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1.
Clin Microbiol Infect ; 2022 Apr 28.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1872991

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVES: The COVID-19 pandemic increases healthcare worker (HCW) absenteeism. The bacillus Calmette-Guérin (BCG) vaccine may provide non-specific protection against respiratory infections through enhancement of trained immunity. We investigated the impact of BCG vaccination on HCW absenteeism during the COVID-19 pandemic. METHODS: HCWs exposed to COVID-19 patients in nine Dutch hospitals were randomized to BCG vaccine or placebo in a 1:1 ratio, and followed for one year using a mobile phone application. The primary endpoint was the self-reported number of days of unplanned absenteeism for any reason. Secondary endpoints included documented COVID-19, acute respiratory symptoms or fever. This was an investigator-funded study, registered at ClinicalTrials.gov (NCT03987919). RESULTS: In March/April 2020, 1511 HCWs were enrolled. The median duration of follow-up was 357 person-days (interquartile range [IQR], 351 to 361). Unplanned absenteeism for any reason was observed in 2.8% of planned working days in the BCG group and 2.7% in the placebo group (adjusted relative risk 0.94; 95% credible interval, 0.78-1.15). Cumulative incidences of documented COVID-19 were 14.2% in the BCG and 15.2% in the placebo group (adjusted hazard ratio (aHR) 0.94; 95% confidence interval (CI), 0.72-1.24). First episodes of self-reported acute respiratory symptoms or fever occurred in 490 (66.2%) and 443 (60.2%) participants, respectively (aHR: 1.13; 95% CI, 0.99-1.28). Thirty-one serious adverse events were reported (13 after BCG, 18 after placebo), none considered related to study medication. CONCLUSIONS: During the COVID-19 pandemic, BCG-vaccination of HCW exposed to COVID-19 patients did not reduce unplanned absenteeism nor documented COVID-19.

2.
Sci Rep ; 12(1): 8991, 2022 May 30.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1868022

ABSTRACT

Knowledge about contagiousness is key to accurate management of hospitalized COVID-19 patients. Epidemiological studies suggest that in addition to transmission through droplets, aerogenic SARS-CoV-2 transmission contributes to the spread of infection. However, the presence of virus in exhaled air has not yet been sufficiently demonstrated. In pandemic situations low tech disposable and user-friendly bedside devices are required, while commercially available samplers are unsuitable for application in patients with respiratory distress. We included 49 hospitalized COVID-19 patients and used a disposable modular breath sampler to measure SARS-CoV-2 RNA load in exhaled air samples and compared these to SARS-CoV-2 RNA load of combined nasopharyngeal throat swabs and saliva. Exhaled air sampling using the modular breath sampler has proven feasible in a clinical COVID-19 setting and demonstrated viral detection in 25% of the patients.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , RNA, Viral , COVID-19/diagnosis , Humans , Nasopharynx , Pharynx , RNA, Viral/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/genetics
3.
EClinicalMedicine ; 48:101414-101414, 2022.
Article in English | EuropePMC | ID: covidwho-1843171

ABSTRACT

Background BCG vaccination prevents severe childhood tuberculosis (TB) and was introduced in South Africa in the 1950s. It is hypothesised that BCG trains the innate immune system by inducing epigenetic and functional reprogramming, thus providing non-specific protection from respiratory tract infections. We evaluated BCG for reduction of morbidity and mortality due to COVID-19 in healthcare workers in South Africa. Methods This randomised, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial recruited healthcare workers at three facilities in the Western Cape, South Africa, unless unwell, pregnant, breastfeeding, immunocompromised, hypersensitivity to BCG, or undergoing experimental COVID-19 treatment. Participants received BCG or saline intradermally (1:1) and were contacted once every 4 weeks for 1 year. COVID-19 testing was guided by symptoms. Hospitalisation, COVID-19, and respiratory tract infections were assessed with Cox proportional hazard modelling and time-to-event analyses, and event severity with post hoc Markovian analysis. This study is registered with ClinicalTrials.gov, NCT04379336. Findings Between May 4 and Oct 23, 2020, we enrolled 1000 healthcare workers with a median age of 39 years (IQR 30–49), 70·4% were female, 16·5% nurses, 14·4% medical doctors, 48·5% had latent TB, and 15·3% had evidence of prior SARS-CoV-2 exposure. Hospitalisation due to COVID-19 occurred in 15 participants (1·5%);ten (66·7%) in the BCG group and five (33·3%) in the placebo group, hazard ratio (HR) 2·0 (95% CI 0·69–5·9, p = 0·20), indicating no statistically significant protection. Similarly, BCG had no statistically significant effect on COVID-19 (p = 0·63, HR = 1·08, 95% CI 0·82–1·42). Two participants (0·2%) died from COVID-19 and two (0·2%) from other reasons, all in the placebo group. Interpretation BCG did not protect healthcare workers from SARS-CoV-2 infection or related severe COVID-19 disease and hospitalisation. Funding Funding provided by EDCTP, grant number RIA2020EF-2968. Additional funding provided by private donors including: Mediclinic, Calavera Capital (Pty) Ltd, Thys Du Toit, Louis Stassen, The Ryan Foundation, and Dream World Investments 401 (Pty) Ltd. The computations were enabled by resources in project SNIC 2020–5–524 provided by the Swedish National Infrastructure for Computing (SNIC) at UPPMAX, partially funded by the Swedish Research Council through grant agreement No. 2018–05,973.

4.
Clin Infect Dis ; 2022 Mar 05.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1831053

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Older age is associated with increased severity and death from respiratory infections, including coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19). The tuberculosis vaccine Bacille Calmette-Guérin (BCG) may provide heterologous protection against non-tuberculous infections, and has been proposed as a potential preventive strategy against Covid-19. METHODS: In this multicenter, placebo-controlled trial, we randomly assigned elderly individuals (60 years or older, n=2014) to intracutaneous vaccination with BCG (n=1008) or placebo (n=1006). The primary endpoint was the cumulative incidence of respiratory tract infections that required medical intervention, during 12 months of follow-up. Secondary endpoints included the incidence of Covid-19, and the effect of BCG vaccination on the cellular and humoral immune responses. RESULTS: The cumulative incidence of respiratory tract infection requiring medical intervention was 0.029 in the BCG-vaccinated group and 0.024 in the control group (subdistribution hazard ratio [SHR], 1.26; 98.2% confidence interval [CI], 0.65 to 2.44). 51 and 48 individuals tested positive for SARS-CoV-2 by PCR in the BCG and placebo group, respectively (SHR, 1.053; 95% CI, 0.71 to 1.56). No difference was observed in the frequency of adverse events. BCG vaccination was associated with enhanced cytokines responses after influenza, and partially also after SARS-CoV-2 stimulation. In patients diagnosed with Covid-19, antibody responses after infection were significantly stronger if the volunteers had previously received BCG. CONCLUSIONS: BCG-vaccination had no effect on the incidence of respiratory tract infections, including SARS-CoV-2 infection, in elderly volunteers. However, BCG vaccination improved cytokine responses stimulated by influenza and SARS-CoV-2, and induced stronger antibody titers after Covid-19 infection.

5.
Front Immunol ; 13: 838132, 2022.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1809394

ABSTRACT

The majority of COVID-19 patients experience mild to moderate disease course and recover within a few weeks. An increasing number of studies characterized the long-term changes in the specific anti-SARS-CoV-2 immune responses, but how COVID-19 shapes the innate and heterologous adaptive immune system after recovery is less well known. To comprehensively investigate the post-SARS-CoV-2 infection sequelae on the immune system, we performed a multi-omics study by integrating single-cell RNA-sequencing, single-cell ATAC-sequencing, genome-wide DNA methylation profiling, and functional validation experiments in 14 convalescent COVID-19 and 15 healthy individuals. We showed that immune responses generally recover without major sequelae after COVID-19. However, subtle differences persist at the transcriptomic level in monocytes, with downregulation of the interferon pathway, while DNA methylation also displays minor changes in convalescent COVID-19 individuals. However, these differences did not affect the cytokine production capacity of PBMCs upon different bacterial, viral, and fungal stimuli, although baseline release of IL-1Ra and IFN-γ was higher in convalescent individuals. In conclusion, we propose that despite minor differences in epigenetic and transcriptional programs, the immune system of convalescent COVID-19 patients largely recovers to the homeostatic level of healthy individuals.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Convalescence , Disease Progression , Humans , Leukocytes, Mononuclear , SARS-CoV-2
6.
J Clin Invest ; 132(7)2022 04 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1673606

ABSTRACT

Trained immunity refers to the long-lasting memory traits of innate immunity. Recent studies have shown that trained immunity is orchestrated by sustained changes in epigenetic marks and metabolic pathways, leading to an altered transcriptional response to a second challenge. However, the potential heterogeneity of trained-immunity induction in innate immune cells has not been explored. In this study, we demonstrate cellular transcriptional programs in response to 4 different inducers of trained immunity in monocyte populations at single-cell resolution. Specifically, we identified 3 monocyte subpopulations upon the induction of trained immunity, and replicated these findings in an in vivo study. In addition, we found gene signatures consistent with these functional programs in patients with ulcerative colitis, sepsis, and COVID-19, suggesting the impact of trained-immunity programs in immune-mediated diseases.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Immune System Diseases , COVID-19/genetics , Humans , Immunity, Innate , Immunologic Memory , Monocytes , Sequence Analysis, RNA
7.
Nat Med ; 28(1): 39-50, 2022 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1641982

ABSTRACT

Immune dysregulation is an important component of the pathophysiology of COVID-19. A large body of literature has reported the effect of immune-based therapies in patients with COVID-19, with some remarkable successes such as the use of steroids or anti-cytokine therapies. However, challenges in clinical decision-making arise from the complexity of the disease phenotypes and patient heterogeneity, as well as the variable quality of evidence from immunotherapy studies. This Review aims to support clinical decision-making by providing an overview of the evidence generated by major clinical trials of host-directed therapy. We discuss patient stratification and propose an algorithm to guide the use of immunotherapy strategies in the clinic. This will not only help guide treatment decisions, but may also help to design future trials that investigate immunotherapy in other severe infections.


Subject(s)
Anticoagulants/therapeutic use , COVID-19/therapy , Complement Inactivating Agents/therapeutic use , Glucocorticoids/therapeutic use , Immunologic Factors/therapeutic use , Immunomodulation , Protein Kinase Inhibitors/therapeutic use , Antibodies, Monoclonal/therapeutic use , Antibodies, Monoclonal, Humanized/therapeutic use , Antibodies, Neutralizing/therapeutic use , Azetidines/therapeutic use , Bradykinin/analogs & derivatives , Bradykinin/therapeutic use , Bradykinin B2 Receptor Antagonists/therapeutic use , COVID-19/immunology , Dexamethasone/therapeutic use , Drug Combinations , Factor Xa Inhibitors/therapeutic use , Heparin/therapeutic use , Humans , Hydrocortisone/therapeutic use , Imatinib Mesylate/therapeutic use , Immunization, Passive , Interferon beta-1a/therapeutic use , Interferon beta-1b/therapeutic use , Interferon-gamma/therapeutic use , Interleukin 1 Receptor Antagonist Protein/therapeutic use , Kallikrein-Kinin System , Piperidines/therapeutic use , Purines/therapeutic use , Pyrazoles/therapeutic use , Pyrimidines/therapeutic use , SARS-CoV-2 , Sulfonamides/therapeutic use
8.
Trends Immunol ; 43(2): 106-116, 2022 02.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1560364

ABSTRACT

Not all individuals exposed to a pathogen develop illness: some are naturally resistant whereas others develop an asymptomatic infection. Epidemiological studies suggest that there is similar variability in susceptibility to severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) infections. We propose that natural resistance is part of the disease history in some individuals exposed to this new coronavirus. Epidemiological arguments for natural resistance to SARS-CoV-2 are the lower seropositivity of children compared to adults, studies on closed environments of ships with outbreaks, and prevalence studies in some developing countries. Potential mechanisms of natural resistance include host genetic variants, viral interference, cross-protective natural antibodies, T cell immunity, and highly effective innate immune responses. Better understanding of natural resistance can help to advance preventive and therapeutic measures against infections for improved preparedness against potential future pandemics.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Humans , Immunity, Innate , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2 , T-Lymphocytes
9.
PLoS Pathog ; 17(10): e1009928, 2021 10.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1484868

ABSTRACT

Non-specific protective effects of certain vaccines have been reported, and long-term boosting of innate immunity, termed trained immunity, has been proposed as one of the mechanisms mediating these effects. Several epidemiological studies suggested cross-protection between influenza vaccination and COVID-19. In a large academic Dutch hospital, we found that SARS-CoV-2 infection was less common among employees who had received a previous influenza vaccination: relative risk reductions of 37% and 49% were observed following influenza vaccination during the first and second COVID-19 waves, respectively. The quadrivalent inactivated influenza vaccine induced a trained immunity program that boosted innate immune responses against various viral stimuli and fine-tuned the anti-SARS-CoV-2 response, which may result in better protection against COVID-19. Influenza vaccination led to transcriptional reprogramming of monocytes and reduced systemic inflammation. These epidemiological and immunological data argue for potential benefits of influenza vaccination against COVID-19, and future randomized trials are warranted to test this possibility.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/immunology , Cross Protection/physiology , Immunity, Innate/physiology , Influenza Vaccines/administration & dosage , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/prevention & control , Cytokines/immunology , Cytokines/metabolism , Down-Regulation , Imidazoles/immunology , Incidence , Influenza Vaccines/immunology , Netherlands/epidemiology , Personnel, Hospital , Poly I-C/immunology , Proteomics , Risk Factors , Sequence Analysis, RNA
10.
Med (N Y) ; 2(10): 1163-1170.e2, 2021 10 08.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1433668

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Prolonged severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) shedding has been described in immunocompromised coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) patients, resulting in protracted disease and poor outcome. Specific therapy to improve viral clearance and outcome for this group of patients is currently unavailable. METHODS: Five critically ill COVID-19 patients with severe defects in cellular immune responses, high SARS-CoV-2 viral RNA loads, and no respiratory improvement were treated with interferon gamma, 100 µg subcutaneously, thrice weekly. Bronchial secretion was collected every 48 h for routine diagnostic SARS-CoV-2 RT-PCR and viral culture. FINDINGS: Interferon gamma administration was followed by a rapid decline in SARS-CoV-2 load and a positive-to-negative viral culture conversion. Four patients recovered, and no signs of hyperinflammation were observed. CONCLUSIONS: Interferon gamma may be considered as adjuvant immunotherapy in a subset of immunocompromised COVID-19 patients. FUNDING: A.v.L. and R.v.C. are supported by National Institutes of Health (R01AI145781). G.J.O. and R.P.v.R. are supported by a VICI grant (016.VICI.170.090) from the Dutch Research Council (NWO). W.F.A. is supported by a clinical fellowship grant (9071561) of Netherlands Organization for Health Research and Development. M.G.N. is supported by an ERC advanced grant (833247) and a Spinoza grant of the Netherlands Organization for Scientific Research.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Critical Illness/therapy , Humans , Immunity, Cellular , Immunotherapy , Interferon-gamma , Research , SARS-CoV-2 , United States
11.
Cell ; 181(5): 969-977, 2020 05 28.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1385208

ABSTRACT

SARS-CoV-2 infection is mild in the majority of individuals but progresses into severe pneumonia in a small proportion of patients. The increased susceptibility to severe disease in the elderly and individuals with co-morbidities argues for an initial defect in anti-viral host defense mechanisms. Long-term boosting of innate immune responses, also termed "trained immunity," by certain live vaccines (BCG, oral polio vaccine, measles) induces heterologous protection against infections through epigenetic, transcriptional, and functional reprogramming of innate immune cells. We propose that induction of trained immunity by whole-microorganism vaccines may represent an important tool for reducing susceptibility to and severity of SARS-CoV-2.


Subject(s)
Betacoronavirus/physiology , Coronavirus Infections/immunology , Immunity, Innate , Immunomodulation , Pneumonia, Viral/immunology , SARS Virus/physiology , Animals , BCG Vaccine/immunology , COVID-19 , Clinical Trials as Topic , Coronavirus Infections/pathology , Coronavirus Infections/physiopathology , Coronavirus Infections/transmission , Humans , Immunity, Innate/drug effects , Lung/immunology , Lung/pathology , Lymphopenia/pathology , Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus/physiology , Pandemics , Pneumonia, Viral/pathology , Pneumonia, Viral/physiopathology , Pneumonia, Viral/transmission , SARS-CoV-2 , Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome/immunology , Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome/pathology , Virus Replication
12.
Trop Med Infect Dis ; 6(1)2021 01 08.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1207815

ABSTRACT

Diabetes Mellitus increases the risk of developing Tuberculosis (TB) disease by about three times; it also doubles the risk of death during TB treatment and other poor TB treatment outcomes. Diabetes may increase the risk of latent infection with Mycobacterium tuberculosis (LTBI), but the magnitude of this effect is less clear. Whilst this syndemic has received considerable attention, most of the published research has focussed on screening for undiagnosed diabetes in TB patients or observational follow-up of TB treatment outcomes by diabetes status. There are thus substantial research and policy gaps, particularly with regard to prevention of TB disease in people with diabetes and management of patients with TB-diabetes, both during TB treatment and after successful completion of TB treatment, when they likely remain at high risk of TB recurrence, mortality from TB and cardiovascular disease. Potential strategies to prevent development of TB disease might include targeted vaccination programmes, screening for LTBI and preventive therapy among diabetes patients or, perhaps ideally, improved diabetes management and prevention. The cost-effectiveness of each of these, and in particular how each strategy might compare with targeted TB prevention among other population groups at higher risk of developing TB disease, is also unknown. Despite research gaps, clinicians urgently need practical management advice and more research evidence on the choice and dose of different anti-diabetes medication and effective medical therapies to reduce cardiovascular risks (statins, anti-hypertensives and aspirin). Substantial health system strengthening and integration may be needed to prevent these at risk patients being lost to care at the end of TB treatment.

13.
mBio ; 11(6)2020 12 22.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1189818

ABSTRACT

The development of vaccines is one of the greatest medical interventions in the history of global infectious diseases and has contributed to the annual saving of at least 2 to 3 million lives worldwide. However, many diseases are not preventable through currently available vaccines, and the potential of modulating the immune response during vaccination has not been fully exploited. The first golden age of vaccines was based on the germ theory and the use of live, attenuated, inactivated pathogens or toxins. New strategies and formulations (e.g., adjuvants) with an immunomodulatory capacity to enhance the protective qualities and duration of vaccines have been incompletely exploited. These strategies can prevent disease and improve protection against infectious diseases, modulate the course of some noncommunicable diseases, and increase the immune responses of patients at a high risk of infection, such as the elderly or immunocompromised patients. In this minireview, we focus on how metabolic and epigenetic modulators can amplify and enhance the function of immunity in a given vaccine. We propose the term "amplifier" for such additives, and we pose that future vaccines will have three components: antigen, adjuvant, and amplifier.


Subject(s)
Adjuvants, Immunologic/administration & dosage , Drug Design , Immunomodulation , Pandemics/prevention & control , Vaccines/immunology , Adaptive Immunity , Adjuvants, Immunologic/chemistry , Adjuvants, Immunologic/classification , Animals , Humans , Immunity, Innate , Vaccination , Vaccines/classification , Vaccines/genetics
14.
PLoS One ; 16(3): e0249231, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1154085

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: To date, survival data on risk factors for COVID-19 mortality in western Europe is limited, and none of the published survival studies have used a competing risk approach. This study aims to identify risk factors for in-hospital mortality in COVID-19 patients in the Netherlands, considering recovery as a competing risk. METHODS: In this observational multicenter cohort study we included adults with PCR-confirmed SARS-CoV-2 infection that were admitted to one of five hospitals in the Netherlands (March to May 2020). We performed a competing risk survival analysis, presenting cause-specific hazard ratios (HRCS) for the effect of preselected factors on the absolute risk of death and recovery. RESULTS: 1,006 patients were included (63.9% male; median age 69 years, IQR: 58-77). Patients were hospitalized for a median duration of 6 days (IQR: 3-13); 243 (24.6%) of them died, 689 (69.9%) recovered, and 74 (7.4%) were censored. Patients with higher age (HRCS 1.10, 95% CI 1.08-1.12), immunocompromised state (HRCS 1.46, 95% CI 1.08-1.98), who used anticoagulants or antiplatelet medication (HRCS 1.38, 95% CI 1.01-1.88), with higher modified early warning score (MEWS) (HRCS 1.09, 95% CI 1.01-1.18), and higher blood LDH at time of admission (HRCS 6.68, 95% CI 1.95-22.8) had increased risk of death, whereas fever (HRCS 0.70, 95% CI 0.52-0.95) decreased risk of death. We found no increased mortality risk in male patients, high BMI or diabetes. CONCLUSION: Our competing risk survival analysis confirms specific risk factors for COVID-19 mortality in a the Netherlands, which can be used for prediction research, more intense in-hospital monitoring or prioritizing particular patients for new treatments or vaccination.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/diagnosis , Hospital Mortality , Aged , Anticoagulants/therapeutic use , Body Mass Index , COVID-19/mortality , COVID-19/virology , Cohort Studies , Diabetes Complications , Female , Humans , Immunocompromised Host , L-Lactate Dehydrogenase/biosynthesis , Length of Stay , Male , Middle Aged , Netherlands , Proportional Hazards Models , RNA, Viral/analysis , Risk Factors , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Survival Analysis
15.
PLoS One ; 16(3): e0248713, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1140537

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVE: To describe clinical characteristics, disease course and outcomes in a large and well-documented cohort of hospitalized COVID-19 patients in the Netherlands. METHODS: We conducted a multicentre retrospective cohort study in The Netherlands including 952 of 1183 consecutively hospitalized patients that were admitted to participating hospitals between March 2nd, 2020, and May 22nd, 2020. Clinical characteristics and laboratory parameters upon admission and during hospitalization were collected until July 1st. RESULTS: The median age was 69 years (IQR 58-77 years) and 605 (63.6%) were male. Cardiovascular disease was present in 558 (58.6%) patients. The median time of onset of symptoms prior to hospitalization was 7 days (IQR 5-10). A non ICU admission policy was applicable in 312 (32.8%) patients and in 165 (56.3%) of the severely ill patients admitted to the ward. At admission and during hospitalization, severely ill patients had higher values of CRP, LDH, ferritin and D-dimer with higher neutrophil counts and lower lymphocyte counts. Overall in-hospital mortality was 25.1% and 183 (19.1%) patients were admitted to ICU, of whom 56 (30.6%) died. Patients aged ≥70 years had high mortality, both at the ward (52.4%) and ICU (47.4%). The median length of ICU stay was 8 days longer in patients aged ≥70 years compared to patients aged ≤60 years. CONCLUSION: Hospitalized COVID-19 patients aged ≥70 years had high mortality and longer ICU stay compared to patients aged ≤60 years. These findings in combination with the patient burden of an ICU admission and possible long term complications after discharge should encourage us to further investigate the benefit of ICU admission in elderly and fragile COVID-19-patients.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/blood , COVID-19/epidemiology , Age Factors , Aged , COVID-19/diagnosis , Critical Illness/epidemiology , Female , Hospital Mortality , Hospitalization , Humans , Intensive Care Units , Length of Stay , Male , Middle Aged , Netherlands/epidemiology , Retrospective Studies , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification
16.
J Clin Invest ; 131(2)2021 01 19.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1067000

ABSTRACT

A number of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) vaccine candidates have shown promising results, but substantial uncertainty remains regarding their effectiveness and global rollout. Boosting innate immunity with bacillus Calmette Guérin (BCG) or other live attenuated vaccines may also play a role in the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic. BCG has long been known for its nonspecific beneficial effects that are most likely explained by epigenetic and metabolic reprogramming of innate immune cells, termed trained immunity. In this issue of the JCI, Rivas et al. add to these arguments by showing that BCG-vaccinated health care providers from a Los Angeles health care organization had lower rates of COVID-19 diagnoses and seropositivity compared with unvaccinated individuals. Prospective clinical trials are thus warranted to explore the effects of BCG vaccination in COVID-19. We posit that beyond COVID-19, vaccines such as BCG that elicit trained immunity may mitigate the impact of emerging pathogens in future pandemics.


Subject(s)
BCG Vaccine , COVID-19 , Health Personnel , Humans , Pandemics , Prospective Studies , SARS-CoV-2 , Seroepidemiologic Studies , Vaccination
17.
J Infect Dis ; 223(8): 1322-1333, 2021 04 23.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1057852

ABSTRACT

The clinical spectrum of COVID-19 varies and the differences in host response characterizing this variation have not been fully elucidated. COVID-19 disease severity correlates with an excessive proinflammatory immune response and profound lymphopenia. Inflammatory responses according to disease severity were explored by plasma cytokine measurements and proteomics analysis in 147 COVID-19 patients. Furthermore, peripheral blood mononuclear cell cytokine production assays and whole blood flow cytometry were performed. Results confirm a hyperinflammatory innate immune state, while highlighting hepatocyte growth factor and stem cell factor as potential biomarkers for disease severity. Clustering analysis revealed no specific inflammatory endotypes in COVID-19 patients. Functional assays revealed abrogated adaptive cytokine production (interferon-γ, interleukin-17, and interleukin-22) and prominent T-cell exhaustion in critically ill patients, whereas innate immune responses were intact or hyperresponsive. Collectively, this extensive analysis provides a comprehensive insight into the pathobiology of severe to critical COVID-19 and highlights potential biomarkers of disease severity.


Subject(s)
Adaptive Immunity/immunology , COVID-19/immunology , Immunity, Innate/immunology , Aged , Biomarkers/blood , COVID-19/blood , COVID-19/virology , Cytokine Release Syndrome/blood , Cytokine Release Syndrome/immunology , Cytokine Release Syndrome/virology , Cytokines/immunology , Female , Humans , Inflammation/blood , Inflammation/immunology , Inflammation/virology , Leukocytes, Mononuclear/immunology , Leukocytes, Mononuclear/virology , Lymphopenia/blood , Lymphopenia/immunology , Lymphopenia/virology , Male , Middle Aged , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Severity of Illness Index
18.
Eur Respir J ; 56(4)2020 10.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-890060

ABSTRACT

Major epidemics, including some that qualify as pandemics, such as severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS), Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS), HIV, influenza A (H1N1)pdm/09 and most recently COVID-19, affect the lung. Tuberculosis (TB) remains the top infectious disease killer, but apart from syndemic TB/HIV little is known regarding the interaction of viral epidemics and pandemics with TB. The aim of this consensus-based document is to describe the effects of viral infections resulting in epidemics and pandemics that affect the lung (MERS, SARS, HIV, influenza A (H1N1)pdm/09 and COVID-19) and their interactions with TB. A search of the scientific literature was performed. A writing committee of international experts including the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control Public Health Emergency (ECDC PHE) team, the World Association for Infectious Diseases and Immunological Disorders (WAidid), the Global Tuberculosis Network (GTN), and members of the European Society of Clinical Microbiology and Infectious Diseases (ESCMID) Study Group for Mycobacterial Infections (ESGMYC) was established. Consensus was achieved after multiple rounds of revisions between the writing committee and a larger expert group. A Delphi process involving the core group of authors (excluding the ECDC PHE team) identified the areas requiring review/consensus, followed by a second round to refine the definitive consensus elements. The epidemiology and immunology of these viral infections and their interactions with TB are discussed with implications for diagnosis, treatment and prevention of airborne infections (infection control, viral containment and workplace safety). This consensus document represents a rapid and comprehensive summary on what is known on the topic.


Subject(s)
Respiratory Tract Infections/epidemiology , Tuberculosis/epidemiology , Virus Diseases/epidemiology , BCG Vaccine/therapeutic use , Betacoronavirus , COVID-19 , Coronavirus Infections/diagnosis , Coronavirus Infections/drug therapy , Coronavirus Infections/epidemiology , Coronavirus Infections/immunology , Epidemics , HIV Infections/diagnosis , HIV Infections/drug therapy , HIV Infections/epidemiology , HIV Infections/immunology , Humans , Influenza A Virus, H1N1 Subtype , Influenza, Human/diagnosis , Influenza, Human/drug therapy , Influenza, Human/epidemiology , Influenza, Human/immunology , Lung/immunology , Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus , Pandemics , Pneumonia, Viral/diagnosis , Pneumonia, Viral/drug therapy , Pneumonia, Viral/epidemiology , Pneumonia, Viral/immunology , Public Health , Respiratory Tract Infections/diagnosis , Respiratory Tract Infections/drug therapy , Respiratory Tract Infections/immunology , SARS-CoV-2 , Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome/diagnosis , Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome/drug therapy , Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome/epidemiology , Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome/immunology , Tuberculosis/diagnosis , Tuberculosis/immunology , Tuberculosis/prevention & control , Virus Diseases/diagnosis , Virus Diseases/drug therapy , Virus Diseases/immunology
19.
Cell ; 183(2): 315-323.e9, 2020 10 15.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-738067

ABSTRACT

BCG vaccination in children protects against heterologous infections and improves survival independently of tuberculosis prevention. The phase III ACTIVATE trial assessed whether BCG has similar effects in the elderly. In this double-blind, randomized trial, elderly patients (n = 198) received BCG or placebo vaccine at hospital discharge and were followed for 12 months for new infections. At interim analysis, BCG vaccination significantly increased the time to first infection (median 16 weeks compared to 11 weeks after placebo). The incidence of new infections was 42.3% (95% CIs 31.9%-53.4%) after placebo vaccination and 25.0% (95% CIs 16.4%-36.1%) after BCG vaccination; most of the protection was against respiratory tract infections of probable viral origin (hazard ratio 0.21, p = 0.013). No difference in the frequency of adverse effects was found. Data show that BCG vaccination is safe and can protect the elderly against infections. Larger studies are needed to assess protection against respiratory infections, including COVID-19 (ClinicalTrials.gov NCT03296423).


Subject(s)
BCG Vaccine/adverse effects , BCG Vaccine/immunology , Respiratory Tract Infections/prevention & control , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , BCG Vaccine/administration & dosage , Double-Blind Method , Female , Hospitalization , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Respiratory Tract Infections/immunology , Virus Diseases/immunology , Virus Diseases/prevention & control
20.
Cell Rep Med ; 1(5): 100073, 2020 08 25.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-694416

ABSTRACT

Bacille Calmette-Guérin (BCG) induces long-term boosting of innate immunity, termed trained immunity, and decreases susceptibility to respiratory tract infections. BCG vaccination trials for reducing SARS-CoV-2 infection are underway, but concerns have been raised regarding the potential harm of strong innate immune responses. To investigate the safety of BCG vaccination, we retrospectively assessed coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) and related symptoms in three cohorts of healthy volunteers who either received BCG in the last 5 years or did not. BCG vaccination is not associated with increased incidence of symptoms during the COVID-19 outbreak in the Netherlands. Our data suggest that BCG vaccination might be associated with a decrease in the incidence of sickness during the COVID-19 pandemic (adjusted odds ratio [AOR] 0.58, p < 0.05), and lower incidence of extreme fatigue. In conclusion, recent BCG vaccination is safe, and large randomized trials are needed to reveal if BCG reduces the incidence and/or severity of SARS-CoV-2 infection.


Subject(s)
BCG Vaccine/administration & dosage , COVID-19/epidemiology , Vaccination/statistics & numerical data , Adult , Aged , BCG Vaccine/immunology , COVID-19/immunology , Female , Humans , Immunologic Memory , Incidence , Male , Middle Aged , Netherlands/epidemiology , Retrospective Studies , SARS-CoV-2 , Severity of Illness Index , Young Adult
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