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J Neurotrauma ; 38(1): 1-43, 2021 01 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1066221


The severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) virus attacks multiple organs of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) patients, including the brain. There are worldwide descriptions of neurological deficits in COVID-19 patients. Central nervous system (CNS) symptoms can be present early in the course of the disease. As many as 55% of hospitalized COVID-19 patients have been reported to have neurological disturbances three months after infection by SARS-CoV-2. The mutability of the SARS-COV-2 virus and its potential to directly affect the CNS highlight the urgency of developing technology to diagnose, manage, and treat brain injury in COVID-19 patients. The pathobiology of CNS infection by SARS-CoV-2 and the associated neurological sequelae of this infection remain poorly understood. In this review, we outline the rationale for the use of blood biomarkers (BBs) for diagnosis of brain injury in COVID-19 patients, the research needed to incorporate their use into clinical practice, and the improvements in patient management and outcomes that can result. BBs of brain injury could potentially provide tools for detection of brain injury in COVID-19 patients. Elevations of BBs have been reported in cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) and blood of COVID-19 patients. BB proteins have been analyzed in CSF to detect CNS involvement in patients with infectious diseases, including human immunodeficiency virus and tuberculous meningitis. BBs are approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for diagnosis of mild versus moderate traumatic brain injury and have identified brain injury after stroke, cardiac arrest, hypoxia, and epilepsy. BBs, integrated with other diagnostic tools, could enhance understanding of viral mechanisms of brain injury, predict severity of neurological deficits, guide triage of patients and assignment to appropriate medical pathways, and assess efficacy of therapeutic interventions in COVID-19 patients.

Brain Injuries/blood , Brain Injuries/diagnosis , Brain/metabolism , COVID-19/blood , COVID-19/diagnosis , Biomarkers/blood , Brain/pathology , Brain Injuries/etiology , COVID-19/complications , Humans , Nervous System Diseases/blood , Nervous System Diseases/diagnosis , Nervous System Diseases/etiology , Prospective Studies , Retrospective Studies
J Alzheimers Dis ; 79(3): 931-948, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1033235


Proinflammatory cytokines such as tumor necrosis factor (TNF), with its now appreciated key roles in neurophysiology as well as neuropathophysiology, are sufficiently well-documented to be useful tools for enquiry into the natural history of neurodegenerative diseases. We review the broader literature on TNF to rationalize why abruptly-acquired neurodegenerative states do not exhibit the remorseless clinical progression seen in those states with gradual onsets. We propose that the three typically non-worsening neurodegenerative syndromes, post-stroke, post-traumatic brain injury (TBI), and post cardiac arrest, usually become and remain static because of excess cerebral TNF induced by the initial dramatic peak keeping microglia chronically activated through an autocrine loop of microglial activation through excess cerebral TNF. The existence of this autocrine loop rationalizes post-damage repair with perispinal etanercept and proposes a treatment for cerebral aspects of COVID-19 chronicity. Another insufficiently considered aspect of cerebral proinflammatory cytokines is the fitness of the endogenous cerebral anti-TNF system provided by norepinephrine (NE), generated and distributed throughout the brain from the locus coeruleus (LC). We propose that an intact LC, and therefore an intact NE-mediated endogenous anti-cerebral TNF system, plus the DAMP (damage or danger-associated molecular pattern) input having diminished, is what allows post-stroke, post-TBI, and post cardiac arrest patients a strong long-term survival advantage over Alzheimer's disease and Parkinson's disease sufferers. In contrast, Alzheimer's disease and Parkinson's disease patients remorselessly worsen, being handicapped by sustained, accumulating, DAMP and PAMP (pathogen-associated molecular patterns) input, as well as loss of the LC-origin, NE-mediated, endogenous anti-cerebral TNF system. Adrenergic receptor agonists may counter this.

Brain Injuries/physiopathology , Neurodegenerative Diseases/physiopathology , Stroke/physiopathology , Tumor Necrosis Factor-alpha/physiology , Alzheimer Disease/diagnosis , Alzheimer Disease/physiopathology , Alzheimer Disease/therapy , Anti-Inflammatory Agents, Non-Steroidal/therapeutic use , Brain/physiopathology , Brain Injuries/diagnosis , Brain Injuries/therapy , COVID-19/diagnosis , COVID-19/physiopathology , COVID-19/therapy , Disease Progression , Etanercept/therapeutic use , Heart Arrest/diagnosis , Heart Arrest/physiopathology , Heart Arrest/therapy , Humans , Locus Coeruleus/physiopathology , Neurodegenerative Diseases/diagnosis , Neurodegenerative Diseases/therapy , Norepinephrine/physiology , Parkinson Disease/diagnosis , Parkinson Disease/physiopathology , Parkinson Disease/therapy , Risk Factors , SARS-CoV-2 , Stroke/diagnosis , Stroke/therapy , Survivors , Tumor Necrosis Factor-alpha/antagonists & inhibitors