Uneven worldwide vaccination coverage against SARS-CoV-2 and emergence of variants escaping immunity call for broadly-effective and easily-deployable therapeutics. We previously described the human single-chain scFv76 antibody, which recognizes SARS-CoV-2 Alfa, Beta, Gamma and Delta variants. We now show that scFv76 also neutralizes infectivity and fusogenic activity of Omicron BA.1 and BA.2 variants. Cryo-EM analysis reveals that scFv76 binds to a well-conserved SARS-CoV-2 spike epitope, providing the structural basis for its broad-spectrum activity. Moreover, we demonstrate that nebulized scFv76 exhibits therapeutic efficacy in a severe hACE2 transgenic mouse model of COVID-19 pneumonia, as shown by body weight and pulmonary viral load data. Counteraction of infection correlates with the inhibition of lung inflammation observed by histopathology and expression of inflammatory cytokines and chemokines. Biomarkers of pulmonary endothelial damage were also significantly reduced in scFv76-treated mice. Altogether the results support the use of nebulized scFv76 for COVID-19 induced by any SARS-CoV-2 variants emerged so far.
Fuente: Molecular Therapy
Available online 15 September 2022
In Press, Journal Pre-proof