Mosaic RBD nanoparticles protect against multiple sarbecovirus challenges in animal models.
Cohen AA., van Doremalen N., Greaney AJ., Andersen H., Sharma A., Starr TN., Keeffe JR., Fan C., Schulz JE., Gnanapragasam PNP., Kakutani LM., West AP., Saturday G., Lee YE., Gao H., Jette CA., Lewis MG., Tan TK., Townsend AR., Bloom JD., Munster VJ., Bjorkman PJ.
To combat future SARS-CoV-2 variants and spillovers of SARS-like betacoronaviruses (sarbecoviruses) threatening global health, we designed mosaic nanoparticles presenting randomly-arranged sarbecovirus spike receptor-binding domains (RBDs) to elicit antibodies against conserved/relatively-occluded, rather than variable/immunodominant/exposed, epitopes. We compared immune responses elicited by mosaic-8 (SARS-CoV-2 and seven animal sarbecoviruses) and homotypic (only SARS-CoV-2) RBD-nanoparticles in mice and macaques, observing stronger responses elicited by mosaic-8 to mismatched (not on nanoparticles) strains including SARS-CoV and animal sarbecoviruses. Mosaic-8 immunization showed equivalent neutralization of SARS-CoV-2 variants including Omicron and protected from SARS-CoV-2 and SARS-CoV challenges, whereas homotypic SARS-CoV-2 immunization protected only from SARS-CoV-2 challenge. Epitope mapping demonstrated increased targeting of conserved epitopes after mosaic-8 immunization. Together, these results suggest mosaic-8 RBD-nanoparticles could protect against SARS-CoV-2 variants and future sarbecovirus spillovers.