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Title: Linear B-cell epitopes in the spike and nucleocapsid proteins as markers of SARS-CoV-2 exposure and disease severity
Authors: Siti Naqiah Amrun
Lee, Cheryl Yi-Pin
Lee, Bernett
Fong, Siew-Wai
Young, Barnaby Edward
Chee, Rhonda Sin-Ling
Yeo, Nicholas Kim-Wah
Torres-Ruesta, Anthony
Carissimo, Guillaume
Poh, Chek Meng
Chang, Zi Wei
Tay, Matthew Zirui
Chan, Yi-Hao
Chen, Mark I-Cheng
Low, Jenny Guek-Hong
Tambyah, Paul A.
Kalimuddin, Shirin
Pada, Surinder
Tan, Seow-Yen
Sun, Louisa Jin
Leo, Yee-Sin
Lye, David C.
Renia, Laurent
Ng, Lisa F. P.
Keywords: Science::Medicine
Issue Date: 2020
Source: Siti Naqiah Amrun, Lee, C. Y.-P., Lee, B., Fong, S.-W., Young, B. E., Chee, R. S.-L., . . . Ng, L. F. P. (2020). Linear B-cell epitopes in the spike and nucleocapsid proteins as markers of SARS-CoV-2 exposure and disease severity. EBioMedicine, 58, 102911-. doi:10.1016/j.ebiom.2020.102911
Project: COVID19RF-001
Journal: EBioMedicine
Abstract: Background: Given the unceasing worldwide surge in COVID-19 cases, there is an imperative need to develop highly specific and sensitive serology assays to define exposure to Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2). Methods: Pooled plasma samples from PCR positive COVID-19 patients were used to identify linear B-cell epitopes from a SARS-CoV-2 peptide library of spike (S), envelope (E), membrane (M), and nucleocapsid (N) structural proteins by peptide-based ELISA. Hit epitopes were further validated with 79 COVID-19 patients with different disease severity status, 13 seasonal human CoV, 20 recovered SARS patients and 22 healthy donors. Findings: Four immunodominant epitopes, S14P5, S20P2, S21P2 and N4P5, were identified on the S and N viral proteins. IgG responses to all identified epitopes displayed a strong detection profile, with N4P5 achieving the highest level of specificity (100%) and sensitivity (>96%) against SARS-CoV-2. Furthermore, the magnitude of IgG responses to S14P5, S21P2 and N4P5 were strongly associated with disease severity. Interpretation: IgG responses to the peptide epitopes can serve as useful indicators for the degree of immunopathology in COVID-19 patients, and function as higly specific and sensitive sero-immunosurveillance tools for recent or past SARS-CoV-2 infections. The flexibility of these epitopes to be used alone or in combination will allow for the development of improved point-of-care-tests (POCTs).
ISSN: 2352-3964
DOI: 10.1016/j.ebiom.2020.102911
Rights: © 2020 The Authors. Published by Elsevier B.V. This is an open access article under the CC BY-NC-ND license. (
Fulltext Permission: open
Fulltext Availability: With Fulltext
Appears in Collections:LKCMedicine Journal Articles

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