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1.
Front Cardiovasc Med ; 9: 893681, 2022.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1952283

ABSTRACT

Background: Heart rate-corrected QT interval (QTc) prolongation is prevalent in patients with severe coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) and is associated with poor outcomes. Recent evidence suggests that the exaggerated host immune-inflammatory response characterizing the disease, specifically interleukin-6 (IL-6) increase, may have an important role, possibly via direct effects on cardiac electrophysiology. The aim of this study was to dissect the short-term discrete impact of IL-6 elevation on QTc in patients with severe COVID-19 infection and explore the underlying mechanisms. Methods: We investigated the following mechanisms: (1) the QTc duration in patients with COVID-19 during the active phase and recovery, and its association with C-reactive protein (CRP) and IL-6 levels; (2) the acute impact of IL-6 administration on QTc in an in vivo guinea pig model; and (3) the electrophysiological effects of IL-6 on ventricular myocytes in vitro. Results: In patients with active severe COVID-19 and elevated IL-6 levels, regardless of acute myocardial injury/strain and concomitant QT-prolonging risk factors, QTc was significantly prolonged and rapidly normalized in correlation with IL-6 decrease. The direct administration of IL-6 in an in vivo guinea pig model acutely prolongs QTc duration. Moreover, ventricular myocytes incubated in vitro with IL-6 show evident prolongation in the action potential, along with significant inhibition in the rapid delayed rectifier potassium current (IKr). Conclusion: For the first time, we demonstrated that in severe COVID-19, systemic inflammatory activation can per se promote QTc prolongation via IL-6 elevation, leading to ventricular electric remodeling. Despite being transitory, such modifications may significantly contribute to arrhythmic events and associated poor outcomes in COVID-19. These findings provide a further rationale for current anti-inflammatory treatments for COVID-19, including IL-6-targeted therapies.

2.
Frontiers in cardiovascular medicine ; 9, 2022.
Article in English | EuropePMC | ID: covidwho-1877094

ABSTRACT

Background Heart rate-corrected QT interval (QTc) prolongation is prevalent in patients with severe coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) and is associated with poor outcomes. Recent evidence suggests that the exaggerated host immune-inflammatory response characterizing the disease, specifically interleukin-6 (IL-6) increase, may have an important role, possibly via direct effects on cardiac electrophysiology. The aim of this study was to dissect the short-term discrete impact of IL-6 elevation on QTc in patients with severe COVID-19 infection and explore the underlying mechanisms. Methods We investigated the following mechanisms: (1) the QTc duration in patients with COVID-19 during the active phase and recovery, and its association with C-reactive protein (CRP) and IL-6 levels;(2) the acute impact of IL-6 administration on QTc in an in vivo guinea pig model;and (3) the electrophysiological effects of IL-6 on ventricular myocytes in vitro. Results In patients with active severe COVID-19 and elevated IL-6 levels, regardless of acute myocardial injury/strain and concomitant QT-prolonging risk factors, QTc was significantly prolonged and rapidly normalized in correlation with IL-6 decrease. The direct administration of IL-6 in an in vivo guinea pig model acutely prolongs QTc duration. Moreover, ventricular myocytes incubated in vitro with IL-6 show evident prolongation in the action potential, along with significant inhibition in the rapid delayed rectifier potassium current (IKr). Conclusion For the first time, we demonstrated that in severe COVID-19, systemic inflammatory activation can per se promote QTc prolongation via IL-6 elevation, leading to ventricular electric remodeling. Despite being transitory, such modifications may significantly contribute to arrhythmic events and associated poor outcomes in COVID-19. These findings provide a further rationale for current anti-inflammatory treatments for COVID-19, including IL-6-targeted therapies.

3.
Transbound Emerg Dis ; 2022 Apr 02.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1774901

ABSTRACT

The ongoing enzootic circulation of the Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) in the Middle East and North Africa is increasingly raising the concern about the possibility of its recombination with other human-adapted coronaviruses, particularly the pandemic SARS-CoV-2. We aim to provide an updated picture about ecological niches of MERS-CoV and associated socio-environmental drivers. Based on 356 confirmed MERS cases with animal contact reported to the WHO and 63 records of animal infections collected from the literature as of 30 May 2020, we assessed ecological niches of MERS-CoV using an ensemble model integrating three machine learning algorithms. With a high predictive accuracy (area under receiver operating characteristic curve = 91.66% in test data), the ensemble model estimated that ecologically suitable areas span over the Middle East, South Asia and the whole North Africa, much wider than the range of reported locally infected MERS cases and test-positive animal samples. Ecological suitability for MERS-CoV was significantly associated with high levels of bareland coverage (relative contribution = 30.06%), population density (7.28%), average temperature (6.48%) and camel density (6.20%). Future surveillance and intervention programs should target the high-risk populations and regions informed by updated quantitative analyses.

4.
Infect Dis Poverty ; 10(1): 66, 2021 May 08.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1220374

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: The ongoing transmission of the Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) in the Middle East and its expansion to other regions are raising concerns of a potential pandemic. An in-depth analysis about both population and molecular epidemiology of this pathogen is needed. METHODS: MERS cases reported globally as of June 2020 were collected mainly from World Health Organization official reports, supplemented by other reliable sources. Determinants for case fatality and spatial diffusion of MERS were assessed with Logistic regressions and Cox proportional hazard models, respectively. Phylogenetic and phylogeographic analyses were performed to examine the evolution and migration history of MERS-CoV. RESULTS: A total of 2562 confirmed MERS cases with 150 case clusters were reported with a case fatality rate of 32.7% (95% CI: 30.9‒34.6%). Saudi Arabia accounted for 83.6% of the cases. Age of ≥ 65 years old, underlying conditions and ≥ 5 days delay in diagnosis were independent risk factors for death. However, a history of animal contact was associated with a higher risk (adjusted OR = 2.97, 95% CI: 1.10-7.98) among female cases < 65 years but with a lower risk (adjusted OR = 0.31, 95% CI: 0.18-0.51) among male cases ≥ 65 years old. Diffusion of the disease was fastest from its origin in Saudi Arabia to the east, and was primarily driven by the transportation network. The most recent sub-clade C5.1 (since 2013) was associated with non-synonymous mutations and a higher mortality rate. Phylogeographic analyses pointed to Riyadh of Saudi Arabia and Abu Dhabi of the United Arab Emirates as the hubs for both local and international spread of MERS-CoV. CONCLUSIONS: MERS-CoV remains primarily locally transmitted in the Middle East, with opportunistic exportation to other continents and a potential of causing transmission clusters of human cases. Animal contact is associated with a higher risk of death, but the association differs by age and sex. Transportation network is the leading driver for the spatial diffusion of the disease. These findings how this pathogen spread are helpful for targeting public health surveillance and interventions to control endemics and to prevent a potential pandemic.


Subject(s)
Coronavirus Infections/epidemiology , Coronavirus Infections/transmission , Adult , Aged , Animals , Evolution, Molecular , Female , Humans , Logistic Models , Male , Middle Aged , Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus/isolation & purification , Molecular Epidemiology , Mortality , Phylogeny , Saudi Arabia/epidemiology , Survival Analysis , Zoonoses/epidemiology , Zoonoses/virology
6.
Gastroenterol Rep (Oxf) ; 9(1): 85-87, 2021 Jan.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-977375
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