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2.
Front Cell Infect Microbiol ; 12: 905757, 2022.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2198697

ABSTRACT

In early 2020, one of the most prevalent symptoms of SARS-CoV-2 infection was the loss of smell (anosmia), found in 60-70% of all cases. Anosmia used to occur early, concomitantly with other symptoms, and often persisted after recovery for an extended period, sometimes for months. In addition to smell disturbance, COVID-19 has also been associated with loss of taste (ageusia). The latest research suggests that SARS-CoV-2 could spread from the respiratory system to the brain through receptors in sustentacular cells localized to the olfactory epithelium. The virus invades human cells via the obligatory receptor, angiotensin-converting enzyme II (ACE2), and a priming protease, TMPRSS2, facilitating viral penetration. There is an abundant expression of both ACE2 and TMPRSS2 in sustentacular cells. In this study, we evaluated 102 COVID-19 hospitalized patients, of which 17.60% presented anosmia and 9.80% ageusia. ACE1, ACE2, and TMPRSS2 gene expression levels in nasopharyngeal tissue were obtained by RT-qPCR and measured using ΔCT analysis. ACE1 Alu287bp association was also evaluated. Logistic regression models were generated to estimate the effects of variables on ageusia and anosmia Association of ACE2 expression levels with ageusia. was observed (OR: 1.35; 95% CI: 1.098-1.775); however, no association was observed between TMPRSS2 and ACE1 expression levels and ageusia. No association was observed among the three genes and anosmia, and the Alu287bp polymorphism was not associated with any of the outcomes. Lastly, we discuss whetherthere is a bridge linking these initial symptoms, including molecular factors, to long-term COVID-19 health consequences such as cognitive dysfunctions.


Subject(s)
Ageusia , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/genetics , COVID-19 , Olfaction Disorders , Ageusia/etiology , Anosmia , COVID-19/genetics , Cognition , Gene Expression , Humans , Olfaction Disorders/genetics , Receptors, Angiotensin , SARS-CoV-2
3.
Hum Immunol ; 83(8-9): 613-617, 2022.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2179262

ABSTRACT

The NF-κB signaling pathway is a key regulator of inflammation in the response to SARS-CoV-2 infection. This pathway has been implicated in the hyperinflammatory state that characterizes the severe forms of COVID-19. The genetic variation of the NF-κB components might thus explain the predisposition to critical outcomes of this viral disease. We aimed to study the role of the common NFKB1 rs28362491, NFKBIA rs696 and NFKBIZ rs3217713 variants in the risk of developing severe COVID-19 with ICU admission. A total of 470 Spanish patients requiring respiratory support in the ICU were studied (99 deceased and 371 survivors). Compared to healthy population controls (N = 300), the NFKBIA rs696 GG genotype was increased in the patients (p = 0.045; OR = 1.37). The NFKBIZ rs3217713 insertion homozygosis was associated with a significant risk of death (p = 0.02; OR = 1.76) and was also related to increased D-dimer values (p = 0.0078, OR = 1.96). This gene has been implicated in sepsis in mice and rats. Moreover, we found a trend toward lower expression of the NFKBIZ transcript in total blood from II patients. In conclusion, variants in the NF-κB genes might be associated with the risk of developing severe COVID-19, with a significant effect of the NFKBIZ gene on mortality. Our results were based on a limited number of patients and require validation in larger cohorts from other populations.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , NF-kappa B , Adaptor Proteins, Signal Transducing , COVID-19/genetics , Genetic Association Studies , Genetic Predisposition to Disease , Humans , NF-KappaB Inhibitor alpha/genetics , NF-kappa B/genetics , NF-kappa B p50 Subunit/genetics , Polymorphism, Single Nucleotide , SARS-CoV-2 , Signal Transduction
5.
PLoS Pathog ; 18(11): e1010951, 2022 Nov.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2140720

ABSTRACT

SARS-CoV-2 continues to acquire mutations in the spike receptor-binding domain (RBD) that impact ACE2 receptor binding, folding stability, and antibody recognition. Deep mutational scanning prospectively characterizes the impacts of mutations on these biochemical properties, enabling rapid assessment of new mutations seen during viral surveillance. However, the effects of mutations can change as the virus evolves, requiring updated deep mutational scans. We determined the impacts of all single amino acid mutations in the Omicron BA.1 and BA.2 RBDs on ACE2-binding affinity, RBD folding, and escape from binding by the LY-CoV1404 (bebtelovimab) monoclonal antibody. The effects of some mutations in Omicron RBDs differ from those measured in the ancestral Wuhan-Hu-1 background. These epistatic shifts largely resemble those previously seen in the Alpha variant due to the convergent epistatically modifying N501Y substitution. However, Omicron variants show additional lineage-specific shifts, including examples of the epistatic phenomenon of entrenchment that causes the Q498R and N501Y substitutions present in Omicron to be more favorable in that background than in earlier viral strains. In contrast, the Omicron substitution Q493R exhibits no sign of entrenchment, with the derived state, R493, being as unfavorable for ACE2 binding in Omicron RBDs as in Wuhan-Hu-1. Likely for this reason, the R493Q reversion has occurred in Omicron sub-variants including BA.4/BA.5 and BA.2.75, where the affinity buffer from R493Q reversion may potentiate concurrent antigenic change. Consistent with prior studies, we find that Omicron RBDs have reduced expression, and identify candidate stabilizing mutations that ameliorate this deficit. Last, our maps highlight a broadening of the sites of escape from LY-CoV1404 antibody binding in BA.1 and BA.2 compared to the ancestral Wuhan-Hu-1 background. These BA.1 and BA.2 deep mutational scanning datasets identify shifts in the RBD mutational landscape and inform ongoing efforts in viral surveillance.


Subject(s)
Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2 , COVID-19 , Humans , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , COVID-19/genetics , Antibodies, Neutralizing/chemistry , Mutation
6.
Hum Genomics ; 16(1): 60, 2022 Nov 19.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2139420

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: The interferon-induced transmembrane-protein 3 (IFITM3) is a vital component of the immune system's defense against viral infection. Variants in the IFITM3 gene have been linked to changes in expression and the risk of severe Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). This study aimed to investigate whether IFITM3 rs6598045, quantitative polymerase chain reaction (qPCR) cycle threshold (Ct) values, and severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) variants are associated with an increased mortality rate of COVID-19. METHODS: The genotyping of IFITM3 rs6598045 polymorphism was analyzed using the amplification refractory mutation system-polymerase chain reaction in 1342 recovered and 1149 deceased patients positive for SARS-CoV-2. RESULTS: In this study, IFITM3 rs6598045 G allele as minor allele frequency was significantly more common in the deceased patients than in the recovered ones. Furthermore, the highest mortality rates were observed in Delta variant and lowest qPCR Ct values. COVID-19 mortality was associated with IFITM3 rs6598045 GG and AG in Delta variant and IFITM3 rs6598045 AG in Alpha variant. A statistically significant difference was observed in the qPCR Ct values between individuals with GG and AG genotypes and those with an AA genotype. CONCLUSION: A possible correlation was observed between the mortality rate of COVID-19, the G allele of IFITM3 rs6598045, and SARS-CoV-2 variants. However, large-scale research is still required to validate our results.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Humans , COVID-19/genetics , Alleles , Genotype , Membrane Proteins/genetics , RNA-Binding Proteins/genetics
7.
Eur J Med Res ; 27(1): 255, 2022 Nov 21.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2139417

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: The presentation of peptides and the subsequent immune response depend on the MHC characteristics and influence the specificity of the immune response. Several studies have found an association between HLA variants and differential COVID-19 outcomes and have shown that HLA genotypes are associated with differential immune responses against SARS-CoV-2, particularly in severely ill patients. Information, whether HLA haplotypes are associated with the severity or length of the disease in moderately diseased individuals is absent. METHODS: Next-generation sequencing-based HLA typing was performed in 303 female and 231 male non-hospitalized North Rhine Westphalian patients infected with SARS-CoV2 during the first and second wave. For HLA-Class I, we obtained results from 528 patients, and for HLA-Class II from 531. In those patients, who became ill between March 2020 and January 2021, the 22 most common HLA-Class I (HLA-A, -B, -C) or HLA-Class II (HLA -DRB1/3/4, -DQA1, -DQB1) haplotypes were determined. The identified HLA haplotypes as well as the presence of a CCR5Δ32 mutation and number of O and A blood group alleles were associated to disease severity and duration of the disease. RESULTS: The influence of the HLA haplotypes on disease severity and duration was more pronounced than the influence of age, sex, or ABO blood group. These associations were sex dependent. The presence of mutated CCR5 resulted in a longer recovery period in males. CONCLUSION: The existence of certain HLA haplotypes is associated with more severe disease.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Humans , Male , Female , COVID-19/genetics , HLA-DQ Antigens/genetics , Prognosis , RNA, Viral , SARS-CoV-2 , HLA-DRB1 Chains
8.
Genome Med ; 14(1): 134, 2022 Nov 29.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2139391

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: COVID-19 manifests with a wide spectrum of clinical phenotypes, ranging from asymptomatic and mild to severe and critical. Severe and critical COVID-19 patients are characterized by marked changes in the myeloid compartment, especially monocytes. However, little is known about the epigenetic alterations that occur in these cells during hyperinflammatory responses in severe COVID-19 patients. METHODS: In this study, we obtained the DNA methylome and transcriptome of peripheral blood monocytes from severe COVID-19 patients. DNA samples extracted from CD14 + CD15- monocytes of 48 severe COVID-19 patients and 11 healthy controls were hybridized on MethylationEPIC BeadChip arrays. In parallel, single-cell transcriptomics of 10 severe COVID-19 patients were generated. CellPhoneDB was used to infer changes in the crosstalk between monocytes and other immune cell types. RESULTS: We observed DNA methylation changes in CpG sites associated with interferon-related genes and genes associated with antigen presentation, concordant with gene expression changes. These changes significantly overlapped with those occurring in bacterial sepsis, although specific DNA methylation alterations in genes specific to viral infection were also identified. We also found these alterations to comprise some of the DNA methylation changes occurring during myeloid differentiation and under the influence of inflammatory cytokines. A progression of DNA methylation alterations in relation to the Sequential Organ Failure Assessment (SOFA) score was found to be related to interferon-related genes and T-helper 1 cell cytokine production. CellPhoneDB analysis of the single-cell transcriptomes of other immune cell types suggested the existence of altered crosstalk between monocytes and other cell types like NK cells and regulatory T cells. CONCLUSION: Our findings show the occurrence of an epigenetic and transcriptional reprogramming of peripheral blood monocytes, which could be associated with the release of aberrant immature monocytes, increased systemic levels of pro-inflammatory cytokines, and changes in immune cell crosstalk in these patients.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Monocytes , Humans , Transcriptome , Cytokines , COVID-19/genetics , Interferons , Antiviral Agents , Epigenesis, Genetic
9.
Virol J ; 19(1): 198, 2022 Nov 28.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2139350

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2, has led to major public health crises worldwide. Several studies have reported the comprehensive mRNA expression analysis of immune-related genes in patients with COVID-19, using blood samples, to understand its pathogenesis; however, the characteristics of RNA expression in COVID-19 and bacterial sepsis have not been compared. The current study aimed to address this gap. METHODS: RNA-sequencing and bioinformatics analyses were used to compare the transcriptome expression of whole blood samples from patients with COVID-19 and patients with sepsis who were admitted to the intensive care unit of Osaka University Graduate School of Medicine. RESULTS: The COVID-19 and sepsis cohorts showed upregulation of mitochondrial- and neutrophil-related transcripts, respectively. Compared with that in the control cohort, neutrophil-related transcripts were upregulated in both the COVID-19 and sepsis cohorts. In contrast, mitochondrial-related transcripts were upregulated in the COVID-19 cohort and downregulated in the sepsis cohort, compared to those in the control cohort. Moreover, transcript levels of the pro-apoptotic genes BAK1, CYCS, BBC3, CASP7, and CASP8 were upregulated in the COVID-19 cohort, whereas those of anti-apoptotic genes, such as BCL2L11 and BCL2L1, were upregulated in the sepsis cohort. CONCLUSIONS: This study clarified the differential expression of transcripts related to neutrophils and mitochondria in sepsis and COVID-19 conditions. Mitochondrial-related transcripts were downregulated in sepsis than in COVID-19 conditions, and our results indicated suboptimal intrinsic apoptotic features in sepsis samples compared with that in COVID-19 samples. This study is expected to contribute to the development of specific treatments for COVID-19.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Sepsis , Humans , COVID-19/genetics , Sepsis/genetics , SARS-CoV-2 , Intensive Care Units , RNA
10.
Am J Respir Crit Care Med ; 206(10): 1220-1229, 2022 Nov 15.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2138355

ABSTRACT

Rationale: A common MUC5B gene polymorphism, rs35705950-T, is associated with idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF), but its role in severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 infection and disease severity is unclear. Objectives: To assess whether rs35705950-T confers differential risk for clinical outcomes associated with coronavirus disease (COVID-19) infection among participants in the Million Veteran Program (MVP). Methods: The MUC5B rs35705950-T allele was directly genotyped among MVP participants; clinical events and comorbidities were extracted from the electronic health records. Associations between the incidence or severity of COVID-19 and rs35705950-T were analyzed within each ancestry group in the MVP followed by transancestry meta-analysis. Replication and joint meta-analysis were conducted using summary statistics from the COVID-19 Host Genetics Initiative (HGI). Sensitivity analyses with adjustment for additional covariates (body mass index, Charlson comorbidity index, smoking, asbestosis, rheumatoid arthritis with interstitial lung disease, and IPF) and associations with post-COVID-19 pneumonia were performed in MVP subjects. Measurements and Main Results: The rs35705950-T allele was associated with fewer COVID-19 hospitalizations in transancestry meta-analyses within the MVP (Ncases = 4,325; Ncontrols = 507,640; OR = 0.89 [0.82-0.97]; P = 6.86 × 10-3) and joint meta-analyses with the HGI (Ncases = 13,320; Ncontrols = 1,508,841; OR, 0.90 [0.86-0.95]; P = 8.99 × 10-5). The rs35705950-T allele was not associated with reduced COVID-19 positivity in transancestry meta-analysis within the MVP (Ncases = 19,168/Ncontrols = 492,854; OR, 0.98 [0.95-1.01]; P = 0.06) but was nominally significant (P < 0.05) in the joint meta-analysis with the HGI (Ncases = 44,820; Ncontrols = 1,775,827; OR, 0.97 [0.95-1.00]; P = 0.03). Associations were not observed with severe outcomes or mortality. Among individuals of European ancestry in the MVP, rs35705950-T was associated with fewer post-COVID-19 pneumonia events (OR, 0.82 [0.72-0.93]; P = 0.001). Conclusions: The MUC5B variant rs35705950-T may confer protection in COVID-19 hospitalizations.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis , Humans , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/genetics , Mucin-5B/genetics , Polymorphism, Genetic , Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis/genetics , Genotype , Hospitalization , Genetic Predisposition to Disease/genetics
11.
Commun Biol ; 5(1): 1302, 2022 Nov 27.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2133652

ABSTRACT

Single-cell RNA sequencing (scRNA-seq) is currently one of the most powerful techniques available to study the transcriptional response of thousands of cells to an external perturbation. Here, we perform a pseudotime analysis of SARS-CoV-2 infection using publicly available scRNA-seq data from human bronchial epithelial cells and colon and ileum organoids. Our results reveal that, for most genes, the transcriptional response to SARS-CoV-2 infection follows a non-linear pattern characterized by an initial and a final down-regulatory phase separated by an intermediate up-regulatory stage. A correlation analysis of transcriptional profiles suggests a common mechanism regulating the mRNA levels of most genes. Interestingly, genes encoded in the mitochondria or involved in translation exhibited distinct pseudotime profiles. To explain our results, we propose a simple model where nuclear export inhibition of nsp1-sensitive transcripts will be sufficient to explain the transcriptional shutdown of SARS-CoV-2 infected cells.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Humans , COVID-19/genetics , Data Analysis , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , RNA, Messenger/genetics , Epithelial Cells
12.
Signal Transduct Target Ther ; 7(1): 382, 2022 Nov 25.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2133303

ABSTRACT

COVID-19 patients can develop clinical and histopathological features associated with fibrosis, but the pathogenesis of fibrosis remains poorly understood. CD147 has been identified as a universal receptor for SARS-CoV-2 and its variants, which could initiate COVID-19-related cytokine storm. Here, we systemically analyzed lung pathogenesis in SARS-CoV-2- and its delta variant-infected humanized CD147 transgenic mice. Histopathology and Transmission Electron Microscopy revealed inflammation, fibroblast expansion and pronounced fibrotic remodeling in SARS-CoV-2-infected lungs. Consistently, RNA-sequencing identified a set of fibrosis signature genes. Furthermore, we identified CD147 as a crucial regulator for fibroblast activation induced by SARS-CoV-2. We found conditional knockout of CD147 in fibroblast suppressed activation of fibroblasts, decreasing susceptibility to bleomycin-induced pulmonary fibrosis. Meplazumab, a CD147 antibody, was able to inhibit the accumulation of activated fibroblasts and the production of ECM proteins, thus alleviating the progression of pulmonary fibrosis caused by SARS-CoV-2. In conclusion, we demonstrated that CD147 contributed to SARS-CoV-2-triggered progressive pulmonary fibrosis and identified CD147 as a potential therapeutic target for treating patients with post-COVID-19 pulmonary fibrosis.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Pulmonary Fibrosis , Mice , Animals , Pulmonary Fibrosis/genetics , SARS-CoV-2 , COVID-19/genetics
13.
Clin Microbiol Infect ; 28(11): 1417-1421, 2022 Nov.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2130458

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: During the past 2 years, studies on patients with SARS-CoV-2 infection have revealed rare inborn errors of immunity (IEIs) in type interferon (IFN) pathways underlying critical COVID-19 pneumonia. This has provided insights into pathophysiological mechanisms and immune signaling circuits regulating antiviral responses to SARS-CoV-2 and governing the susceptibility to and outcome of SARS-CoV-2 infection in humans. OBJECTIVES: In this review, the current knowledge on IEIs underlying critical COVID-19 is presented, and the clinical implications of these findings for individualized prophylaxis and treatment are outlined. SOURCES: The review is based on a broad literature search, including primarily studies on whole-exome sequencing, and to a lesser extent genome-wide association studies, of patients with critical COVID-19, as well as retrospective descriptive studies of the SARS-CoV-2 disease course in individuals with known IEIs. CONTENT: The review describes the discovery of monogenic IEI in 9 genetic loci related to the production or responses to type I IFN in patients with critical COVID-19 pneumonia and the surprising finding of phenocopies of these, represented by neutralizing autoantibodies to type IFN in a significant proportion of patients with critical pneumonia, particularly in elderly men, and further enriched in patients with lethal disease course. Moreover insights gained from studies on SARS-CoV-2 infection, disease course, and outcome in patients with known IEI is presented. Finally, some hypotheses for a possible genetic basis of autoimmune, inflammatory, and long-term complications of SARS-CoV-2 infection are presented and discussed. IMPLICATIONS: Uncovering IEIs underlying critical COVID-19 or other severe SARS-CoV-2 disease manifestations provides valuable insights into the basic principles of antiviral immune responses and pathophysiology related to SARS-CoV-2 infection. Such knowledge has important clinical implications for identification of susceptible individuals and for diagnosis, prophylaxis, and treatment of patients to reduce disease burden and improve preparedness against viral pandemics with known or emerging viruses in the future.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Male , Humans , Aged , COVID-19/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Genome-Wide Association Study , Retrospective Studies , Antiviral Agents/therapeutic use , Interferons , Autoantibodies , Human Genetics
14.
Elife ; 112022 11 23.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2145048

ABSTRACT

Transmission of SARS-CoV-2 from humans to other species threatens wildlife conservation and may create novel sources of viral diversity for future zoonotic transmission. A variety of computational heuristics have been developed to pre-emptively identify susceptible host species based on variation in the angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2) receptor used for viral entry. However, the predictive performance of these heuristics remains unknown. Using a newly compiled database of 96 species, we show that, while variation in ACE2 can be used by machine learning models to accurately predict animal susceptibility to sarbecoviruses (accuracy = 80.2%, binomial confidence interval [CI]: 70.8-87.6%), the sites informing predictions have no known involvement in virus binding and instead recapitulate host phylogeny. Models trained on host phylogeny alone performed equally well (accuracy = 84.4%, CI: 75.5-91.0%) and at a level equivalent to retrospective assessments of accuracy for previously published models. These results suggest that the predictive power of ACE2-based models derives from strong correlations with host phylogeny rather than processes which can be mechanistically linked to infection biology. Further, biased availability of ACE2 sequences misleads projections of the number and geographic distribution of at-risk species. Models based on host phylogeny reduce this bias, but identify a very large number of susceptible species, implying that model predictions must be combined with local knowledge of exposure risk to practically guide surveillance. Identifying barriers to viral infection or onward transmission beyond receptor binding and incorporating data which are independent of host phylogeny will be necessary to manage the ongoing risk of establishment of novel animal reservoirs of SARS-CoV-2.


The COVID-19 pandemic affects humans, but also many of the animals we interact with. So far, humans have transmitted the SARS-CoV-2 virus to pet dogs and cats, a wide range of zoo animals, and even wildlife. Transmission of SARS-CoV-2 from humans to animals can lead to outbreaks amongst certain species, which can endanger animal populations and create new sources of human infections. Thus, careful monitoring of animal infections may help protect both animals and humans. Identifying which animals are susceptible to SARS-CoV-2 would help scientists monitor these species for outbreaks and viral circulation. Unfortunately, testing whether SARS-CoV-2 can infect different species in the laboratory is both time-consuming and expensive. To overcome this obstacle, researchers have used computational methods and existing data about the structure and genetic sequences of ACE2 receptors ­ the proteins on the cell surface that SARS-CoV-2 uses to enter the cell ­ to predict SARS-COV-2 susceptibility in different species. However, it remained unclear how accurate this approach was at predicting susceptibility in different animals, or whether their correct predictions indicated causal links between ACE2 variability and SARS-CoV-2 susceptibility. To assess the usefulness of this approach, Mollentze et al. started by using data on the ACE2 receptors from 96 different species and building a machine learning model to predict how susceptible those species might be to SARS-CoV-2. The susceptibility of these species had either been observed in natural infections ­ in zoos, for example ­ or had been assessed in the laboratory, so Mollentze et al. were able to use this information to determine how good both their model and previous approaches based on the sequence of ACE2 receptors were. The results showed that while the model was quite accurate (it correctly predicted susceptibility to SARS-CoV-2 about 80% of the time), its predictions were based on regions of the ACE2 receptors that were not known to interact with the virus. Instead, the regions that the machine learning model relied on were ones that tend to vary more the more distantly related two species are. This indicates that existing computational approaches are likely not relying on information about how ACE2 receptors interact with SARS-CoV-2 to predict susceptibility. Instead, they are simply using information on how closely related the different animal species are, which is much easier to source than data about ACE2 receptors. Indeed, the sequences of the ACE2 receptors in many species are unknown and the species for which this information is available come only from a few geographic areas. Mollentze et al. also showed that limiting the predictions about susceptibility to these species could mislead scientists when deciding which species and geographic areas to surveil for possible viral circulation. Instead, it may be more effective and cost-efficient to use animal relatedness to predict susceptibility to SARS-CoV-2. This makes it possible to make predictions for nearly all mammals, while being just as accurate as models based on ACE2 receptor data. However, Mollentze et al. point out that this approach would still fail to narrow down the number of animals that need to be monitored enough for it to be practical. Considering additional factors like how often the animals interact with humans or how prone they are to transmit the virus among themselves may help narrow it down more. Further research is therefore needed to identify the best multifactor approaches to identifying which animal populations should be monitored.


Subject(s)
Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2 , COVID-19 , Animals , Humans , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/genetics , COVID-19/diagnosis , COVID-19/genetics , Retrospective Studies , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Disease Susceptibility
15.
Elife ; 112022 10 17.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2145045

ABSTRACT

Background: Epidemiological studies observed gender differences in COVID-19 outcomes, however, whether sex hormone plays a causal in COVID-19 risk remains unclear. This study aimed to examine associations of sex hormone, sex hormones-binding globulin (SHBG), insulin-like growth factor-1 (IGF-1), and COVID-19 risk. Methods: Two-sample Mendelian randomization (TSMR) study was performed to explore the causal associations between testosterone, estrogen, SHBG, IGF-1, and the risk of COVID-19 (susceptibility, hospitalization, and severity) using genome-wide association study (GWAS) summary level data from the COVID-19 Host Genetics Initiative (N=1,348,701). Random-effects inverse variance weighted (IVW) MR approach was used as the primary MR method and the weighted median, MR-Egger, and MR Pleiotropy RESidual Sum and Outlier (MR-PRESSO) test were conducted as sensitivity analyses. Results: Higher genetically predicted IGF-1 levels have nominally significant association with reduced risk of COVID-19 susceptibility and hospitalization. For one standard deviation increase in genetically predicted IGF-1 levels, the odds ratio was 0.77 (95% confidence interval [CI], 0.61-0.97, p=0.027) for COVID-19 susceptibility, 0.62 (95% CI: 0.25-0.51, p=0.018) for COVID-19 hospitalization, and 0.85 (95% CI: 0.52-1.38, p=0.513) for COVID-19 severity. There was no evidence that testosterone, estrogen, and SHBG are associated with the risk of COVID-19 susceptibility, hospitalization, and severity in either overall or sex-stratified TSMR analysis. Conclusions: Our study indicated that genetically predicted high IGF-1 levels were associated with decrease the risk of COVID-19 susceptibility and hospitalization, but these associations did not survive the Bonferroni correction of multiple testing. Further studies are needed to validate the findings and explore whether IGF-1 could be a potential intervention target to reduce COVID-19 risk. Funding: We acknowledge support from NSFC (LR22H260001), CRUK (C31250/A22804), SHLF (Hjärt-Lungfonden, 20210351), VR (Vetenskapsrådet, 2019-00977), and SCI (Cancerfonden).


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Genome-Wide Association Study , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/genetics , Estrogens , Gonadal Steroid Hormones , Hospitalization , Humans , Insulin-Like Growth Factor I/genetics , Polymorphism, Single Nucleotide , Testosterone
16.
Front Immunol ; 13: 1001070, 2022.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2142020

ABSTRACT

Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS- CoV-2) is the causative virus of the pandemic coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). Evaluating the immunological factors and other implicated processes underlying the progression of COVID-19 is essential for the recognition and then the design of efficacious therapies. Therefore, we analyzed RNAseq data obtained from PBMCs of the COVID-19 patients to explore coding and non-coding RNA diagnostic immunological panels. For this purpose, we integrated multiple RNAseq data and analyzed them overall as well as by considering the state of disease including severe and non-severe conditions. Afterward, we utilized a co-expressed-based machine learning procedure comprising weighted-gene co-expression analysis and differential expression gene as filter phase and recursive feature elimination-support vector machine as wrapper phase. This procedure led to the identification of two modules containing 5 and 84 genes which are mostly involved in cell dysregulation and innate immune suppression, respectively. Moreover, the role of vitamin D in regulating some classifiers was highlighted. Further analysis disclosed the role of discriminant miRNAs including miR-197-3p, miR-150-5p, miR-340-5p, miR-122-5p, miR-1307-3p, miR-34a-5p, miR-98-5p and their target genes comprising GAN, VWC2, TNFRSF6B, and CHST3 in the metabolic pathways. These classifiers differentiate the final fate of infection toward severe or non-severe COVID-19. The identified classifier genes and miRNAs may help in the proper design of therapeutic procedures considering their involvement in the immune and metabolic pathways.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , MicroRNAs , Humans , COVID-19/diagnosis , COVID-19/genetics , MicroRNAs/genetics , MicroRNAs/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Machine Learning
17.
Front Immunol ; 13: 918817, 2022.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2141935

ABSTRACT

Most transcriptomic studies of SARS-CoV-2 infection have focused on differentially expressed genes, which do not necessarily reveal the genes mediating the transcriptomic changes. In contrast, exploiting curated biological network, our PathExt tool identifies central genes from the differentially active paths mediating global transcriptomic response. Here we apply PathExt to multiple cell line infection models of SARS-CoV-2 and other viruses, as well as to COVID-19 patient-derived PBMCs. The central genes mediating SARS-CoV-2 response in cell lines were uniquely enriched for ATP metabolic process, G1/S transition, leukocyte activation and migration. In contrast, PBMC response reveals dysregulated cell-cycle processes. In PBMC, the most frequently central genes are associated with COVID-19 severity. Importantly, relative to differential genes, PathExt-identified genes show greater concordance with several benchmark anti-COVID-19 target gene sets. We propose six novel anti-SARS-CoV-2 targets ADCY2, ADSL, OCRL, TIAM1, PBK, and BUB1, and potential drugs targeting these genes, such as Bemcentinib, Phthalocyanine, and Conivaptan.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , COVID-19/drug therapy , COVID-19/genetics , Cell Line , Humans , Leukocytes, Mononuclear , Transcriptome
18.
Front Endocrinol (Lausanne) ; 13: 935906, 2022.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2123396

ABSTRACT

Background: Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), has caused a pandemic in many countries around the world. The virus is highly contagious and has a high fatality rate. Lung adenocarcinoma (LUAD) patients may have higher susceptibility and mortality to COVID-19. While Paxlovid is the first oral drug approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for COVID-19, its specific drug mechanism for lung cancer patients infected with COVID-19 remains to be further studied. Methods: COVID-19 related genes were obtained from NCBI, GeneCards, and KEGG, and then the transcriptome data for LUAD was downloaded from TCGA. The drug targets of Paxlovid were revealed through BATMAN-TCM, DrugBank, SwissTargetPrediction, and TargetNet. The genes related to susceptibility to COVID-19 in LUAD patients were obtained through differential analysis. The interaction of LUAD/COVID-19 related genes was evaluated and displayed by STRING, and a COX risk regression model was established to screen and evaluate the correlation between genes and clinical characteristics. The Venn diagram was drawn to select the candidate targets of Paxlovid against LUAD/COVID-19, and the functional analysis of the target genes was performed using KEGG and GO enrichment analysis. Finally, Cytoscape was used to screen and visualize the Hub Gene, and Autodock was used for molecular docking between the drug and the target. Result: Bioinformatics analysis was performed by combining COVID-19-related genes with the gene expression and clinical data of LUAD, including analysis of prognosis-related genes, survival rate, and hub genes screened out by the prognosis model. The key targets of Paxlovid against LUAD/COVID-19 were obtained through network pharmacology, the most important targets include IL6, IL12B, LBP. Furthermore, pathway analysis showed that Paxlovid modulates the IL-17 signaling pathway, the cytokine-cytokine receptor interaction, during LUAD/COVID-19 treatment. Conclusions: Based on bioinformatics and network pharmacology, the prognostic signature of LUAD/COVID-19 patients was screened. And identified the potential therapeutic targets and molecular pathways of Paxlovid Paxlovid in the treatment of LUAD/COVID. As promising features, prognostic signatures and therapeutic targets shed light on improving the personalized management of patients with LUAD.


Subject(s)
Adenocarcinoma of Lung , COVID-19 , Lung Neoplasms , Adenocarcinoma of Lung/genetics , Adenocarcinoma of Lung/metabolism , COVID-19/drug therapy , COVID-19/genetics , Computational Biology , Drug Combinations , Humans , Interleukin-17 , Interleukin-6 , Lactams , Leucine , Molecular Docking Simulation , Network Pharmacology , Nitriles , Proline , Receptors, Cytokine , Ritonavir , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , United States
19.
Hum Genomics ; 16(1): 59, 2022 Nov 15.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2119172

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: AU-rich elements (AREs) are located in the 3'UTRs of 22% of human mRNAs, including most transiently expressed inflammatory mediators. By default, AREs mark mRNAs for decay and translational inhibition, but this activity can be temporarily inhibited in case of infection to allow the onset of inflammation. Morbidity and mortality in COVID-19 patients have been associated with dysregulated inflammation, a process that may include aberrant ARE activity. RESULTS: RNA-seq data from available transcriptomic studies were analyzed to investigate a possible differential expression of mRNAs that contain AREs in the context of SARS-CoV-2 infections. ARE-mRNAs turned out to be significantly overrepresented among the upregulated mRNAs after SARS-CoV-2 infection (up to 42%). In contrast, ARE-mRNAs were underrepresented (16%) in the downregulated group. Consequently, at a global scale, ARE-mRNAs are significantly more upregulated after SARS-CoV-2 infection compared to non-ARE mRNAs. This observation was apparent in lung cell line models such as A549 and Calu-3 and with infections with other respiratory viruses and cell lines. Most importantly, at the clinical level, the elevated ARE-mRNA response appeared strongest in blood cells of COVID-19 patients with mild disease. It diminished with disease severity and was least apparent in patients in need of intubation and respiratory-related death. Gene function and clustering analysis suggest that the ARE-response is rather global and the upregulated ARE-mRNAs in patients with mild disease do not particularly cluster in specific functional groups. CONCLUSIONS: Compared to the rest of the transcriptome, ARE-containing mRNAs are preferentially upregulated in response to viral infections at a global level. In the context of COVID-19, they are most upregulated in mild disease. Due to their large number, their levels measured by RNA-seq may provide a reliable indication of COVID-19 severity.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Humans , RNA, Messenger/genetics , RNA, Messenger/metabolism , COVID-19/genetics , Up-Regulation/genetics , SARS-CoV-2 , Inflammation
20.
Immunobiology ; 227(6): 152301, 2022 Nov.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2119151

ABSTRACT

Coronavirus disease-19 (COVID-19) has recently emerged as a respiratory infection with a significant impact on health and society. The pathogenesis is primarily attributed to a dysregulation of cytokines, especially those with pro-inflammatory and anti-inflammatory effects. Interleukin-38 (IL-38) is a recently identified anti-inflammatory cytokine with a proposed involvement in mediating COVID-19 pathogenesis, while the association between IL38 gene variants and disease susceptibility has not been explored. Therefore, a pilot study was designed to evaluate the association of three gene variants in the promoter region of IL38 gene (rs7599662 T/A/C/G, rs28992497 T/C and rs28992498 C/A/T) with COVID-19 risk. DNA sequencing was performed to identify these variants. The study included 148 Iraqi patients with COVID-19 and 113 healthy controls (HC). Only rs7599662 showed a significant negative association with susceptibility to COVID-19. The mutant T allele was presented at a significantly lower frequency in patients compared to HC. Analysis of recessive, dominant and codominant models demonstrated that rs7599662 TT genotype frequency was significantly lower in patients than in HC. In terms of haplotypes (in order: rs7599662, rs28992497 and rs28992498), frequency of CTC haplotype was significantly increased in patients compared to HC, while TTC haplotype showed significantly lower frequency in patients. The three SNPs influenced serum IL-38 levels and homozygous genotypes of mutant alleles were associated with elevated levels. In conclusion, this study indicated that IL38 gene in terms of promoter variants and haplotypes may have important implications for COVID-19 risk.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Humans , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/genetics , Genotype , Pilot Projects , Iraq , Case-Control Studies , Promoter Regions, Genetic/genetics , Polymorphism, Single Nucleotide , Alleles , Haplotypes , Cytokines/genetics , Interleukins/genetics , Genetic Predisposition to Disease , Gene Frequency
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