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1.
Biochem J ; 479(5): 609-628, 2022 03 18.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1730329

ABSTRACT

Two years after the emergence of SARS-CoV-2, our understanding of COVID-19 disease pathogenesis is still incomplete. Despite unprecedented global collaborative scientific efforts and rapid vaccine development, an uneven vaccine roll-out and the emergence of novel variants of concern such as omicron underscore the critical importance of identifying the mechanisms that contribute to this disease. Overt inflammation and cell death have been proposed to be central drivers of severe pathology in COVID-19 patients and their pathways and molecular components therefore present promising targets for host-directed therapeutics. In our review, we summarize the current knowledge on the role and impact of diverse programmed cell death (PCD) pathways on COVID-19 disease. We dissect the complex connection of cell death and inflammatory signaling at the cellular and molecular level and identify a number of critical questions that remain to be addressed. We provide rationale for targeting of cell death as potential COVID-19 treatment and provide an overview of current therapeutics that could potentially enter clinical trials in the near future.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/etiology , COVID-19/pathology , Antiviral Agents , Apoptosis/drug effects , Apoptosis/physiology , COVID-19/drug therapy , Humans , Inflammasomes/physiology , Interferons/metabolism , Necroptosis/physiology , Neutrophils/pathology , Neutrophils/virology , Pyroptosis/physiology , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity
2.
mBio ; 12(4): e0157221, 2021 08 31.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1349194

ABSTRACT

Tissue- and cell-specific expression patterns are highly variable within and across individuals, leading to altered host responses after acute virus infection. Unraveling key tissue-specific response patterns provides novel opportunities for defining fundamental mechanisms of virus-host interaction in disease and the identification of critical tissue-specific networks for disease intervention in the lung. Currently, there are no approved therapeutics for Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) patients, and little is understood about how lung cell types contribute to disease outcomes. MERS-CoV replicates equivalently in primary human lung microvascular endothelial cells (MVE) and fibroblasts (FB) and to equivalent peak titers but with slower replication kinetics in human airway epithelial cell cultures (HAE). However, only infected MVE demonstrate observable virus-induced cytopathic effect. To explore mechanisms leading to reduced MVE viability, donor-matched human lung MVE, HAE, and FB were infected, and their transcriptomes, proteomes, and lipidomes were monitored over time. Validated functional enrichment analysis demonstrated that MERS-CoV-infected MVE were dying via an unfolded protein response (UPR)-mediated apoptosis. Pharmacologic manipulation of the UPR in MERS-CoV-infected primary lung cells reduced viral titers and in male mice improved respiratory function with accompanying reductions in weight loss, pathological signatures of acute lung injury, and times to recovery. Systems biology analysis and validation studies of global kinetic transcript, protein, and lipid data sets confirmed that inhibition of host stress pathways that are differentially regulated following MERS-CoV infection of different tissue types can alleviate symptom progression to end-stage lung disease commonly seen following emerging coronavirus outbreaks. IMPORTANCE Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) causes severe atypical pneumonia in infected individuals, but the underlying mechanisms of pathogenesis remain unknown. While much has been learned from the few reported autopsy cases, an in-depth understanding of the cells targeted by MERS-CoV in the human lung and their relative contribution to disease outcomes is needed. The host response in MERS-CoV-infected primary human lung microvascular endothelial (MVE) cells and fibroblasts (FB) was evaluated over time by analyzing total RNA, proteins, and lipids to determine the cellular pathways modulated postinfection. Findings revealed that MERS-CoV-infected MVE cells die via apoptotic mechanisms downstream of the unfolded protein response (UPR). Interruption of enzymatic processes within the UPR in MERS-CoV-infected male mice reduced disease symptoms, virus-induced lung injury, and time to recovery. These data suggest that the UPR plays an important role in MERS-CoV infection and may represent a host target for therapeutic intervention.


Subject(s)
Acute Lung Injury/pathology , Apoptosis/physiology , Coronavirus Infections/pathology , Unfolded Protein Response/physiology , Acute Lung Injury/virology , Animals , Cell Line , Endothelial Cells/metabolism , Endothelial Cells/virology , Female , Fibroblasts/metabolism , Fibroblasts/virology , Humans , Male , Mice , Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus/immunology
3.
Carbohydr Polym ; 269: 118345, 2021 Oct 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1271581

ABSTRACT

This work reports novel chitosan functionalized graphene oxide (GO) nanocomposites combined fluorescence imaging and therapeutic functions in one agent, which can serve as a promising alternative to alleviate related diseases caused hyperinflammation. Briefly, GO was designed to be conjugated with chitosan, fluorescein-labeled peptide, toll-like receptor 4 antibody and hydroxycamptothecin/aloe emodin. We have demonstrated that such nanocomposites could effectively achieve active targeted delivery of pro-apoptotic and anti-inflammatory drugs into inflammatory cells and cause cells apoptosis by acid-responsive drug release. Moreover, confocal fluorescence imaging confirms that the drug-induced inflammatory cells apoptosis could be visualized the light-up fluorescence of fluorescein activated by caspase-3. Meanwhile, inflammatory-related biomarkers have down-regulated after the nanocomposites' treatment in both vitro and vivo experiments consistent with the results in histological sections. In summary, the bifunctional nanocomposites that possess anti-inflammation and fluorescence imaging could serve as a promising therapeutic agent for reducing hyperinflammation caused by numerous diseases.


Subject(s)
Anti-Inflammatory Agents/therapeutic use , Apoptosis/physiology , Drug Carriers/chemistry , Inflammation/drug therapy , Nanocomposites/chemistry , Animals , Anti-Inflammatory Agents/chemistry , Antibodies/immunology , Camptothecin/analogs & derivatives , Camptothecin/chemistry , Camptothecin/therapeutic use , Cattle , Cell Line , Chitosan/chemistry , Drug Liberation , Emodin/chemistry , Emodin/therapeutic use , Fluorescent Dyes/chemistry , Graphite/chemistry , Humans , Lipopolysaccharides , Mammary Glands, Human/drug effects , Mammary Glands, Human/pathology , Mastitis/chemically induced , Mastitis/drug therapy , Mastitis/pathology , Mice , Toll-Like Receptor 4/immunology
4.
Cells ; 10(7)2021 06 23.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1285369

ABSTRACT

Cell death mechanisms are crucial to maintain an appropriate environment for the functionality of healthy cells. However, during viral infections, dysregulation of these processes can be present and can participate in the pathogenetic mechanisms of the disease. In this review, we describe some features of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), and some immunopathogenic mechanisms characterizing the present coronavirus disease (COVID-19). Lymphopenia and monocytopenia are important contributors to COVID-19 immunopathogenesis. The fine mechanisms underlying these phenomena are still unknown, and several hypotheses have been raised, some of which assign a role to cell death as far as the reduction of specific types of immune cells is concerned. Thus, we discuss three major pathways such as apoptosis, necroptosis, and pyroptosis, and suggest that all of them likely occur simultaneously in COVID-19 patients. We describe that SARS-CoV-2 can have both a direct and an indirect role in inducing cell death. Indeed, on the one hand, cell death can be caused by the virus entry into cells, on the other, the excessive concentration of cytokines and chemokines, a process that is known as a COVID-19-related cytokine storm, exerts deleterious effects on circulating immune cells. However, the overall knowledge of these mechanisms is still scarce and further studies are needed to delineate new therapeutic strategies.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/pathology , Cell Death/physiology , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity , Apoptosis/physiology , COVID-19/immunology , COVID-19/virology , Cytokine Release Syndrome/immunology , Cytokine Release Syndrome/pathology , Cytokines/metabolism , Humans , Necroptosis/physiology , Virus Internalization
5.
Sci Adv ; 7(25)2021 06.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1276873

ABSTRACT

Infection by highly pathogenic coronaviruses results in substantial apoptosis. However, the physiological relevance of apoptosis in the pathogenesis of coronavirus infections is unknown. Here, with a combination of in vitro, ex vivo, and in vivo models, we demonstrated that protein kinase R-like endoplasmic reticulum kinase (PERK) signaling mediated the proapoptotic signals in Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) infection, which converged in the intrinsic apoptosis pathway. Inhibiting PERK signaling or intrinsic apoptosis both alleviated MERS pathogenesis in vivo. Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) and SARS-CoV induced apoptosis through distinct mechanisms but inhibition of intrinsic apoptosis similarly limited SARS-CoV-2- and SARS-CoV-induced apoptosis in vitro and markedly ameliorated the lung damage of SARS-CoV-2-inoculated human angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (hACE2) mice. Collectively, our study provides the first evidence that virus-induced apoptosis is an important disease determinant of highly pathogenic coronaviruses and demonstrates that this process can be targeted to attenuate disease severity.


Subject(s)
Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , Apoptosis/drug effects , COVID-19/drug therapy , Coronavirus Infections/drug therapy , eIF-2 Kinase/metabolism , Adenine/analogs & derivatives , Adenine/pharmacology , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/genetics , Animals , Apoptosis/physiology , COVID-19/etiology , COVID-19/pathology , Cell Line , Coronavirus Infections/etiology , Coronavirus Infections/pathology , Dipeptidyl Peptidase 4/genetics , Epithelial Cells/virology , Female , Humans , Indoles/pharmacology , Lung/virology , Male , Mice, Transgenic , eIF-2 Kinase/antagonists & inhibitors , eIF-2 Kinase/genetics
6.
Exp Biol Med (Maywood) ; 246(15): 1681-1687, 2021 08.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1243784

ABSTRACT

Mediator is an evolutionarily conserved multi-protein complex that mediates the interaction between different proteins as a basic linker in the transcription mechanism of eukaryotes. It interacts with RNA polymerase II and participates in the process of gene expression. Mediator complex subunit 19 or regulation by oxygen 3, or lung cancer metastasis-related protein 1 is located at the head of the mediator complex; it is a multi-protein co-activator that induces the transcription of RNA polymerase II by DNA transcription factors. It is a tumor-related gene that plays an important role in transcriptional regulation, cell proliferation, and apoptosis and is closely related to the occurrence and development of the cancers of the lung, bladder, skin, etc. Here, we used the structure of mediator complex subunit 19 to review its role in tumor progression, fat metabolism, drug therapy, as well as the novel coronavirus, which has attracted much attention at present, suggesting that mediator complex subunit 19 has broad application in the occurrence and development of clinical diseases. As a tumor-related gene, the role and mechanism of mediator complex subunit 19 in the regulation of tumor growth could be of great significance for the diagnosis, prognosis, and treatment of mediator complex subunit 19 -related tumors.


Subject(s)
Host-Pathogen Interactions/physiology , Mediator Complex/physiology , Neoplasms/pathology , Apoptosis/physiology , COVID-19/metabolism , COVID-19/virology , Cell Cycle/physiology , Cell Movement , Gene Expression Regulation, Neoplastic , Humans , Neoplasms/genetics
7.
Methods Mol Biol ; 2256: 217-236, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1235682

ABSTRACT

Viruses have evolved to interact with their hosts. Some viruses such as human papilloma virus, dengue virus, SARS-CoV, or influenza virus encode proteins including a PBM that interact with cellular proteins containing PDZ domains. There are more than 400 cellular protein isoforms with these domains in the human genome, indicating that viral PBMs have a high potential to influence the behavior of the cell. In this review we analyze the most relevant cellular processes known to be affected by viral PBM-cellular PDZ interactions including the establishment of cell-cell interactions and cell polarity, the regulation of cell survival and apoptosis and the activation of the immune system. Special attention has been provided to coronavirus PBM conservation throughout evolution and to the role of the PBMs of human coronaviruses SARS-CoV and MERS-CoV in pathogenesis.


Subject(s)
Cell Adhesion Molecules/metabolism , Host-Pathogen Interactions , Viral Proteins/metabolism , Virus Diseases/metabolism , Viruses/metabolism , Apoptosis/physiology , Cell Proliferation/physiology , Humans , PDZ Domains , Protein Binding , Protein Structure, Secondary , Virus Diseases/virology , Viruses/isolation & purification
8.
Stem Cell Reports ; 16(3): 437-445, 2021 03 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1084274

ABSTRACT

COVID-19 is a transmissible respiratory disease caused by a novel coronavirus, SARS-CoV-2, and has become a global health emergency. There is an urgent need for robust and practical in vitro model systems to investigate viral pathogenesis. Here, we generated human induced pluripotent stem cell (iPSC)-derived lung organoids (LORGs), cerebral organoids (CORGs), neural progenitor cells (NPCs), neurons, and astrocytes. LORGs containing epithelial cells, alveolar types 1 and 2, highly express ACE2 and TMPRSS2 and are permissive to SARS-CoV-2 infection. SARS-CoV-2 infection induces interferons, cytokines, and chemokines and activates critical inflammasome pathway genes. Spike protein inhibitor, EK1 peptide, and TMPRSS2 inhibitors (camostat/nafamostat) block viral entry in LORGs. Conversely, CORGs, NPCs, astrocytes, and neurons express low levels of ACE2 and TMPRSS2 and correspondingly are not highly permissive to SARS-CoV-2 infection. Infection in neuronal cells activates TLR3/7, OAS2, complement system, and apoptotic genes. These findings will aid in understanding COVID-19 pathogenesis and facilitate drug discovery.


Subject(s)
Brain/virology , COVID-19/virology , Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells/virology , Lung/virology , Neural Stem Cells/virology , Organoids/virology , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity , Apoptosis/physiology , Brain/metabolism , COVID-19/metabolism , Cells, Cultured , Complement System Proteins/metabolism , Epithelial Cells/metabolism , Epithelial Cells/virology , Humans , Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells/metabolism , Inflammation/metabolism , Inflammation/virology , Lung/metabolism , Neural Stem Cells/metabolism , Neurons/metabolism , Neurons/virology , Organoids/metabolism , Serine Endopeptidases/metabolism , Signal Transduction/physiology , Stem Cells/metabolism , Stem Cells/virology
9.
Cell Mol Gastroenterol Hepatol ; 11(3): 763-770, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1026085

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND & AIMS: Liver injury due to coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) is being increasingly recognized. Abnormal liver chemistry tests of varying severities occur in a majority of patients. However, there is a dearth of accompanying liver histologic studies in these patients. METHODS: The current report details the clinical courses of 2 patients having severe COVID-19 hepatitis. Liver biopsies were analyzed under light microscopy, portions of liver tissue were hybridized with a target probe to the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-2 S gene, and small sections from formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded liver tissue were processed for electron microscopy. RESULTS: The liver histology of both cases showed a mixed inflammatory infiltrate with prominent bile duct damage, endotheliitis, and many apoptotic bodies. In situ hybridization and electron microscopy suggest the intrahepatic presence of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-2, the findings of which may indicate the possibility of direct cell injury. CONCLUSIONS: On the basis of the abundant apoptosis and severe cholangiocyte injury, these histopathologic changes suggest a direct cytopathic injury. Furthermore, some of the histopathologic changes may resemble acute cellular rejection occurring after liver transplantation. These 2 cases demonstrate that severe COVID-19 hepatitis can occur even in the absence of significant involvement of other organs.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/virology , Hepatitis/virology , Liver/pathology , Liver/virology , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity , Adult , Apoptosis/physiology , Biopsy , Female , Hepatitis/pathology , Humans , Liver Diseases/virology , Male , Middle Aged
10.
Nature ; 580(7801): 36-37, 2020 04.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-820644
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