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Cell Transplant ; 30: 9636897211049814, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1484237


During the past 18 months as the world dealt with the COVID-19 pandemic, articles published in Cell Transplantation (CT) voiced unique perspectives on the disease which have since been supported by additional research. Intrigued by the variability in COVID-19 severity, CT authors explored the influence of variants in angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2) and the transmembrane serine protease 2 (TMPRSS2) genes, as well as the role of androgen receptors on disease development. Mesenchymal stem cells (MSC) were offered up as a potential COVID-19 therapy because of their immune modulating characteristics and successful use in other acute respiratory diseases. Two CT author groups gave proof of principle when hospitalized COVID-19 patients were infused with MSC after no other interventions seemed to work. MSC treatment reduced disease severity and shortened hospitalization stays. Lastly, CT authors speculated why we are still in the midst of a pandemic and the consequences of disillusioned comfort as we face new emerging variants that may undermine all we have accomplished thus far.

COVID-19/immunology , COVID-19/therapy , Mesenchymal Stem Cells/cytology , Serine Endopeptidases/genetics , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/metabolism , Biomedical Research , Cell Transplantation , Cytokines/metabolism , Hospitalization , Humans , Immune System , Mesenchymal Stem Cells/metabolism , Peptidyl-Dipeptidase A/genetics , Publications , Receptors, Androgen/metabolism , Retrospective Studies , SARS-CoV-2 , Severity of Illness Index
Cell Transplant ; 30: 9636897211053872, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1477154


The 28th American Society for Neural Therapy and Repair (ASNTR) returned to the Sheraton Sand Key in Clearwater Beach, Florida after an 18 month hiatus. Like nearly all conferences during the pandemic, the ASNTR conference was held in person while offering a virtual option to the event. These formats are advantageous for those under travel restrictions or personal constraints, but they lack the spontaneity of in-person connections. Highlights from the meeting included the return of the Bernard Sanberg Memorial Award and the Roy Bakay Memorial lecture. The presidential lecture was given by Gabriel de Erausquin, who discussed the possibility of long-term CNS effects resulting from SARS-CoV2 infection. With both virtual and in-person events, including oral and poster presentations, the ASNTR managed to maintain the unique essence of this small important meeting.

COVID-19/diagnosis , COVID-19/therapy , Congresses as Topic , Cell Transplantation , Florida , Humans , Hydrogels , Magnetic Resonance Imaging , Neurodegenerative Diseases/therapy , Neurons/pathology , Neurons/physiology , Neuropathology/methods , RNA, Viral , SARS-CoV-2 , Societies, Medical , Telecommunications , United States
J Cell Mol Med ; 25(22): 10554-10564, 2021 11.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1462824


Acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) is the most common cause of death in COVID-19 patients. The cytokine storm is the main driver of the severity and magnitude of ARDS. Placenta-derived decidua stromal cells (DSCs) have a stronger immunosuppressive effect than other sources of mesenchymal stromal cells. Safety and efficacy study included 10 patients with a median age of 50 (range 14-68) years with COVID-19-induced ARDS. DSCs were administered 1-2 times at a dose of 1 × 106 /kg. End points were safety and efficacy by survival, oxygenation and effects on levels of cytokines. Oxygenation levels increased from a median of 80.5% (range 69-88) to 95% (range 78-99) (p = 0.012), and pulmonary infiltrates disappeared in all patients. Levels of IL-6 decreased from a median of 69.3 (range 35.0-253.4) to 11 (range 4.0-38.3) pg/ml (p = 0.018), and CRP decreased from 69 (range 5-169) to 6 (range 2-31) mg/ml (p = 0.028). Two patients died, one of a myocardial infarction and the other of multiple organ failure, diagnosed before the DSC therapy. The other patients recovered and left the intensive care unit (ICU) within a median of 6 (range 3-12) days. DSC therapy is safe and capable of improving oxygenation, decreasing inflammatory cytokine level and clearing pulmonary infiltrates in patients with COVID-19.

COVID-19/drug therapy , Cell Transplantation/methods , Cytokine Release Syndrome/therapy , Respiratory Distress Syndrome/virology , Stromal Cells/transplantation , Adolescent , Adult , Aged , COVID-19/complications , COVID-19/therapy , Cell Transplantation/adverse effects , Cytokine Release Syndrome/etiology , Cytokines/blood , Female , Humans , Length of Stay , Male , Middle Aged , Placenta/cytology , Pregnancy , Respiratory Distress Syndrome/therapy , Stromal Cells/physiology , Treatment Outcome