medRxiv. 2020 Sep 7:2020.09.04.20187088. doi: 10.1101/2020.09.04.20187088. Preprint.
Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) is responsible for the pandemic respiratory infectious disease COVID-19. However, clinical manifestations and outcomes differ significantly among COVID-19 patients, ranging from asymptomatic to extremely severe, and it remains unclear what drives these disparities. Here, we studied 159 hospitalized Italian patients with pneumonia from the NIAID-NCI COVID-19 Consortium using a phage-display method to characterize circulating antibodies binding to 93,904 viral peptides encoded by 1,276 strains of human viruses. SARS-CoV-2 infection was associated with a marked increase in individual’s immune memory antibody repertoires linked to trajectories of disease severity from the longitudinal analysis also including anti-spike protein antibodies. By applying a machine-learning-based strategy, we developed a viral exposure signature predictive of COVID-19-related disease severity linked to patient survival. These results provide a basis for understanding the roles of memory B-cell repertoires in COVID-19-related symptoms as well as a predictive tool for monitoring its clinical severity.