SARS-CoV-2 infections in infants in Haiti 2020-2021; evidence from a seroepidemiological cohort

PLoS One. 2022 Aug 25;17(8):e0273482. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0273482. eCollection 2022.


Few data are available on frequency of SARS-CoV-2 infection among very young children in low- to middle-income countries (LMIC), with the studies that are available biased towards higher income countries with low reported infection and seroconversion rates. Between February 2019 and March 2021, 388 dried blood spot (DBS) samples were obtained from 257 children less than 30 months of age as part of a prospective observational cohort study of pregnant women and their infants in Haiti; longitudinal samples were available for 107 children. In a subsequent retrospective analysis, DBS samples were tested by ELISA for antibody targeting the receptor binding domain of the SARS-CoV-2 S1 protein. Over the course of the study, 16·7% of the infants became seropositive. All seropositive samples were collected after March 19, 2020 (the date of the first reported COVID-19 case in Haiti) with the highest hazards measured in August 2020. Sampling date was the only covariate associated with the hazard of seroconversion. Our data provide an estimate of SARS-CoV-2 infection rates among very young children without prior SARS-CoV-2 exposure during the initial pandemic waves in Haiti, and demonstrate that these children mount a detectable serological response which is independent of patient age.

Publication types

  • Observational Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Antibodies, Viral
  • COVID-19* / epidemiology
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Cohort Studies
  • Female
  • Haiti / epidemiology
  • Humans
  • Immunoglobulin G
  • Infant
  • Pregnancy
  • Prospective Studies
  • Retrospective Studies
  • SARS-CoV-2


  • Antibodies, Viral
  • Immunoglobulin G