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1.
Methods Mol Biol ; 2273: 131-138, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1092090

ABSTRACT

The current coronavirus disease-19 (COVID-19) pandemic, caused by "severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2" (SARS-CoV-2), underscores the threat posed by newly emerging viruses. The understanding of the mechanisms driving early infection events, that are crucial for the exponential spread of the disease, is mandatory and can be significantly implemented generating 3D in vitro models as experimental platforms to investigate the infection substrates and how the virus invades and ravages the tissues.We here describe a protocol for the creation of a synthetic hydrogel-based 3D culture system that mimics in vitro the complex architectures and mechanical cues distinctive of the upper airway epithelia. We then expose the in vitro generated 3D nasal and tracheal epithelia to gold nanoparticles (AuNPs) that display the typical shape and size distinctive of SARS-CoV-2 and of the majority of Coronaviridae presently known.The infection platform here described provides an efficient and highly physiological in vitro model that reproduces the host-pathogen early interactions, using virus-mimicking nanoparticles, and offers a flexible tool to study virus entry into the cell. At the same time, it reduces the risk of accidental infection/spillovers for researchers, which represents a crucial aspect when dealing with a virus that is highly contagious, virulent, and even deadly.


Subject(s)
/metabolism , Cell Culture Techniques/methods , Epithelial Cells/cytology , Nanoparticles/metabolism , Respiratory Mucosa/cytology , Animals , Cell Line , Chlorocebus aethiops , Epithelial Cells/virology , Gold , Humans , Metal Nanoparticles/chemistry , Molecular Mimicry/immunology , Nose/virology , Respiratory Mucosa/virology , /pathogenicity , Trachea/virology , Vero Cells , Virus Internalization
2.
mSphere ; 5(5)2020 09 02.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-742194

ABSTRACT

Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) has infected millions within just a few months, causing severe respiratory disease and mortality. Assays to monitor SARS-CoV-2 growth in vitro depend on time-consuming and costly RNA extraction steps, hampering progress in basic research and drug development efforts. Here, we developed a simplified quantitative real-time PCR assay that bypasses viral RNA extraction steps and can monitor SARS-CoV-2 growth from a small amount of cell culture supernatants. In addition, we show that this approach is easily adaptable to numerous other RNA and DNA viruses. Using this assay, we screened the activities of a number of compounds that were predicted to alter SARS-CoV-2 entry and replication as well as HIV-1-specific drugs in a proof-of-concept study. We found that E64D (inhibitor of endosomal proteases cathepsin B and L) and apilimod (endosomal trafficking inhibitor) potently decreased the amount of SARS-CoV-2 RNA in cell culture supernatants with minimal cytotoxicity. Surprisingly, we found that the macropinocytosis inhibitor ethylisopropylamiloride (EIPA) similarly decreased SARS-CoV-2 RNA levels in supernatants, suggesting that entry may additionally be mediated by an alternative pathway. HIV-1-specific inhibitors nevirapine (a nonnucleoside reverse transcriptase inhibitor [NNRTI]), amprenavir (a protease inhibitor), and allosteric integrase inhibitor 2 (ALLINI-2) modestly inhibited SARS-CoV-2 replication, albeit the 50% inhibitory concentration (IC50) values were much higher than that required for HIV-1. Taking the data together, this simplified assay will expedite basic SARS-CoV-2 research, be amenable to mid-throughput screening assays (i.e., drug, CRISPR, small interfering RNA [siRNA], etc.), and be applicable to a broad number of RNA and DNA viruses.IMPORTANCE Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), the etiological agent of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic, is continuing to cause immense respiratory disease and social and economic disruptions. Conventional assays that monitor SARS-CoV-2 growth in cell culture rely on costly and time-consuming RNA extraction procedures, hampering progress in basic SARS-CoV-2 research and development of effective therapeutics. Here, we developed a simple quantitative real-time PCR assay to monitor SARS-CoV-2 growth in cell culture supernatants that does not necessitate RNA extraction and that is as accurate and sensitive as existing methods. In a proof-of-concept screen, we found that E64D, apilimod, EIPA, and remdesivir can substantially impede SARS-Cov-2 replication, providing novel insight into viral entry and replication mechanisms. In addition, we show that this approach is easily adaptable to numerous other RNA and DNA viruses. This simplified assay will undoubtedly expedite basic SARS-CoV-2 and virology research and be amenable to use in drug screening platforms to identify therapeutics against SARS-CoV-2.


Subject(s)
Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , Betacoronavirus/drug effects , Betacoronavirus/growth & development , Cell Culture Techniques/methods , Coronavirus Infections/virology , Pneumonia, Viral/virology , Real-Time Polymerase Chain Reaction/methods , Betacoronavirus/genetics , Betacoronavirus/pathogenicity , Pandemics , RNA, Viral/analysis , RNA, Viral/isolation & purification , Virus Replication/drug effects
3.
Virol Sin ; 35(3): 311-320, 2020 Jun.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-617330

ABSTRACT

The mechanism of how SARS-CoV-2 causes severe multi-organ failure is largely unknown. Acute kidney injury (AKI) is one of the frequent organ damage in severe COVID-19 patients. Previous studies have shown that human renal tubule cells could be the potential host cells targeted by SARS-CoV-2. Traditional cancer cell lines or immortalized cell lines are genetically and phenotypically different from host cells. Animal models are widely used, but often fail to reflect a physiological and pathogenic status because of species tropisms. There is an unmet need for normal human epithelial cells for disease modeling. In this study, we successfully established long term cultures of normal human kidney proximal tubule epithelial cells (KPTECs) in 2D and 3D culture systems using conditional reprogramming (CR) and organoids techniques. These cells had the ability to differentiate and repair DNA damage, and showed no transforming property. Importantly, the CR KPTECs maintained lineage function with expression of specific transporters (SLC34A3 and cubilin). They also expressed angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2), a receptor for SARS-CoV and SARS-CoV-2. In contrast, cancer cell line did not express endogenous SLC34A3, cubilin and ACE2. Very interestingly, ACE2 expression was around twofold higher in 3D organoids culture compared to that in 2D CR culture condition. Pseudovirion assays demonstrated that SARS-CoV spike (S) protein was able to enter CR cells with luciferase reporter. This integrated 2D CR and 3D organoid cultures provide a physiological ex vivo model to study kidney functions, innate immune response of kidney cells to viruses, and a novel platform for drug discovery and safety evaluation.


Subject(s)
Betacoronavirus/metabolism , Cell Culture Techniques/methods , Coronavirus Infections/virology , Coronavirus/metabolism , Epithelial Cells/virology , Kidney/virology , Pneumonia, Viral/virology , Animals , Betacoronavirus/pathogenicity , Cell Line , Coronavirus/pathogenicity , DNA Damage , Disease Models, Animal , Humans , Organoids , Pandemics , Peptidyl-Dipeptidase A/metabolism , Receptors, Cell Surface/metabolism , SARS Virus/metabolism , SARS Virus/pathogenicity , Sodium-Phosphate Cotransporter Proteins, Type IIc/metabolism , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/metabolism
4.
Viruses ; 12(6)2020 06 08.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-574875

ABSTRACT

Clinical samples collected in coronavirus disease 19 (COVID-19), patients are commonly manipulated in biosafety level 2 laboratories for molecular diagnostic purposes. Here, we tested French norm NF-EN-14476+A2 derived from European standard EN-14885 to assess the risk of manipulating infectious viruses prior to RNA extraction. SARS-CoV-2 cell-culture supernatant and nasopharyngeal samples (virus-spiked samples and clinical samples collected in COVID-19 patients) were used to measure the reduction of infectivity after 10 minute contact with lysis buffer containing various detergents and chaotropic agents. A total of thirteen protocols were evaluated. Two commercially available formulations showed the ability to reduce infectivity by at least 6 log 10, whereas others proved less effective.


Subject(s)
Betacoronavirus/drug effects , Coronavirus Infections/virology , Pneumonia, Viral/virology , Virus Inactivation/drug effects , Animals , Betacoronavirus/genetics , Betacoronavirus/isolation & purification , Betacoronavirus/physiology , Cell Culture Techniques/methods , Chlorocebus aethiops , Containment of Biohazards/methods , Containment of Biohazards/standards , Humans , Nasopharynx/virology , Pandemics , RNA, Viral/isolation & purification , Specimen Handling/methods , Vero Cells , Viral Load/methods
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