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Front Microbiol ; 12: 752597, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1470762


Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) has caused a crisis to global public health since its outbreak at the end of 2019. Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), the pathogen of COVID-19, appears to efficiently evade the host immune responses, including interferon (IFN) signaling. Several SARS-CoV-2 viral proteins are believed to involve in the inhibition of IFN signaling. In this study, we discovered that ORF3a, an accessory protein of SARS-CoV-2, inhibited IFN-activated Janus kinase (JAK)/signal transducer and activator of transcription (STAT) signaling via upregulating suppressor of cytokine signaling 1 (SOCS1), a negative regulator of cytokine signaling. ORF3a induced SOCS1 elevation in a dose- and time-dependent manner. RNAi-mediated silencing of SOCS1 efficiently abolished ORF3a-induced blockage of JAK/STAT signaling. Interestingly, we found that ORF3a also promoted the ubiquitin-proteasomal degradation of Janus kinase 2 (JAK2), an important kinase in IFN signaling. Silencing of SOCS1 by siRNA distinctly blocked ORF3a-induced JAK2 ubiquitination and degradation. These results demonstrate that ORF3a dampens IFN signaling via upregulating SOCS1, which suppressed STAT1 phosphorylation and accelerated JAK2 ubiquitin-proteasomal degradation. Furthermore, analysis of ORF3a deletion constructs showed that the middle domain of ORF3a (amino acids 70-130) was responsible for SOCS1 upregulation. These findings contribute to our understanding of the mechanism of SARS-CoV-2 antagonizing host antiviral response.

Clin Chem ; 67(4): 672-683, 2021 03 31.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1165392


BACKGROUND: Infectious disease outbreaks such as the COVID-19 (coronavirus disease 2019) pandemic call for rapid response and complete screening of the suspected community population to identify potential carriers of pathogens. Central laboratories rely on time-consuming sample collection methods that are rarely available in resource-limited settings. METHODS: We present a highly automated and fully integrated mobile laboratory for fast deployment in response to infectious disease outbreaks. The mobile laboratory was equipped with a 6-axis robot arm for automated oropharyngeal swab specimen collection; virus in the collected specimen was inactivated rapidly using an infrared heating module. Nucleic acid extraction and nested isothermal amplification were performed by a "sample in, answer out" laboratory-on-a-chip system, and the result was automatically reported by the onboard information platform. Each module was evaluated using pseudovirus or clinical samples. RESULTS: The mobile laboratory was stand-alone and self-sustaining and capable of on-site specimen collection, inactivation, analysis, and reporting. The automated sampling robot arm achieved sampling efficiency comparable to manual collection. The collected samples were inactivated in as short as 12 min with efficiency comparable to a water bath without damage to nucleic acid integrity. The limit of detection of the integrated microfluidic nucleic acid analyzer reached 150 copies/mL within 45 min. Clinical evaluation of the onboard microfluidic nucleic acid analyzer demonstrated good consistency with reverse transcription quantitative PCR with a κ coefficient of 0.979. CONCLUSIONS: The mobile laboratory provides a promising solution for fast deployment of medical diagnostic resources at critical junctions of infectious disease outbreaks and facilitates local containment of SARS-CoV-2 (severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2) transmission.

COVID-19 Nucleic Acid Testing/methods , COVID-19/diagnosis , Laboratories , Mobile Health Units , Pathology, Molecular/methods , RNA, Viral/analysis , Adult , Automobiles , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19 Nucleic Acid Testing/instrumentation , Female , Humans , Lab-On-A-Chip Devices , Male , Microfluidic Analytical Techniques/instrumentation , Microfluidic Analytical Techniques/methods , Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus/chemistry , Molecular Diagnostic Techniques/instrumentation , Molecular Diagnostic Techniques/methods , Pandemics , Pathology, Molecular/instrumentation , Robotics , SARS-CoV-2/chemistry
Heliyon ; 6(12): e05725, 2020 Dec.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-974076


Recently, the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-Cov-2), a novel coronavirus, which results in corona virus disease 2019 (COVID-19), has caused over 40 millions of people infected and over 1 million fatalities, challenging the public health. The recognition of its functional receptor, angiotensin converting enzyme 2 (ACE2), have facilitated the antivirus drugs testing and vaccines development. Due to the natural resistance of mouse model to SARS-Cov-2, there is an urgent need to find out the alternative animal model. Considering the crucial role of ACE2 in the host cell entry, we analyzed the phylogeny and expression pattern of ACE2 from various mammals. Firstly, crab-eating macaque possesses all of the 5 identical hotspot residues with human, suggesting high likelihood of interaction between ACE2 and spike protein of SARS-CoV-2 to occur. Cattle and pig show 4 identical sites. Ferret, cat and dog possess 3 identical sites. Bat and mouse only share 2 same amino acids with human. Secondly, in humans, ACE2 is widely present, with particularly high expression in adipose, thyroid, lung and colon tissues. In crab-eating macaque, liver, lung, thyroid and colon showed high expression level of ACE2. For dog, ACE2 is most highly expressed in colon with obvious differential expression level between female and male group. The results would provide clues for establishing the appropriate animal model in the research and clinical cure of COVID-19.