Association of Flu specific and SARS-CoV-2 specific CD4 T cell responses in SARS-CoV-2 infected asymptomatic heath care workers

Suresh Pallikkuth, Erin Williams, Rajendra Pahwa, Michael Hoffer, Savita Pahwa

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Influenza vaccination is widely advocated to avoid infection with influenza virus, a serious respiratory pathogen, and this was greatly emphasized during the raging COVID-19 epidemic. We conducted a study for baseline Flu specific immunity in a group of health care workers with documented past SARs-CoV-2 infection (designated COVID+) with mild or no symptoms and compared them with a control group that had not been infected with SARS CoV-2 (COVID-). Concurrently, we examined flu and SARS-CoV-2 specific T cell responses using the AIM (activation induced molecules) assay by flow cytometry. All COVID+ and 40% COVID- participants exhibited AIM responses to SARS-CoV-2 peptides, but only COVID+ were positive for SARs-CoV-2 antibody. Influenza HIN1 antigen specific CD4 T cells were found in 92% COVID+ and 76% COVID- participants and exhibited a strong direct correlation with SARS-CoV-2 specific CD4 T cells. This observation suggests that influenza specific T cell immunity may impact immune responses to SARS-CoV-2.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)6019-6024
Number of pages6
JournalVaccine
Volume39
Issue number41
DOIs
StatePublished - Oct 1 2021

Keywords

  • COVID and T cell immunity
  • COVID and immune response
  • COVID19
  • Flu and COVID
  • SARS-CoV-2 and Influenza
  • SARS-CoV-2 antigen specific immunity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Medicine
  • Immunology and Microbiology(all)
  • veterinary(all)
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Infectious Diseases

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