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PLoS One ; 18(2): e0281272, 2023.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2229770


BACKGROUND: Accurate COVID-19 prognosis is a critical aspect of acute and long-term clinical management. We identified discrete clusters of early stage-symptoms which may delineate groups with distinct disease severity phenotypes, including risk of developing long-term symptoms and associated inflammatory profiles. METHODS: 1,273 SARS-CoV-2 positive U.S. Military Health System beneficiaries with quantitative symptom scores (FLU-PRO Plus) were included in this analysis. We employed machine-learning approaches to identify symptom clusters and compared risk of hospitalization, long-term symptoms, as well as peak CRP and IL-6 concentrations. RESULTS: We identified three distinct clusters of participants based on their FLU-PRO Plus symptoms: cluster 1 ("Nasal cluster") is highly correlated with reporting runny/stuffy nose and sneezing, cluster 2 ("Sensory cluster") is highly correlated with loss of smell or taste, and cluster 3 ("Respiratory/Systemic cluster") is highly correlated with the respiratory (cough, trouble breathing, among others) and systemic (body aches, chills, among others) domain symptoms. Participants in the Respiratory/Systemic cluster were twice as likely as those in the Nasal cluster to have been hospitalized, and 1.5 times as likely to report that they had not returned-to-activities, which remained significant after controlling for confounding covariates (P < 0.01). Respiratory/Systemic and Sensory clusters were more likely to have symptoms at six-months post-symptom-onset (P = 0.03). We observed higher peak CRP and IL-6 in the Respiratory/Systemic cluster (P < 0.01). CONCLUSIONS: We identified early symptom profiles potentially associated with hospitalization, return-to-activities, long-term symptoms, and inflammatory profiles. These findings may assist in patient prognosis, including prediction of long COVID risk.

COVID-19 , Humans , COVID-19/epidemiology , SARS-CoV-2 , Post-Acute COVID-19 Syndrome , Interleukin-6 , Phenotype , Hospitalization , Machine Learning
PLoS Negl Trop Dis ; 16(3): e0010220, 2022 03.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1731579


The Joint Program Executive Office for Chemical, Biological, Radiological, and Nuclear Defense (JPEO-CBRND) began development of a broad-spectrum antiviral countermeasure against deliberate use of high-consequence viral hemorrhagic fevers (VHFs) in 2016. The effort featured comprehensive preclinical research, including laboratory testing and rapid advancement of lead molecules into nonhuman primate (NHP) models of Ebola virus disease (EVD). Remdesivir (GS-5734, Veklury, Gilead Sciences) was the first small molecule therapeutic to successfully emerge from this effort. Remdesivir is an inhibitor of RNA-dependent RNA polymerase, a viral enzyme that is essential for viral replication. Its robust potency and broad-spectrum antiviral activity against certain RNA viruses including Ebola virus and Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) led to its clinical evaluation in randomized, controlled trials (RCTs) in human patients during the 2018 EVD outbreak in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) and the ongoing Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic today. Remdesivir was recently approved by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for the treatment of COVID-19 requiring hospitalization. Substantial gaps remain in improving the outcomes of acute viral infections for patients afflicted with both EVD and COVID-19, including how to increase therapeutic breadth and strategies for the prevention and treatment of severe disease. Combination therapy that joins therapeutics with complimentary mechanisms of action appear promising, both preclinically and in RCTs. Importantly, significant programmatic challenges endure pertaining to a clear drug and biological product development pathway for therapeutics targeting biodefense and emerging pathogens when human efficacy studies are not ethical or feasible. For example, remdesivir's clinical development was facilitated by outbreaks of Ebola and SARS-CoV-2; as such, the development pathway employed for remdesivir is likely to be the exception rather than the rule. The current regulatory licensure pathway for therapeutics targeting rare, weaponizable VHF agents is likely to require use of FDA's established Animal Rule (21 CFR 314.600-650 for drugs; 21 CFR 601.90-95 for biologics). The FDA may grant marketing approval based on adequate and well-controlled animal efficacy studies when the results of those studies establish that the drug is safe and likely to produce clinical benefit in humans. In practical terms, this is anticipated to include a series of rigorous, well-documented, animal challenge studies, to include aerosol challenge, combined with human safety data. While small clinical studies against naturally occurring, high-consequence pathogens are typically performed where possible, approval for the therapeutics currently under development against biodefense pathogens will likely require the Animal Rule pathway utilizing studies in NHPs. We review the development of remdesivir as illustrative of the effort that will be needed to field future therapeutics against highly lethal, infectious agents.

Adenosine Monophosphate/analogs & derivatives , Alanine/analogs & derivatives , Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , Drug Development , Hemorrhagic Fevers, Viral/drug therapy , Medical Countermeasures , RNA Virus Infections/drug therapy , Adenosine Monophosphate/pharmacology , Alanine/pharmacology , Animals , Humans , Models, Animal , Primates , United States , United States Food and Drug Administration/legislation & jurisprudence