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Hot Off The Press 

«HOT OFF THE PRESS» 
RECENT PUBLICATIONS IDENTIFIED
BY TTS EDUCATION COMMITTEE ON COVID-19

Selected Publications by TTS Education Committee. This week's selection made by Drs. Enver Akalin and Marlies Reinders.

Antibody and T Cell Response to SARS-CoV-2 Messenger RNA BNT162b2 Vaccine in Kidney Transplant Recipients and Hemodialysis Patients

Bertrand, Dominique et al.
J Am Soc Nephrol. 2021 Jun 10:ASN.2021040480. doi: 10.1681/ASN.2021040480. PMID: 34112706
225 kidney transplant recipients (KTR) and 45 hemodialysis patients (HDP) received two injections of mRNA BNT162b2 vaccine. The post-vaccinal humoral and cellular response was explored in the first 45 KTR and 10 HDP. After the second dose, 8 HDP (88.9%) and 8 KTR (17.8%) developed anti-spike SARS-CoV-2 antibodies (p<0.0001). Median titer of antibodies in responders was 1052 AU/mL (IQR: 515-2689) in HDP and 671 AU/mL (IQR: 172-1523) in KTR (p=0.4). Nine HDP (100%) and 26 KTR (57.8%) showed a specific T cell response (p=0.06) after the second injection. In responders, median numbers of spike-reactive T cells were 305 SFC/106 CD3+ T cells (IQR: 95-947) in HDP and 212 SFC/106 CD3+ T cells (IQR: 61-330) in KTR (p=0.4). In KTR, the immune response to BNT162b2 seemed influenced by the immunosuppressive regimen

Naturally enhanced neutralizing breadth against SARS-CoV-2 one year after infection

Zijun Wang et al.
Nature https://doi.org/10.1038/s41586-021-03696-9 (2021). PMID: 34100013
This study reports on a cohort of 63 COVID-19-convalescent individuals assessed at 1.3, 6.2 and 12 months after infection, 41% of whom also received mRNA vaccines3,4. In the absence of vaccination antibody reactivity to the receptor binding domain (RBD) of SARS-CoV-2, neutralizing activity and the number of RBD-specific memory B cells remain relatively stable from 6 to 12 months. Vaccination increases all components of the humoral response, and as expected, results in serum neutralizing activities against variants of concern that are comparable to or greater than neutralizing activity against the original Wuhan Hu-1 achieved by vaccination of naive individuals. The mechanism underlying these broad-based responses involves ongoing antibody somatic mutation, memory B cell clonal turnover, and development of monoclonal antibodies that are exceptionally resistant to SARS-CoV-2 RBD mutations, including those found in variants of concern. In addition, B cell clones expressing broad and potent antibodies are selectively retained in the repertoire over time and expand dramatically after vaccination. The data suggest that immunity in convalescent individuals will be very long lasting and that convalescent individuals who receive available mRNA vaccines will produce antibodies and memory B cells that should be protective against circulating SARS-CoV-2 variants.

In the News 

Could a Nasal Spray of Designer Antibodies Help to Beat COVID-19?

June 15 - Report on the progress in the development of a specially engineered therapeutic antibody that could be delivered through a nasal spray. Preclinical studies also suggest it may work even better than existing antibody treatments to fight COVID-19, especially now that new SARS-CoV-2 “variants of concern” have become increasingly prevalent.

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