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1.
Med Sci Monit ; 26: e925591, 2020 Sep 12.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-761142

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND Beginning in the 2020 spring semester, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, all school-age children in China were homeschooled via live/recorded broadcasts, online group communication, and software-based homework submission. This study assessed the effects of and proper preparation for this educational approach. MATERIAL AND METHODS The homeschooling behaviors and feelings of school-age children were assessed with 2010 online surveys obtained separately from students, parents, and teachers of grades 1-9 in 15 Chinese provinces. Answers were compared among low- (grades 1-3), middle- (grades 4-6), and high- (grades 7-9) grade groups. The chi-square test was used to identify significant differences between groups. RESULTS We found that 76% of the respondents thought the homeschooling style was acceptable. However, teachers were concerned that students' interest, focus, and academic performance would decline. Sixty-nine percent of the parents reported their children had more than 3 hours of daily screen time, and 82% of students had less than 2 hours of daily outdoor activity. Ninety-five percent of the parents were concerned about their children's eyesight. Additionally, 17.6% of the students were suspected to have emotional or behavioral problems according to the parent-rated Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire (SDQ) results. The Self-Rating Anxiety Scale (SAS) results of parents and teachers showed higher levels of anxiety than usual. CONCLUSIONS Students should continue the going-to-school rhythm at home to cope with changes caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. Integrated grade-specific approaches are needed. Because long screen time and insufficient outdoor activities can severely affect children's eyesight, appropriate eye-protection measures should be implemented.

2.
J Virol ; 94(17)2020 08 17.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-740271

ABSTRACT

Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) is a novel coronavirus first identified in December 2019. Notable features that make SARS-CoV-2 distinct from most other previously identified betacoronaviruses include a receptor binding domain and a unique insertion of 12 nucleotides or 4 amino acids (PRRA) at the S1/S2 boundary. In this study, we identified two deletion variants of SARS-CoV-2 that either directly affect the polybasic cleavage site itself (NSPRRAR) or a flanking sequence (QTQTN). These deletions were verified by multiple sequencing methods. In vitro results showed that the deletion of NSPRRAR likely does not affect virus replication in Vero and Vero-E6 cells; however, the deletion of QTQTN may restrict late-phase viral replication. The deletion of QTQTN was detected in 3 of 68 clinical samples and 12 of 24 in vitro-isolated viruses, while the deletion of NSPRRAR was identified in 3 in vitro-isolated viruses. Our data indicate that (i) there may be distinct selection pressures on SARS-CoV-2 replication or infection in vitro and in vivo; (ii) an efficient mechanism for deleting this region from the viral genome may exist, given that the deletion variant is commonly detected after two rounds of cell passage; and (iii) the PRRA insertion, which is unique to SARS-CoV-2, is not fixed during virus replication in vitro These findings provide information to aid further investigation of SARS-CoV-2 infection mechanisms and a better understanding of the NSPRRAR deletion variant observed here.IMPORTANCE The spike protein determines the infectivity and host range of coronaviruses. Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) has two unique features in its spike protein, the receptor binding domain and an insertion of 12 nucleotides at the S1/S2 boundary resulting in a furin-like cleavage site. Here, we identified two deletion variants of SARS-CoV-2 that either directly affect the furin-like cleavage site itself (NSPRRAR) or a flanking sequence (QTQTN), and we investigated these deletions in cell isolates and clinical samples. The absence of the polybasic cleavage site in SARS-CoV-2 did not affect virus replication in Vero or Vero-E6 cells. Our data indicate the PRRAR sequence and the flanking QTQTN sequence are not fixed in vitro; thus, there appears to be distinct selection pressures on SARS-CoV-2 sequences in vitro and in vivo Further investigation of the mechanism of generating these deletion variants and their infectivity in different animal models would improve our understanding of the origin and evolution of this virus.


Subject(s)
Betacoronavirus/genetics , Betacoronavirus/metabolism , Sequence Deletion , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/isolation & purification , Amino Acid Sequence , Animals , Base Sequence , Cell Line , Chlorocebus aethiops , Coronavirus Infections/virology , Furin/metabolism , Genome, Viral , Host Specificity , Kinetics , Models, Molecular , Pandemics , Pneumonia, Viral/virology , Protein Conformation , Sequence Analysis , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/chemistry , Vero Cells , Virus Replication
3.
Ann Intern Med ; 2020 Sep 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-738264

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: The role of fecal aerosols in the transmission of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 has been suspected. OBJECTIVE: To investigate the temporal and spatial distributions of 3 infected families in a high-rise apartment building and examine the associated environment variables to verify the role of fecal aerosols. DESIGN: Epidemiologic survey and quantitative reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reaction analyses on throat swabs from the participants; 237 surface and air samples from 11 of the 83 flats in the building, public areas, and building drainage systems; and tracer gas released into bathrooms as a surrogate for virus-laden aerosols in the drainage system. SETTING: A high-rise apartment building in Guangzhou, China. PARTICIPANTS: 9 infected patients, 193 other residents of the building, and 24 members of the building's management staff. MEASUREMENTS: Locations of infected flats and positive environmental samples, and spread of virus-laden aerosols. RESULTS: 9 infected patients in 3 families were identified. The first family had a history of travel to the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) epicenter Wuhan, whereas the other 2 families had no travel history and a later onset of symptoms. No evidence was found for transmission via the elevator or elsewhere. The families lived in 3 vertically aligned flats connected by drainage pipes in the master bathrooms. Both the observed infections and the locations of positive environmental samples are consistent with the vertical spread of virus-laden aerosols via these stacks and vents. LIMITATION: Inability to determine whether the water seals were dried out in the flats of the infected families. CONCLUSION: On the basis of circumstantial evidence, fecal aerosol transmission may have caused the community outbreak of COVID-19 in this high-rise building. PRIMARY FUNDING SOURCE: Key-Area Research and Development Program of Guangdong Province and the Research Grants Council of Hong Kong.

4.
Cell Mol Life Sci ; 2020 Aug 11.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-708549

ABSTRACT

Currently, a novel coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2, also called 2019-nCoV) has triggered pandemic Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19), an acute infectious respiratory disease that first became epidemic in Wuhan (China) and is now spreading worldwide. Although 2019-nCoV and SARS-CoV are very similar viruses genomically and structurally, the huge number of severe cases and deaths now being caused by 2019-nCoV infections has understandably prompted intense research on the receptor used by it to enter human cells. Angiotensin converting enzyme 2 (ACE2), a functional receptor for SARS-CoV, now appears likely to mediate 2019-nCoV entry into human cells. In this review, we describe the roles performed by ACE2 as an enzymatic catalyst and as a receptor for this novel coronavirus. We also summarize the latest research pertaining to the changes noted in ACE2 expression after viral binding, and the relationships relating to virus transmission and population susceptibility to it. Lastly, we speculate on the pathogenesis of COVID-19 and provide a useful reference for drug development against this aggressive virus.

5.
BMC Med Imaging ; 20(1): 92, 2020 08 05.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-696127

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: To investigate the CT changes of different clinical types of COVID-19 pneumonia. METHODS: This retrospective study included 50 patients with COVID-19 from 16 January 2020 to 25 February 2020. We analyzed the clinical characteristics, CT characteristics and the pneumonia involvement of the patients between the moderate group and the severe and critical group, and the dynamic changes of severity with the CT follow-up time. RESULTS: There were differences in the CT severity score of the right lung in the initial CT, and total CT severity score in the initial and follow-up CT between the moderate group and the severe and critical group (all p < 0.05). There was a quadratic relationship between total CT severity score and CT follow-up time in the severe and critical group (r2 = 0.137, p = 0.008), the total CT severity score peaked at the second follow-up CT. There was no correlation between total CT severity score and CT follow-up time in the moderate group (p > 0.05). There were no differences in the occurrence rate of CT characteristics in the initial CT between the two groups (all p > 0.05). There were differences in the occurrence rate of ground-glass opacity and crazy-paving pattern in the second follow-up CT, and pleural thickening or adhesion in the third follow-up CT between the two groups (all p < 0.05). CONCLUSIONS: The CT changes of COVID-19 pneumonia with different severity were different, and the extent of pneumonia involvement by CT can help to assess the severity of COVID-19 pneumonia rather than the initial CT characteristics.


Subject(s)
Coronavirus Infections/diagnostic imaging , Pneumonia, Viral/diagnostic imaging , Pneumonia/virology , Radiographic Image Interpretation, Computer-Assisted/methods , Adult , Aged , Coronavirus Infections/pathology , Female , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Pandemics , Pneumonia/diagnostic imaging , Pneumonia/pathology , Pneumonia, Viral/pathology , Retrospective Studies , Severity of Illness Index , Tomography, X-Ray Computed , Young Adult
6.
SN Compr Clin Med ; : 1-6, 2020 Jul 04.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-632712

ABSTRACT

In early January 2020, the outbreak of the new corona virus pneumonia (Corona Virus Disease 2019, COVID-19) occurred. Wuhan, the capital city of Hubei province, became the epicenter of the disease in China. The rapid growth of patients had exceeded the maximum affordability of local medical resources. A large comprehensive gymnasium was converted into Wuchang Fangcang Shelter Hospital in order to provide adequate medical beds and appropriate care for the confirmed patients with mild to moderate symptoms. For these hospitalized patients with COVID-19, medication became the mainstay of therapy. From 5th February to 10th March, a team of pharmacists successfully completed drug supplies and pharmaceutical services for 1124 patients and approximately 800 medical staff, and, while doing so, received zero complaint, and experienced zero disputes and zero pharmacist infection. This paper summarizes the development and construction of the pharmacy, human resource allocation of pharmacists, pharmacy administration, and pharmaceutical services. It aims to review a 34-day period of pharmaceutical practice and serve as a reference for other health professionals working on COVID-19 prevention and treatment in other regions.

7.
J Virol ; 94(17)2020 08 17.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-610356

ABSTRACT

Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) is a novel coronavirus first identified in December 2019. Notable features that make SARS-CoV-2 distinct from most other previously identified betacoronaviruses include a receptor binding domain and a unique insertion of 12 nucleotides or 4 amino acids (PRRA) at the S1/S2 boundary. In this study, we identified two deletion variants of SARS-CoV-2 that either directly affect the polybasic cleavage site itself (NSPRRAR) or a flanking sequence (QTQTN). These deletions were verified by multiple sequencing methods. In vitro results showed that the deletion of NSPRRAR likely does not affect virus replication in Vero and Vero-E6 cells; however, the deletion of QTQTN may restrict late-phase viral replication. The deletion of QTQTN was detected in 3 of 68 clinical samples and 12 of 24 in vitro-isolated viruses, while the deletion of NSPRRAR was identified in 3 in vitro-isolated viruses. Our data indicate that (i) there may be distinct selection pressures on SARS-CoV-2 replication or infection in vitro and in vivo; (ii) an efficient mechanism for deleting this region from the viral genome may exist, given that the deletion variant is commonly detected after two rounds of cell passage; and (iii) the PRRA insertion, which is unique to SARS-CoV-2, is not fixed during virus replication in vitro These findings provide information to aid further investigation of SARS-CoV-2 infection mechanisms and a better understanding of the NSPRRAR deletion variant observed here.IMPORTANCE The spike protein determines the infectivity and host range of coronaviruses. Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) has two unique features in its spike protein, the receptor binding domain and an insertion of 12 nucleotides at the S1/S2 boundary resulting in a furin-like cleavage site. Here, we identified two deletion variants of SARS-CoV-2 that either directly affect the furin-like cleavage site itself (NSPRRAR) or a flanking sequence (QTQTN), and we investigated these deletions in cell isolates and clinical samples. The absence of the polybasic cleavage site in SARS-CoV-2 did not affect virus replication in Vero or Vero-E6 cells. Our data indicate the PRRAR sequence and the flanking QTQTN sequence are not fixed in vitro; thus, there appears to be distinct selection pressures on SARS-CoV-2 sequences in vitro and in vivo Further investigation of the mechanism of generating these deletion variants and their infectivity in different animal models would improve our understanding of the origin and evolution of this virus.


Subject(s)
Betacoronavirus/genetics , Betacoronavirus/metabolism , Sequence Deletion , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/isolation & purification , Amino Acid Sequence , Animals , Base Sequence , Cell Line , Chlorocebus aethiops , Coronavirus Infections/virology , Furin/metabolism , Genome, Viral , Host Specificity , Kinetics , Models, Molecular , Pandemics , Pneumonia, Viral/virology , Protein Conformation , Sequence Analysis , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/chemistry , Vero Cells , Virus Replication
8.
J Med Virol ; 2020 Jun 03.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-505569

ABSTRACT

In this study, we designed a set of SARS-CoV-2 enrichment probes to increase the capacity for sequence-based virus detection and obtain the comprehensive genome sequence at the same time. This universal SARS-CoV-2 enrichment probe set contains 502 120 nt single-stranded DNA biotin-labeled probes designed based on all available SARS-CoV-2 viral sequences and it can be used to enrich for SARS-CoV-2 sequences without prior knowledge of type or subtype. Following the CDC health and safety guidelines, marked enrichment was demonstrated in a virus strain sample from cell culture, three nasopharyngeal swab samples (cycle threshold [Ct ] values: 32.36, 36.72, and 38.44) from patients diagnosed with COVID-19 (positive control) and four throat swab samples from patients without COVID-19 (negative controls), respectively. Moreover, based on these high-quality sequences, we discuss the heterozygosity and viral expression during coronavirus replication and its phylogenetic relationship with other selected high-quality samples from the Genome Variation Map. Therefore, this universal SARS-CoV-2 enrichment probe system can capture and enrich SARS-CoV-2 viral sequences selectively and effectively in different samples, especially clinical swab samples with a relatively low concentration of viral particles.

10.
Chin. J. Microbiol. Immunol. ; 3(40): 174-177, 20200331.
Article in Chinese | ELSEVIER | ID: covidwho-142790

ABSTRACT

Objective: To obtain the genome sequences of SARS-CoV-2 in respiratory specimens in Guangdong Province with next-generation sequencing (NGS) and analyze the factors influencing sequencing. Methods: Eight upper and lower respiratory tract specimens were collected from patients with SARS-CoV-2 infection in Guangdong Province in January 2020. RNA library construction was used to obtain the genome sequences of SARS-CoV-2. A bio-informatics software package (CLC Genomics Workbench 12.0) was used to analyze and compare the genomic sequences. Results: Five SARS-CoV-2 genome sequences were obtained from the eight specimens and two were obtained from lower respiratory tract specimens. The nucleotide homology to SARS-CoV-2 was 97.74%-99.90%. The Ct values were lower, while the sequencing depth, coverage, relative abundance and genome integrity were higher in sequencing the SARS-CoV-2 in lower respiratory tract specimens. Conclusions: The low Ct value of SARS-CoV-2 in the samples was good for sequencing.

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