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1.
Pediatr Infect Dis J ; 2023 Jun 14.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-20239749

ABSTRACT

This study aims to characterize the clinical and metabolic features of acute gastroenteritis in children with and without severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2). A multicenter case-control study was conducted in 2022 including 200 children. Clinical data and laboratory tests were analyzed. Children with SARS-CoV-2 presented less frequently hyponatremia and metabolic acidosis, but more often systemic inflammation as compared with children without SARS-CoV-2.

2.
Eur J Pediatr ; 2023 May 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2316686

ABSTRACT

The outbreak of COVID-19 resulted in a decrease in tuberculosis notification rates globally. We compared tuberculosis incidence rates and disease severity in children seen in our centre prior and during COVID-19 pandemic.We performed a cohort study enrolling children aged under 18 years who received a diagnosis of tuberculosis (January 1st, 2010-December 31st, 2021) at our Pediatric Infectious Diseases Unit. Disease severity was evaluated based on: the classification proposed by Wiseman et al., smear positivity, presence of symptoms at presentation, lung cavitation, extrapulmonary disease, respiratory failure and need for intensive care support. Overall, 168 children (50.6% female, median age 69 months, IQR 95.4) received a diagnosis of tuberculosis, 156 (92.8%) between 2010-2019, before COVID-19 outbreak, and 12 (7.2%) between 2020-2021, during the pandemic. The annual tuberculosis notification rate dropped by 73% in 2021 (0.38/100000, 95%CI 0.1-0.96) compared with 2019 (1.46/100000, 95%CI 0.84-2.37). Compared to the pre-pandemic period, the proportion of children classified as severe was higher in 2020-2021 (5, 41.6% vs 23, 15.7%, p = 0.006) with a higher rate of respiratory failure (2, 16.7%, vs 4, 2.6%, p = 0.01) and an increased need for intensive care support (1, 8.3% vs 1, 0.6%, p = 0.01).   Conclusion: During COVID-19 pandemic we observed a reduction in tuberculosis notification rate in pediatric population and a significant increase in disease severity. This scenario may be the consequence of a delay in diagnosis and an underreporting of cases, rather than the effect of a reduced transmission of tuberculosis. Children reached health-care services only in the need of urgent medical attention. What is Known: • COVID-19 pandemic had a huge impact on national health care systems, resulting in a reduction of access to medical care. What is New: • In Campania Region, Italy, a low tuberculosis incidence country, we witnessed a 75% reduction in tuberculosis notification rate during pandemic. In parallel we demonstrated a significant increase in disease severity, suggesting that the reduction in notification rate may be attributed to an underreporting of cases and consequential diagnostic delay, rather than a reduced transmission of infection.

3.
Eur Heart J Case Rep ; 5(12): ytab405, 2021 Dec.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2293509

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children (MIS-C) is a rare life-threatening clinical condition that can develop in patients younger than 21 years of age with a history of infection/exposure to severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2). The cardiovascular system is a main target of the inflammatory process that frequently causes myocardial dysfunction, myopericarditis, coronary artery dilation, hypotension, and shock. Multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children-associated myocarditis is usually characterized by fever, tachycardia, non-specific electrocardiogram abnormalities, and left ventricular dysfunction, but serious tachyarrhythmias may also occur. We report two cases of patients with MIS-C-associated myocarditis who developed severe bradycardia. CASE SUMMARY: Two female adolescents with recent history of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) were initially hospitalized for long-lasting high-grade fever and severe gastrointestinal symptoms. Both patients were diagnosed with MIS-C-associated myocarditis for elevation of markers of myocardial injury (mean highly-sensitive cardiac troponin 2663 pg/mL, mean N-terminal-pro-brain natriuretic peptide 5097 pg/mL) and left ventricular dysfunction, which was subsequently confirmed by cardiac magnetic resonance. Both patients developed a severe sinus bradycardia (lowest heart rate 36 and 42, respectively), which appeared refractory to the treatment with intravenous Methylprednisolone and Immunoglobulins, despite a clinical and biochemical improvement. The use of Anakinra (a recombinant interleukin-1 receptor antagonist), was associated with a rapid improvement of cardiac rhythm and excellent clinical outcome at 6 months of follow-up. DISCUSSION: In patients with MIS-C-associated myocarditis, a continuous cardiac monitoring is mandatory to promptly identify potential conduction abnormalities. Adolescents may present bradycardia as a rhythm complication. We experienced a rapid recovery after treatment with Anakinra, to be considered as add-on therapy in cases refractory to standard anti-inflammatory treatment.

4.
J Pers Med ; 13(2)2023 Feb 11.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2258443

ABSTRACT

Telemedicine has entered the daily lives of doctors, although the digital skills of healthcare professionals still remain a goal to be achieved. For the purpose of a large-scale development of telemedicine, it is necessary to create trust in the services it can offer and to favor their acceptance by healthcare professionals and patients. In this context, information for the patient regarding the use of telemedicine, the benefits that can be derived from it, and the training of healthcare professionals and patients for the use of new technologies are fundamental aspects. This consensus document is a commentary that has the aim of defining the information on and training aspects of telemedicine for pediatric patients and their caregivers, as well as pediatricians and other health professionals who deal with minors. For the present and the future of digital healthcare, there is a need for a growth in the skills of professionals and a lifelong learning approach throughout the professional life. Therefore, information and training actions are important to guarantee the necessary professionalism and knowledge of the tools, as well as a good understanding of the interactive context in which they are used. Furthermore, medical skills can also be integrated with the skills of various professionals (engineers, physicists, statisticians, and mathematicians) to birth a new category of health professionals responsible for building new semiotics, identifying criteria for predictive models to be integrated into clinical practice, standardizing clinical and research databases, and defining the boundaries of social networks and new communication technologies within health services.

5.
Viruses ; 15(3)2023 03 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2274522

ABSTRACT

The spread of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) and the implementation of restrictive measures led to a dramatic reduction in respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) occurrence together with rare and mild bronchiolitis induced by SARS-CoV-2. We described the respiratory picture of SARS-CoV-2 infection and evaluated the frequency and the severity of SARS-CoV-2 bronchiolitis comparing it with other respiratory viral infections in children less than two years of age. The severity of respiratory involvement was evaluated based on the need for oxygen therapy, intravenous hydration, and the length of hospital stay. A total of 138 children hospitalized for respiratory symptoms were enrolled: 60 with SARS-CoV-2 and 78 with RSV. In the group of SARS-CoV-2-infected children, 13/60 (21%) received a diagnosis of co-infection. Among the enrolled children, 87/138 (63%) received a diagnosis of bronchiolitis. The comparative evaluation showed a higher risk of the need for oxygen therapy and intravenous hydration in children with RSV infection and co-infection compared to children with SARS-CoV-2 infection. In the children with a diagnosis of bronchiolitis, no differences in the main outcomes among the groups were observed. Although children with SARS-CoV-2 infection have less severe respiratory effects than adults, the pediatrician should pay attention to bronchiolitis due to SARS-CoV-2, which could have a severe clinical course in younger children.


Subject(s)
Bronchiolitis , COVID-19 , Coinfection , Pneumonia , Respiratory Syncytial Virus Infections , Respiratory Syncytial Virus, Human , Virus Diseases , Humans , Child , Infant , Coinfection/diagnosis , Coinfection/epidemiology , Hospitalization , COVID-19/diagnosis , COVID-19/therapy , SARS-CoV-2 , Respiratory Syncytial Virus Infections/diagnosis , Respiratory Syncytial Virus Infections/epidemiology , Respiratory Syncytial Virus Infections/therapy , Oxygen
6.
Arthritis Care Res (Hoboken) ; 2021 Aug 16.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2233622

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVE: Changes of routine disease management associated with COVID-19 lockdown might have potentially affected the clinical course of juvenile idiopathic arthritis (JIA). The aim of our study was to assess the rate of disease flare before and during COVID-19 lockdown to investigate its impact on disease course in children with JIA. METHODS: A single-center retrospective study was conducted, including patients presenting with inactive JIA between September 1, 2018 and March 9, 2019 (group A) and between September 1, 2019 and March 9, 2020 (group B). For each patient, demographic and clinical data were collected. The rate of JIA flare from March 10, 2019 to June 30, 2019 for group A and from March 10, 2020 to June 30, 2020 for group B was compared. RESULTS: Group A included 126 patients, and group B 124 patients. Statistical analysis did not show significant differences among the 2 cohorts with respect to age, sex, age at JIA onset, JIA subtype, co-occurrence of uveitis, antinuclear antibody positivity, and past or ongoing medications. The rate of disease flare during lockdown at the time of the first COVID-19 pandemic wave was significantly higher in comparison to the previous year (16.9% versus 6.3%; P = 0.009). CONCLUSION: Our study showed that COVID-19 lockdown was associated with a higher rate of joint inflammation in children with JIA. This finding has a considerable clinical implication, as restrictive measures may be necessary in order to contain pandemics. Our data highlight the need for rearrangement in the home and health care management of children with JIA during lockdowns.

7.
Viruses ; 14(12)2022 12 06.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2200866

ABSTRACT

Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) is a pathogen with enteric tropism. We compared the clinical, biochemical and radiological features of children hospitalized for acute SARS-CoV-2 infection, classified in two groups based on the presence of diarrhea. Logistic regression analyses were used to investigate the variables associated with diarrhea. Overall, 407 children were included in the study (226 males, 55.5%, mean age 3.9 ± 5.0 years), of whom 77 (18.9%) presented with diarrhea, which was mild in most cases. Diarrhea prevalence was higher during the Alpha (23.6%) and Delta waves (21.9%), and in children aged 5-11 y (23.8%). Other gastrointestinal symptoms were most commonly reported in children with diarrhea (p < 0.05). Children with diarrhea showed an increased systemic inflammatory state (higher C-reactive protein, procalcitonin and ferritin levels, p < 0.005), higher local inflammation as judged by mesenteric fat hyperechogenicity (adjusted Odds Ratio 3.31, 95%CI 1.13-9.70) and a lower chance of previous immunosuppressive state (adjusted Odds Ratio 0.19, 95%CI 0.05-0.70). Diarrhea is a frequent feature of pediatric COVID-19 and is associated with increased systemic inflammation, which is related to the local mesenteric fat inflammatory response, confirming the implication of the gut not only in multisystem inflammatory syndrome but also in the acute phase of the infection.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Male , Humans , Child , Child, Preschool , COVID-19/epidemiology , SARS-CoV-2 , Inflammation/complications , Diarrhea/epidemiology
8.
Heliyon ; 8(8): e10246, 2022 Aug.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2086249

ABSTRACT

Background and aims: The pathophysiology of SARS-CoV-2-associated diarrhea is unknown. Using an experimental model validated for rotavirus-induced diarrhea, we investigated the effects of SARS-CoV-2 on transepithelial ion fluxes and epithelial integrity of human intestinal cells. The effect of the antidiarrheal agent diosmectite on secretion was also evaluated following its inclusion in COVID-19 management protocols. Methods: We evaluated electrical parameters (intensity of short-circuit current [Isc] and transepithelial electrical resistance [TEER]) in polarized Caco-2 cells and in colonic specimens mounted in Ussing chambers after exposure to heat-inactivated (hi) SARS-CoV-2 and spike protein. Spectrofluorometry was used to measure reactive oxygen species (ROS), a marker of oxidative stress. Experiments were repeated after pretreatment with diosmectite, an antidiarrheal drug used in COVID-19 patients. Results: hiSARS-CoV-2 induced an increase in Isc when added to the mucosal (but not serosal) side of Caco-2 cells. The effect was inhibited in the absence of chloride and calcium and by the mucosal addition of the Ca2+-activated Cl- channel inhibitor A01, suggesting calcium-dependent chloride secretion. Spike protein had a lower, but similar, effect on Isc. The findings were consistent when repeated in human colonic mucosa specimens. Neither hiSARS-CoV-2 nor spike protein affected TEER, indicating epithelial integrity; both increased ROS production. Pretreatment with diosmectite inhibited the secretory effect and significantly reduced ROS of both hiSARS-CoV-2 and spike protein. Conclusions: SARS-CoV-2 induces calcium-dependent chloride secretion and oxidative stress without damaging intestinal epithelial structure. The effects are largely induced by the spike protein and are significantly reduced by diosmectite. SARS-CoV-2 should be added to the list of human enteric pathogens.

9.
Frontiers in molecular biosciences ; 9, 2022.
Article in English | EuropePMC | ID: covidwho-2057951

ABSTRACT

Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) causes Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19), which, since 2019 in China, has rapidly become a worldwide pandemic. The aggressiveness and global spread were enhanced by the many SARS-CoV-2 variants that have been isolated up to now. These mutations affect mostly the viral glycoprotein Spike (S), the capsid protein mainly involved in the early stages of viral entry processes, through the recognition of specific receptors on the host cell surface. In particular, the subunit S1 of the Spike glycoprotein contains the Receptor Binding Domain (RBD) and it is responsible for the interaction with the angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2). Although ACE2 is the primary Spike host receptor currently studied, it has been demonstrated that SARS-CoV-2 is also able to infect cells expressing low levels of ACE2, indicating that the virus may have alternative receptors on the host cells. The identification of the alternative receptors can better elucidate the pathogenicity and the tropism of SARS-CoV-2. Therefore, we investigated the Spike S1 interactomes, starting from host membrane proteins of non-pulmonary cell lines, such as human kidney (HK-2), normal colon (NCM460D), and colorectal adenocarcinoma (Caco-2). We employed an affinity purification-mass spectrometry (AP-MS) to pull down, from the membrane protein extracts of all cell lines, the protein partners of the recombinant form of the Spike S1 domain. The purified interactors were identified by a shotgun proteomics approach. The lists of S1 potential interacting proteins were then clusterized according to cellular localization, biological processes, and pathways, highlighting new possible S1 intracellular functions, crucial not only for the entrance mechanisms but also for viral replication and propagation processes.

10.
JCI Insight ; 7(16)2022 08 22.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1950563

ABSTRACT

Dysregulation in neutrophil extracellular trap (NET) formation and degradation may play a role in the pathogenesis and severity of COVID-19; however, its role in the pediatric manifestations of this disease, including multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children (MIS-C) and chilblain-like lesions (CLLs), otherwise known as "COVID toes," remains unclear. Studying multinational cohorts, we found that, in CLLs, NETs were significantly increased in serum and skin. There was geographic variability in the prevalence of increased NETs in MIS-C, in association with disease severity. MIS-C and CLL serum samples displayed decreased NET degradation ability, in association with C1q and G-actin or anti-NET antibodies, respectively, but not with genetic variants of DNases. In adult COVID-19, persistent elevations in NETs after disease diagnosis were detected but did not occur in asymptomatic infection. COVID-19-affected adults displayed significant prevalence of impaired NET degradation, in association with anti-DNase1L3, G-actin, and specific disease manifestations, but not with genetic variants of DNases. NETs were detected in many organs of adult patients who died from COVID-19 complications. Infection with the Omicron variant was associated with decreased NET levels when compared with other SARS-CoV-2 strains. These data support a role for NETs in the pathogenesis and severity of COVID-19 in pediatric and adult patients.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Extracellular Traps , Actins/metabolism , Adult , COVID-19/complications , Child , Deoxyribonuclease I , Humans , Neutrophils , SARS-CoV-2 , Systemic Inflammatory Response Syndrome
12.
Front Immunol ; 13: 841126, 2022.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1775675

ABSTRACT

The antibody profile against autoantigens previously associated with autoimmune diseases and other human proteins in patients with COVID-19 or multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children (MIS-C) remains poorly defined. Here we show that 30% of adults with COVID-19 had autoantibodies against the lung antigen KCNRG, and 34% had antibodies to the SLE-associated Smith-D3 protein. Children with COVID-19 rarely had autoantibodies; one of 59 children had GAD65 autoantibodies associated with acute onset of insulin-dependent diabetes. While autoantibodies associated with SLE/Sjögren's syndrome (Ro52, Ro60, and La) and/or autoimmune gastritis (gastric ATPase) were detected in 74% (40/54) of MIS-C patients, further analysis of these patients and of children with Kawasaki disease (KD), showed that the administration of intravenous immunoglobulin (IVIG) was largely responsible for detection of these autoantibodies in both groups of patients. Monitoring in vivo decay of the autoantibodies in MIS-C children showed that the IVIG-derived Ro52, Ro60, and La autoantibodies declined to undetectable levels by 45-60 days, but gastric ATPase autoantibodies declined more slowly requiring >100 days until undetectable. Further testing of IgG and/or IgA antibodies against a subset of potential targets identified by published autoantigen array studies of MIS-C failed to detect autoantibodies against most (16/18) of these proteins in patients with MIS-C who had not received IVIG. However, Troponin C2 and KLHL12 autoantibodies were detected in 2 of 20 and 1 of 20 patients with MIS-C, respectively. Overall, these results suggest that IVIG therapy may be a confounding factor in autoantibody measurements in MIS-C and that antibodies against antigens associated with autoimmune diseases or other human proteins are uncommon in MIS-C.


Subject(s)
Autoimmune Diseases , COVID-19 , Lupus Erythematosus, Systemic , Adaptor Proteins, Signal Transducing , Adenosine Triphosphatases , Adult , Autoantibodies , Autoantigens , Autoimmunity , COVID-19/complications , Child , Humans , Immunoglobulins, Intravenous , Ribonucleoproteins , Systemic Inflammatory Response Syndrome
13.
Ital J Pediatr ; 48(1): 42, 2022 Mar 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1736431

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Two sequelae of pediatric COVID-19 have been identified, the multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children (MIS-C) and the long COVID. Long COVID is much less precisely defined and includes all the persistent or new clinical manifestations evidenced in subjects previously infected by SARS-CoV-2 beyond the period of the acute infection and that cannot be explained by an alternative diagnosis. In this Intersociety Consensus, present knowledge on pediatric long COVID as well as how to identify and manage children with long COVID are discussed. MAIN FINDINGS: Although the true prevalence of long COVID in pediatrics is not exactly determined, it seems appropriate to recommend evaluating the presence of symptoms suggestive of long COVID near the end of the acute phase of the disease, between 4 and 12 weeks from this. Long COVID in children and adolescents should be suspected in presence of persistent headache and fatigue, sleep disturbance, difficulty in concentrating, abdominal pain, myalgia or arthralgia. Persistent chest pain, stomach pain, diarrhea, heart palpitations, and skin lesions should be considered as possible symptoms of long COVID. It is recommended that the primary care pediatrician visits all subjects with a suspected or a proven diagnosis of SARS-CoV-2 infection after 4 weeks to check for the presence of symptoms of previously unknown disease. In any case, a further check-up by the primary care pediatrician should be scheduled 3 months after the diagnosis of SARS-CoV-2 infection to confirm normality or to address emerging problems. The subjects who present symptoms of any organic problem must undergo a thorough evaluation of the same, with a possible request for clinical, laboratory and / or radiological in-depth analysis in case of need. Children and adolescents with clear symptoms of mental stress will need to be followed up by existing local services for problems of this type. CONCLUSIONS: Pediatric long COVID is a relevant problem that involve a considerable proportion of children and adolescents. Prognosis of these cases is generally good as in most of them symptoms disappear spontaneously. The few children with significant medical problems should be early identified after the acute phase of the infection and adequately managed to assure complete resolution. A relevant psychological support for all the children during COVID-19 pandemic must be organized by health authorities and government that have to treat this as a public health issue.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Adolescent , COVID-19/complications , Child , Consensus , Humans , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2 , Systemic Inflammatory Response Syndrome/diagnosis , Systemic Inflammatory Response Syndrome/therapy , Post-Acute COVID-19 Syndrome
14.
Nat Med ; 28(5): 1050-1062, 2022 05.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1701612

ABSTRACT

Pediatric Coronavirus Disease 2019 (pCOVID-19) is rarely severe; however, a minority of children infected with severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) might develop multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children (MIS-C), with substantial morbidity. In this longitudinal multi-institutional study, we applied multi-omics (analysis of soluble biomarkers, proteomics, single-cell gene expression and immune repertoire analysis) to profile children with COVID-19 (n = 110) and MIS-C (n = 76), along with pediatric healthy controls (pHCs; n = 76). pCOVID-19 was characterized by robust type I interferon (IFN) responses, whereas prominent type II IFN-dependent and NF-κB-dependent signatures, matrisome activation and increased levels of circulating spike protein were detected in MIS-C, with no correlation with SARS-CoV-2 PCR status around the time of admission. Transient expansion of TRBV11-2 T cell clonotypes in MIS-C was associated with signatures of inflammation and T cell activation. The association of MIS-C with the combination of HLA A*02, B*35 and C*04 alleles suggests genetic susceptibility. MIS-C B cells showed higher mutation load than pCOVID-19 and pHC. These results identify distinct immunopathological signatures in pCOVID-19 and MIS-C that might help better define the pathophysiology of these disorders and guide therapy.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , COVID-19/complications , COVID-19/genetics , Child , Humans , SARS-CoV-2 , Systemic Inflammatory Response Syndrome/genetics , T-Lymphocytes
15.
European heart journal. Case reports ; 5(12), 2021.
Article in English | EuropePMC | ID: covidwho-1601860

ABSTRACT

Background Multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children (MIS-C) is a rare life-threatening clinical condition that can develop in patients younger than 21 years of age with a history of infection/exposure to severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2). The cardiovascular system is a main target of the inflammatory process that frequently causes myocardial dysfunction, myopericarditis, coronary artery dilation, hypotension, and shock. Multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children-associated myocarditis is usually characterized by fever, tachycardia, non-specific electrocardiogram abnormalities, and left ventricular dysfunction, but serious tachyarrhythmias may also occur. We report two cases of patients with MIS-C-associated myocarditis who developed severe bradycardia. Case summary Two female adolescents with recent history of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) were initially hospitalized for long-lasting high-grade fever and severe gastrointestinal symptoms. Both patients were diagnosed with MIS-C-associated myocarditis for elevation of markers of myocardial injury (mean highly-sensitive cardiac troponin 2663 pg/mL, mean N-terminal-pro-brain natriuretic peptide 5097 pg/mL) and left ventricular dysfunction, which was subsequently confirmed by cardiac magnetic resonance. Both patients developed a severe sinus bradycardia (lowest heart rate 36 and 42, respectively), which appeared refractory to the treatment with intravenous Methylprednisolone and Immunoglobulins, despite a clinical and biochemical improvement. The use of Anakinra (a recombinant interleukin-1 receptor antagonist), was associated with a rapid improvement of cardiac rhythm and excellent clinical outcome at 6 months of follow-up. Discussion In patients with MIS-C-associated myocarditis, a continuous cardiac monitoring is mandatory to promptly identify potential conduction abnormalities. Adolescents may present bradycardia as a rhythm complication. We experienced a rapid recovery after treatment with Anakinra, to be considered as add-on therapy in cases refractory to standard anti-inflammatory treatment.

16.
JAMA Netw Open ; 4(12): e2139974, 2021 12 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1589283

ABSTRACT

Importance: Severe gastrointestinal (GI) manifestations have been sporadically reported in children with COVID-19; however, their frequency and clinical outcome are unknown. Objective: To describe the clinical, radiological, and histopathologic characteristics of children with COVID-19 presenting with severe GI manifestations to identify factors associated with a severe outcome. Design, Setting, and Participants: A multicenter retrospective cohort study (February 25, 2020, to January 20, 2021) enrolled inpatient and outpatient children (aged <18 years) with acute SARS-CoV-2 infection, confirmed by positive real-time reverse-transcriptase-polymerase chain reaction on nasopharyngeal swab or fulfilling the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention criteria for multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children (MIS-C). The study was conducted by pediatricians working in primary care or hospitals in Italy participating in the COVID-19 Registry of the Italian Society of Pediatric Infectious Diseases. Main Outcomes and Measures: The occurrence of severe GI manifestations, defined by a medical and/or radiological diagnosis of acute abdomen, appendicitis (complicated or not by perforation and/or peritonitis), intussusception, pancreatitis, abdominal fluid collection, and diffuse adenomesenteritis requiring surgical consultation, occurring during or within 4 to 6 weeks after infection with SARS-CoV-2 infection. Logistic regression was used to estimate odds ratios (ORs) with 95% CIs of factors potentially associated with severe outcomes. Results: Overall, 685 children (386 boys [56.4%]; median age, 7.3 [IQR, 1.6-12.4] years) were included. Of these children, 628 (91.7%) were diagnosed with acute SARS-CoV-2 infection and 57 (8.3%) with MIS-C. The presence of GI symptoms was associated with a higher chance of hospitalization (OR, 2.64; 95% CI, 1.89-3.69) and intensive care unit admission (OR, 3.90; 95% CI, 1.98-7.68). Overall, 65 children (9.5%) showed severe GI involvement, including disseminated adenomesenteritis (39.6%), appendicitis (33.5%), abdominal fluid collection (21.3%), pancreatitis (6.9%), or intussusception (4.6%). Twenty-seven of these 65 children (41.5%) underwent surgery. Severe GI manifestations were associated with the child's age (5-10 years: OR, 8.33; 95% CI, 2.62-26.5; >10 years: OR, 6.37; 95% CI, 2.12-19.1, compared with preschool-age), abdominal pain (adjusted OR [aOR], 34.5; 95% CI, 10.1-118), lymphopenia (aOR, 8.93; 95% CI, 3.03-26.3), or MIS-C (aOR, 6.28; 95% CI, 1.92-20.5). Diarrhea was associated with a higher chance of adenomesenteritis (aOR, 3.13; 95% CI, 1.08-9.12) or abdominal fluid collection (aOR, 3.22; 95% CI, 1.03-10.0). Conclusions and Relevance: In this multicenter cohort study of Italian children with SARS-CoV-2 infection or MIS-C, 9.5% of the children had severe GI involvement, frequently associated with MIS-C. These findings suggest that prompt identification may improve the management of serious complications.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/complications , Gastrointestinal Diseases/virology , Systemic Inflammatory Response Syndrome/complications , Child , Child, Preschool , Female , Gastrointestinal Diseases/diagnostic imaging , Gastrointestinal Diseases/pathology , Humans , Male , Prognosis , Radiography , Retrospective Studies , SARS-CoV-2
17.
Sci Rep ; 11(1): 21725, 2021 11 05.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1504567

ABSTRACT

SARS-CoV-2 enters the intestine by the spike protein binding to angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2) receptors in enterocyte apical membranes, leading to diarrhea in some patients. Early treatment of COVID-19-associated diarrhea could relieve symptoms and limit viral spread within the gastrointestinal (GI) tract. Diosmectite, an aluminomagnesium silicate adsorbent clay with antidiarrheal effects, is recommended in some COVID-19 management protocols. In rotavirus models, diosmectite prevents pathogenic effects by binding the virus and its enterotoxin. We tested the trapping and anti-inflammatory properties of diosmectite in a SARS-CoV-2 model. Trapping effects were tested in Caco-2 cells using spike protein receptor-binding domain (RBD) and heat-inactivated SARS-CoV-2 preparations. Trapping was assessed by immunofluorescence, alone or in the presence of cells. The effect of diosmectite on nuclear factor kappa B (NF-kappaB) activation and CXCL10 secretion induced by the spike protein RBD and heat-inactivated SARS-CoV-2 were analyzed by Western blot and ELISA, respectively. Diosmectite bound the spike protein RBD and SARS-CoV-2 preparation, and inhibited interaction of the spike protein RBD with ACE2 receptors on the Caco-2 cell surface. Diosmectite exposure also inhibited NF-kappaB activation and CXCL10 secretion. These data provide direct evidence that diosmectite can bind SARS-CoV-2 components and inhibit downstream inflammation, supporting a mechanistic rationale for consideration of diosmectite as a management option for COVID-19-associated diarrhea.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Drug Treatment , Chemokine CXCL10/metabolism , NF-kappa B p50 Subunit/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2 , Silicates/chemistry , Adsorption , Aluminum Compounds/chemistry , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/metabolism , Anti-Inflammatory Agents , Binding Sites , Caco-2 Cells , Chromatography, Liquid , Clay , Diarrhea/etiology , Diarrhea/therapy , Enterocytes/metabolism , Gastroenterology , Humans , Magnesium Compounds/chemistry , Mass Spectrometry , Molecular Docking Simulation , Molecular Dynamics Simulation , Protein Binding/drug effects , Protein Domains , Rotavirus , Silicates/metabolism
18.
Front Pediatr ; 9: 720084, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1367756

ABSTRACT

Introduction: The transmission rates severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) from children to adults are unclear due to a lack of controlled conditions. Materials and Methods: We investigated the occurrence of SARS-CoV-2 transmission among 12 discordant child-parent pairs in our ward. In each hospital isolation room, caregivers and children lived in close contact during the entire hospitalization period. Results: A total of 136 swab-positive children (mean age, 3.6 ± 4.9 median age, 1; IQR 0-6.2, range 0.1-17) attended by their caregivers were hospitalized. Of those, 12/136 (8.8%, mean age, 6.1 ± 5.3 median age, 4.5) were attended by caregivers who were swab and serology negative at admission despite previous close contact with positive children at home. Three children were completely dependent on their mothers, one of whom was being breastfed. The mean duration of overall exposure to the index case was 20.5 ± 8.2 days. Conclusion: None of the infected children transmitted SARS-CoV-2 infection to their caregivers, raising the hypothesis of a cluster of resistant mothers or of limited transmission from children to adults despite prolonged exposure and close contact. These data might provide reassurance regarding school openings and offer the chance of investigating SARS-CoV-2 variants in the future under the same quasi-experimental conditions.

20.
JAMA Netw Open ; 4(6): e2111369, 2021 06 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1263036

ABSTRACT

Importance: Chilblain-like lesions have been one of the most frequently described cutaneous manifestations during the COVID-19 pandemic. Their etiopathogenesis, including the role of SARS-CoV-2, remains elusive. Objective: To examine the association of chilblain-like lesions with SARS-CoV-2 infection. Design, Setting, and Participants: This prospective case series enrolled 17 adolescents who presented with chilblain-like lesions from April 1 to June 30, 2020, at a tertiary referral academic hospital in Italy. Main Outcomes and Measures: Macroscopic (clinical and dermoscopic) and microscopic (histopathologic) analysis contributed to a thorough understanding of the lesions. Nasopharyngeal swab, serologic testing, and in situ hybridization of the skin biopsy specimens were performed to test for SARS-CoV-2 infection. Laboratory tests explored signs of systemic inflammation or thrombophilia. Structural changes in peripheral microcirculation were investigated by capillaroscopy. Results: Of the 17 adolescents (9 [52.9%] male; median [interquartile range] age, 13.2 [12.5-14.3] years) enrolled during the first wave of the COVID-19 pandemic, 16 (94.1%) had bilaterally localized distal erythematous or cyanotic lesions. A triad of red dots (16 [100%]), white rosettes (11 [68.8%]), and white streaks (10 [62.5%]) characterized the dermoscopic picture. Histologic analysis revealed a remodeling of the dermal blood vessels with a lobular arrangement, wall thickening, and a mild perivascular lymphocytic infiltrate. SARS-CoV-2 infection was excluded by molecular and serologic testing. In situ hybridization did not highlight the viral genome in the lesions. Conclusions and Relevance: This study delineated the clinical, histologic, and laboratory features of chilblain-like lesions that emerged during the COVID-19 pandemic, and its findings do not support their association with SARS-CoV-2 infection. The lesions occurred in otherwise healthy adolescents, had a long but benign course to self-resolution, and were characterized by a microvascular remodeling with perivascular lymphocytic infiltrate but no other signs of vasculitis. These results suggest that chilblain-like lesions do not imply a concomitant SARS-CoV-2 infection. Ongoing studies will help clarify the etiopathogenic mechanisms.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Chilblains , Skin/pathology , Toes/pathology , Vascular Remodeling , Adolescent , Chilblains/etiology , Chilblains/pathology , Female , Hospitals , Humans , Italy , Lymphocytes/metabolism , Male , Pandemics , Prospective Studies , SARS-CoV-2 , Skin/blood supply , Toes/blood supply
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