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Int J Biol Sci ; 18(15): 5591-5606, 2022.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2040345


Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) is responsible for the pandemic respiratory infectious disease COVID-19. However, clinical manifestations and outcomes differ significantly among COVID-19 patients, ranging from asymptomatic to extremely severe, and it remains unclear what drives these disparities. Here, we studied 159 sequentially enrolled hospitalized patients with COVID-19-associated pneumonia from Brescia, Italy using the VirScan phage-display method to characterize circulating antibodies binding to 96,179 viral peptides encoded by 1,276 strains of human viruses. SARS-CoV-2 infection was associated with a marked increase in immune antibody repertoires against many known pathogenic and non-pathogenic human viruses. This antiviral antibody response was linked to longitudinal trajectories of disease severity and was further confirmed in additional 125 COVID-19 patients from the same geographical region in Northern Italy. By applying a machine-learning-based strategy, a viral exposure signature predictive of COVID-19-related disease severity linked to patient survival was developed and validated. These results provide a basis for understanding the role of memory B-cell repertoire to viral epitopes in COVID-19-related symptoms and suggest that a unique anti-viral antibody repertoire signature may be useful to define COVID-19 clinical severity.

COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Humans , Virome , Antiviral Agents , Epitopes
JCI Insight ; 7(16)2022 08 22.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1950563


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.

COVID-19 , Extracellular Traps , Actins/metabolism , Adult , COVID-19/complications , Child , Deoxyribonuclease I , Humans , Neutrophils , SARS-CoV-2 , Systemic Inflammatory Response Syndrome
Ann Clin Transl Neurol ; 9(5): 622-632, 2022 05.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1825806


OBJECTIVE: Given the continued spread of coronavirus 2, the early predictors of coronavirus disease 19 (COVID-19) associated mortality might improve patients' outcomes. Increased levels of circulating neurofilament light chain (NfL), a biomarker of neuronal injury, have been observed in severe COVID-19 patients. We investigated whether NfL provides non-redundant clinical value to previously identified predictors of COVID-19 mortality. METHODS: We measured serum or plasma NfL concentrations in a blinded fashion in 3 cohorts totaling 338 COVID-19 patients. RESULTS: In cohort 1, we found significantly elevated NfL levels only in critically ill COVID-19 patients. Longitudinal cohort 2 data showed that NfL is elevated late in the course of the disease, following the two other prognostic markers of COVID-19: decrease in absolute lymphocyte count (ALC) and increase in lactate dehydrogenase (LDH). Significant correlations between ALC and LDH abnormalities and subsequent rise of NfL implicate that the multi-organ failure is the most likely cause of neuronal injury in severe COVID-19 patients. The addition of NfL to age and gender in cohort 1 significantly improved the accuracy of mortality prediction and these improvements were validated in cohorts 2 and 3. INTERPRETATION: A substantial increase in serum/plasma NfL reproducibly enhanced COVID-19 mortality prediction. Combined with other prognostic markers, such as ALC and LDH that are routinely measured in ICU patients, NfL measurements might be useful to identify the patients at a high risk of COVID-19-associated mortality, who might still benefit from escalated care.

COVID-19 , Biomarkers , Cohort Studies , Humans , Intermediate Filaments , Prognosis
Nat Med ; 28(5): 1050-1062, 2022 05.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1701612


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.

COVID-19 , COVID-19/complications , COVID-19/genetics , Child , Humans , SARS-CoV-2 , Systemic Inflammatory Response Syndrome/genetics , T-Lymphocytes