Effects of potent neutralizing antibodies from convalescent plasma in patients hospitalized for severe SARS-CoV-2 infection
Nature Communications. 2021;12(1):3189
In a randomized clinical trial of 86 hospitalized COVID-19 patients comparing standard care to treatment with 300mL convalescent plasma containing high titers of neutralizing SARS-CoV-2 antibodies, no overall clinical benefit was observed. Using a comprehensive translational approach, we unravel the virological and immunological responses following treatment to disentangle which COVID-19 patients may benefit and should be the focus of future studies. Convalescent plasma is safe, does not improve survival, has no effect on the disease course, nor does plasma enhance viral clearance in the respiratory tract, influence SARS-CoV-2 antibody development or serum proinflammatory cytokines levels. Here, we show that the vast majority of patients already had potent neutralizing SARS-CoV-2 antibodies at hospital admission and with comparable titers to carefully selected plasma donors. This resulted in the decision to terminate the trial prematurely. Treatment with convalescent plasma should be studied early in the disease course or at least preceding autologous humoral response development.
COVID-19 Convalescent Plasma: from donation to treatment - A Systematic Review & Single Center Experience
Missouri medicine. 2021;118(1):74-80
Convalescent plasma is an old treatment for a new disease. The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic caused the analysis of convalescent plasma to reemerge as a possible treatment. First, a systematic review summarizes the available research examining the use of convalescent plasma for the treatment of patients with COVID-19. Second, we describe our experience in establishing a single-center convalescent plasma donation program.
Neutralizing Activity to SARS-CoV-2 of Convalescent and Control Plasma Used in a Randomized Controlled Trial
BACKGROUND There are limited data on the neutralizing activity of convalescent plasma (CP) administered in randomized controlled trials (RCT) of COVID-19 infection. STUDY DESIGN AND METHODS As part of an RCT, CP was collected per FDA guidelines from individuals recovered from COVID-19 infection. CP donors had to have ≥145 optical density (OD) units (ideal target ≥300) using a semi quantitative, immunochromatographic test for IgG antibody to the nucleocapsid protein (NP) of SARS-CoV-2 (typical range 0-500 OD units). A random subset of samples [14 control plasma, 12 CP "medium-anti-NP" (145-299 OD units), and 13 CP "high" anti-NP (≥300 OD units)] were tested for neutralizing antibodies using an established viral luciferase antibody inhibition assay to detect the infection of SARS-CoV-2 pseudovirus that encoded spike protein (SARS2-S(trunc) ) on a human immunodeficiency virus 1 vector (NL43dEnvNanoLuc), using ACE2-expressing 293T cells. The titer needed to neutralize 50% of viral activity (NT50) was calculated. RESULTS The uptake of SARS-CoV-2 pseudovirus by 293T(ACE2) cells was inhibited by pretreatment with CP compared to control CP (p<0.001) with control plasma having a median (IQR) 50% neutralization titer (NT50) of 1:28 (1:16,1:36) compared to 1:334 (1:130,1:1295) and 1:324 (1:244,1:578), for medium anti-NP and high anti-NP CP units, respectively. The neutralizing activity of CP met minimum FDA criteria with neutralizing antibody titers >1:80 in 100% of randomly selected samples, using a conservative approach that excluded non-specific binding. DISCUSSION Plasma from donors screened using an immunochromatographic test for IgG antibody to SARS-CoV-2 NP exhibited neutralizing activity meeting FDA's minimum standard in all randomly selected COVID-19 CP units. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
Systematic review and meta-analysis of randomised controlled trials testing the safety and efficacy of convalescent plasma in the treatment of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19): Evidence-base for practise and implications for research
Transfusion Medicine (Oxford, England). 2021
BACKGROUND Despite scientific advances, there is no effective medical therapy for coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). This systematic review and meta-analysis aimed to evaluate the safety and efficacy of convalescent plasma therapy in COVID-19. METHODS This review was carried out in accordance with Cochrane methodology including risk of bias assessment and grading of the quality of evidence. Only prospective clinical trials randomly assigning COVID-19 patients to convalescent plasma plus standard of care therapy (test arm) versus placebo/standard of care (control arm) were included. Two reviewers independently read each preprint/publication and extracted relevant data from individual studies. Data were pooled using the random-effects model and expressed as risk ratio (RR) with 95% confidence interval (CI). RESULTS A total of 13 206 patients from 12 randomised controlled trials were included. There was no significant difference in clinical improvement rate (RR = 1.00, 95% CI: 0.98-1.02, p = 0.96) or time to clinical improvement (median difference of 1.08 days with 95% CI ranging from -0.15 to +2.30 days) between convalescent plasma versus placebo/standard of care therapy. The use of convalescent plasma was not associated with significantly reduced risk of death (RR = 0.81, 95% CI: 0.65-1.02, p = 0.08). Reassuringly, overall incidence of infusion-related serious adverse events was low (3.25%) and not significantly different (RR = 1.14, 95% CI: 0.93-1.40, p = 0.22) for convalescent plasma transfusion compared to placebo/standard of care therapy. CONCLUSIONS There is low to moderate certainty evidence that the addition of convalescent plasma to current standard of care therapy is generally safe but, does not result in any significant clinical benefit or reduction of mortality in COVID-19.
Convalescent Plasma for Pregnant Women with COVID-19: A Systematic Literature Review
The treatment of COVID-19 is particularly critical in pregnant women, considering the potential teratogenic effects of antiviral agents and the immune-depression related with pregnancy. The aim of this review is to systematically examine the current evidence on the clinical use of convalescent plasma during pregnancy. The electronic databases Medline PubMed Advanced Search Builder, Scopus, Web Of Science and Google Scholar were searched (until 1 January 2021). Inclusion criteria were pregnant women with COVID-19 (or SARS-CoV-2 infection), in whom convalescent plasma (or hyperimmune plasma) was used as treatment. We searched clinical trial registries (censored 5 January 2021) for eligible studies under way. After elimination of duplications, the initial search yielded 79 potentially relevant records, of which 67 were subsequently excluded. The 12 remaining records were case reports involving 12 pregnancies. Six of the mothers were reported to be well, two were reported to have preeclampsia, and in one case each the maternal outcome was described as survival, clinical improvement, discharged with oxygen and rehabilitation. With regard to the neonates, two were declared to be well, four had transient morbidity, two were critically ill and one died; normal ongoing pregnancies, but no post-delivery information, were reported for the remaining three cases. Clinical trials under way or planned to investigate the use of convalescent plasma for COVID-19 during pregnancy are lacking. This is the first systematic review of the literature regarding the treatment of COVID-19 in pregnancy. The published literature data seem to indicate that convalescent plasma administered to pregnant women with severe COVID-19 provides benefits for both the mother and the fetus. The quality of the available studies is, however, very limited since they are all case reports and thus suffer from relevant reporting bias.
Evaluation of the efficacy and safety of recombinant erythropoietin on the improvement of hospitalised COVID-19 patients: A structured summary of a study protocol for a randomised controlled trial
OBJECTIVES To evaluate the effect of recombinant erythropoietin on hospitalised COVID-19 patients. TRIAL DESIGN Concealed, randomized, single-blinded, phase 2 controlled clinical trial with two arm parallel-group design of 20 patients allocated with 1:1 ratio and using the placebo in the control group. PARTICIPANTS This study will be performed at Shahid Mohammadi Hospital in Bandar Abbas, Hormozgan in Iran. All positive (PCR confirmed) COVID-19 patients ≤65 years old who have Hb≤9 and at least one of the severe COVID-19 symptoms (tachypnea (breathing rate> 30 beats per minute), hypoxemia (O2 ≤93 saturation, the partial pressure ratio of arterial oxygen <300), Lung infiltration (> 50% of lung field within 24 to 48 hours), progressive lymphopenia, LDH>245 U/I, CRP>100) and are willing to cooperate in this project will be included in the study. Patients with a history of coronary heart disease, thrombosis, deep vein thrombosis, chronic lung disease, diabetes mellitus, weakened immune system, end-stage renal disease, liver disease, and patients with a history of taking oral contraceptive pills, systolic blood pressure more than 160 mm Hg, diastolic blood pressure more than 90 mm Hg and age over 65 and erythropoietin above 500 are excluded. INTERVENTION AND COMPARATOR Patients will receive the standard of care (SOC) based on the treatment protocols of the Iranian National Committee of COVID-19 and recombinant erythropoietin (EPREX Manufactured by Johnson and Johnson Pharmaceutical Company) 300 units / Kg or 4000IU as subcutaneous (SQ) injection three times a day for 5 days and simultaneously Enoxaparin 1 mg/kg SQ daily is also taken to prevent thrombosis in the intervention group. Patients' blood pressure, along with other vital signs, are checked regularly and at regular intervals. In the control group, patients received SOC and the placebo (distilled water) is given as a subcutaneous injection three times a day for 5 days. We use sterile water for injection (EXIRpharmaceutical company) as the placebo. To the same appearance of the placebo and the recombinant erythropoietin, they are taken in a separate room in the same size syringes and cover with labels before injection. MAIN OUTCOMES The main outcome for this study is a composite endpoint for Patient clinical symptoms (Respiratory rate, Oxygen saturation state and arterial oxygen partial pressure ratio, Lung infiltration status, blood pressure), Laboratory tests (LDH, CRP, Lymphocyte count, Endogenous erythropoietin, and Haemoglobin level). All of these will be assessed at the beginning of the study (before the intervention) and day 5 after the intervention. The study will also evaluate side effects and how to manage them. RANDOMISATION Eligible participants (20) will be randomized in two arms in the ratio of 1: 1 (10 per arm) by permuted block randomization method using online web-based tools. BLINDING (MASKING): Patients participating in the study will not be aware of the assignment to the intervention or control group. The principal investigator, health care personnel, data collectors, and those evaluating the outcome are aware of patient grouping. NUMBERS TO BE RANDOMISED (SAMPLE SIZE): A total of 20 patients will participate in this study, who are randomly allocated to the 2 arms with a 1:1 ratio; 10 patients in the intervention group will receive SOC and recombinant erythropoietin, and 10 patients in the control group will receive SOC and placebo. TRIAL STATUS The protocol version is 3.0, approved by the Deputy of Research and Technology and the ethics committee of Hormozgan University of Medical Sciences on 6(th) June 2020, with the local grant number of 990108. The expected recruitment end date was on 21(th) December 2020 but since we had a wide and careful exclusion criteria because of the adverse reactions of the medication, the recruitment (for both cases and controls) was not so easy and did not finish on the expected date and we are still recruiting now. Recruitment began on 17(th) August 2020 and the updated expected recruitment end date is 1(st) August 2021. TRIAL REGISTRATION The protocol was registered before starting subject recruitment under the title: Evaluation of the effect of recombinant erythropoietin on the improvement of COVID-19 patients, IRCT20200509047364N1, at Iranian Registry of clinical trials ( https://en.irct.ir/trial/49282 ) on 2020/08/09. FULL PROTOCOL The full protocol is attached as an additional file, accessible from the Trials website (Additional file 1). In the interest in expediting dissemination of this material, the familiar formatting has been eliminated; this Letter serves as a summary of the key elements of the full protocol. The study protocol has been reported in accordance with the Standard Protocol Items: Recommendations for Clinical Interventional Trials (SPIRIT) guidelines (Additional file 2).
A randomized clinical trial evaluating the immunomodulatory effect of convalescent plasma on COVID-19-related cytokine storm
Internal and emergency medicine. 2021;:1-11
Evaluating the effect of convalescent plasma (CP) on some cytokine storm indices in severe COVID-19 patients. Totally, 62 patients were randomly assigned into two groups for this clinical trial. Patients in the intervention group received one unit (500 mL) plasma on the admission day plus standard drugs while the controls merely received standard treatments. Eventually, primary and secondary outcomes were evaluated. In the CP group, compared with controls, the mean levels of lymphocytes and IL-10 significantly increased while the levels of IL-6, TNF-α, and IFN-γ decreased (p < 0.05). The length of in-hospital stay, and mortality rate did not significantly reduce in the CP group compared with controls (p > 0.05) while WHO severity scores remarkably improved (p = 0.01), despite the higher frequency of underlying diseases among the CP group (66.7%) vs. controls (33.3%). Although CP has a remarkable immunomodulatory and antiviral potential to improve the cytokine storm and disease severity in COVID-19 patients, it did not considerably affect the mortality rate.
Correction: Convalescent Plasma for the Prevention and Treatment of COVID-19: A Systematic Review and Quantitative Analysis
JMIR Public Health and Surveillance. 2021;7(6):e31554
[This corrects the article DOI: 10.2196/25500.].
Convalescent plasma for COVID-19 in hospitalised patients: an open-label, randomised clinical trial
The European Respiratory Journal. 2021
BACKGROUND The effects of convalescent plasma (CP) therapy hospitalised patients with coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) remain uncertain. This study investigates the effect CP on clinical improvement in these patients. METHODS This is an investigator-initiated, randomised, parallel arm, open-label, superiority clinical trial. Patients were randomly (1:1) assigned to two infusions of CP plus standard of care (SOC) or SOC alone. The primary outcome was the proportion of patients with clinical improvement 28 days after enrolment. RESULTS A total of 160 (80 in each arm) patients (66.3% were critically ill and 33.7%, severe) completed the trial. The median age was 60.5 years (interquartile range [IQR], 48-68), 58.1% were men and the median time from symptom onset to randomisation was 10 days (IQR, 8-12). Neutralising antibodies titres >1:80 were present in 133 (83.1%) patients at baseline. The proportion of patients with clinical improvement on day 28 was 61.3% in the CP+SOC and 65.0% in the SOC group (difference, -3.7%; 95% Confidence Interval [CI], -18.8%-11.3%). The results were similar in the subgroups of severe and critically ill. There was no significant difference between CP+SOC and SOC groups in prespecified secondary outcomes, including 28-day mortality, days alive and free of respiratory support and duration of invasive ventilatory support. Inflammatory and other laboratorial markers values on days 3, 7 and 14 were similar between groups. CONCLUSIONS CP+SOC did not result in a higher proportion of clinical improvement on at day 28 in hospitalised patients with COVID-19 compared to SOC alone.
Efficacy and Safety of Convalescent Plasma for COVID-19: A Systematic Review and Meta-analysis
Indian Journal of Hematology & Blood Transfusion : An Official Journal of Indian Society of Hematology and Blood Transfusion. 2021;:1-19
Convalescent plasma is currently being used in the treatment of COVID-19. Recommendations regarding use convalescent plasma in COVID-19 requires systematic summaries of available evidence. We searched the databases Medline, Embase, Cochrane CENTRAL, Epistomonikos, Medrxiv and Biorxiv. Title/abstract screening, full text screening and data abstraction were carried out in duplicate by two reviewers. Pooled effect sizes and 95% confidence intervals were calculated using random effects meta-analysis. GRADE tool was used to rate the certainty of evidence. Twenty two studies were found eligible for inclusion: nine randomized controlled trials and thirteen cohort studies. Low certainty evidence from eight RCTs showed inconclusive effects of convalescent plasma on mortality at 28 days (OR 0.85, 95% CI 0.61 to 1.18). Low certainty evidence from thirteen cohort studies showed a reduction in mortality at 28 days (OR 0.66, 95% CI 0.53 to 0.82). The pooled OR for clinical improvement was 1.07 (95% CI 0.86 to 1.34) representing low certainty evidence. Evidence from three RCTs showed inconclusive effect of CP on the need for mechanical ventilation (OR 1.20, 95% CI 0.72 to 1.98). Four cohort studies reporting unadjusted estimates suggested a reduction in the need for mechanical ventilation with convalescent plasma (OR 0.80 95% CI 0.71 to 0.91, low certainty). Pooled estimates from 2 RCTs showed inconclusive effects of convalescent plasma on the proportion of patients with nondetectable levels of virus in nasopharyngeal specimens on day 3 (OR 3.62, 95% CI 0.43, 30.49, very low-quality evidence). The present review reports uncertain estimates on the efficacy of convalescent plasma in the treatment of COVID-19. There is low certainty evidence of a possible reduction in mortality and mechanical ventilation, a faster viral clearance and the absence of any serious adverse events. However, its efficacy for these outcomes requires evidence from good quality and adequately powered randomized controlled trials. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION The online version contains supplementary material available at 10.1007/s12288-021-01417-w.