SARS-CoV-2 continues to infect people globally with the concomitant urgency to develop effective nAbs as prophylactic and therapeutic agents to prevent and treat its infection and control its spread. Studies from SARS-CoV and MERS-CoV have demonstrated that many fragments (S1-NTD, RBD, S2) in S proteins can be used as targets to develop nAbs. Still, RBD-specific antibodies have greater potency to neutralize infection with divergent virus strains, suggesting that the RBD of SARS-CoV-2 can also serve as an important target for the development of potent and specific nAbs. Cocktails comprising antibodies specific for RBD and other regions in the S protein may further improve the breadth and potency of nAbs against SARS-CoV-2 and its escape-mutant strains. Human sera from convalescent patients have been used to treat COVID-19, but lessons learned from SARS show that some non-nAbs targeting the non-RBD regions in the S protein may cause an antibody-dependent enhancement (ADE) effect on viral infectivity and disease, as well as other harmful immune responses .
On a positive note, some anti-SARS-CoV nAbs have shown cross-reactivity or cross-neutralizing activity against SARS-CoV-2 infectionin vitro. Thus, overall, research on SARS-CoV- and MERS-CoV-specific nAbs should provide important guidelines for the rapid design and development of SARS-CoV-2-specific nAbs.
Reference & Source information: https://www.cell.com/
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