Deciphering the epitope dominance of the natural memory responses seen in recovered patients with COVID-19 will aid vaccine development. In this preprint, Ferretti et al. used an unbiased genome-wide screen (T-Scan) to map the epitopes recognized by memory CD8+ T cells from convalescent patients with COVID-19 with prevalent HLA types. SARS-CoV-2-specific memory CD8+ T cells recurrently targeted a limited set of immunodominant epitopes, which were unique to SARS-CoV-2 and not from highly variable regions. Only 10% of these epitopes corresponded to the S protein, stressing the relevance of developing vaccines that promote T cell responses against other viral targets, such as ORF1ab and N protein.
Ferretti, A. P. et al. COVID-19 patients form memory CD8+ T cells that recognize a small set of shared immunodominant epitopes in SARS-CoV-2. Preprint at medRxiv https://doi.org/10.1101/2020.07.24.20161653 (2020)
The authors declare no competing interests.
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Mazet, J.M., Gea-Mallorquí, E. CD8+ T cells remember same bits of SARS-CoV-2. Nat Rev Immunol 20, 592 (2020). https://doi.org/10.1038/s41577-020-00440-8