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1.
Biometals ; 2022 Jan 07.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1611429

ABSTRACT

The role of micronutrient deficiency in the pathogenesis of COVID-19 has been reviewed in the literature; however, the data are limited and conflicting. This study investigated the association between the status of essential metals, vitamins, and antioxidant enzyme activities in COVID-19 patients and disease severity. We recruited 155 patients, who were grouped into four classes based on the Adults guideline for the Management of Coronavirus Disease 2019 at King Faisal Specialist & Research Centre (KFSH&RC): asymptomatic (N = 16), mild (N = 49), moderate (N = 68), and severe (N = 22). We measured serum levels of copper (Cu), zinc (Zn), selenium (Se), vitamin D3, vitamin A, vitamin E, total antioxidant capacity, and superoxide dismutase (SOD). Among the patients, 30%, 25%, 37%, and 68% were deficient in Se (< 70.08 µg/L), Zn (< 0.693 µg/mL), vitamin A (< 0.343 µg/mL), and vitamin D3 (< 20.05 µg/L), respectively, and SOD activity was low. Among the patients, 28% had elevated Cu levels (> 1.401 µg/mL, KFSH&RC upper reference limit). Multiple regression analysis revealed an 18% decrease in Se levels in patients with severe symptoms, which increased to 30% after adjusting the model for inflammatory markers. Regardless of inflammation, Se was independently associated with COVID-19 severity. In contrast, a 50% increase in Cu levels was associated with disease severity only after adjusting for C-reactive protein, reflecting its possible inflammatory and pro-oxidant role in COVID-19 pathogenesis. We noted an imbalance in the ratio between Cu and Zn, with ~ 83% of patients having a Cu/Zn ratio > 1, which is an indicator of inflammation. Cu-to-Zn ratio increased to 45% in patients with mild symptoms and 34%-36% in patients with moderate symptoms compared to asymptomatic patients. These relationships were only obtained when one of the laboratory parameters (lymphocyte or monocyte) or inflammatory markers (neutrophil-to-lymphocyte ratio) was included in the regression model. These findings suggest that Cu/Zn might further exacerbate inflammation in COVID-19 patients and might be synergistically associated with disease severity. A 23% decrease in vitamin A was seen in patients with severe symptoms, which disappeared after adjusting for inflammatory markers. This finding may highlight the potential role of inflammation in mediating the relationship between COVID-19 severity and vitamin A levels. Despite our patients' low status of Zn, vitamin D3, and antioxidant enzyme (SOD), there is no evidence of their role in COVID-19 progression. Our findings reinforce that deficiency or excess of certain micronutrients plays a role in the pathogenesis of COVID-19. More studies are required to support our results.

2.
Sci Rep ; 11(1): 19888, 2021 10 06.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1454817

ABSTRACT

To cope with the shortage of filtering facepiece respirators (FFRs) during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, healthcare institutions were forced to reuse FFRs after applying different decontamination methods including gamma-irradiation (GIR). The aim of this study was to evaluate the effect of GIR on the filtration efficiency (FE) of FFRs and on SARS-CoV-2 detection. The FE of 2 FFRs types (KN95 and N95-3 M masks) was assessed at different particle sizes (0.3-5 µm) following GIR (0-15 kGy) delivered at either typical (1.65 kGy/h) or low (0.5088 kGy/h) dose rates. The detection of two SARS-CoV-2 RNA genes (E and RdRp4) following GIR (0-50 kGy) was carried out using RT-qPCR assay. Both masks showed an overall significant (P < 0.001) reduction in FE with increased GIR doses. No significant differences were observed between GIR dose rates on FE. The GIR exhibited significant increases (P ≤ 0.001) in the cycle threshold values (ΔCt) of both genes, with no detection following high doses. In conclusion, complete degradation of SARS-CoV-2 RNA can be achieved by high GIR (≥ 30 kGy), suggesting its potential use in FFRs decontamination. However, GIR exhibited adverse effects on FE in dose- and particle size-dependent manners, rendering its use to decontaminate FFRs debatable.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/virology , Decontamination/methods , Masks , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Ventilators, Mechanical , COVID-19/prevention & control , COVID-19/transmission , Filtration , Gamma Rays , Humans , Particle Size
3.
J Inflamm Res ; 14: 4313-4328, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1417005

ABSTRACT

Purpose: This study aimed to understand the pathophysiology of host responses to infections caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2)/(COVID-19) and Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) and to identify proteins for patient stratification with different grades of illness severity. Patients and Methods: Peripheral blood samples from 43 patients with different grades of COVID-19, 7 MERS-CoV patients admitted to the ICU, and 10 healthy subjects were analyzed using label-free quantitative liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry (LC-MS). Results: We identified 193 and 91 proteins that differed significantly between COVID-19 and MERS-CoV sample groups, respectively, and 49 overlapped between datasets. Only 10 proteins are diagnostic of asymptomatic cases, 12 are prognostic of recovery from severe illness, and 28 are prognostic of a fatal outcome of COVID-19. These proteins are implicated in virus-specific/related signaling networks. Notable among the top canonical pathways are humoral immunity, inflammation, acute-phase response signaling, liver X receptor/retinoid X receptor (LXR/RXR) activation, coagulation, and the complement system. Furthermore, we confirmed positive viral shedding in 11.76% of 51 additional peripheral blood samples, indicating that caution should be taken to avoid the possible risk of transfusion of infected blood products. Conclusion: We identified COVID-19 and MERS-CoV protein panels that have potential as biomarkers and might assist in the prognosis of SARS-CoV-2 infection. The identified markers further our understanding of COVID-19 disease pathophysiology and may have prognostic or therapeutic potential in predicting or managing host cell responses to human COVID-19 and MERS-CoV infections.

4.
Ann Saudi Med ; 40(5): 373-381, 2020.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-782327

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: The pandemic of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-COV-2) has prompted a need for mass testing to identify patients with viral infection. The high demand has created a global bottleneck in testing capacity, which prompted us to modify available resources to extract viral RNA and perform reverse transcription quantitative real-time polymerase chain reaction (RT-qPCR) to detect SARS-COV-2. OBJECTIVES: Report on the use of a DNA extraction kit, after modifications, to extract viral RNA that could then be detected using an FDA-approved SARS-COV-2 RT-qPCR assay. MATERIALS AND METHODS: Initially, automated RNA extraction was performed using a modified DNA kit on samples from control subjects, a bacteriophage, and an RNA virus. We then verified the automated extraction using the modified kit to detect in-lab propagated SARSCOV-2 titrations using an FDA approved commercial kit (S, N, and ORF1b genes) and an in-house primer-probe based assay (E, RdRp2 and RdRp4 genes). RESULTS: Automated RNA extraction on serial dilutions SARS-COV-2 achieved successful one-step RT-qPCR detection down to 60 copies using the commercial kit assay and less than 30 copies using the in-house primer-probe assay. Moreover, RT-qPCR detection was successful after automated RNA extraction using this modified protocol on 12 patient samples of SARS-COV-2 collected by nasopharyngeal swabs and stored in viral transport media. CONCLUSIONS: We demonstrated the capacity of a modified DNA extraction kit for automated viral RNA extraction and detection using a platform that is suitable for mass testing. LIMITATIONS: Small patient sample size. CONFLICT OF INTEREST: None.


Subject(s)
Betacoronavirus/genetics , Coronavirus Infections/diagnosis , High-Throughput Nucleotide Sequencing/methods , Nasopharynx/virology , Pneumonia, Viral/diagnosis , RNA, Viral/isolation & purification , Reverse Transcriptase Polymerase Chain Reaction/methods , Animals , Automation , COVID-19 , COVID-19 Testing , Chlorocebus aethiops , Clinical Laboratory Techniques , Coronavirus Envelope Proteins , Coronavirus Nucleocapsid Proteins , Coronavirus RNA-Dependent RNA Polymerase , Encephalomyocarditis virus/genetics , Humans , Levivirus/genetics , Nucleocapsid Proteins/genetics , Pandemics , Phosphoproteins , RNA, Viral/analysis , RNA-Dependent RNA Polymerase/genetics , SARS-CoV-2 , Sequence Analysis, RNA , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Vero Cells , Viral Envelope Proteins/genetics , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/genetics
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