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1.
EClinicalMedicine ; 48: 101450, 2022 Jun.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1926373

ABSTRACT

Background: Current available therapeutic options for Coronavirus Disease-2019 (COVID-19) are primarily focused on treating hospitalized patients, and there is a lack of oral therapeutic options to treat mild to moderate outpatient COVID-19 and prevent clinical progression. Raloxifene was found as a promising molecule to treat COVID-19 due to its activity to modulate the replication of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2) and act as an immunomodulator to decrease proinflammatory cytokines. Methods: This was a phase 2 multicenter, randomized, placebo-controlled trial to evaluate the efficacy and safety of raloxifene in adult patients with mild to moderate COVID-19 between October 2020 to June 2021 in five centers located in Italy. This was a planned 2/3 adaptive study, but due to operational difficulties, the study was discontinued during the phase 2 study segment. Participants were randomized 1:1:1 to receive oral placebo, raloxifene 60 mg, or raloxifene 120 mg by self-administration for a maximum of two weeks. The primary outcomes were the proportion of patients with undetectable SARS-CoV-2 via nasopharyngeal swabs at day 7 and the proportion of patients who did not require supplemental oxygen therapy or mechanical ventilation on day 14. Safety was assessed. The trial is registered (EudraCT 2021-002,476-39, and ClinicalTrials.gov: NCT05172050). Findings: A total of 68 participants were enrolled and randomized to placebo (n = 21), raloxifene 60 mg (n = 24), and raloxifene 120 mg (n = 23). The proportion of participants with undetectable SARS-CoV-2 after seven days of treatment with raloxifene 60 mg [36.8%, 7/19 vs. 0.0%, 0/14] and 120 mg [22.2%, 4/18 vs. 0.0%, 0/14] was better compared to placebo, [risk difference (RD) = 0·37 (95% C.I.:0·09-0·59)] and [RD = 0·22 (95% C.I.: -0·03-0·45)], respectively. There was no evidence of effect for requirement of supplemental oxygen and/or mechanical ventilation with effects for raloxifene 60 mg and raloxifene 120 mg over placebo, [RD = 0·09 (95% C.I.: -0·22-0·37)], and [RD = 0·03 (95% C.I.: -0·28-0·33)], respectively. Raloxifene was well tolerated at both doses, and there was no evidence of any difference in the occurrence of serious adverse events. Interpretation: Raloxifene showed evidence of effect in the primary virologic endpoint in the treatment of early mild to moderate COVID-19 patients shortening the time of viral shedding. The safety profile was consistent with that reported for other indications. Raloxifene may represent a promising pharmacological option to prevent or mitigate COVID-19 disease progression. Funding: The study was funded by Dompé Farmaceutici SpA and supported by the funds from the European Commission - Health and Consumers Directorate General, for the Action under the Emergency Support Instrument- Grant to support clinical testing of repurposed medicines to treat SARS-COV-2 patients (PPPA-ESI-CTRM-2020-SI2.837140), and by the COVID-2020-12,371,675 Ricerca finalizzata and line 1 Ricerca Corrente COVID both funded by Italian Ministry of Health.

2.
Cell Death Dis ; 13(5): 498, 2022 May 25.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1864735

ABSTRACT

The new coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 is the causative agent of the COVID-19 pandemic, which so far has caused over 6 million deaths in 2 years, despite new vaccines and antiviral medications. Drug repurposing, an approach for the potential application of existing pharmaceutical products to new therapeutic indications, could be an effective strategy to obtain quick answers to medical emergencies. Following a virtual screening campaign on the most relevant viral proteins, we identified the drug raloxifene, a known Selective Estrogen Receptor Modulator (SERM), as a new potential agent to treat mild-to-moderate COVID-19 patients. In this paper we report a comprehensive pharmacological characterization of raloxifene in relevant in vitro models of COVID-19, specifically in Vero E6 and Calu-3 cell lines infected with SARS-CoV-2. A large panel of the most common SARS-CoV-2 variants isolated in Europe, United Kingdom, Brazil, South Africa and India was tested to demonstrate the drug's ability in contrasting the viral cytopathic effect (CPE). Literature data support a beneficial effect by raloxifene against the viral infection due to its ability to interact with viral proteins and activate protective estrogen receptor-mediated mechanisms in the host cells. Mechanistic studies here reported confirm the significant affinity of raloxifene for the Spike protein, as predicted by in silico studies, and show that the drug treatment does not directly affect Spike/ACE2 interaction or viral internalization in infected cell lines. Interestingly, raloxifene can counteract Spike-mediated ADAM17 activation in human pulmonary cells, thus providing new insights on its mechanism of action. A clinical study in mild to moderate COVID-19 patients (NCT05172050) has been recently completed. Our contribution to evaluate raloxifene results on SARS-CoV-2 variants, and the interpretation of the mechanisms of action will be key elements to better understand the trial results, and to design new clinical studies aiming to evaluate the potential development of raloxifene in this indication.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , Antiviral Agents/therapeutic use , COVID-19/drug therapy , Humans , Pandemics , Raloxifene Hydrochloride/pharmacology , Raloxifene Hydrochloride/therapeutic use , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/metabolism
3.
EClinicalMedicine ; 48:101450-101450, 2022.
Article in English | EuropePMC | ID: covidwho-1843017

ABSTRACT

Background Current available therapeutic options for Coronavirus Disease-2019 (COVID-19) are primarily focused on treating hospitalized patients, and there is a lack of oral therapeutic options to treat mild to moderate outpatient COVID-19 and prevent clinical progression. Raloxifene was found as a promising molecule to treat COVID-19 due to its activity to modulate the replication of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2) and act as an immunomodulator to decrease proinflammatory cytokines. Methods This was a phase 2 multicenter, randomized, placebo-controlled trial to evaluate the efficacy and safety of raloxifene in adult patients with mild to moderate COVID-19 between October 2020 to June 2021 in five centers located in Italy. This was a planned 2/3 adaptive study, but due to operational difficulties, the study was discontinued during the phase 2 study segment. Participants were randomized 1:1:1 to receive oral placebo, raloxifene 60 mg, or raloxifene 120 mg by self-administration for a maximum of two weeks. The primary outcomes were the proportion of patients with undetectable SARS-CoV-2 via nasopharyngeal swabs at day 7 and the proportion of patients who did not require supplemental oxygen therapy or mechanical ventilation on day 14. Safety was assessed. The trial is registered (EudraCT 2021–002,476–39, and ClinicalTrials.gov: NCT05172050). Findings A total of 68 participants were enrolled and randomized to placebo (n = 21), raloxifene 60 mg (n = 24), and raloxifene 120 mg (n = 23). The proportion of participants with undetectable SARS-CoV-2 after seven days of treatment with raloxifene 60 mg [36.8%, 7/19 vs. 0.0%, 0/14] and 120 mg [22.2%, 4/18 vs. 0.0%, 0/14] was better compared to placebo, [risk difference (RD) = 0·37 (95% C.I.:0·09–0·59)] and [RD = 0·22 (95% C.I.: -0·03–0·45)], respectively. There was no evidence of effect for requirement of supplemental oxygen and/or mechanical ventilation with effects for raloxifene 60 mg and raloxifene 120 mg over placebo, [RD = 0·09 (95% C.I.: -0·22–0·37)], and [RD = 0·03 (95% C.I.: -0·28–0·33)], respectively. Raloxifene was well tolerated at both doses, and there was no evidence of any difference in the occurrence of serious adverse events. Interpretation Raloxifene showed evidence of effect in the primary virologic endpoint in the treatment of early mild to moderate COVID-19 patients shortening the time of viral shedding. The safety profile was consistent with that reported for other indications. Raloxifene may represent a promising pharmacological option to prevent or mitigate COVID-19 disease progression. Funding The study was funded by Dompé Farmaceutici SpA and supported by the funds from the European Commission – Health and Consumers Directorate General, for the Action under the Emergency Support Instrument- Grant to support clinical testing of repurposed medicines to treat SARS-COV-2 patients (PPPA-ESI-CTRM-2020-SI2.837140), and by the COVID-2020–12,371,675 Ricerca finalizzata and line 1 Ricerca Corrente COVID both funded by Italian Ministry of Health.

4.
Cell Rep Med ; 3(3): 100560, 2022 03 15.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1706398

ABSTRACT

Most patients infected with SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19) experience mild, non-specific symptoms, but many develop severe symptoms associated with an excessive inflammatory response. Elevated plasma concentrations of soluble urokinase plasminogen activator receptor (suPAR) provide early warning of progression to severe respiratory failure (SRF) or death, but access to suPAR testing may be limited. The Severe COvid Prediction Estimate (SCOPE) score, derived from circulating concentrations of C-reactive protein, D- dimers, interleukin-6, and ferritin among patients not receiving non-invasive or invasive mechanical ventilation during the SAVE-MORE study, offers predictive accuracy for progression to SRF or death within 14 days comparable to that of a suPAR concentration of ≥6 ng/mL (area under receiver operator characteristic curve 0.81 for both). The SCOPE score is validated in two similar independent cohorts. A SCOPE score of 6 or more is an alternative to suPAR for predicting progression to SRF or death within 14 days of hospital admission for pneumonia, and it can be used to guide treatment decisions.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Respiratory Insufficiency , Biomarkers , COVID-19/diagnosis , Humans , Prognosis , Receptors, Urokinase Plasminogen Activator , Respiratory Insufficiency/diagnosis , SARS-CoV-2
5.
EuropePMC; 2021.
Preprint in English | EuropePMC | ID: ppcovidwho-294791

ABSTRACT

Most patients infected with SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19) experience mild, non-specific symptoms, but several develop severe symptoms associated with an excessive inflammatory response. Elevated plasma concentrations of soluble urokinase plasminogen activator receptor (suPAR) provide early warning of progression to severe respiratory failure (SRF) or death, but access to suPAR testing may be limited. The Severe COvid Prediction Estimate (SCOPE) score, derived from C-reactive protein, D-dimer, interleukin-6, and ferritin circulating concentrations at hospitalization during the SAVE-MORE study, offers comparable predictive accuracy for progression to SRF or death within 14 days as suPAR ≥6 ng/ml (area under receiver operator characteristic curve, 0.81 for both). SCOPE score was validated against an independent dataset from the SAVE study. The SCOPE score is an alternative to suPAR for predicting progression to SRF or death within 14 days of hospital admission for pneumonia, and it can be used to guide treatment decisions.<br><br>Funding: The study was funded in part by the Hellenic Institute for the Study of Sepsis and by Swedish Orphan Biovitrum. The Hellenic Institute for the Study of Sepsis is the Sponsor of the SAVE and SAVE-MORE studies.<br><br>Declaration of Interests:E. J. Giamarellos-Bourboulis has received honoraria from Abbott CH, bioMérieux, Brahms GmbH, GSK, InflaRx GmbH, Sobi and XBiotech Inc;independent educational grants from Abbott CH, AxisShield, bioMérieux Inc, InflaRx GmbH, Johnson & Johnson, MSD, Sobi and XBiotech Inc.;and funding from the Horizon2020 Marie-Curie Project European Sepsis Academy (granted to the National and Kapodistrian University of Athens), and the Horizon 2020 European Grants ImmunoSep and RISKinCOVID (granted to the Hellenic Institute for the Study of Sepsis). G. Poulakou has received independent educational grants from Pfizer, MSD, Angelini, and Biorad. H. Milionis reports receiving honoraria, consulting fees and non-financial support from healthcare companies, including Amgen, Angelini, Bayer, Mylan, MSD, Pfizer, and Servier. L. Dagna had received consultation honoraria from SOBI. M. Bassetti has received funds for research grants and/or advisor/consultant and/or speaker/chairman from Angelini, Astellas, Bayer, Biomerieux, Cidara, Cipla, Gilead, Menarini, MSD, Pfizer, Roche, Shionogi and Nabriva. P. Panagopoulos has received honoraria from GILEAD Sciences, Janssen, and MSD. G. N. Dalekos is an advisor or lecturer for Ipsen, Pfizer, Genkyotex, Novartis, Sobi, received research grants from Abbvie, Gilead and has served as PI in studies for Abbvie, Novartis, Gilead, Novo Nordisk, Genkyotex, Regulus Therapeutics Inc, Tiziana Life Sciences, Bayer, Astellas, Pfizer, Amyndas Pharmaceuticals, CymaBay Therapeutics Inc., Sobi and Intercept Pharmaceuticals. M. G. Netea is supported by an ERC Advanced Grant (#833247) and a Spinoza grant of the Netherlands Organization for Scientific Research. Hes is a scientific founder of TTxD and he has received independent educational grants from TTxD, GSK, Ono Pharma and ViiV HealthCare. The other authors do not have any competing interest to declare.<br><br>Ethics Approval Statement: The SAVE protocol was approved by the National Ethics Committee of Greece (approval 38/20) and National Organization for Medicines approval (ISO 28/20). The SAVE-MORE protocol was approved by the National Ethics Committee of Greece (approval 161/20) and by the Ethics Committee of the National Institute for Infectious Diseases Lazzaro Spallanzani, IRCCS, in Rome (1 February 2021).<br><br>Trial Registration: The SAVE study was prospectively registered prior to enrolling the first patient (EudraCT number 2020-001466-11;ClinicalTrials.gov identifier NCT04357366). The SAVE-MORE study was prospectively registered (EudraCT no. 2020-005828-11;ClinicalTrials.gov identifier NCT04680949). Written informed consent was provided by all patients prior to enrollment.

6.
Sci Transl Med ; 14(627): eabj1996, 2022 Jan 12.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1483986

ABSTRACT

Safe and effective vaccines against coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) are essential for ending the ongoing pandemic. Although impressive progress has been made with several COVID-19 vaccines already approved, it is clear that those developed so far cannot meet the global vaccine demand alone. We describe a COVID-19 vaccine based on a replication-defective gorilla adenovirus expressing the stabilized prefusion severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) spike protein named GRAd-COV2. We assessed the safety and immunogenicity of a single-dose regimen of this vaccine in healthy younger and older adults to select the appropriate dose for each age group. For this purpose, a phase 1, dose-escalation, open-labeled trial was conducted including 90 healthy participants (45 aged 18 to 55 years old and 45 aged 65 to 85 years old) who received a single intramuscular administration of GRAd-COV2 at three escalating doses. Local and systemic adverse reactions were mostly mild or moderate and of short duration, and no serious adverse events were reported. Four weeks after vaccination, seroconversion to spike protein and receptor binding domain was achieved in 43 of 44 young volunteers and in 45 of 45 older participants. Consistently, neutralizing antibodies were detected in 42 of 44 younger-age and 45 of 45 older-age volunteers. In addition, GRAd-COV2 induced a robust and T helper 1 cell (TH1)­skewed T cell response against the spike protein in 89 of 90 participants from both age groups. Overall, the safety and immunogenicity data from the phase 1 trial support the further development of this vaccine.


Subject(s)
Adenovirus Vaccines , COVID-19 , Adenoviridae , Aged , Animals , COVID-19 Vaccines , Gorilla gorilla , Humans , SARS-CoV-2
7.
Cell Death Differ ; 29(1): 156-166, 2022 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1361626

ABSTRACT

The ongoing coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic caused by the novel severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) necessitates strategies to identify prophylactic and therapeutic drug candidates to enter rapid clinical development. This is particularly true, given the uncertainty about the endurance of the immune memory induced by both previous infections or vaccines, and given the fact that the eradication of SARS-CoV-2 might be challenging to reach, given the attack rate of the virus, which would require unusually high protection by a vaccine. Here, we show how raloxifene, a selective estrogen receptor modulator with anti-inflammatory and antiviral properties, emerges as an attractive candidate entering clinical trials to test its efficacy in early-stage treatment COVID-19 patients.


Subject(s)
Anti-Inflammatory Agents/therapeutic use , COVID-19/drug therapy , Drug Repositioning , Estrogen Receptor Modulators/therapeutic use , Raloxifene Hydrochloride/therapeutic use , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/metabolism , Antiviral Agents/therapeutic use , Estradiol/therapeutic use , Estrogens/metabolism , Female , Humans , Male , SARS-CoV-2/drug effects , Sex Factors
9.
Open Forum Infect Dis ; 7(10): ofaa403, 2020 Oct.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1059676

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: The pathogenesis of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) infection remains unclear. We report the detection of viral RNA from different anatomical districts and the antibody profile in the first 2 COVID-19 cases diagnosed in Italy. METHODS: We tested for SARS-CoV-2 RNA clinical samples, either respiratory and nonrespiratory (ie, saliva, serum, urine, vomit, rectal, ocular, cutaneous, and cervico-vaginal swabs), longitudinally collected from both patients throughout the hospitalization. Serological analysis was carried out on serial serum samples to evaluate IgM, IgA, IgG, and neutralizing antibody levels. RESULTS: SARS-CoV-2 RNA was detected since the early phase of illness, lasting over 2 weeks in both upper and lower respiratory tract samples. Virus isolate was obtained from acute respiratory samples, while no infectious virus was rescued from late respiratory samples with low viral RNA load, collected when serum antibodies had been developed. Several other specimens came back positive, including saliva, vomit, rectal, cutaneous, cervico-vaginal, and ocular swabs. IgM, IgA, and IgG were detected within the first week of diagnosis, with IgG appearing earlier and at higher titers. Neutralizing antibodies developed during the second week, reaching high titers 32 days after diagnosis. CONCLUSIONS: Our longitudinal analysis showed that SARS-CoV-2 RNA can be detected in different body samples, which may be associated with broad tropism and different spectra of clinical manifestations and modes of transmission. Profiling antibody response and neutralizing activity can assist in laboratory diagnosis and surveillance actions.

10.
J Antimicrob Chemother ; 75(10): 2977-2980, 2020 10 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-626863

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Remdesivir is a prodrug of the nucleoside analogue GS-441524 and is under evaluation for treatment of SARS-CoV-2-infected patients. OBJECTIVES: To evaluate the pharmacokinetics of remdesivir and GS-441524 in plasma, bronchoalveolar aspirate (BAS) and CSF in two critically ill COVID-19 patients. METHODS: Remdesivir was administered at 200 mg loading dose on the first day followed by 12 days of 100 mg in two critically ill patients. Blood samples were collected immediately after (C0) and at 1 (C1) and 24 h (C24) after intravenous administration on day 3 until day 9. BAS samples were collected on Days 4, 7 and 9 from both patients while one CSF on Day 7 was obtained in one patient. Remdesivir and GS-441524 concentrations were measured in these samples using a validated UHPLC-MS/MS method. RESULTS: We observed higher concentrations of remdesivir at C0 (6- to 7-fold higher than EC50 from in vitro studies) and a notable decay at C1. GS-441524 plasma concentrations reached a peak at C1 and persisted until the next administration. Higher concentrations of GS-441524 were observed in the patient with mild renal dysfunction. Mean BAS/plasma concentration ratios of GS-441524 were 2.3% and 6.4% in Patient 1 and Patient 2, respectively. The CSF concentration found in Patient 2 was 25.7% with respect to plasma. GS-441524 levels in lung and CNS suggest compartmental differences in drug exposure. CONCLUSIONS: We report the first pharmacokinetic evaluation of remdesivir and GS-441524 in recovered COVID-19 patients. Further study of the pharmacokinetic profile of remdesivir, GS-441524 and the intracellular triphosphate form are required.


Subject(s)
Adenosine Monophosphate/analogs & derivatives , Adenosine Triphosphate/analogs & derivatives , Alanine/analogs & derivatives , Antiviral Agents/pharmacokinetics , Betacoronavirus , Coronavirus Infections/metabolism , Critical Illness/therapy , Pneumonia, Viral/metabolism , Adenosine Monophosphate/pharmacokinetics , Adenosine Monophosphate/therapeutic use , Adenosine Triphosphate/pharmacokinetics , Adenosine Triphosphate/therapeutic use , Aged , Alanine/pharmacokinetics , Alanine/therapeutic use , Antiviral Agents/therapeutic use , COVID-19 , Coronavirus Infections/diagnosis , Coronavirus Infections/drug therapy , Female , Humans , Male , Pandemics , Pneumonia, Viral/diagnosis , Pneumonia, Viral/drug therapy , Recovery of Function/drug effects , Recovery of Function/physiology , SARS-CoV-2
11.
Euro Surveill ; 25(11)2020 03.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-10076

ABSTRACT

Data concerning the transmission of the novel severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2) in paucisymptomatic patients are lacking. We report an Italian paucisymptomatic case of coronavirus disease 2019 with multiple biological samples positive for SARS-CoV-2. This case was detected using the World Health Organization protocol on cases and contact investigation. Current discharge criteria and the impact of extra-pulmonary SARS-CoV-2 samples are discussed.


Subject(s)
Asymptomatic Infections , Coronavirus Infections/diagnosis , Coronavirus/isolation & purification , Feces/virology , Lung/diagnostic imaging , Nasopharynx/virology , Pneumonia, Viral/diagnosis , Travel , Virus Shedding , Antibodies, Viral/immunology , Betacoronavirus , COVID-19 , COVID-19 Testing , China , Clinical Laboratory Techniques , Contact Tracing , Coronavirus/genetics , Coronavirus Infections/transmission , Coronavirus Infections/virology , Humans , Italy , Lung/pathology , Male , Pandemics , Pneumonia, Viral/therapy , Pneumonia, Viral/transmission , Pneumonia, Viral/virology , Quarantine , Radiography, Thoracic , Real-Time Polymerase Chain Reaction , SARS-CoV-2 , Tomography, X-Ray Computed , World Health Organization , Young Adult
12.
Euro Surveill ; 25(8)2020 02.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2677

ABSTRACT

A novel coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2) has been identified as the causative pathogen of an ongoing outbreak of respiratory disease, now named COVID-19. Most cases and sustained transmission occurred in China, but travel-associated cases have been reported in other countries, including Europe and Italy. Since the symptoms are similar to other respiratory infections, differential diagnosis in travellers arriving from countries with wide-spread COVID-19 must include other more common infections such as influenza and other respiratory tract diseases.


Subject(s)
Betacoronavirus , Coronavirus Infections/diagnosis , Molecular Diagnostic Techniques , Pneumonia, Viral/diagnosis , Algorithms , Betacoronavirus/genetics , Betacoronavirus/isolation & purification , COVID-19 , COVID-19 Testing , Clinical Laboratory Techniques , Coronavirus Infections/epidemiology , Diagnosis, Differential , Disease Outbreaks , Humans , Influenza, Human/diagnosis , Italy/epidemiology , Mass Screening , Molecular Diagnostic Techniques/methods , Molecular Diagnostic Techniques/standards , Pneumonia, Viral/epidemiology , Population Surveillance , Respiratory Tract Infections/diagnosis , SARS-CoV-2 , Travel
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