luther-University Halle (Saale).
Conflict of Interest: The authors declare no competing interests.
Ethical Approval: Blood collection of COVID-19 patients was performed under institutional review board approvals number 2020-039 and 11/17. Blood collection of pre-pandemic samples was performed under approval of ethics committee of the medical association Hamburg (project number PV4767) and the ethics committee of the medical faculty of MartinLuther-University Halle-Wittenberg (project number 2014-75). Written informed consent was received from all participants. The study has been performed in accordance with the declaration of Helsinki of 1975.
Keywords: SARS-CoV-2, COVID-19, T cells, T cell receptor, cluster, immune repertoires, pre-pandemic samples
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