Journal article

Systems serology detects functionally distinct coronavirus antibody features in children and elderly

Kevin J Selva, Carolien E van de Sandt, Melissa M Lemke, Christina Y Lee, Suzanne K Shoffner, Brendon Y Chua, Samantha K Davis, Thi HO Nguyen, Louise C Rowntree, Luca Hensen, Marios Koutsakos, Chinn Yi Wong, Francesca Mordant, David C Jackson, Katie L Flanagan, Jane Crowe, Shidan Tosif, Melanie R Neeland, Philip Sutton, Paul Licciardi Show all



The hallmarks of COVID-19 are higher pathogenicity and mortality in the elderly compared to children. Examining baseline SARS-CoV-2 cross-reactive immunological responses, induced by circulating human coronaviruses (hCoVs), is needed to understand such divergent clinical outcomes. Here we show analysis of coronavirus antibody responses of pre-pandemic healthy children (n = 89), adults (n = 98), elderly (n = 57), and COVID-19 patients (n = 50) by systems serology. Moderate levels of cross-reactive, but non-neutralizing, SARS-CoV-2 antibodies are detected in pre-pandemic healthy individuals. SARS-CoV-2 antigen-specific Fcγ receptor binding accurately distinguishes COVID-19 patients from health..

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Awarded by NHMRC Leadership Investigator Grant

Awarded by NHMRC Program

Awarded by Research Grants Council of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, China

Awarded by MRFF

Awarded by NHMRC

Awarded by European Union

Awarded by NHMRC Early Career Fellowship (ECF)

Awarded by NHMRC CDF2 Fellowship

Funding Acknowledgements

We thank all the participants involved in the study, Daniel Pellicci, Jane Batten and Helen Kent for support with the cohort, and Ebene Haycroft and Brendan Watts for Flexmap3D technical assistance. This work was supported by Jack Ma Foundation to K.K., A.W.C. and A.W., the Clifford Craig Foundation to K.L.F. and K.K., NHMRC Leadership Investigator Grant to K.K. (1173871), NHMRC Program Grant to K.K. (1071916), NHMRC Program Grant to D.L.D. (#1132975), NHMRC Program grant to S.J.K. (#1149990), Research Grants Council of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region, China (#T11-712/19-N) to K.K., MRFF Award (#2005544) to K.K., S.J.K., A.W.C., J.J., A.K.W. and Emergent Ventures Fast Grant to A.W.C. A.W.C. is supported by a NHMRC Career Development Fellowship (#1140509), K.K. by NHMRC Senior Research Fellowship (1102792), D.L.D. by a NHMRC Principal Research Fellowship (#1137285). S.J.K. by NHMRC Senior Principal Research Fellowship (#1136322). C.E.S. has received funding from the European Union's Horizon 2020 research and innovation program under the Marie Skodowska-Curie grant agreement (#792532). L.H. is supported by the Melbourne International Research Scholarship (MIRS) and the Melbourne International Fee Remission Scholarship (MIFRS) from the University of Melbourne. J.A.J. is supported by an NHMRC Early Career Fellowship (ECF) (APP1123673). P.V.L. is supported by a NHMRC CDF2 Fellowship (#1146198). P.S. is supported by DHB Foundation Fellowship. This work is supported by Victorian Government's Medical Research Operational Infrastructure Support Program.