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1.
J Korean Med Sci ; 37(8): e65, 2022 Feb 28.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1714983

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2) and transmembrane protease serine subtype 2 (TMPRSS2) are key proteins mediating viral entry of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2). Although gene expressions of ACE2 and TMPRSS2 have been analyzed in various organs and diseases, their soluble forms have been less studied, particularly in asthma. Therefore, we aimed to measure circulating ACE2 and TMPRSS2 in the serum of asthmatics and examine their relationship with clinical characteristics. METHODS: Clinical data and serum samples of 400 participants were obtained from an asthma cohort. The soluble ACE2 (sACE2) and soluble TMPRSS2 (sTMPRSS2) level was measured by enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay, and the values underwent a natural log transformation. Associations between sACE2 and TMPRSS2 levels and various clinical variables were analyzed. RESULTS: The patients younger than 70 years old, those with eosinophilic asthma (eosinophils ≥ 200 cells/µL), and inhaled corticosteroids (ICS) non-users were associated with higher levels of sACE2. Blood eosinophils and fractionated exhaled nitric oxide levels were positively correlated with serum ACE2. In contrast, lower levels of sTMPRSS2 were noted in patients below 70 years and those with eosinophilic asthma, while no association was noted between ICS use and sTMPRSS2. The level of sTMPRSS2 also differed according to sex, smoking history, coexisting hypertension, and forced expiratory volume in 1 second/forced vital capacity (FEV1/FVC) ratio. The proportion of sputum neutrophils was positively correlated with sTMPRSS2, while the FEV1/FVC ratio reported a negative correlation with sTMPRSS2. CONCLUSION: The levels of ACE2 and TMPRSS2 were differently expressed according to age, ICS use, and several inflammatory markers. These findings suggest variable susceptibility and prognosis of SARS-CoV-2 infection among asthmatic patients.


Subject(s)
Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/blood , Asthma/complications , COVID-19/etiology , SARS-CoV-2 , Serine Endopeptidases/blood , Adrenal Cortex Hormones/therapeutic use , Adult , Age Factors , Aged , Asthma/blood , Asthma/drug therapy , Female , Humans , Male , Middle Aged
2.
BMC Pulm Med ; 21(1): 268, 2021 Aug 17.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1362052

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Curcumin, a derivative of the spice turmeric, has been adopted by Eastern medicine for centuries as an adjunct to treat several medical conditions (e.g., anorexia and arthritis) because of its well-established anti-inflammatory properties. Studies have shown that the use of curcumin in mice models has led to reduction in several inflammatory markers as well as key inflammatory pathway enzymes. As a result, studies in Western medicine have developed to determine if this recognized benefit can be utilized for patients with inflammatory lung diseases, such as asthma. This study will seek to better understand if curcumin can be used as an adjunctive therapy for improving asthma control of patients with moderate to severe asthma; a finding we hope will allow for a more affordable treatment. METHODS: This study will utilize a randomized, placebo controlled, double blinded pilot superiority phase 2 trial at an outpatient pulmonary clinic in Southern California, USA. Subjects will be receiving Curcumin 1500 mg or matching placebo by mouth twice daily for the study period of 12 weeks. Subjects will be randomized to either a placebo or intervention Curcumin. Subjects will have 6 clinic visits: screening visit, a baseline visit, monthly clinic visits (weeks 4, 8, and 12), at weeks 4, 8, and a follow-up clinic visit or phone-call (week 16). Changes in asthma control test scores, number of days missed from school/work, FEV1 (% predicted), FEV1/FVC ratio, FVC (% predicted), blood eosinophil count, blood total IgE, and FeNO levels will be compared by group over time. DISCUSSION: The therapeutic effects of curcumin have been studied on a limited basis in asthmatics and has shown mixed results thus far. Our study hopes to further establish the benefits of curcumin, however, there are potential issues that may arise from our study design that we will address within this paper. Moreover, the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in safety concerns that have delayed initiation of our study. This study will contribute to existing literature on curcumin's role in reducing lung inflammation as it presents in asthmatics as well as patients suffering from COVID-19. TRIAL REGISTRATION: This study protocol has been approved by the Institutional Review Board at Loma Linda University Health, (NCT04353310). IND# 145101 Registered April 20th, 2020. https://clinicaltrials.gov/ct2/show/NCT04353310 .


Subject(s)
Asthma , COVID-19 , Curcumin , Eosinophils , Immunoglobulin E/blood , Administration, Oral , Adult , Ambulatory Care/methods , Anti-Inflammatory Agents, Non-Steroidal/administration & dosage , Anti-Inflammatory Agents, Non-Steroidal/adverse effects , Antioxidants/administration & dosage , Antioxidants/adverse effects , Asthma/blood , Asthma/diagnosis , Asthma/drug therapy , Asthma/physiopathology , COVID-19/diagnosis , COVID-19/drug therapy , COVID-19/physiopathology , Clinical Trials, Phase II as Topic , Curcumin/administration & dosage , Curcumin/adverse effects , Double-Blind Method , Drug Monitoring/methods , Female , Humans , Leukocyte Count/methods , Male , Randomized Controlled Trials as Topic , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Severity of Illness Index
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