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1.
Nature ; 602(7896): 321-327, 2022 02.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1585831

ABSTRACT

It is not fully understood why COVID-19 is typically milder in children1-3. Here, to examine the differences between children and adults in their response to SARS-CoV-2 infection, we analysed paediatric and adult patients with COVID-19 as well as healthy control individuals (total n = 93) using single-cell multi-omic profiling of matched nasal, tracheal, bronchial and blood samples. In the airways of healthy paediatric individuals, we observed cells that were already in an interferon-activated state, which after SARS-CoV-2 infection was further induced especially in airway immune cells. We postulate that higher paediatric innate interferon responses restrict viral replication and disease progression. The systemic response in children was characterized by increases in naive lymphocytes and a depletion of natural killer cells, whereas, in adults, cytotoxic T cells and interferon-stimulated subpopulations were significantly increased. We provide evidence that dendritic cells initiate interferon signalling in early infection, and identify epithelial cell states associated with COVID-19 and age. Our matching nasal and blood data show a strong interferon response in the airways with the induction of systemic interferon-stimulated populations, which were substantially reduced in paediatric patients. Together, we provide several mechanisms that explain the milder clinical syndrome observed in children.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/blood , COVID-19/immunology , Dendritic Cells/immunology , Interferons/immunology , Killer Cells, Natural/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , T-Lymphocytes, Cytotoxic/immunology , Adult , Bronchi/immunology , Bronchi/virology , COVID-19/pathology , Chicago , Cohort Studies , Disease Progression , Epithelial Cells/cytology , Epithelial Cells/immunology , Epithelial Cells/virology , Female , Humans , Immunity, Innate , London , Male , Nasal Mucosa/immunology , Nasal Mucosa/virology , SARS-CoV-2/growth & development , Single-Cell Analysis , Trachea/virology , Young Adult
2.
Am J Respir Crit Care Med ; 204(8): 921-932, 2021 10 15.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1476910

ABSTRACT

Rationale: Current guidelines recommend patients with severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) pneumonia receive empirical antibiotics for suspected bacterial superinfection on the basis of weak evidence. Rates of ventilator-associated pneumonia (VAP) in clinical trials of patients with SARS-CoV-2 pneumonia are unexpectedly low. Objectives: We conducted an observational single-center study to determine the prevalence and etiology of bacterial superinfection at the time of initial intubation and the incidence and etiology of subsequent bacterial VAP in patients with severe SARS-CoV-2 pneumonia. Methods: Bronchoscopic BAL fluid samples from all patients with SARS-CoV-2 pneumonia requiring mechanical ventilation were analyzed using quantitative cultures and a multiplex PCR panel. Actual antibiotic use was compared with guideline-recommended therapy. Measurements and Main Results: We analyzed 386 BAL samples from 179 patients with SARS-CoV-2 pneumonia requiring mechanical ventilation. Bacterial superinfection within 48 hours of intubation was detected in 21% of patients. Seventy-two patients (44.4%) developed at least one VAP episode (VAP incidence rate = 45.2/1,000 ventilator days); 15 (20.8%) initial VAPs were caused by difficult-to-treat pathogens. The clinical criteria did not distinguish between patients with or without bacterial superinfection. BAL-based management was associated with significantly reduced antibiotic use compared with guideline recommendations. Conclusions: In patients with SARS-CoV-2 pneumonia requiring mechanical ventilation, bacterial superinfection at the time of intubation occurs in <25% of patients. Guideline-based empirical antibiotic management at the time of intubation results in antibiotic overuse. Bacterial VAP developed in 44% of patients and could not be accurately identified in the absence of microbiologic analysis of BAL fluid.

4.
Am J Respir Crit Care Med ; 204(8): 921-932, 2021 10 15.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1365264

ABSTRACT

Rationale: Current guidelines recommend patients with severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) pneumonia receive empirical antibiotics for suspected bacterial superinfection on the basis of weak evidence. Rates of ventilator-associated pneumonia (VAP) in clinical trials of patients with SARS-CoV-2 pneumonia are unexpectedly low. Objectives: We conducted an observational single-center study to determine the prevalence and etiology of bacterial superinfection at the time of initial intubation and the incidence and etiology of subsequent bacterial VAP in patients with severe SARS-CoV-2 pneumonia. Methods: Bronchoscopic BAL fluid samples from all patients with SARS-CoV-2 pneumonia requiring mechanical ventilation were analyzed using quantitative cultures and a multiplex PCR panel. Actual antibiotic use was compared with guideline-recommended therapy. Measurements and Main Results: We analyzed 386 BAL samples from 179 patients with SARS-CoV-2 pneumonia requiring mechanical ventilation. Bacterial superinfection within 48 hours of intubation was detected in 21% of patients. Seventy-two patients (44.4%) developed at least one VAP episode (VAP incidence rate = 45.2/1,000 ventilator days); 15 (20.8%) initial VAPs were caused by difficult-to-treat pathogens. The clinical criteria did not distinguish between patients with or without bacterial superinfection. BAL-based management was associated with significantly reduced antibiotic use compared with guideline recommendations. Conclusions: In patients with SARS-CoV-2 pneumonia requiring mechanical ventilation, bacterial superinfection at the time of intubation occurs in <25% of patients. Guideline-based empirical antibiotic management at the time of intubation results in antibiotic overuse. Bacterial VAP developed in 44% of patients and could not be accurately identified in the absence of microbiologic analysis of BAL fluid.

6.
Nature ; 590(7847): 635-641, 2021 02.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1019856

ABSTRACT

Some patients infected with severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) develop severe pneumonia and acute respiratory distress syndrome1 (ARDS). Distinct clinical features in these patients have led to speculation that the immune response to virus in the SARS-CoV-2-infected alveolus differs from that in other types of pneumonia2. Here we investigate SARS-CoV-2 pathobiology by characterizing the immune response in the alveoli of patients infected with the virus. We collected bronchoalveolar lavage fluid samples from 88 patients with SARS-CoV-2-induced respiratory failure and 211 patients with known or suspected pneumonia from other pathogens, and analysed them using flow cytometry and bulk transcriptomic profiling. We performed single-cell RNA sequencing on 10 bronchoalveolar lavage fluid samples collected from patients with severe coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) within 48 h of intubation. In the majority of patients with SARS-CoV-2 infection, the alveolar space was persistently enriched in T cells and monocytes. Bulk and single-cell transcriptomic profiling suggested that SARS-CoV-2 infects alveolar macrophages, which in turn respond by producing T cell chemoattractants. These T cells produce interferon-γ to induce inflammatory cytokine release from alveolar macrophages and further promote T cell activation. Collectively, our results suggest that SARS-CoV-2 causes a slowly unfolding, spatially limited alveolitis in which alveolar macrophages containing SARS-CoV-2 and T cells form a positive feedback loop that drives persistent alveolar inflammation.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/immunology , COVID-19/virology , Macrophages, Alveolar/immunology , Pneumonia, Viral/immunology , Pneumonia, Viral/virology , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity , T-Lymphocytes/immunology , Bronchoalveolar Lavage Fluid/chemistry , Bronchoalveolar Lavage Fluid/immunology , COVID-19/genetics , Cohort Studies , Humans , Interferon-gamma/immunology , Interferons/immunology , Interferons/metabolism , Macrophages, Alveolar/metabolism , Macrophages, Alveolar/virology , Pneumonia, Viral/genetics , RNA-Seq , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Signal Transduction/immunology , Single-Cell Analysis , T-Lymphocytes/metabolism , Time Factors
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