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1.
Frontiers in cardiovascular medicine ; 8, 2021.
Article in English | EuropePMC | ID: covidwho-1610491

ABSTRACT

Background: Despite the ongoing global pandemic, the impact of COVID-19 on cardiac structure and function is still not completely understood. Myocarditis is a rare but potentially serious complication of other viral infections with variable recovery, and is, in some cases, associated with long-term cardiac remodeling and functional impairment. Aim: To assess myocardial injury in patients who recently recovered from an acute SARS-CoV-2 infection with advanced cardiac magnetic resonance imaging (CMR) and endomyocardial biopsy (EMB). Methods: In total, 32 patients with persistent cardiac symptoms after a COVID-19 infection, 22 patients with acute classic myocarditis not related to COVID-19, and 16 healthy volunteers were included in this study and underwent a comprehensive baseline CMR scan. Of these, 10 patients post COVID-19 and 13 with non-COVID-19 myocarditis underwent a follow-up scan. In 10 of the post-COVID-19 and 15 of the non-COVID-19 patients with myocarditis endomyocardial biopsy (EMB) with histological, immunohistological, and molecular analysis was performed. Results: In total, 10 (31%) patients with COVID-19 showed evidence of myocardial injury, eight (25%) presented with myocardial oedema, eight (25%) exhibited global or regional systolic left ventricular (LV) dysfunction, and nine (28%) exhibited impaired right ventricular (RV) function. However, only three (9%) of COVID-19 patients fulfilled updated CMR–Lake Louise criteria (LLC) for acute myocarditis. Regarding EMB, none of the COVID-19 patients but 87% of the non-COVID-19 patients with myocarditis presented histological findings in keeping with acute or chronic inflammation. COVID-19 patients with severe disease on the WHO scale presented with reduced biventricular longitudinal function, increased RV mass, and longer native T1 times compared with those with only mild or moderate disease. Conclusions: In our cohort, CMR and EMB findings revealed that SARS-CoV-2 infection was associated with relatively mild but variable cardiac involvement. More symptomatic COVID-19 patients and those with higher clinical care demands were more likely to exhibit chronic inflammation and impaired cardiac function compared to patients with milder forms of the disease.

2.
Respir Med ; 191: 106709, 2021 Dec 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1556145

ABSTRACT

INTRODUCTION: Prospective and longitudinal data on pulmonary injury over one year after acute coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) are sparse. We aim to determine reductions in pulmonary function and respiratory related quality of life up to 12 months after acute COVID-19. METHODS: Patients with acute COVID-19 were enrolled into an ongoing single-centre, prospective observational study and prospectively examined 6 weeks, 3, 6 and 12 months after onset of COVID-19 symptoms. Chest CT-scans, pulmonary function and symptoms assessed by St. Georges Respiratory Questionnaire were used to evaluate respiratory limitations. Patients were stratified according to severity of acute COVID-19. RESULTS: Median age of all patients was 57 years, 37.8% were female. Higher age, male sex and higher BMI were associated with acute-COVID-19 severity (p < 0.0001, 0.001 and 0.004 respectively). Also, pulmonary restriction and reduced carbon monoxide diffusion capacity was associated with disease severity. In patients with restriction and impaired diffusion capacity, FVC improved over 12 months from 61.32 to 71.82, TLC from 68.92 to 76.95, DLCO from 60.18 to 68.98 and KCO from 81.28 to 87.80 (percent predicted values; p = 0.002, 0.045, 0.0002 and 0.0005). The CT-score of lung involvement in the acute phase was associated with restriction and reduction in diffusion capacity in follow-up. Respiratory symptoms improved for patients in higher severity groups during follow-up, but not for patients with initially mild disease. CONCLUSION: Severity of respiratory failure during COVID-19 correlates with the degree of pulmonary function impairment and respiratory quality of life in the year after acute infection.

3.
Blood Adv ; 2021 Dec 03.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1551193

ABSTRACT

The high incidence of thrombotic events suggests a possible role of the contact system pathway in COVID-19 pathology. Here, we demonstrate altered levels of factor XII (FXII) and its activation products in critically ill COVID-19 patients in comparison to patients with severe acute respiratory distress syndrome due to influenza virus (ARDS-influenza). Compatible with this data, we report rapid consumption of FXII in COVID-19, but not in ARDS-influenza, plasma. Interestingly, the lag phase in fibrin formation, triggered by the FXII activator kaolin, was not prolonged in COVID-19 as opposed to ARDS-influenza. Using confocal and electron microscopy, we showed that increased FXII activation rate, in conjunction with elevated fibrinogen levels, triggers formation of fibrinolysis-resistant, compact clots with thin fibers and small pores in COVID-19. Accordingly, clot lysis was markedly impaired in COVID-19 as opposed to ARDS-infleunza subjects. Dysregulatated fibrinolytic system, as evidenced by elevated levels of thrombin-activatable fibrinolysis inhibitor, tissue-plasminogen activator, and plasminogen activator inhibitor-1 in COVID-19 potentiated this effect. Analysis of lung tissue sections revealed wide-spread extra- and intra-vascular compact fibrin deposits in COVID-19 patients. Together, compact fibrin network structure and dysregulated fibrinolysis may collectively contribute to high incidence of thrombotic events in COVID-19.

4.
Cell ; 184(26): 6243-6261.e27, 2021 12 22.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1536467

ABSTRACT

COVID-19-induced "acute respiratory distress syndrome" (ARDS) is associated with prolonged respiratory failure and high mortality, but the mechanistic basis of lung injury remains incompletely understood. Here, we analyze pulmonary immune responses and lung pathology in two cohorts of patients with COVID-19 ARDS using functional single-cell genomics, immunohistology, and electron microscopy. We describe an accumulation of CD163-expressing monocyte-derived macrophages that acquired a profibrotic transcriptional phenotype during COVID-19 ARDS. Gene set enrichment and computational data integration revealed a significant similarity between COVID-19-associated macrophages and profibrotic macrophage populations identified in idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis. COVID-19 ARDS was associated with clinical, radiographic, histopathological, and ultrastructural hallmarks of pulmonary fibrosis. Exposure of human monocytes to SARS-CoV-2, but not influenza A virus or viral RNA analogs, was sufficient to induce a similar profibrotic phenotype in vitro. In conclusion, we demonstrate that SARS-CoV-2 triggers profibrotic macrophage responses and pronounced fibroproliferative ARDS.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/pathology , COVID-19/virology , Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis/pathology , Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis/virology , Macrophages/pathology , Macrophages/virology , SARS-CoV-2/physiology , Antigens, CD/metabolism , Antigens, Differentiation, Myelomonocytic/metabolism , COVID-19/diagnostic imaging , Cell Communication , Cohort Studies , Fibroblasts/pathology , Gene Expression Regulation , Humans , Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis/diagnostic imaging , Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis/genetics , Mesenchymal Stem Cells/pathology , Phenotype , Proteome/metabolism , Receptors, Cell Surface/metabolism , Respiratory Distress Syndrome/diagnostic imaging , Respiratory Distress Syndrome/pathology , Respiratory Distress Syndrome/virology , Tomography, X-Ray Computed , Transcription, Genetic
5.
Infection ; 49(6): 1299-1306, 2021 Dec.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1482322

ABSTRACT

PURPOSE: Thorough knowledge of the nature and frequency of co-infections is essential to optimize treatment strategies and risk assessment in cases of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). This study aimed to evaluate the multiplex polymerase chain reaction (PCR) screening approach for community-acquired bacterial pathogens (CABPs) at hospital admission, which could facilitate identification of bacterial co-infections in hospitalized COVID-19 patients. METHODS: Clinical data and biomaterials from 200 hospitalized COVID-19 patients from the observational cohort of the Competence Network for community-acquired pneumonia (CAPNETZ) prospectively recruited between March 17, 2020, and March 12, 2021 in 12 centers in Germany and Switzerland, were included in this study. Nasopharyngeal swab samples were analyzed on hospital admission using multiplex real-time reverse transcription (RT)-PCR for a broad range of CABPs. RESULTS: In total of 200 patients Staphylococcus aureus (27.0%), Haemophilus influenzae (13.5%), Streptococcus pneumoniae (5.5%), Moraxella catarrhalis (2.5%), and Legionella pneumophila (1.5%) were the most frequently detected bacterial pathogens. PCR detection of bacterial pathogens correlated with purulent sputum, and showed no correlation with ICU admission, mortality, and inflammation markers. Although patients who received antimicrobial treatment were more often admitted to the ICU and had a higher mortality rate, PCR pathogen detection was not significantly related to antimicrobial treatment. CONCLUSION: General CABP screening using multiplex PCR with nasopharyngeal swabs may not facilitate prediction or identification of bacterial co-infections in the early phase of COVID-19-related hospitalization. Most patients with positive PCR results appear to be colonized rather than infected at that time, questioning the value of routine antibiotic treatment on admission in COVID-19 patients.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Coinfection , Community-Acquired Infections , Legionella pneumophila , Pneumonia , Cohort Studies , Coinfection/diagnosis , Coinfection/epidemiology , Community-Acquired Infections/diagnosis , Humans , Multiplex Polymerase Chain Reaction , Prospective Studies , SARS-CoV-2
6.
Nat Commun ; 12(1): 4869, 2021 08 11.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1354100

ABSTRACT

In COVID-19, immune responses are key in determining disease severity. However, cellular mechanisms at the onset of inflammatory lung injury in SARS-CoV-2 infection, particularly involving endothelial cells, remain ill-defined. Using Syrian hamsters as a model for moderate COVID-19, we conduct a detailed longitudinal analysis of systemic and pulmonary cellular responses, and corroborate it with datasets from COVID-19 patients. Monocyte-derived macrophages in lungs exert the earliest and strongest transcriptional response to infection, including induction of pro-inflammatory genes, while epithelial cells show weak alterations. Without evidence for productive infection, endothelial cells react, depending on cell subtypes, by strong and early expression of anti-viral, pro-inflammatory, and T cell recruiting genes. Recruitment of cytotoxic T cells as well as emergence of IgM antibodies precede viral clearance at day 5 post infection. Investigating SARS-CoV-2 infected Syrian hamsters thus identifies cell type-specific effector functions, providing detailed insights into pathomechanisms of COVID-19 and informing therapeutic strategies.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/immunology , Disease Models, Animal , Alveolar Epithelial Cells/immunology , Animals , Cricetinae , Cytokines/genetics , Cytokines/immunology , Endothelial Cells/immunology , Humans , Immunoglobulin M/immunology , Inflammation , Lung/immunology , Macrophages/immunology , Mesocricetus , Monocytes/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Signal Transduction , T-Lymphocytes, Cytotoxic/immunology , Toll-Like Receptors/immunology
7.
Emerg Microbes Infect ; 10(1): 1515-1518, 2021 Dec.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1313723

ABSTRACT

We show a shift in the prevalence of respiratory viral pathogens in community-acquired pneumonia patients during the COVID-19 pandemic. Our data support the efficiency of non-pharmaceutical interventions on virus circulation except for rhinoviruses. The consequences of an altered circulation on subsequent winter seasons remain unclear and support the importance of systematic virological surveillance.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/epidemiology , Community-Acquired Infections/epidemiology , Pneumonia/epidemiology , Respiratory Tract Infections/epidemiology , Adult , Aged , Bacteria/classification , Bacteria/genetics , Bacteria/isolation & purification , COVID-19/virology , Community-Acquired Infections/microbiology , Community-Acquired Infections/virology , Female , Germany/epidemiology , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Pandemics , Pneumonia/microbiology , Pneumonia/virology , Prevalence , Prospective Studies , Respiratory Tract Infections/microbiology , Respiratory Tract Infections/virology , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/physiology , Viruses/classification , Viruses/genetics , Viruses/isolation & purification , Young Adult
8.
Clin Microbiol Infect ; 27(10): 1520.e7-1520.e10, 2021 Oct.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1297038

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVES: Dexamethasone has become the standard of care for severe coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), but its virological impact is poorly understood. The objectives of this work were to characterize the kinetics of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) concentration in the upper respiratory tract (URT) and the antibody response in patients with (D+) and without (D-) dexamethasone treatment. METHODS: Data and biosamples from hospitalized patients with severe COVID-19, enrolled between 4th March and 11th December 2020 in a prospective observational study, were analysed. SARS-CoV-2 virus concentration in serial URT samples was measured using RT-PCR. SARS-CoV-2-specific immunoglobulins A and G (IgA and IgG) were measured in serum samples using S1-ELISA. RESULTS: We compared 101 immunocompetent patients who received dexamethasone (according to the inclusion criteria and dosage determined in the RECOVERY trial) to 93 immunocompetent patients with comparable disease severity from the first months of the pandemic, who had not been treated with dexamethasone or other glucocorticoids. We found no inter-group differences in virus concentration kinetics, duration of presence of viral loads >106 viral copies/mL (D+ median 17 days (IQR 13-24), D- 19 days (IQR 13-29)), or time from symptom onset until seroconversion (IgA: D+ median 11.5 days (IQR 11-12), D- 14 days (IQR 11.5-15.75); IgG: D+ 13 days (IQR 12-14.5), D- 12 days (IQR 11-15)). CONCLUSION: Dexamethasone does not appear to lead to a change in virus clearance or a delay in antibody response in immunocompetent patients hospitalized with severe COVID-19.


Subject(s)
Antibodies, Viral/blood , COVID-19/drug therapy , Dexamethasone/therapeutic use , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Anti-Inflammatory Agents/therapeutic use , COVID-19/blood , COVID-19/immunology , COVID-19/virology , Hospitalization , Humans , Immunoglobulin A/blood , Immunoglobulin G/blood , Kinetics , Prospective Studies , RNA, Viral/analysis , Respiratory System/virology , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Seroconversion , Viral Load
9.
The FASEB Journal ; 35(S1), 2021.
Article in English | Wiley | ID: covidwho-1233934

ABSTRACT

Study objective Endothelial dysfunction and increased microvascular permeability are hallmarks of severe COVID-19. At present, the extent of endothelial barrier failure and its underlying mechanisms in COVID?19 remain unclear. We hypothesized that endothelial leak results from bioactive mediators released in COVID-19 rather than direct endothelial infection and can thus be recapitulated ex vivo by treating endothelial cells with patient plasma, thus providing a personalized screening platform for barrier-protective interventions in COVID-19. Methods Citrate plasma was sampled as part of the Pa-COVID-19 cohort study (ethics approval EA2/066/20) in patients with moderate (hospitalized, no invasive ventilation;WHO severity score: 3-4) and severe (high flow O2 or intubated and mechanically ventilated;WHO severity score: 5-7) COVID?19. Plasma samples were diluted to 10% (v/v) in cell culture medium without FCS and tested for their ability to disrupt barrier integrity of primary human pulmonary microvascular endothelial cells (HPMEC) monolayers by electrical cell-substrate impedance sensing (ECIS), immunofluorescence for endothelial VE-cadherin and F-actin, and real-time Ca2+ imaging. Plasma from healthy donors served as control. Results COVID-19 plasma was virus-free but caused endothelial barrier disruption as measured by ECIS and gap formation in HPMEC monolayers. The extent of barrier disruption increased with disease severity but varied considerably between endothelial cells from different microvascular beds (lung/heart >> skin). The TRPV4-antagonist HC-067047 prevented the endothelial Ca2+ response to COVID-19 plasma and protected endothelial barrier integrity in lung microvascular cells. Conclusion Here, we identify TRPV4 as critical regulator of microvascular permeability in COVID?19. Targeting TRPV4-mediated endothelial barrier failure may present a promising adjunctive therapy in COVID-19.

10.
Eur J Heart Fail ; 23(11): 1891-1902, 2021 11.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1209196

ABSTRACT

AIMS: Viral-induced cardiac inflammation can induce heart failure with preserved ejection fraction (HFpEF)-like syndromes. COVID-19 can lead to myocardial damage and vascular injury. We hypothesised that COVID-19 patients frequently develop a HFpEF-like syndrome, and designed this study to explore this. METHODS AND RESULTS: Cardiac function was assessed in 64 consecutive, hospitalized, and clinically stable COVID-19 patients from April-November 2020 with left ventricular ejection fraction (LVEF) ≥50% (age 56 ± 19 years, females: 31%, severe COVID-19 disease: 69%). To investigate likelihood of HFpEF presence, we used the HFA-PEFF score. A low (0-1 points), intermediate (2-4 points), and high (5-6 points) HFA-PEFF score was observed in 42%, 33%, and 25% of patients, respectively. In comparison, 64 subjects of similar age, sex, and comorbidity status without COVID-19 showed these scores in 30%, 66%, and 4%, respectively (between groups: P = 0.0002). High HFA-PEFF scores were more frequent in COVID-19 patients than controls (25% vs. 4%, P = 0.001). In COVID-19 patients, the HFA-PEFF score significantly correlated with age, estimated glomerular filtration rate, high-sensitivity troponin T (hsTnT), haemoglobin, QTc interval, LVEF, mitral E/A ratio, and H2 FPEF score (all P < 0.05). In multivariate, ordinal regression analyses, higher age and hsTnT were significant predictors of increased HFA-PEFF scores. Patients with myocardial injury (hsTnT ≥14 ng/L: 31%) vs. patients without myocardial injury, showed higher HFA-PEFF scores [median 5 (interquartile range 3-6) vs. 1 (0-3), P < 0.001] and more often showed left ventricular diastolic dysfunction (75% vs. 27%, P < 0.001). CONCLUSION: Hospitalized COVID-19 patients frequently show high likelihood of presence of HFpEF that is associated with cardiac structural and functional alterations, and myocardial injury. Detailed cardiac assessments including echocardiographic determination of left ventricular diastolic function and biomarkers should become routine in the care of hospitalized COVID-19 patients.

11.
Infection ; 49(4): 703-714, 2021 Aug.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1198523

ABSTRACT

PURPOSE: Adequate patient allocation is pivotal for optimal resource management in strained healthcare systems, and requires detailed knowledge of clinical and virological disease trajectories. The purpose of this work was to identify risk factors associated with need for invasive mechanical ventilation (IMV), to analyse viral kinetics in patients with and without IMV and to provide a comprehensive description of clinical course. METHODS: A cohort of 168 hospitalised adult COVID-19 patients enrolled in a prospective observational study at a large European tertiary care centre was analysed. RESULTS: Forty-four per cent (71/161) of patients required invasive mechanical ventilation (IMV). Shorter duration of symptoms before admission (aOR 1.22 per day less, 95% CI 1.10-1.37, p < 0.01) and history of hypertension (aOR 5.55, 95% CI 2.00-16.82, p < 0.01) were associated with need for IMV. Patients on IMV had higher maximal concentrations, slower decline rates, and longer shedding of SARS-CoV-2 than non-IMV patients (33 days, IQR 26-46.75, vs 18 days, IQR 16-46.75, respectively, p < 0.01). Median duration of hospitalisation was 9 days (IQR 6-15.5) for non-IMV and 49.5 days (IQR 36.8-82.5) for IMV patients. CONCLUSIONS: Our results indicate a short duration of symptoms before admission as a risk factor for severe disease that merits further investigation and different viral load kinetics in severely affected patients. Median duration of hospitalisation of IMV patients was longer than described for acute respiratory distress syndrome unrelated to COVID-19.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/virology , SARS-CoV-2/physiology , COVID-19/therapy , Cohort Studies , Germany/epidemiology , Hospitalization , Humans , Hypertension/complications , Kinetics , Prospective Studies , Respiration, Artificial , Risk Factors , Tertiary Care Centers , Time Factors , Viral Load , Virus Shedding
12.
Infection ; 49(4): 757-762, 2021 Aug.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1171404

ABSTRACT

Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) is caused by infection with severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2). Type I interferons are important in the defense of viral infections. Recently, neutralizing IgG auto-antibodies against type I interferons were found in patients with severe COVID-19 infection. Here, we analyzed expression of CD169/SIGLEC1, a well described downstream molecule in interferon signaling, and found increased monocytic CD169/SIGLEC1 expression levels in patients with mild, acute COVID-19, compared to patients with severe disease. We recommend further clinical studies to evaluate the value of CD169/SIGLEC1 expression in patients with COVID-19 with or without auto-antibodies against type I interferons.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/immunology , Monocytes/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/physiology , Sialic Acid Binding Ig-like Lectin 1/blood , Aged , Female , Hospitalization , Humans , Longitudinal Studies , Male , Middle Aged , Retrospective Studies , Severity of Illness Index , Sialic Acid Binding Ig-like Lectin 1/biosynthesis , Up-Regulation
13.
Kidney Int Rep ; 6(4): 905-915, 2021 Apr.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1169160

ABSTRACT

Introduction: Acute kidney injury (AKI) is an important complication in COVID-19, but its precise etiology has not fully been elucidated. Insights into AKI mechanisms may be provided by analyzing the temporal associations of clinical parameters reflecting disease processes and AKI development. Methods: We performed an observational cohort study of 223 consecutive COVID-19 patients treated at 3 sites of a tertiary care referral center to describe the evolvement of severe AKI (Kidney Disease: Improving Global Outcomes stage 3) and identify conditions promoting its development. Descriptive statistics and explanatory multivariable Cox regression modeling with clinical parameters as time-varying covariates were used to identify risk factors of severe AKI. Results: Severe AKI developed in 70 of 223 patients (31%) with COVID-19, of which 95.7% required kidney replacement therapy. Patients with severe AKI were older, predominantly male, had more comorbidities, and displayed excess mortality. Severe AKI occurred exclusively in intensive care unit patients, and 97.3% of the patients developing severe AKI had respiratory failure. Mechanical ventilation, vasopressor therapy, and inflammatory markers (serum procalcitonin levels and leucocyte count) were independent time-varying risk factors of severe AKI. Increasing inflammatory markers displayed a close temporal association with the development of severe AKI. Sensitivity analysis on risk factors of AKI stage 2 and 3 combined confirmed these findings. Conclusion: Severe AKI in COVID-19 was tightly coupled with critical illness and systemic inflammation and was not observed in milder disease courses. These findings suggest that traditional systemic AKI mechanisms rather than kidney-specific processes contribute to severe AKI in COVID-19.

14.
Front Immunol ; 11: 628971, 2020.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1083815

ABSTRACT

Clinical trials on the use of COVID-19 convalescent plasma remain inconclusive. While data on safety is increasingly available, evidence for efficacy is still sparse. Subgroup analyses hint to a dose-response relationship between convalescent plasma neutralizing antibody levels and mortality. In particular, patients with primary and secondary antibody deficiency might benefit from this approach. However, testing of neutralizing antibodies is limited to specialized biosafety level 3 laboratories and is a time- and labor-intense procedure. In this single center study of 206 COVID-19 convalescent patients, clinical data, results of commercially available ELISA testing of SARS-CoV-2 spike-IgG and -IgA, and levels of neutralizing antibodies, determined by plaque reduction neutralization testing (PRNT), were analyzed. At a medium time point of 58 days after symptom onset, only 12.6% of potential plasma donors showed high levels of neutralizing antibodies (PRNT50 ≥ 1:320). Multivariable proportional odds logistic regression analysis revealed need for hospitalization due to COVID-19 (odds ratio 6.87; p-value 0.0004) and fever (odds ratio 3.00; p-value 0.0001) as leading factors affecting levels of SARS-CoV-2 neutralizing antibody titers in convalescent plasma donors. Using penalized estimation, a predictive proportional odds logistic regression model including the most important variables hospitalization, fever, age, sex, and anosmia or dysgeusia was developed. The predictive discrimination for PRNT50 ≥ 1:320 was reasonably good with AUC: 0.86 (with 95% CI: 0.79-0.92). Combining clinical and ELISA-based pre-screening, assessment of neutralizing antibodies could be spared in 75% of potential donors with a maximal loss of 10% of true positives (PRNT50 ≥ 1:320).


Subject(s)
Antibodies, Neutralizing/immunology , Antibodies, Viral/immunology , Blood Donors , COVID-19/immunology , COVID-19/therapy , Adolescent , Adult , Age Factors , Aged , Convalescence , Female , Fever , Humans , Immunization, Passive , Male , Middle Aged , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Severity of Illness Index , Sex Factors , Young Adult
16.
Nat Biotechnol ; 38(8): 970-979, 2020 08.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1023942

ABSTRACT

To investigate the immune response and mechanisms associated with severe coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), we performed single-cell RNA sequencing on nasopharyngeal and bronchial samples from 19 clinically well-characterized patients with moderate or critical disease and from five healthy controls. We identified airway epithelial cell types and states vulnerable to severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) infection. In patients with COVID-19, epithelial cells showed an average three-fold increase in expression of the SARS-CoV-2 entry receptor ACE2, which correlated with interferon signals by immune cells. Compared to moderate cases, critical cases exhibited stronger interactions between epithelial and immune cells, as indicated by ligand-receptor expression profiles, and activated immune cells, including inflammatory macrophages expressing CCL2, CCL3, CCL20, CXCL1, CXCL3, CXCL10, IL8, IL1B and TNF. The transcriptional differences in critical cases compared to moderate cases likely contribute to clinical observations of heightened inflammatory tissue damage, lung injury and respiratory failure. Our data suggest that pharmacologic inhibition of the CCR1 and/or CCR5 pathways might suppress immune hyperactivation in critical COVID-19.


Subject(s)
Coronavirus Infections/pathology , Coronavirus Infections/physiopathology , Pneumonia, Viral/pathology , Pneumonia, Viral/physiopathology , Respiratory System/pathology , Single-Cell Analysis , Transcriptome , Adult , Aged , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2 , Bronchoalveolar Lavage Fluid/virology , COVID-19 , Cell Communication , Cell Differentiation , Coronavirus Infections/virology , Epithelial Cells/pathology , Epithelial Cells/virology , Female , Humans , Immune System/pathology , Inflammation/immunology , Inflammation/pathology , Longitudinal Studies , Male , Middle Aged , Nasopharynx/virology , Pandemics , Peptidyl-Dipeptidase A/genetics , Pneumonia, Viral/virology , Respiratory System/immunology , Respiratory System/virology , Severity of Illness Index
18.
Lancet Rheumatol ; 2(12): e764-e773, 2020 Dec.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1003183

ABSTRACT

Background: Severe COVID-19 is characterised by inflammation and coagulation in the presence of complement system activation. We aimed to explore the potential benefit and safety of selectively blocking the anaphylatoxin and complement protein C5a with the monoclonal antibody IFX-1 (vilobelimab), in patients with severe COVID-19. Methods: We did an exploratory, open-label, randomised phase 2 trial (part of the adaptive phase 2/3 PANAMO trial) of intravenous IFX-1 in adults with severe COVID-19 at three academic hospitals in the Netherlands. Eligibility criteria were age 18 years or older; severe pneumonia with pulmonary infiltrates consistent with pneumonia, a clinical history of severe shortness of breath within the past 14 days, or a need for non-invasive or invasive ventilation; severe disease defined as a ratio of partial pressure of arterial oxygen to fractional concentration of oxygen in inspired air (PaO2/FiO2) between 100 mm Hg and 250 mm Hg in the supine position; and severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 infection confirmed by RT-PCR. Patients were randomly assigned 1:1 to receive IFX-1 (up to seven doses of 800 mg intravenously) plus best supportive care (IFX-1 group) or best supportive care only (control group). The primary outcome was the percentage change in PaO2/FiO2 in the supine position between baseline and day 5. Mortality at 28 days and treatment-emergent and serious adverse events were key secondary outcomes. The primary analysis was done in the intention-to-treat population and safety analyses were done in all patients according to treatment received. This trial is registered at ClinicalTrials.gov (NCT04333420). Findings: Between March 31 and April 24, 2020, 30 patients were enrolled and randomly assigned to the IFX-1 group (n=15) or the control group (n=15). During the study it became clear that several patients could not be assessed regularly in the supine position because of severe hypoxaemia. It was therefore decided to focus on all PaO2/FiO2 assessments (irrespective of position). At day 5 after randomisation, the mean PaO2/FiO2 (irrespective of position) was 158 mm Hg (SD 63; range 84-265) in the IFX-1 group and 189 mm Hg (89; 71-329) in the control group. Analyses of the least squares mean relative change in PaO2/FiO2 at day 5 showed no differences between treatment groups (17% change in the IFX-1 group vs 41% in the control group; difference -24% [95% CI -58 to 9], p=0·15. Kaplan-Meier estimates of mortality by 28 days were 13% (95% CI 0-31) for the IFX-1 group and 27% (4-49) for the control group (adjusted hazard ratio for death 0·65 [95% CI 0·10-4·14]). The frequency of serious adverse events were similar between groups (nine [60%] in the IFX-1 group vs seven [47%] in the control group) and no deaths were considered related to treatment assignment. However, a smaller proportion of patients had pulmonary embolisms classed as serious in the IFX-1 group (two [13%]) than in the control group (six [40%]). Infections classed as serious were reported in three (20%) patients in the IFX-1 group versus five (33%) patients in the control group. Interpretation: In this small exploratory phase 2 part of the PANAMO trial, C5a inhibition with IFX-1 appears to be safe in patients with severe COVID-19. The secondary outcome results in favour of IFX-1 are preliminary because the study was not powered on these endpoints, but they support the investigation of C5a inhibition with IFX-1 in a phase 3 trial using 28-day mortality as the primary endpoint. Funding: InflaRx.

19.
Nat Biotechnol ; 39(6): 705-716, 2021 06.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-997913

ABSTRACT

In coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), hypertension and cardiovascular diseases are major risk factors for critical disease progression. However, the underlying causes and the effects of the main anti-hypertensive therapies-angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors (ACEIs) and angiotensin receptor blockers (ARBs)-remain unclear. Combining clinical data (n = 144) and single-cell sequencing data of airway samples (n = 48) with in vitro experiments, we observed a distinct inflammatory predisposition of immune cells in patients with hypertension that correlated with critical COVID-19 progression. ACEI treatment was associated with dampened COVID-19-related hyperinflammation and with increased cell intrinsic antiviral responses, whereas ARB treatment related to enhanced epithelial-immune cell interactions. Macrophages and neutrophils of patients with hypertension, in particular under ARB treatment, exhibited higher expression of the pro-inflammatory cytokines CCL3 and CCL4 and the chemokine receptor CCR1. Although the limited size of our cohort does not allow us to establish clinical efficacy, our data suggest that the clinical benefits of ACEI treatment in patients with COVID-19 who have hypertension warrant further investigation.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/drug therapy , Chemokine CCL3/genetics , Chemokine CCL4/genetics , Hypertension/drug therapy , Receptors, CCR1/genetics , Adult , Angiotensin Receptor Antagonists/administration & dosage , Angiotensin Receptor Antagonists/adverse effects , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme Inhibitors/administration & dosage , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme Inhibitors/adverse effects , COVID-19/complications , COVID-19/genetics , COVID-19/virology , Disease Progression , Female , Gene Expression Regulation/drug effects , Humans , Hypertension/complications , Hypertension/genetics , Hypertension/pathology , Inflammation/complications , Inflammation/drug therapy , Inflammation/genetics , Inflammation/virology , Male , Middle Aged , RNA-Seq , Respiratory System/drug effects , Respiratory System/pathology , Respiratory System/virology , Risk Factors , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity , Single-Cell Analysis
20.
Blood Adv ; 4(24): 6315-6326, 2020 12 22.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-985753

ABSTRACT

Community-acquired pneumonia by primary or superinfections with Streptococcus pneumoniae can lead to acute respiratory distress requiring mechanical ventilation. The pore-forming toxin pneumolysin alters the alveolar-capillary barrier and causes extravasation of protein-rich fluid into the interstitial pulmonary tissue, which impairs gas exchange. Platelets usually prevent endothelial leakage in inflamed pulmonary tissue by sealing inflammation-induced endothelial gaps. We not only confirm that S pneumoniae induces CD62P expression in platelets, but we also show that, in the presence of pneumolysin, CD62P expression is not associated with platelet activation. Pneumolysin induces pores in the platelet membrane, which allow anti-CD62P antibodies to stain the intracellular CD62P without platelet activation. Pneumolysin treatment also results in calcium efflux, increase in light transmission by platelet lysis (not aggregation), loss of platelet thrombus formation in the flow chamber, and loss of pore-sealing capacity of platelets in the Boyden chamber. Specific anti-pneumolysin monoclonal and polyclonal antibodies inhibit these effects of pneumolysin on platelets as do polyvalent human immunoglobulins. In a post hoc analysis of the prospective randomized phase 2 CIGMA trial, we show that administration of a polyvalent immunoglobulin preparation was associated with a nominally higher platelet count and nominally improved survival in patients with severe S pneumoniae-related community-acquired pneumonia. Although, due to the low number of patients, no definitive conclusion can be made, our findings provide a rationale for investigation of pharmacologic immunoglobulin preparations to target pneumolysin by polyvalent immunoglobulin preparations in severe community-acquired pneumococcal pneumonia, to counteract the risk of these patients becoming ventilation dependent. This trial was registered at www.clinicaltrials.gov as #NCT01420744.


Subject(s)
Platelet Activation , Streptolysins , Bacterial Proteins , Humans , Immunoglobulins , Prospective Studies
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