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1.
J Med Virol ; 2022 Jul 13.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1925955

ABSTRACT

In December 2019, several patients were hospitalized and diagnosed with severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) infection, which subsequently led to a global pandemic. To date, there are no studies evaluating the relationship between the respiratory phageome and the SARS-CoV-2 infection. The current study investigated the phageome profiles in the nasopharyngeal swabs collected from 55 patients during the three different waves of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) in the Campania Region (Southern Italy). Data obtained from the taxonomic profiling show that phage families belonging to the order Caudovirales have a high abundance in the patient samples. Moreover, the severity of the COVID-19 infection seems to be correlated with the phage abundance.

2.
Vaccines (Basel) ; 10(4)2022 Mar 29.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1822471

ABSTRACT

Severe acute respiratory syndrome-related coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), the etiological agent of COVID-19, has caused over 460 million cases of infection and over 6 million deaths worldwide. The pandemic has called for science, technology, and innovation to provide solutions and, due to an incredible scientific and financial global effort, several prophylactic and therapeutic apparatuses such as monoclonal antibodies and vaccines were developed in less than one year to address this emergency. After SARS-CoV-2 infection, serum neutralizing antibodies are produced by B cells and studies on virus-neutralizing antibodies' kinetics are pivotal. The process of protective immunity and the duration of this kind of protection against COVID-19 remain to be clarified. We tested 136 sera from 3 groups of individuals, some of them providing multiple sequential sera (1-healthy, no previous CoV2-infected, vaccinated; 2-healthy, previous CoV2 infected, vaccinated; 3-healed, previous CoV2-infected, not vaccinated) to assess the kinetics of antibodies (Abs) neutralizing activity. We found that SARS-CoV-2 infection elicits moderate neutralizing antibody activity in most individuals; neither age nor gender appear to have any influence on Abs responses. The BNT162b2 vaccine, when administered in two doses, induces high antibodies titre endowed with potent neutralizing activity against bare SARS-CoV-2 in in vitro neutralizing assay. The residual neutralization capability and the kinetic of waning immunity were also evaluated over 9 months after the second dose in a reference group of subjects. Neutralization titre showed a decline in all subjects and the median level of S-protein IgG, over 270 days after the second vaccination dose, was below 10 AU/mL in 53% of serum tested.

3.
Mult Scler Relat Disord ; 60: 103724, 2022 Apr.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1783662

ABSTRACT

INTRODUCTION: Real-world clinical data suggest an attenuated short-term humoral response to SARS-CoV-2 vaccines in patients with multiple sclerosis (pwMS) receiving high efficacy (HE) disease modifying therapies (DMTs) such as Ocrelizumab (OCR) and Fingolimod (FNG). Long-term humoral response in pwMS treated with these HE-DMTs has been poorly investigated. The aim of our study was to explore: i) the humoral response up to six months after a full cycle of the BNT162b2 mRNA Covid-19 vaccine in pwMS treated with OCR and FNG and to compare it to age- and sex-matched healthy controls (HCs); ii) the relationship between humoral response and clinical and immunological characteristics of the studied population. METHODS: Serum samples were collected from HCs and pwMS treated with OCR or FNG at the following time points: before BNT162b2 mRNA Covid-19 vaccine (T0), and 4 (T1), 8 (T2), 16 (T3) and 24 (T4) weeks after the first dose. Sera were stored at -20 °C and tested for the quantitative detection of IgG antibodies to SARS-CoV-2 trimeric spike protein (Anti-TSP IgG) expressed in binding antibody units (BAU). At T1 neutralizing antibodies (NAbs) titres were assessed. The relationship between Anti-TSP IgG at each time-point and clinical and laboratoristic analyses were analysed by the Spearman correlation coefficient. RESULTS: 47 HCs and 50 pwMS (28 on OCR and 22 on FNG) were included in the study. All HCs mounted a positive humoral response at T1 and preserved it up to six months. At T1 only 57.1% pwMS on OCR (p < 0.001 compared with HCs) and 40.9% on FNG (p < 0.001) had a positive humoral response at T1, with only 39.3% and 27.3% maintaining a positive response at sixth months (T4), respectively. A strong positive correlation was observed between Nabs titres and Anti-TSP IgG at T1 (rho 0.87, p < 0.0001) with NAbs titres significantly higher in HCs compared with pwMS on OCR and FNG (p<0.0001). We also found a strong positive correlation between time-window since last OCR infusion and anti-TSP IgG titres at all time-points (T1 rho=0.58, p = 0.001; T2 rho=0.59, p = 0.001; T3 rho=0.53, p = 0.004; T4 rho=0.47, p = 0.01). In the FNG group we observed a significant correlation between the humoral response measured from T1 to T4 and: i) treatment duration (T1: rho -0.65, p = 0.001; T2: rho -0.8 p< 0.001; T3: rho -0.72, p=<0.001; T4: rho -0.67, p<0.001), ii) disease duration (T1: rho -0.5, p = 0.017; T2: rho -0.6, p = 0.003; T3: rho -0.58, p = 0.005; T4: rho -0.57, p = 0.006), and iii) baseline total lymphocyte count (T1: rho 0.37, p = 0.08; T2: rho 0.45, p = 0.03; T3: rho 0.43, p = 0.04; T4: rho 0.45, p = 0.03). CONCLUSIONS: Our long-term data show a weakened and short-lasting humoral response to SARS-CoV-2 mRNA vaccine in pwMS treated with OCR and FNG when compared with HCs. MS neurologists should take into account the time elapsed since the last infusion for pwMS on OCR, and the lymphocyte count as well as the disease and treatment duration for those on FNG when called to counsel such pwMS regarding the vaccination with the SARS-CoV-2 mRNA vaccine.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Multiple Sclerosis , Antibodies, Monoclonal, Humanized , Antibodies, Viral , BNT162 Vaccine , COVID-19/prevention & control , COVID-19 Vaccines , Fingolimod Hydrochloride/therapeutic use , Humans , Immunoglobulin G/therapeutic use , Multiple Sclerosis/drug therapy , RNA, Messenger , SARS-CoV-2 , Vaccination , Vaccines, Synthetic , mRNA Vaccines
4.
Sci Rep ; 12(1): 5468, 2022 03 31.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1768860

ABSTRACT

This study investigated the performance of 24 commercial disinfectants present on the market during last year according to the manufacturer's instructions. Recently, national and international organizations of public health performed studies on disinfection products due to the increasing awareness of the potential and growing risks on human health, such as skin damage and reactions in the mucosal lining, especially for the healthcare workers in their frequent daily use. However, there are many limitations in the common cleaning/disinfection products on market as in the selection of effective disinfectants to decontaminate inanimate surfaces. We analyzed the disinfection power of hydrogen peroxide, quaternary ammonium compounds, alcohols, phenols and aldehydes used as active principles according to international guidelines. The antimicrobial properties were assessed by broth microdilution, and antibiofilm properties against Escherichia coli (E. coli) and Staphylococcus aureus (S. aureus); their virucidal efficacy was tested against Herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV-1) and Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2). The quaternary ammonium compounds demonstrated better efficacy than others and in some cases ready to use products had also virucidal and antimicrobial activities after dilution at 0.125%. The scientific evidence indicates that many commercial products are used at high concentrations and high doses and this could have deleterious effects both on human health and the environment. A lower concentration of active ingredients would avoid the excessive release of chemicals into the environment and improve skin tolerance, ensuring the health and safety protection of workers, including the healthcare operators at their workplace.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Disinfectants , COVID-19/prevention & control , Disinfectants/pharmacology , Escherichia coli , Humans , Pandemics/prevention & control , SARS-CoV-2 , Staphylococcus aureus , Workplace
5.
Microb Pathog ; 165: 105506, 2022 Apr.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1763898

ABSTRACT

Since its first appearance, the SARS-CoV-2 has spread rapidly in the human population, reaching the pandemic scale with >280 million confirmed infections and more than 5 million deaths to date (https://covid19.who.int/). These data justify the urgent need to enhance our understanding of SARS-CoV-2 effects in the respiratory system, including those linked to co-infections. The principal aim of our study is to investigate existing correlations in the nasopharynx between the bacterial community, potential pathogens, and SARS-CoV-2 infection. The main aim of this study was to provide evidence pointing to possible relationships between components of the bacterial community and SARS-CoV-2 in the nasopharynx. Meta-transcriptomic profiling of the nasopharyngeal microbial community was carried out in 89 SARS-Cov-2 positive subjects from the Campania Region in Italy. To this end, RNA extracted from nasopharyngeal swabs collected at different times during the initial phases of the pandemic was analyzed by Next-Generation Sequencing (NGS). Results show a consistently high presence of members of the Proteobacteria (41.85%), Firmicutes (28.54%), and Actinobacteria (16.10%) phyla, and an inverted correlation between the host microbiome, co-infectious bacteria, and super-potential pathogens such as Staphylococcus aureus, Klebsiella pneumoniae, Streptococcus pneumoniae, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Acinetobacter baumannii, and Neisseria gonorrhoeae. In depth characterization of microbiota composition in the nasopharynx can provide clues to understand its potential contribution to the clinical phenotype of Covid-19, clarifying the interaction between SARS-Cov-2 and the bacterial flora of the host, and highlighting its dysbiosis and the presence of pathogens that could affect the patient's disease progression and outcome.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Coinfection , Microbiota , Bacteria/genetics , Coinfection/epidemiology , High-Throughput Nucleotide Sequencing , Humans , Italy/epidemiology , Microbiota/genetics , Nasopharynx/microbiology , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2/genetics
6.
Vaccines (Basel) ; 10(3)2022 Feb 27.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1715834

ABSTRACT

Vaccination has been a key protective behavior for COVID-19. This study investigated the clinical status of university professors administered the Vaxzevria COVID-19 vaccine, to monitor for any adverse reaction, and to understand attitude and hesitancy to vaccination. Data were collected through an online survey. The study received approval from the relevant ethics committee "Comitato Etico Campania Sud". Multivariate logistic regressions were used to calculate significant predictors of the outcomes of interest. A gender and AB0 blood type difference in adverse vaccine reactions was found. The multivariate logistic regression model showed that female gender, city residence, blood type A+ and B-, and chronic underlying medical conditions or comorbidities were more strongly implicated in the occurrence of adverse reactions, whereas blood type 0 Rh+ or blood type A Rh- were protective factors of adverse reactions to the Vaxzevria vaccine. Both genders did not show serious adverse reactions to the Vaxzevria vaccine. Based on our results, we are able to support the hypothesis that AB0 blood type and gender difference appear as predictors of Vaxzevria COVID-19 vaccine reactogenicity. Furthermore, in the study population, the degree of concern and hesitation to undergo vaccination was minimal.

7.
Int J Mol Sci ; 23(4)2022 Feb 13.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1686819

ABSTRACT

The COVID-19 pandemic has evidenced the urgent need for the discovery of broad-spectrum antiviral therapies that could be deployed in the case of future emergence of novel viral threats, as well as to back up current therapeutic options in the case of drug resistance development. Most current antivirals are directed to inhibit specific viruses since these therapeutic molecules are designed to act on a specific viral target with the objective of interfering with a precise step in the replication cycle. Therefore, antimicrobial peptides (AMPs) have been identified as promising antiviral agents that could help to overcome this limitation and provide compounds able to act on more than a single viral family. We evaluated the antiviral activity of an amphibian peptide known for its strong antimicrobial activity against both Gram-positive and Gram-negative bacteria, namely Temporin L (TL). Previous studies have revealed that TL is endowed with widespread antimicrobial activity and possesses marked haemolytic activity. Therefore, we analyzed TL and a previously identified TL derivative (Pro3, DLeu9 TL, where glutamine at position 3 is replaced with proline, and the D-Leucine enantiomer is present at position 9) as well as its analogs, for their activity against a wide panel of viruses comprising enveloped, naked, DNA and RNA viruses. We report significant inhibition activity against herpesviruses, paramyxoviruses, influenza virus and coronaviruses, including SARS-CoV-2. Moreover, we further modified our best candidate by lipidation and demonstrated a highly reduced cytotoxicity with improved antiviral effect. Our results show a potent and selective antiviral activity of TL peptides, indicating that the novel lipidated temporin-based antiviral agents could prove to be useful additions to current drugs in combatting rising drug resistance and epidemic/pandemic emergencies.


Subject(s)
Amphibian Proteins/pharmacology , Amphibians/metabolism , Antimicrobial Cationic Peptides/pharmacology , Antiviral Agents/chemistry , DNA Viruses/drug effects , RNA Viruses/drug effects , Amino Acid Sequence , Amphibian Proteins/chemistry , Amphibian Proteins/metabolism , Animals , Antimicrobial Cationic Peptides/chemistry , Antimicrobial Cationic Peptides/metabolism , Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , Cell Survival/drug effects , Chlorocebus aethiops , Gram-Negative Bacteria/drug effects , Gram-Positive Bacteria/drug effects , Humans , Lipids/chemistry , SARS-CoV-2/drug effects , Vero Cells
8.
Microorganisms ; 10(2)2022 Feb 02.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1667249

ABSTRACT

The aim of the present study is to check the relationship between virus detection on the conjunctival swabs by RT-PCR and the systemic and ocular clinical data, treatments, and to the modalities of administration of supplemental oxygen. The SARS-CoV-2 RNA reverse-transcriptase PCR assay of conjunctival brushing samples and the corneal/conjunctival clinical findings were evaluated in 18 eyes of 9 consecutive patients admitted to the COVID-19 Sub-intensive Unit of Salerno Hospital University, Italy. Conjunctival swabs were positive for SARS-CoV-2 in 13 eyes of 7 patients; corneal epithelial defects were detected in 9 eyes. The seven patients with ocular involvement from SARS-CoV-2 had undergone treatment with a full-face mask or oxygen helmet in the last week, while the two subjects with negative conjunctival swabs had been treated with high flow nasal cannula. The positivity to the conjunctival test for SARS-CoV-2 was higher (72%) than that reported in the literature (10-15%) and related in all cases to the use of facial respiratory devices. These results suggest that exposure of unprotected eyes to aerosols containing high concentrations of SARS-CoV-2 could cause a keratoconjunctival viral infection. Further studies are needed to verify the causal link with the use of respiratory facial devices in patients suffering from COVID-19 pneumonia.

9.
Int J Mol Sci ; 23(2)2022 Jan 14.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1625084

ABSTRACT

Viral infections represent a serious threat to the world population and are becoming more frequent. The search and identification of broad-spectrum antiviral molecules is necessary to ensure new therapeutic options, since there is a limited availability of effective antiviral drugs able to eradicate viral infections, and consequently due to the increase of strains that are resistant to the most used drugs. Recently, several studies on antimicrobial peptides identified them as promising antiviral agents. In detail, amphibian skin secretions serve as a rich source of natural antimicrobial peptides. Their antibacterial and antifungal activities have been widely reported, but their exploitation as potential antiviral agents have yet to be fully investigated. In the present study, the antiviral activity of the peptide derived from the secretion of Rana tagoi, named AR-23, was evaluated against both DNA and RNA viruses, with or without envelope. Different assays were performed to identify in which step of the infectious cycle the peptide could act. AR-23 exhibited a greater inhibitory activity in the early stages of infection against both DNA (HSV-1) and RNA (MeV, HPIV-2, HCoV-229E, and SARS-CoV-2) enveloped viruses and, on the contrary, it was inactive against naked viruses (PV-1). Altogether, the results indicated AR-23 as a peptide with potential therapeutic effects against a wide variety of human viruses.


Subject(s)
Amphibian Proteins/pharmacology , Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , Ranidae/metabolism , Animals , Antimicrobial Cationic Peptides/pharmacology , Cell Survival/drug effects , Chlorocebus aethiops , DNA Viruses/drug effects , RNA Viruses/drug effects , SARS-CoV-2/drug effects , Vero Cells , Viral Envelope/drug effects , Viral Plaque Assay , Virus Diseases/drug therapy
10.
J Med Virol ; 94(5): 2275-2283, 2022 05.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1604831

ABSTRACT

From December 2019, severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) infection has spread rapidly, leading to a global pandemic. Little is known about possible relationships between SARS-CoV-2 and other viruses in the respiratory system affecting patient prognosis and outcomes. This study aims to characterize respiratory virome profiles in association with SARS-CoV-2 infection and disease severity, through the analysis in 89 nasopharyngeal swabs collected in a patient's cohort from the Campania region (Southern Italy). Results show coinfections with viral species belonging to Coronaviridae, Retroviridae, Herpesviridae, Poxviridae, Pneumoviridae, Pandoraviridae, and Anelloviridae families and only 2% of the cases (2/89) identified respiratory viruses.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Nasopharynx , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/therapy , COVID-19/virology , Humans , Italy/epidemiology , Nasopharynx/virology , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2 , Virome
11.
2021.
Preprint in English | Other preprints | ID: ppcovidwho-294173

ABSTRACT

We test the validity of a possible schematization of DNA structure and dynamics based on the Chern-Simons theory, that is a topological field theory mostly considered in the context of effective gravity theories. By means of the expectation value of the Wilson Loop, derived from this analogue gravity approach, we find the point-like curvature of genomic strings in KRAS human gene and COVID-19 sequences, correlating this curvature with the genetic mutations. The point-like curvature profile, obtained by means of the Chern-Simons currents, can be used to infer the position of the given mutations within the genetic string. Generally, mutations take place in the highest Chern-Simons current gradient locations and subsequent mutated sequences appear to have a smoother curvature than the initial ones, in agreement with a free energy minimization argument.

12.
Pharmaceutics ; 13(12)2021 Dec 08.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1554858

ABSTRACT

Emerging and re-emerging viruses represent a serious threat to human health at a global level. In particular, enveloped viruses are one of the main causes of viral outbreaks, as recently demonstrated by SARS-CoV-2. An effective strategy to counteract these viruses could be to target the envelope by using surface-active compounds. Rhamnolipids (RLs) are microbial biosurfactants displaying a wide range of bioactivities, such as antibacterial, antifungal and antibiofilm, among others. Being of microbial origin, they are environmentally-friendly, biodegradable, and less toxic than synthetic surfactants. In this work, we explored the antiviral activity of the rhamnolipids mixture (M15RL) produced by the Antarctic bacteria Pseudomonas gessardii M15 against viruses belonging to Coronaviridae and Herpesviridae families. In addition, we investigated the rhamnolipids' mode of action and the possibility of inactivating viruses on treated surfaces. Our results show complete inactivation of HSV-1 and HSV-2 by M15RLs at 6 µg/mL, and of HCoV-229E and SARS-CoV-2 at 25 and 50 µg/mL, respectively. Concerning activity against HCoV-OC43, 80% inhibition of cytopathic effect was recorded, while no activity against naked Poliovirus Type 1 (PV-1) was detectable, suggesting that the antiviral action is mainly directed towards the envelope. In conclusion, we report a significant activity of M15RL against enveloped viruses and demonstrated for the first time the antiviral effect of rhamnolipids against SARS-CoV-2.

13.
Pharmaceuticals (Basel) ; 14(11)2021 Nov 08.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1512534

ABSTRACT

The rapid spread of SARS-CoV-2 and the resulting pandemic has led to a spasmodic search for approaches able to limit the diffusion of the disease. The epigenetic machinery has aroused considerable interest in the last decades, and much evidence has demonstrated that this type of modification could regulate the early stages of viral infection. Recently it was reported that N6-methyladenosine (m6A) influences SARS-CoV-2 replication, although its role remains to be further investigated. The knockdown of enzymes involved in the m6A pathway could represent an optimal strategy to deepen the epigenetic mechanism. In the present study, we blocked the catalytic activity of the fat mass and obesity-associated protein (FTO) by using the selective inhibitor rhein. We observed a strong broad-spectrum reduction of infectivity caused by various coronaviruses, including SARS-CoV-2. This effect could be due to the modulation of m6A levels and could allow identification of this modification as a new therapeutic target to treat SARS-CoV-2 infection.

14.
Eur Phys J Plus ; 136(10): 1080, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1495657

ABSTRACT

We test the validity of a possible schematization of DNA structure and dynamics based on the Chern-Simons theory, that is a topological field theory mostly considered in the context of effective gravity theories. By means of the expectation value of the Wilson Loop, derived from this analogue gravity approach, we find the point-like curvature of genomic strings in KRAS human gene and COVID-19 sequences, correlating this curvature with the genetic mutations. The point-like curvature profile, obtained by means of the Chern-Simons currents, can be used to infer the position of the given mutations within the genetic string. Generally, mutations take place in the highest Chern-Simons current gradient locations and subsequent mutated sequences appear to have a smoother curvature than the initial ones, in agreement with a free energy minimization argument.

15.
Int J Mol Sci ; 22(16)2021 Aug 22.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1372662

ABSTRACT

Natural products of microbial origin have inspired most of the commercial pharmaceuticals, especially those from Actinobacteria. However, the redundancy of molecules in the discovery process represents a serious issue. The untargeted approach, One Strain Many Compounds (OSMAC), is one of the most promising strategies to induce the expression of silent genes, especially when combined with genome mining and advanced metabolomics analysis. In this work, the whole genome of the marine isolate Rhodococcus sp. I2R was sequenced and analyzed by antiSMASH for the identification of biosynthetic gene clusters. The strain was cultivated in 22 different growth media and the generated extracts were subjected to metabolomic analysis and functional screening. Notably, only a single growth condition induced the production of unique compounds, which were partially purified and structurally characterized by liquid chromatography high-resolution tandem mass spectrometry (LC-HRMS/MS). This strategy led to identifying a bioactive fraction containing >30 new glycolipids holding unusual functional groups. The active fraction showed a potent antiviral effect against enveloped viruses, such as herpes simplex virus and human coronaviruses, and high antiproliferative activity in PC3 prostate cancer cell line. The identified compounds belong to the biosurfactants class, amphiphilic molecules, which play a crucial role in the biotech and biomedical industry.


Subject(s)
Antiviral Agents/metabolism , Glycolipids/metabolism , Rhodococcus/metabolism , Animals , Antiviral Agents/analysis , Chlorocebus aethiops , Culture Techniques , Drug Screening Assays, Antitumor , Esters/metabolism , Genome, Bacterial , Glycolipids/chemistry , Humans , Metabolome , Microbial Sensitivity Tests , Molecular Structure , PC-3 Cells , Rhodococcus/chemistry , Rhodococcus/genetics , Succinates/metabolism , Surface-Active Agents/chemistry , Surface-Active Agents/metabolism , Vero Cells
16.
Expert Opin Drug Discov ; 17(1): 9-18, 2022 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1366950

ABSTRACT

INTRODUCTION: Remdesivir (RDV) is an inhibitor of the viral RNA-dependent RNA polymerases that are active in some RNA viruses, including the Ebola virus and zoonotic coronaviruses. When severe acute respiratory syndrome-coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) was identified as the etiologic agent of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), several investigations have assessed the potential activity of RDV in inhibiting viral replication, giving rise to hope for an effective treatment. AREAS COVERED: In this review, the authors describe the main investigations leading to the discovery of RDV and its subsequent development as an antiviral agent, focusing on the main clinical trials investigating its efficacy in terms of symptom resolution and mortality reduction. EXPERT OPINION: RDV is the most widely investigated antiviral drug for the treatment of COVID-19. This attention on RDV activity against SARS-CoV-2 is justified by promising in vitro studies, which demonstrated that RDV was able to suppress viral replication without significant toxicity. Such activity was confirmed by an investigation in an animal model and by the results of preliminary clinical investigations. Nevertheless, the efficacy of RDV in reducing mortality has not been clearly demonstrated.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Adenosine Monophosphate/analogs & derivatives , Alanine/analogs & derivatives , Animals , Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , COVID-19/drug therapy , Humans , SARS-CoV-2
17.
J Gerontol A Biol Sci Med Sci ; 76(10): 1775-1783, 2021 09 13.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1358442

ABSTRACT

Aging and comorbidities make individuals at greatest risk of COVID-19 serious illness and mortality due to senescence-related events and deleterious inflammation. Long-living individuals (LLIs) are less susceptible to inflammation and develop more resiliency to COVID-19. As demonstrated, LLIs are characterized by high circulating levels of BPIFB4, a protein involved in homeostatic response to inflammatory stimuli. Also, LLIs show enrichment of homozygous genotype for the minor alleles of a 4 missense single-nucleotide polymorphism haplotype (longevity-associated variant [LAV]) in BPIFB4, able to counteract progression of diseases in animal models. Thus, the present study was designed to assess the presence and significance of BPIFB4 level in COVID-19 patients and the potential therapeutic use of LAV-BPIFB4 in fighting COVID-19. BPIFB4 plasma concentration was found significantly higher in LLIs compared to old healthy controls while it significantly decreased in 64 COVID-19 patients. Further, the drop in BPIFB4 values correlated with disease severity. Accordingly to the LAV-BPIFB4 immunomodulatory role, while lysates of SARS-CoV-2-infected cells induced an inflammatory response in healthy peripheral blood mononuclear cells in vitro, the co-treatment with recombinant protein (rh) LAV-BPIFB4 resulted in a protective and self-limiting reaction, culminating in the downregulation of CD69 activating-marker for T cells (both TCD4+ and TCD8+) and in MCP-1 reduction. On the contrary, rhLAV-BPIFB4 induced a rapid increase in IL-18 and IL-1b levels, shown largely protective during the early stages of the virus infection. This evidence, along with the ability of rhLAV-BPIFB4 to counteract the cytotoxicity induced by SARS-CoV-2 lysate in selected target cell lines, corroborates BPIFB4 prognostic value and open new therapeutic possibilities in more vulnerable people.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Intercellular Signaling Peptides and Proteins , Longevity/immunology , Aged, 80 and over , Biomarkers/blood , COVID-19/diagnosis , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/immunology , Cell Line , Cytokines/blood , Cytotoxicity, Immunologic/drug effects , Female , Humans , Immunologic Factors/immunology , Immunologic Factors/pharmacology , Inflammation/blood , Inflammation/immunology , Intercellular Signaling Peptides and Proteins/blood , Intercellular Signaling Peptides and Proteins/immunology , Italy/epidemiology , Male , Prognosis , Recombinant Proteins/immunology , Recombinant Proteins/pharmacology , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Severity of Illness Index
18.
mSphere ; 6(4): e0057121, 2021 08 25.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1329040

ABSTRACT

The COVID-19 pandemic caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus type 2 (SARS-CoV-2) is ongoing and has shown the community that flexible methods for rapidly identifying and screening candidate antivirals are needed. Assessing virus-neutralizing activity of human serum to monitor population immunity and response to infection and vaccination is key to pandemic control. We developed a virus neutralization platform strategy that relies only on bioinformatic and genetic information of the virus of interest. The platform uses viral envelope glycoprotein cDNAs to set up an assay that mimics multicycle infection but is safe and, therefore, amenable to biosafety level 2 (BSL2) conditions for viruses that require BSL3 facilities (e.g., SARS-CoV-1 and SARS-CoV-2). As a complement to this platform, we present a new cell-based immunofluorescent (CBI) assay that uses SARS-CoV-2 spike protein (S)-expressing cells to accurately measure the neutralization potential of human sera and is readily adaptable to variants of concern. These methods should be useful additions to the tools for assessing antiviral immunity, whether acquired via natural infection or vaccines. IMPORTANCE Assays for rapid biosafety level 2 (BSL2) evaluation of neutralizing properties of antibodies acquired via natural infection or through vaccination is urgently needed. Here, we propose a combinatorial approach in which sera are screened for SARS-CoV-2 spike protein (S) binding using a cell-based immunofluorescent (CBI) assay, and positive samples are further evaluated in a pseudotyped viral multicycle infection-mimicking protocol under BSL2 conditions.


Subject(s)
Antibodies, Neutralizing/immunology , Antibodies, Viral/immunology , Antiviral Agents/immunology , COVID-19/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/immunology , Animals , COVID-19/virology , Cell Line , Chlorocebus aethiops , HEK293 Cells , Humans , Neutralization Tests/methods , Pandemics/prevention & control , Vero Cells
19.
Microorganisms ; 9(8)2021 Jul 21.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1325735

ABSTRACT

In 2020, a global pandemic was declared following the spread of SARS-CoV-2, the pathogen responsible for COVID-19. The risk of infection is high due to the ease of transmission, which can occur orally, through droplets, or via contact with contaminated surfaces and objects. It has also been demonstrated that the ocular surface can constitute a transmission route, especially in hospital settings, where health care workers can become a dangerous source of infection. In order to increase prevention and reduce the spread of the virus on the ocular surface, the antiviral activity of already-marketed eye drops against SARS-CoV-2 was evaluated. Iodim, Ozodrop, Septavis, and Dropsept were tested against SARS-CoV-2 in plaque-assay experiments at different stimulation times. Furthermore, the expression levels of early and late genes were evaluated through molecular assays. Results indicated that three of the four ophthalmic solutions showed a considerable dose-dependent inhibition of viral replication, highlighting their use as potential antiviral drugs against SARS-CoV-2 and preventing other ocular infections.

20.
Viruses ; 13(7)2021 06 29.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1289028

ABSTRACT

Vitis vinifera represents an important and renowned source of compounds with significant biological activity. Wines and winery bioproducts, such as grape pomace, skins, and seeds, are rich in bioactive compounds against a wide range of human pathogens, including bacteria, fungi, and viruses. However, little is known about the biological properties of vine leaves. The aim of this study was the evaluation of phenolic composition and antiviral activity of Vitis vinifera leaf extract against two human viruses: the Herpes simplex virus type 1 (HSV-1) and the pandemic and currently widespread severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2). About 40 phenolic compounds were identified in the extract by HPLC-MS/MS analysis: most of them were quercetin derivatives, others included derivatives of luteolin, kaempferol, apigenin, isorhamnetin, myricetin, chrysoeriol, biochanin, isookanin, and scutellarein. Leaf extract was able to inhibit both HSV-1 and SARS-CoV-2 replication in the early stages of infection by directly blocking the proteins enriched on the viral surface, at a very low concentration of 10 µg/mL. These results are very promising and highlight how natural extracts could be used in the design of antiviral drugs and the development of future vaccines.


Subject(s)
Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , Herpesvirus 1, Human/drug effects , Plant Extracts/pharmacology , Plant Leaves/chemistry , SARS-CoV-2/drug effects , Vitis/chemistry , A549 Cells , Animals , Biological Products/analysis , Biological Products/pharmacology , Cell Line , Chlorocebus aethiops , Chromatography, High Pressure Liquid , Humans , MCF-7 Cells , Phenols/pharmacology , Plant Extracts/analysis , Tandem Mass Spectrometry , Vero Cells
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