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1.
Nat Neurosci ; 24(11): 1522-1533, 2021 11.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1500484

ABSTRACT

Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) can damage cerebral small vessels and cause neurological symptoms. Here we describe structural changes in cerebral small vessels of patients with COVID-19 and elucidate potential mechanisms underlying the vascular pathology. In brains of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2)-infected individuals and animal models, we found an increased number of empty basement membrane tubes, so-called string vessels representing remnants of lost capillaries. We obtained evidence that brain endothelial cells are infected and that the main protease of SARS-CoV-2 (Mpro) cleaves NEMO, the essential modulator of nuclear factor-κB. By ablating NEMO, Mpro induces the death of human brain endothelial cells and the occurrence of string vessels in mice. Deletion of receptor-interacting protein kinase (RIPK) 3, a mediator of regulated cell death, blocks the vessel rarefaction and disruption of the blood-brain barrier due to NEMO ablation. Importantly, a pharmacological inhibitor of RIPK signaling prevented the Mpro-induced microvascular pathology. Our data suggest RIPK as a potential therapeutic target to treat the neuropathology of COVID-19.


Subject(s)
Blood-Brain Barrier/metabolism , Brain/metabolism , Coronavirus 3C Proteases/metabolism , Intracellular Signaling Peptides and Proteins/metabolism , Microvessels/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2/metabolism , Animals , Blood-Brain Barrier/pathology , Brain/pathology , Chlorocebus aethiops , Coronavirus 3C Proteases/genetics , Cricetinae , Female , Humans , Intracellular Signaling Peptides and Proteins/genetics , Male , Mesocricetus , Mice , Mice, Inbred C57BL , Mice, Knockout , Mice, Transgenic , Microvessels/pathology , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Vero Cells
2.
Nat Neurosci ; 24(11): 1522-1533, 2021 11.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1483143

ABSTRACT

Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) can damage cerebral small vessels and cause neurological symptoms. Here we describe structural changes in cerebral small vessels of patients with COVID-19 and elucidate potential mechanisms underlying the vascular pathology. In brains of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2)-infected individuals and animal models, we found an increased number of empty basement membrane tubes, so-called string vessels representing remnants of lost capillaries. We obtained evidence that brain endothelial cells are infected and that the main protease of SARS-CoV-2 (Mpro) cleaves NEMO, the essential modulator of nuclear factor-κB. By ablating NEMO, Mpro induces the death of human brain endothelial cells and the occurrence of string vessels in mice. Deletion of receptor-interacting protein kinase (RIPK) 3, a mediator of regulated cell death, blocks the vessel rarefaction and disruption of the blood-brain barrier due to NEMO ablation. Importantly, a pharmacological inhibitor of RIPK signaling prevented the Mpro-induced microvascular pathology. Our data suggest RIPK as a potential therapeutic target to treat the neuropathology of COVID-19.


Subject(s)
Blood-Brain Barrier/metabolism , Brain/metabolism , Coronavirus 3C Proteases/metabolism , Intracellular Signaling Peptides and Proteins/metabolism , Microvessels/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2/metabolism , Animals , Blood-Brain Barrier/pathology , Brain/pathology , Chlorocebus aethiops , Coronavirus 3C Proteases/genetics , Cricetinae , Female , Humans , Intracellular Signaling Peptides and Proteins/genetics , Male , Mesocricetus , Mice , Mice, Inbred C57BL , Mice, Knockout , Mice, Transgenic , Microvessels/pathology , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Vero Cells
3.
Front Med (Lausanne) ; 8: 644715, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1266665

ABSTRACT

Background: Acute kidney injury (AKI) is very common in severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2) disease 2019 (COVID-19) and considered as a risk factor for COVID-19 severity. SARS-CoV-2 renal tropism has been observed in COVID-19 patients, suggesting that direct viral injury of the kidneys may contribute to AKI. We examined 20 adult cases with confirmed SARS-CoV-2 infection requiring ICU supportive care in a single-center prospective observational study and investigated whether urinary markers for viral infection (SARS-CoV-2 N) and shedded cellular membrane proteins (ACE2, TMPRSS2) allow identification of patients at risk for AKI and outcome of COVID-19. Objectives: The objective of the study was to evaluate whether urinary markers for viral infection (SARS-CoV-2 N) and shedded cellular membrane proteins (ACE2, TMPRSS2) allow identification of patients at risk for AKI and outcome of COVID-19. Results: Urinary SARS-CoV-2 N measured at ICU admission identified patients at risk for AKI in COVID-19 (HR 5.9, 95% CI 1.4-26, p = 0.0095). In addition, the combination of urinary SARS-CoV-2 N and plasma albumin measurements further improved the association with AKI (HR 11.4, 95% CI 2.7-48, p = 0.0016). Finally, combining urinary SARS-CoV-2 N and plasma albumin measurements associated with the length of ICU supportive care (HR 3.3, 95% CI 1.1-9.9, p = 0.0273) and premature death (HR 7.6, 95% CI 1.3-44, p = 0.0240). In contrast, urinary ACE2 and TMPRSS2 did not correlate with AKI in COVID-19. Conclusions: In conclusion, urinary SARS-CoV-2 N levels associate with risk for AKI and correlate with COVID-19 severity.

4.
Nat Neurosci ; 24(2): 168-175, 2021 02.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1060446

ABSTRACT

The newly identified severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) causes COVID-19, a pandemic respiratory disease. Moreover, thromboembolic events throughout the body, including in the CNS, have been described. Given the neurological symptoms observed in a large majority of individuals with COVID-19, SARS-CoV-2 penetrance of the CNS is likely. By various means, we demonstrate the presence of SARS-CoV-2 RNA and protein in anatomically distinct regions of the nasopharynx and brain. Furthermore, we describe the morphological changes associated with infection such as thromboembolic ischemic infarction of the CNS and present evidence of SARS-CoV-2 neurotropism. SARS-CoV-2 can enter the nervous system by crossing the neural-mucosal interface in olfactory mucosa, exploiting the close vicinity of olfactory mucosal, endothelial and nervous tissue, including delicate olfactory and sensory nerve endings. Subsequently, SARS-CoV-2 appears to follow neuroanatomical structures, penetrating defined neuroanatomical areas including the primary respiratory and cardiovascular control center in the medulla oblongata.


Subject(s)
Brain/virology , COVID-19/virology , Olfactory Mucosa/virology , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity , Central Nervous System , Humans , RNA, Viral/genetics , Smell/physiology , Virus Internalization
5.
Nat Neurosci ; 24(2): 168-175, 2021 02.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-952133

ABSTRACT

The newly identified severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) causes COVID-19, a pandemic respiratory disease. Moreover, thromboembolic events throughout the body, including in the CNS, have been described. Given the neurological symptoms observed in a large majority of individuals with COVID-19, SARS-CoV-2 penetrance of the CNS is likely. By various means, we demonstrate the presence of SARS-CoV-2 RNA and protein in anatomically distinct regions of the nasopharynx and brain. Furthermore, we describe the morphological changes associated with infection such as thromboembolic ischemic infarction of the CNS and present evidence of SARS-CoV-2 neurotropism. SARS-CoV-2 can enter the nervous system by crossing the neural-mucosal interface in olfactory mucosa, exploiting the close vicinity of olfactory mucosal, endothelial and nervous tissue, including delicate olfactory and sensory nerve endings. Subsequently, SARS-CoV-2 appears to follow neuroanatomical structures, penetrating defined neuroanatomical areas including the primary respiratory and cardiovascular control center in the medulla oblongata.


Subject(s)
Brain/virology , COVID-19/virology , Olfactory Mucosa/virology , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity , Central Nervous System , Humans , RNA, Viral/genetics , Smell/physiology , Virus Internalization
6.
Science ; 370(6518): 856-860, 2020 11 13.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-883299

ABSTRACT

The causative agent of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) is the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2). For many viruses, tissue tropism is determined by the availability of virus receptors and entry cofactors on the surface of host cells. In this study, we found that neuropilin-1 (NRP1), known to bind furin-cleaved substrates, significantly potentiates SARS-CoV-2 infectivity, an effect blocked by a monoclonal blocking antibody against NRP1. A SARS-CoV-2 mutant with an altered furin cleavage site did not depend on NRP1 for infectivity. Pathological analysis of olfactory epithelium obtained from human COVID-19 autopsies revealed that SARS-CoV-2 infected NRP1-positive cells facing the nasal cavity. Our data provide insight into SARS-CoV-2 cell infectivity and define a potential target for antiviral intervention.


Subject(s)
Betacoronavirus/physiology , Coronavirus Infections/virology , Neuropilin-1/metabolism , Pneumonia, Viral/virology , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/metabolism , Virus Internalization , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2 , Animals , Antibodies, Monoclonal/immunology , Betacoronavirus/genetics , COVID-19 , Caco-2 Cells , Female , HEK293 Cells , Host Microbial Interactions , Humans , Lung/metabolism , Male , Metal Nanoparticles , Mice , Mice, Inbred C57BL , Mutation , Neuropilin-1/chemistry , Neuropilin-1/genetics , Neuropilin-1/immunology , Neuropilin-2/metabolism , Olfactory Mucosa/metabolism , Olfactory Mucosa/virology , Pandemics , Peptide Fragments/metabolism , Peptidyl-Dipeptidase A/genetics , Peptidyl-Dipeptidase A/metabolism , Protein Binding , Protein Domains , Respiratory Mucosa/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2 , Serine Endopeptidases/genetics , Serine Endopeptidases/metabolism , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/chemistry
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