ACS Sensors. 2022 Jul 11
Tianbao Dong, Chaowei Han, Meng Jiang, Tiantian Zhang, Qing Kang, Pengcheng Wang, and Feimeng Zhou
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Keywords: SPR sensor online immobilization COVID-19 antibody-neutralized virus antibody viral particles


Current tests for severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) detect either the constituent nucleic acids/proteins of the viral particles or antibodies specific to the virus, but cannot provide information about viral neutralization by an antibody and the efficacy of an antibody. Such information is important about individuals’ vulnerability to severe symptoms or their likelihood of showing no symptoms. We immobilized online SARS-CoV-2 spike (S1) protein and angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2) into separate surface plasmon resonance (SPR) channels of a tris-nitrilotriacetic acid (tris-NTA) chip to simultaneously detect the anti-S1 antibody and viral particles in serum samples. In addition, with a high-molecular-weight-cutoff filter, we separated the neutralized viral particles from the free antibody molecules and used a sensing channel immobilized with Protein G to determine antibody-neutralized viral particles. The optimal density of probe molecules in each fluidic channel can be precisely controlled through the closure and opening of the specific ports. By utilizing the high surface density of ACE2, multiple assays can be carried out without regenerations. These three species can be determined with a short analysis time (<12 min per assay) and excellent sensor-to-sensor/cycle-to-cycle reproducibility (RSD < 5%). When coupled with an autosampler, continuous assays can be performed in an unattended manner at a single chip for up to 6 days. Such a sensor capable of assaying serum samples containing the three species at different levels provides additional insights into the disease status and immunity of persons being tested, which should be helpful for containing the SARS-CoV-2 spread during the era of incessant viral mutations.

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