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1.
Front Biosci (Landmark Ed) ; 26(12): 1493-1502, 2021 12 30.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1614662

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Despite the fact that the clinical efficacy of hydroxychloroquine is still controversial, it has been demonstrated in vitro to control SARS-CoV-2 multiplication on Vero E6 cells. In this study, we tested the possibility that some patients with prolonged virus excretion could be infected by less susceptible strains. METHOD: Using a high-content screening method, we screened 30 different selected isolates of SARS-CoV-2 from different patients who received azithromycin ± hydroxychloroquine. We focused on patients with viral persistence, i.e., positive virus detection in a nasopharyngeal sample ≥10 days, and who were tested during two French epidemic waves, late winter-spring of 2020 and the summer of 2020. Dose-response curves in single-molecule assays with hydroxychloroquine were created for isolates with suspected reduced susceptibility. Genome clustering was performed for all isolates. RESULTS: Of 30 tested strains, three were detected as replicating in the presence of azithromycin + hydroxychloroquine, each at 5 µM. The dose-response model showed a decrease in susceptibility of these three strains to hydroxychloroquine. Whole genome sequencing revealed that these three strains are all from the second epidemic wave and two cluster with isolates from Africa. CONCLUSIONS: Reduced susceptibility to hydroxychloroquine was not associated with viral persistence in naso-pharyngeal samples. Rather, it was associated with occurring during the second epidemic wave, which began in the summer and with strains clustering with those with a common genotype in Africa, where hydroxychloroquine was the most widely used.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Hydroxychloroquine , Azithromycin/pharmacology , COVID-19/drug therapy , Humans , Hydroxychloroquine/pharmacology , SARS-CoV-2
2.
J Med Virol ; 2022 Jan 08.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1611315

ABSTRACT

The recently emerging SARS-CoV-2 variant omicron displays an unusual association of 30 mutations, 3 deletions, and 1 insertion. To analyze the impact of this atypic mutational landscape, we constructed a complete structure of the omicron spike protein. Compared with the delta variant, the receptor-binding domain (RBD) of omicron has an increased electrostatic surface potential, but a decreased affinity for the ACE-2 receptor. The N-terminal domain (NTD) has both a decreased surface potential and a lower affinity for lipid rafts. The omicron variant is predicted to be less fusogenic and thus less pathogenic than delta, due to a geometric reorganization of the S1-S2 cleavage site. Overall, these virological parameters suggest that omicron does not have a significant infectivity advantage over the delta variant. However, in omicron, neutralizing epitopes are greatly affected, suggesting that current vaccines will probably confer little protection against this variant. In conclusion, the puzzling mutational pattern of the omicron variant combines contradictory properties which may either decrease (virological properties) or increase (immunological escape/facilitation) the transmission of this variant in the human population. This Janus-like phenotype may explain some conflicting reports on the initial assessment of omicron and provide new insights about the molecular mechanisms controlling its dissemination and pathogenesis worldwide.

4.
Viruses ; 13(12)2021 12 16.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1580428

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: We aimed to compare the clinical severity in patients who were coinfected with severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) and rhinovirus or monoinfected with a single one of these viruses. METHODS: The study period ranged from 1 March 2020 to 28 February 2021 (one year). SARS-CoV-2 and other respiratory viruses were identified by real-time reverse-transcription-PCR as part of the routine work at Marseille University hospitals. Bacterial and fungal infections were detected by standard methods. Clinical data were retrospectively collected from medical files. This study was approved by the ethical committee of our institute. RESULTS: A total of 6034/15,157 (40%) tested patients were positive for at least one respiratory virus. Ninety-three (4.3%) SARS-CoV-2-infected patients were coinfected with another respiratory virus, with rhinovirus being the most frequent (62/93, 67%). Patients coinfected with SARS-CoV-2 and rhinovirus were significantly more likely to report a cough than those with SARS-CoV-2 monoinfection (62% vs. 31%; p = 0.0008). In addition, they were also significantly more likely to report dyspnea than patients with rhinovirus monoinfection (45% vs. 36%; p = 0.02). They were also more likely to be transferred to an intensive care unit and to die than patients with rhinovirus monoinfection (16% vs. 5% and 7% vs. 2%, respectively) but these differences were not statistically significant. CONCLUSIONS: A close surveillance and investigation of the co-incidence and interactions of SARS-CoV-2 and other respiratory viruses is needed. The possible higher risk of increased clinical severity in SARS-CoV-2-positive patients coinfected with rhinovirus warrants further large scale studies.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/epidemiology , Coinfection/epidemiology , Coinfection/virology , Picornaviridae Infections/epidemiology , Adolescent , Adult , Aged , COVID-19/diagnosis , Child , Coinfection/diagnosis , Female , Humans , Incidence , Male , Middle Aged , Picornaviridae Infections/diagnosis , Picornaviridae Infections/virology , Real-Time Polymerase Chain Reaction , Respiratory Tract Infections/epidemiology , Respiratory Tract Infections/virology , Retrospective Studies , Rhinovirus , SARS-CoV-2 , Severity of Illness Index , Young Adult
5.
Viruses ; 14(1)2021 Dec 23.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1580411

ABSTRACT

Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) quickly spread worldwide following its emergence in Wuhan, China, and hit pandemic levels. Its tremendous incidence favoured the emergence of viral variants. The current genome diversity of SARS-CoV-2 has a clear impact on epidemiology and clinical practice, especially regarding transmission rates and the effectiveness of vaccines. In this study, we evaluated the replication of different SARS-CoV-2 isolates representing different virus genotypes which have been isolated throughout the pandemic. We used three distinct cell lines, including Vero E6 cells originating from monkeys; Caco-2 cells, an intestinal epithelium cell line originating from humans; and Calu-3 cells, a pulmonary epithelium cell line also originating from humans. We used RT-qPCR to replicate different SARS-CoV-2 genotypes by quantifying the virus released in the culture supernatant of infected cells. We found that the different viral isolates replicate similarly in Caco-2 cells, but show very different replicative capacities in Calu-3 cells. This was especially highlighted for the lineages B.1.1.7, B.1.351 and P.1, which are considered to be variants of concern. These results underscore the importance of the evaluation and characterisation of each SARS-CoV-2 isolate in order to establish the replication patterns before performing tests, and of the consideration of the ideal SARS-CoV-2 genotype-cell type pair for each assay.

6.
Future Microbiol ; 16: 1341-1370, 2021 11.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1555047

ABSTRACT

Since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, large in silico screening studies and numerous in vitro studies have assessed the antiviral activity of various drugs on SARS-CoV-2. In the context of health emergency, drug repurposing represents the most relevant strategy because of the reduced time for approval by international medicines agencies, the low cost of development and the well-known toxicity profile of such drugs. Herein, we aim to review drugs with in vitro antiviral activity against SARS-CoV-2, combined with molecular docking data and results from preliminary clinical studies. Finally, when considering all these previous findings, as well as the possibility of oral administration, 11 molecules consisting of nelfinavir, favipiravir, azithromycin, clofoctol, clofazimine, ivermectin, nitazoxanide, amodiaquine, heparin, chloroquine and hydroxychloroquine, show an interesting antiviral activity that could be exploited as possible drug candidates for COVID-19 treatment.


Subject(s)
Antiviral Agents/therapeutic use , COVID-19/drug therapy , Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus/drug effects , SARS-CoV-2/drug effects , Animals , COVID-19/virology , Cell Line , Chlorocebus aethiops , Drug Repositioning/methods , Humans , Molecular Docking Simulation , Pandemics/prevention & control , Vero Cells
7.
Virus Genes ; 2021 Nov 27.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1536341

ABSTRACT

Great concerns have been raised about SARS-CoV-2 variants over the past six months. At the end of 2020, an increasing incidence of spike substitutions Q677H/P was described in the USA, which involved six independent lineages. We searched for changes to this amino acid in the sequence database of SARS-CoV-2 genomes obtained at the IHU Méditerranée Infection (Marseille, France) from 3634 patients sampled between February 2020 and April 2021. In seven genomes (0.2%), we found a deletion of five amino acids at spike positions 675-679 (QTQTN) including Q677, and in 76 genomes (2.3%) we found a Q677H substitution. The 83 genomes were classified in ten different Pangolin lineages. Genomes with a spike Q677 deletion were obtained from respiratory samples collected in six cases between 28 March 2020 and 12 October 2020 and in one case on 1 February 2021. The Q677H substitution was found in genomes all obtained from respiratory samples collected from 19 January 2021 and were classified in seven different lineages. Most of these genomes (41 cases) were of UK variant. Two others were classified in the B.1.160 Pangolin lineage (Marseille-4 variant) which was first detected in July 2020 in our institute but was devoid of this substitution until 19 January 2021. Also, eight genomes were classified in the A.27/Marseille-501 lineage which was first detected in our institute in January 2021 and which either harboured or did not harbour the Q677H substitution. Thus, the spike Q677H substitution should be considered as another example of convergent evolution, as it is the case of spike substitutions L18F, E484K, L452R, and N501Y which also independently appeared in various lineages.

8.
Emerg Microbes Infect ; 10(1): 2276-2278, 2021 Dec.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1522076

ABSTRACT

Culture inoculation of 6722 nasopharyngeal samples since February 2020 allowed isolation of 3637 SARS-CoV-2 and confirmed that isolation rate is correlated to viral load, regardless symptomatology or vaccination status. Moreover, the delta variant is associated with higher viral loads and therefore higher rates of viral isolation, explaining its greater contagiousness.

9.
Viruses ; 13(11)2021 10 28.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1488758

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, several SARS-CoV-2 variants have sequentially emerged. In France, most cases were due to spike D641G-harbouring viruses that descended initially from the Wuhan strain, then by the variant of B.1.160 lineage we called Marseille-4 since the summer of 2020, which was followed by the Alpha and Beta variants in early 2021, then the Delta variant currently. METHODS: We determined the neutralising antibody (nAb) titres in sera from convalescent individuals previously infected by these four major local variants and from vaccine recipients to the original Wuhan strain and nine variants, including two recent circulating Delta isolates. RESULTS: The results show high inter-individual heterogeneity in nAbs, especially according to the variant tested. The major variations among nAbs are based on the genotype responsible for the infection. Patients previously infected with the beta and B.1.160 variants had the lowest nAb titres. We show that this heterogeneity is well explained by spike protein mutants modelling using in silico approaches. The highest titres were observed in individuals vaccinated with the Pfizer/BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine, even against the delta variant. CONCLUSIONS: Immunity acquired naturally after infection is highly dependent on the infecting variant, and, unexpectedly, mRNA-based vaccine efficacy was shown to be often better than natural immunity in eliciting neutralising antibodies.

10.
Pathogens ; 10(8)2021 Aug 17.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1477982

ABSTRACT

The monitoring of SARS-CoV-2 RNA in sewage has been proposed as a simple and unbiased means of assessing epidemic evolution and the efficiency of the COVID-19 control measures. The past year has been marked by the emergence of variants that have led to a succession of epidemic waves. It thus appears that monitoring the presence of SARS-CoV-2 in wastewater alone is insufficient, and it may be important in the future to also monitor the evolution of these variants. We used a real-time RT-PCR screening test for variants in the wastewater of our city to assess the effectiveness of direct SARS-CoV-2 sequencing from the same wastewater. We compared the genome sequencing results obtained over the large RS network and the smaller B7 network with the different distributions of the variants observed by RT-PCR screening. The prevalence of the "UK variant" in the RS and B7 networks was estimated to be 70% and 8% using RT-PCR screening compared to 95% and 64% using genome sequencing, respectively. The latter values were close to the epidemiology observed in patients of the corresponding area, which were 91% and 58%, respectively. Genome sequencing in sewage identified SARS-CoV-2 of lineage B.1.525 in B7 at 27% (37% in patients), whereas it was completely missed by RT-PCR. We thus determined that direct sequencing makes it possible to observe, in wastewater, a distribution of the variants comparable to that revealed by genomic monitoring in patients and that this method is more accurate than RT-PCR. It also shows that, rather than a single large sample, it would be preferable to analyse several targeted samples if we want to more appropriately assess the geographical distribution of the different variants. In conclusion, this work supports the wider surveillance of SARS-CoV-2 variants in wastewater by genome sequencing and targeting small areas on the condition of having a sequencing capacity and, when this is not the case, to developing more precise screening tests based on the multiplexed detection of the mutations of interest.

12.
Rev Cardiovasc Med ; 22(3): 1063-1072, 2021 09 24.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1439023

ABSTRACT

We evaluated the age-specific mortality of unselected adult outpatients infected with SARS-CoV-2 treated early in a dedicated COVID-19 day hospital and we assessed whether the use of hydroxychloroquine (HCQ) + azithromycin (AZ) was associated with improved survival in this cohort. A retrospective monocentric cohort study was conducted in the day hospital of our center from March to December 2020 in adults with PCR-proven infection who were treated as outpatients with a standardized protocol. The primary endpoint was 6-week mortality, and secondary endpoints were transfer to the intensive care unit and hospitalization rate. Among 10,429 patients (median age, 45 [IQR 32-57] years; 5597 [53.7%] women), 16 died (0.15%). The infection fatality rate was 0.06% among the 8315 patients treated with HCQ+AZ. No deaths occurred among the 8414 patients younger than 60 years. Older age and male sex were associated with a higher risk of death, ICU transfer, and hospitalization. Treatment with HCQ+AZ (0.17 [0.06-0.48]) was associated with a lower risk of death, independently of age, sex and epidemic period. Meta-analysis evidenced consistency with 4 previous outpatient studies (32,124 patients-Odds ratio 0.31 [0.20-0.47], I2 = 0%). Early ambulatory treatment of COVID-19 with HCQ+AZ as a standard of care is associated with very low mortality, and HCQ+AZ improve COVID-19 survival compared to other regimens.


Subject(s)
Ambulatory Care , Antiviral Agents/therapeutic use , Azithromycin/therapeutic use , COVID-19/drug therapy , Early Medical Intervention , Hydroxychloroquine/therapeutic use , Adolescent , Adult , Age Factors , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , Antiviral Agents/adverse effects , Azithromycin/adverse effects , COVID-19/diagnosis , COVID-19/mortality , Drug Therapy, Combination , Female , France , Hospitalization , Humans , Hydroxychloroquine/adverse effects , Male , Middle Aged , Outpatients , Retrospective Studies , Risk Assessment , Risk Factors , Sex Factors , Time Factors , Treatment Outcome , Young Adult
13.
Infect Genet Evol ; 95: 105092, 2021 11.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1433676

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVES: To compare the demographics, clinical characteristics and severity of patients infected with nine different SARS-CoV-2 variants, during three phases of the COVID-19 epidemic in Marseille. METHODS: A single centre retrospective cohort study was conducted in 1760 patients infected with SARS-CoV-2 of Nextstrain clades 20A, 20B, and 20C (first phase, February-May 2020), Pangolin lineages B.1.177 (we named Marseille-2) and B.1.160 (Marseille-4) variants (second phase, June-December 2020), and B.1.1.7 (alpha), B.1.351 (beta), P.1 (gamma) and A.27 (Marseille-501) variants (third phase, January 2021-today). Outcomes were the occurrence of clinical failures, including hospitalisation, transfer to the intensive-care unit, and death. RESULTS: During each phase, no major differences were observed with regards to age and gender distribution, the prevalence of chronic diseases, and clinical symptoms between variants circulating in a given phase. The B.1.177 and B.1.160 variants were associated with more severe outcomes. Infections occurring during the second phase were associated with a higher rate of death as compared to infections during the first and third phases. Patients in the second phase were more likely to be hospitalised than those in the third phase. Patients infected during the third phase were more frequently obese than others. CONCLUSION: A large cohort study is recommended to evaluate the transmissibility and to better characterise the clinical severity of emerging variants.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/pathology , Diabetes Mellitus/pathology , Genome, Viral , Hypertension/pathology , Obesity/pathology , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity , Adult , Aged , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/mortality , COVID-19/virology , Comorbidity , Diabetes Mellitus/epidemiology , Diabetes Mellitus/mortality , Diabetes Mellitus/virology , Female , France/epidemiology , Genotype , Heart Diseases/epidemiology , Heart Diseases/mortality , Heart Diseases/pathology , Heart Diseases/virology , Hospitalization/statistics & numerical data , Hospitals , Humans , Hypertension/epidemiology , Hypertension/mortality , Hypertension/virology , Intensive Care Units , Male , Middle Aged , Neoplasms/epidemiology , Neoplasms/mortality , Neoplasms/pathology , Neoplasms/virology , Obesity/epidemiology , Obesity/mortality , Obesity/virology , Phylogeny , Retrospective Studies , SARS-CoV-2/classification , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Sequence Analysis, RNA , Severity of Illness Index , Survival Analysis
14.
Front Med (Lausanne) ; 8: 737602, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1430710

ABSTRACT

Since the start of COVID-19 pandemic the Republic of Djibouti, in the horn of Africa, has experienced two epidemic waves of the virus between April and August 2020 and between February and May 2021. By May 2021, COVID-19 had affected 1.18% of the Djiboutian population and caused 152 deaths. Djibouti hosts several foreign military bases which makes it a potential hot-spot for the introduction of different SARS-CoV-2 strains. We genotyped fifty three viruses that have spread during the two epidemic waves. Next, using spike sequencing of twenty-eight strains and whole genome sequencing of thirteen strains, we found that Nexstrain clades 20A and 20B with a typically European D614G substitution in the spike and a frequent P2633L substitution in nsp16 were the dominant viruses during the first epidemic wave, while the clade 20H South African variants spread during the second wave characterized by an increase in the number of severe forms of COVID-19.

15.
J Clin Med ; 10(13)2021 Jun 30.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1403797

ABSTRACT

(1) Background: We collected COVID-19 mortality data and the age distribution of the deceased in France and other European countries, as well as specifically in the cities of Paris and Marseille, and compared them. (2) Methods: Data on mortality related to COVID-19 and the associated age distribution were collected from government institutions in various European countries. In France, data were obtained from INSEE and Santé Publique France. All-cause mortality was also examined in order to study potential excess mortality using EuroMOMO. The Marseille data came from the epidemiological surveillance system. (3) Results: France is one of the European countries most impacted by COVID-19. Its proportion of deaths in people under 60 years of age is higher (6.5%) than that of Italy (4.6%) or Spain (4.7%). Excess mortality (5% more deaths) was also observed. Ile-de-France and the Grand-Est are the two French regions with the highest mortality. The proportion of deaths in the under-60 age group was considerable in Ile-de-France (9.9% vs. 4.5% in the Southern region). There are significantly higher numbers of patients hospitalized, in intensive care and deceased in Paris than in Marseille. (4) Conclusions: No patient management, i.e., from screening to diagnosis, including biological assessment and clinical examination, likely explains the high mortality associated with COVID-19.

16.
Viruses ; 13(5)2021 04 28.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1389539

ABSTRACT

It has now been over a year since SARS-CoV-2 first emerged in China, in December 2019, and it has spread rapidly around the world. Some variants are currently considered of great concern. We aimed to analyze the numbers of SARS-CoV-2 genome sequences obtained in different countries worldwide until January 2021. On 28 January 2021, we downloaded the deposited genome sequence origin from the GISAID database, and from the "Our world in data" website we downloaded numbers of SARS-CoV-2-diagnosed cases, numbers of SARS-CoV-2-associated deaths, population size, life expectancy, gross domestic product (GDP) per capita, and human development index per country. Files were merged and data were analyzed using Microsoft Excel software. A total of 450,968 SARS-CoV-2 genomes originating from 135 countries on the 5 continents were available. When considering the 19 countries for which the number of genomes per 100 deaths was >100, six were in Europe, while eight were in Asia, three were in Oceania and two were in Africa. Six (30%) of these countries are beyond rank 75, regarding the human development index and four (20%) are beyond rank 80 regarding GDP per capita. Moreover, the comparisons of the number of genomes sequenced per 100 deaths to the human development index by country show that some Western European countries have released similar or lower numbers of genomes than many African or Asian countries with a lower human development index. Previous data highlight great discrepancies between the numbers of available SARS-CoV-2 genomes per 100 cases and deaths and the ranking of countries regarding wealth and development.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/virology , Genome, Viral , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Africa/epidemiology , Asia/epidemiology , COVID-19/epidemiology , Databases, Genetic , Europe/epidemiology , Global Health , High-Throughput Nucleotide Sequencing , Humans , Pandemics
20.
Int J Infect Dis ; 96: 154-156, 2020 Jul.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1385692

ABSTRACT

Respiratory viruses are a major cause of mortality worldwide and in France, where they cause several thousands of deaths every year. University Hospital Institute-Méditerranée Infection performs real-time surveillance of all diagnoses of infections and associated deaths in public hospitals in Marseille, Southeastern France. This study compared mortality associated with diagnoses of respiratory viruses during the colder months of 2018-2019 and 2019-2020 (week 47-week 14). In 2018-2019, 73 patients (0.17% of 42,851 hospitalized patients) died after being diagnosed with a respiratory virus; 40 and 13 deaths occurred in patients diagnosed with influenza A virus and respiratory syncytial virus (RSV), respectively. In 2019-2020, 50 patients (0.10% of 49,043 patients hospitalized) died after being diagnosed with a common respiratory virus; seven and seven deaths occurred in patients diagnosed with influenza A virus and RSV, respectively. Additionally, 55 patients died after being diagnosed with SARS-CoV-2. The proportion of respiratory virus-associated deaths among hospitalized patients was thus significantly lower for common respiratory viruses in 2019-2020 than in 2018-2019 (102 versus 170 per 100,000 hospitalized patients; p = 0.003), primarily as a consequence of a decrease in influenza A virus (-83%) and RSV (-46%)-associated deaths. Overall, the proportion of respiratory virus-associated deaths among hospitalized patients was higher, but not significantly, in 2019-2020 than in 2018-2019 (214 versus 170 per 100,000 hospitalized patients; p = 0.08, Yates-corrected Chi-square test). These findings put into perspective the death burden of SARS-CoV-2 infections in this geographical area.


Subject(s)
Betacoronavirus , Coronavirus Infections/mortality , Influenza A virus , Influenza, Human/epidemiology , Pneumonia, Viral/mortality , Respiratory Syncytial Virus Infections/epidemiology , COVID-19 , Child, Preschool , Female , France/epidemiology , Humans , Infant , Male , Middle Aged , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2 , Time Factors
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