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1.
PLoS One ; 16(10): e0258391, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1463319

ABSTRACT

In France, social distancing measures have been adopted to contain the spread of COVID-19, culminating in national Lockdowns. The use of hand washing, hydro-alcoholic rubs and mask-wearing also increased over time. As these measures are likely to impact the transmission of many communicable diseases, we studied the changes in common infectious diseases incidence in France during the first year of COVID-19 circulation. We examined the weekly incidence of acute gastroenteritis, chickenpox, acute respiratory infections and bronchiolitis reported in general practitioner networks since January 2016. We obtained search engine query volume for French terms related to these diseases and sales data for relevant drugs over the same period. A periodic regression model was fit to disease incidence, drug sales and search query volume before the COVID-19 period and extrapolated afterwards. We compared the expected values with observations made in 2020. During the first lockdown period, incidence dropped by 67% for gastroenteritis, by 79% for bronchiolitis, by 49% for acute respiratory infection and 90% for chickenpox compared to the past years. Reductions with respect to the expected incidence reflected the strength of implemented measures. Incidence in children was impacted the most. Reduction in primary care consultations dropped during a short period at the beginning of the first lockdown period but remained more than 95% of the expected value afterwards. In primary care, the large decrease in reported gastroenteritis, chickenpox or bronchiolitis observed during the period where many barrier measures were implemented imply that the circulation of common viruses was reduced and informs on the overall effect of these measures.


Subject(s)
Bronchiolitis/epidemiology , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/prevention & control , Chickenpox/epidemiology , Communicable Disease Control/methods , Communicable Diseases/epidemiology , Diarrhea/epidemiology , Gastroenteritis/epidemiology , Pandemics/prevention & control , SARS-CoV-2 , Adolescent , Adult , Aged , COVID-19/transmission , COVID-19/virology , Child , Child, Preschool , Communicable Diseases/virology , Female , France/epidemiology , Hospitalization , Humans , Incidence , Infant , Infant, Newborn , Male , Middle Aged , Prospective Studies , Referral and Consultation , Seasons , Young Adult
2.
Theranostics ; 11(18): 9133-9161, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1410987

ABSTRACT

During an epidemic or pandemic, the primary task is to rapidly develop precise diagnostic approaches and effective therapeutics. Oligonucleotide aptamer-based pathogen detection assays and control therapeutics are promising, as aptamers that specifically recognize and block pathogens can be quickly developed and produced through simple chemical synthesis. This work reviews common aptamer-based diagnostic techniques for communicable diseases and summarizes currently available aptamers that target various pathogens, including the SARS-CoV-2 virus. Moreover, this review discusses how oligonucleotide aptamers might be leveraged to control pathogen propagation and improve host immune system responses. This review offers a comprehensive data source to the further develop aptamer-based diagnostics and therapeutics specific for infectious diseases.


Subject(s)
Aptamers, Nucleotide , Bacteria/genetics , Communicable Diseases/diagnosis , Molecular Diagnostic Techniques/methods , Viruses/genetics , Aptamers, Nucleotide/pharmacology , Biosensing Techniques , COVID-19 Testing/methods , Communicable Disease Control , Communicable Diseases/microbiology , Communicable Diseases/virology , Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay/methods , Host-Pathogen Interactions/immunology , Humans , SELEX Aptamer Technique , Virus Internalization
3.
Sci Rep ; 11(1): 18108, 2021 09 13.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1406409

ABSTRACT

The progress of the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic requires the design of large-scale, cost-effective testing programs. Pooling samples provides a solution if the tests are sensitive enough. In this regard, the use of the gold standard, RT-qPCR, raises some concerns. Recently, droplet digital PCR (ddPCR) was shown to be 10-100 times more sensitive than RT-qPCR, making it more suitable for pooling. Furthermore, ddPCR quantifies the RNA content directly, a feature that, as we show, can be used to identify nonviable samples in pools. Cost-effective strategies require the definition of efficient deconvolution and re-testing procedures. In this paper we analyze the practical implementation of an efficient hierarchical pooling strategy for which we have recently derived the optimal, determining the best ways to proceed when there are impediments for the use of the absolute optimum or when multiple pools are tested simultaneously and there are restrictions on the throughput time. We also show how the ddPCR RNA quantification and the nested nature of the strategy can be combined to perform self-consistency tests for a better identification of infected individuals and nonviable samples. The studies are useful to those considering pool testing for the identification of infected individuals.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Nucleic Acid Testing/methods , COVID-19/diagnosis , Diagnostic Tests, Routine/methods , Real-Time Polymerase Chain Reaction/methods , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Algorithms , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/virology , Communicable Diseases/diagnosis , Communicable Diseases/virology , Humans , Models, Genetic , Pandemics , RNA, Viral/genetics , Reproducibility of Results , SARS-CoV-2/physiology , Sensitivity and Specificity , Specimen Handling/methods
4.
Biochim Biophys Acta Mol Basis Dis ; 1867(12): 166264, 2021 12 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1385051

ABSTRACT

The molecular evolution of life on earth along with changing environmental, conditions has rendered mankind susceptible to endemic and pandemic emerging infectious diseases. The effects of certain systemic viral and bacterial infections on morbidity and mortality are considered as examples of recent emerging infections. Here we will focus on three examples of infections that are important in pregnancy and early childhood: SARS-CoV-2 virus, Zika virus, and Mycoplasma species. The basic structural characteristics of these infectious agents will be examined, along with their general pathogenic mechanisms. Coronavirus infections, such as caused by the SARS-CoV-2 virus, likely evolved from zoonotic bat viruses to infect humans and cause a pandemic that has been the biggest challenge for humanity since the Spanish Flu pandemic of the early 20th century. In contrast, Zika Virus infections represent an expanding infectious threat in the context of global climate change. The relationship of these infections to pregnancy, the vertical transmission and neurological sequels make these viruses highly relevant to the topics of this special issue. Finally, mycoplasmal infections have been present before mankind evolved, but they were rarely identified as human pathogens until recently, and they are now recognized as important coinfections that are able to modify the course and prognosis of various infectious diseases and other chronic illnesses. The infectious processes caused by these intracellular microorganisms are examined as well as some general aspects of their pathogeneses, clinical presentations, and diagnoses. We will finally consider examples of treatments that have been used to reduce morbidity and mortality of these infections and discuss briefly the current status of vaccines, in particular, against the SARS-CoV-2 virus. It is important to understand some of the basic features of these emerging infectious diseases and the pathogens involved in order to better appreciate the contributions of this special issue on how infectious diseases can affect human pregnancy, fetuses and neonates.


Subject(s)
Bacterial Infections/prevention & control , Communicable Diseases/transmission , Virus Diseases/prevention & control , Bacterial Infections/history , Bacterial Infections/transmission , COVID-19/metabolism , COVID-19/prevention & control , Communicable Diseases/virology , Female , History, 19th Century , History, 20th Century , History, 21st Century , Humans , Infant, Newborn , Infectious Disease Transmission, Vertical/history , Mycoplasma/pathogenicity , Mycoplasma Infections/metabolism , Mycoplasma Infections/prevention & control , Pregnancy , Pregnant Women , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity , Virus Diseases/history , Virus Diseases/transmission , Zika Virus/pathogenicity , Zika Virus Infection/metabolism , Zika Virus Infection/prevention & control
5.
J Mater Chem B ; 9(38): 7878-7908, 2021 10 06.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1373457

ABSTRACT

Infectious diseases caused by bacteria, viruses, and fungi and their global spread pose a great threat to human health. The 2019 World Health Organization report predicted that infection-related mortality will be similar to cancer mortality by 2050. Particularly, the global cumulative numbers of the recent outbreak of coronavirus disease (COVID-19) have reached 110.7 million cases and over 2.4 million deaths as of February 23, 2021. Moreover, the crisis of these infectious diseases exposes the many problems of traditional diagnosis, treatment, and prevention, such as time-consuming and unselective detection methods, the emergence of drug-resistant bacteria, serious side effects, and poor drug delivery. There is an urgent need for rapid and sensitive diagnosis as well as high efficacy and low toxicity treatments. The emergence of nanomedicine has provided a promising strategy to greatly enhance detection methods and drug treatment efficacy. Owing to their unique optical, magnetic, and electrical properties, nanoparticles (NPs) have great potential for the fast and selective detection of bacteria, viruses, and fungi. NPs exhibit remarkable antibacterial activity by releasing reactive oxygen species and metal ions, exerting photothermal effects, and causing destruction of the cell membrane. Nano-based delivery systems can further improve drug permeability, reduce the side effects of drugs, and prolong systemic circulation time and drug half-life. Moreover, effective drugs against COVID-19 are still lacking. Recently, nanomedicine has shown great potential to accelerate the development of safe and novel anti-COVID-19 drugs. This article reviews the fundamental mechanisms and the latest developments in the treatment and diagnosis of bacteria, viruses, and fungi and discusses the challenges and perspectives in the application of nanomedicine.


Subject(s)
Anti-Infective Agents/therapeutic use , Communicable Diseases/drug therapy , Nanomedicine , Anti-Infective Agents/chemistry , COVID-19/diagnosis , COVID-19/drug therapy , COVID-19/virology , Communicable Diseases/diagnosis , Communicable Diseases/microbiology , Communicable Diseases/virology , Drug Carriers/chemistry , Humans , Nanoparticles/chemistry , Reactive Oxygen Species/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification
6.
Nat Biomed Eng ; 5(7): 643-656, 2021 07.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1324420

ABSTRACT

The accurate and timely diagnosis of disease is a prerequisite for efficient therapeutic intervention and epidemiological surveillance. Diagnostics based on the detection of nucleic acids are among the most sensitive and specific, yet most such assays require costly equipment and trained personnel. Recent developments in diagnostic technologies, in particular those leveraging clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats (CRISPR), aim to enable accurate testing at home, at the point of care and in the field. In this Review, we provide a rundown of the rapidly expanding toolbox for CRISPR-based diagnostics, in particular the various assays, preamplification strategies and readouts, and highlight their main applications in the sensing of a wide range of molecular targets relevant to human health.


Subject(s)
CRISPR-Cas Systems/genetics , Communicable Diseases/diagnosis , Nucleic Acid Amplification Techniques/methods , Nucleic Acids/analysis , Communicable Diseases/microbiology , Communicable Diseases/virology , Genetic Diseases, Inborn/diagnosis , Humans , Nucleic Acid Amplification Techniques/economics , Nucleic Acids/metabolism , Point-of-Care Systems , Polymorphism, Single Nucleotide , Sequence Analysis, DNA
7.
Adv Sci (Weinh) ; 8(18): e2100323, 2021 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1316190

ABSTRACT

Blood cell analysis is a major pillar of biomedical research and healthcare. These analyses are performed in central laboratories. Rapid shipment from collection site to the central laboratories is currently needed because cells and biomarkers degrade rapidly. The dried blood spot from a fingerstick allows the preservation of cellular molecules for months but entire cells are never recovered. Here leucocyte elution is optimized from dried blood spots. Flow cytometry and mRNA expression profiling are used to analyze the recovered cells. 50-70% of the leucocytes that are dried on a polyester solid support via elution after shaking the support with buffer are recovered. While red blood cells lyse upon drying, it is found that the majority of leucocytes are preserved. Leucocytes have an altered structure that is improved by adding fixative in the elution buffer. Leucocytes are permeabilized, allowing an easy staining of all cellular compartments. Common immunophenotyping and mRNAs are preserved. The ability of a new biomarker (CD169) to discriminate between patients with and without Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome induced by Coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) infections is also preserved. Leucocytes from blood can be dried, shipped, and/or stored for at least 1 month, then recovered for a wide variety of analyses, potentially facilitating biomedical applications worldwide.


Subject(s)
Communicable Diseases/diagnosis , Diagnostic Tests, Routine/methods , Dried Blood Spot Testing/methods , Hematology/methods , Immunophenotyping/methods , Antibodies, Viral/blood , Biomarkers/blood , Blood Specimen Collection/methods , COVID-19/diagnosis , Cell Separation/methods , Communicable Diseases/virology , Erythrocytes/virology , Flow Cytometry/methods , Humans , Leukocytes/virology , RNA, Messenger/blood , SARS-CoV-2/genetics
9.
Sci Rep ; 11(1): 14341, 2021 07 12.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1307345

ABSTRACT

Computational models for large, resurgent epidemics are recognized as a crucial tool for predicting the spread of infectious diseases. It is widely agreed, that such models can be augmented with realistic multiscale population models and by incorporating human mobility patterns. Nevertheless, a large proportion of recent studies, aimed at better understanding global epidemics, like influenza, measles, H1N1, SARS, and COVID-19, underestimate the role of heterogeneous mixing in populations, characterized by strong social structures and geography. Motivated by the reduced tractability of studies employing homogeneous mixing, which make conclusions hard to deduce, we propose a new, very fine-grained model incorporating the spatial distribution of population into geographical settlements, with a hierarchical organization down to the level of households (inside which we assume homogeneous mixing). In addition, population is organized heterogeneously outside households, and we model the movement of individuals using travel distance and frequency parameters for inter- and intra-settlement movement. Discrete event simulation, employing an adapted SIR model with relapse, reproduces important qualitative characteristics of real epidemics, like high variation in size and temporal heterogeneity (e.g., waves), that are challenging to reproduce and to quantify with existing measures. Our results pinpoint an important aspect, that epidemic size is more sensitive to the increase in distance of travel, rather that the frequency of travel. Finally, we discuss implications for the control of epidemics by integrating human mobility restrictions, as well as progressive vaccination of individuals.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/epidemiology , Communicable Diseases/epidemiology , Influenza, Human/epidemiology , COVID-19/virology , Communicable Diseases/virology , Computer Simulation , Epidemics/prevention & control , Epidemics/statistics & numerical data , Family Characteristics , Humans , Influenza A Virus, H1N1 Subtype/pathogenicity , Influenza, Human/virology , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity , Travel/statistics & numerical data
10.
Acta Neurobiol Exp (Wars) ; 81(1): 69-79, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1190720

ABSTRACT

The recent pandemic of the coronavirus infectious disease 2019 (COVID-19) has affected around 192 countries, and projections have shown that around 40% to 70% of world population could be infected in the next months. COVID-19 is caused by the virus SARS- CoV-2, it enters the cells through the ACE2 receptor (angiotensin converting enzyme 2). It is well known that SARS-CoV-2 could develop mild, moderate, and severe respiratory symptoms that could lead to death. The virus receptor is expressed in different organs such as the lungs, kidney, intestine, and brain, among others. In the lung could cause pneumonia and severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS). The brain can be directly affected by cellular damage due to viral invasion, which can lead to an inflammatory response, by the decrease in the enzymatic activity of ACE2 that regulates neuroprotective, neuro-immunomodulatory and neutralizing functions of oxidative stress. Another severe damage is hypoxemia in patients that do not receive adequate respiratory support. The neurological symptoms that the patient presents, will depend on factors that condition the expression of ACE2 in the brain such as age and sex, as well as the mechanism of neuronal invasion, the immune response and the general state of the patient. Clinical and histopathological studies have described neurological alterations in human patients with COVID-19. These conditions could have a possible contribution to the morbidity and mortality caused by this disease and may even represent the onset of neurodegenerative activity in recovered patients.The recent pandemic of the coronavirus infectious disease 2019 (COVID-19) has affected around 192 countries, and projections have shown that around 40% to 70% of world population could be infected in the next months. COVID-19 is caused by the virus SARS- CoV-2, it enters the cells through the ACE2 receptor (angiotensin converting enzyme 2). It is well known that SARS-CoV-2 could develop mild, moderate, and severe respiratory symptoms that could lead to death. The virus receptor is expressed in different organs such as the lungs, kidney, intestine, and brain, among others. In the lung could cause pneumonia and severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS). The brain can be directly affected by cellular damage due to viral invasion, which can lead to an inflammatory response, by the decrease in the enzymatic activity of ACE2 that regulates neuroprotective, neuro-immunomodulatory and neutralizing functions of oxidative stress. Another severe damage is hypoxemia in patients that do not receive adequate respiratory support. The neurological symptoms that the patient presents, will depend on factors that condition the expression of ACE2 in the brain such as age and sex, as well as the mechanism of neuronal invasion, the immune response and the general state of the patient. Clinical and histopathological studies have described neurological alterations in human patients with COVID-19. These conditions could have a possible contribution to the morbidity and mortality caused by this disease and may even represent the onset of neurodegenerative activity in recovered patients.


Subject(s)
Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/metabolism , Brain/virology , COVID-19/epidemiology , Communicable Diseases/virology , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity , COVID-19/virology , Humans , Neurons/virology
11.
Int J Mol Sci ; 22(5)2021 Mar 08.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1134168

ABSTRACT

The fruit fly, Drosophila melanogaster, has been used to understand fundamental principles of genetics and biology for over a century. Drosophila is now also considered an essential tool to study mechanisms underlying numerous human genetic diseases. In this review, we will discuss how flies can be used to deepen our knowledge of infectious disease mechanisms in vivo. Flies make effective and applicable models for studying host-pathogen interactions thanks to their highly conserved innate immune systems and cellular processes commonly hijacked by pathogens. Drosophila researchers also possess the most powerful, rapid, and versatile tools for genetic manipulation in multicellular organisms. This allows for robust experiments in which specific pathogenic proteins can be expressed either one at a time or in conjunction with each other to dissect the molecular functions of each virulent factor in a cell-type-specific manner. Well documented phenotypes allow large genetic and pharmacological screens to be performed with relative ease using huge collections of mutant and transgenic strains that are publicly available. These factors combine to make Drosophila a powerful tool for dissecting out host-pathogen interactions as well as a tool to better understand how we can treat infectious diseases that pose risks to public health, including COVID-19, caused by SARS-CoV-2.


Subject(s)
Communicable Diseases/immunology , Communicable Diseases/metabolism , Drosophila melanogaster/immunology , Drosophila melanogaster/metabolism , Animals , Communicable Diseases/microbiology , Communicable Diseases/virology , Drosophila melanogaster/microbiology , Drosophila melanogaster/virology , Host-Pathogen Interactions , Immunity, Innate , Signal Transduction , Virulence Factors/metabolism
13.
Pathog Glob Health ; 115(3): 151-167, 2021 05.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1082903

ABSTRACT

Before the 20th century many deaths in England, and most likely a majority, were caused by infectious diseases. The focus here is on the biggest killers, plague, typhus, smallpox, tuberculosis, cholera, typhoid, dysentery, childhood infections, pneumonia, and influenza. Many other infectious diseases including puerperal fever, relapsing fever, malaria, syphilis, meningitis, tetanus and gangrene caused thousands of deaths. This review of preventive measures, public health interventions and changes in behavior that reduced the risk of severe infections puts the response to recent epidemic challenges in historical perspective. Two new respiratory viruses have recently caused pandemics: an H1N1 influenza virus genetically related to pig viruses, and a bat-derived coronavirus causing COVID-19. Studies of infectious diseases emerging in human populations in recent decades indicate that the majority were zoonotic, and many of the causal pathogens had a wildlife origin. As hunter-gatherers, humans contracted pathogens from other species, and then from domesticated animals and rodents when they began to live in settled communities based on agriculture. In the modern world of large inter-connected urban populations and rapid transport, the risk of global transmission of new infectious diseases is high. Past and recent experience indicates that surveillance, prevention and control of infectious diseases are critical for global health. Effective interventions are required to control activities that risk dangerous pathogens transferring to humans from wild animals and those reared for food.


Subject(s)
Communicable Disease Control/history , Communicable Diseases/history , Animals , Communicable Diseases/epidemiology , Communicable Diseases/microbiology , Communicable Diseases/virology , History, 15th Century , History, 16th Century , History, 17th Century , History, 18th Century , History, 19th Century , History, 20th Century , History, 21st Century , History, Ancient , History, Medieval , Humans , Public Health/history
14.
Nutrients ; 13(1)2021 Jan 08.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1067765

ABSTRACT

Reduced magnesium (Mg) intake is a frequent cause of deficiency with age together with reduced absorption, renal wasting, and polypharmacotherapy. Chronic Mg deficiency may result in increased oxidative stress and low-grade inflammation, which may be linked to several age-related diseases, including higher predisposition to infectious diseases. Mg might play a role in the immune response being a cofactor for immunoglobulin synthesis and other processes strictly associated with the function of T and B cells. Mg is necessary for the biosynthesis, transport, and activation of vitamin D, another key factor in the pathogenesis of infectious diseases. The regulation of cytosolic free Mg in immune cells involves Mg transport systems, such as the melastatin-like transient receptor potential 7 channel, the solute carrier family, and the magnesium transporter 1 (MAGT1). The functional importance of Mg transport in immunity was unknown until the description of the primary immunodeficiency XMEN (X-linked immunodeficiency with Mg defect, Epstein-Barr virus infection, and neoplasia) due to a genetic deficiency of MAGT1 characterized by chronic Epstein-Barr virus infection. This and other research reporting associations of Mg deficit with viral and bacterial infections indicate a possible role of Mg deficit in the recent coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) and its complications. In this review, we will discuss the importance of Mg for the immune system and for infectious diseases, including the recent pandemic of COVID-19.


Subject(s)
Aging/physiology , COVID-19/metabolism , Communicable Diseases/metabolism , Magnesium Deficiency/complications , Magnesium/metabolism , Aged , COVID-19/etiology , COVID-19/immunology , COVID-19/virology , Cation Transport Proteins/metabolism , Communicable Diseases/immunology , Communicable Diseases/microbiology , Communicable Diseases/virology , Epstein-Barr Virus Infections/metabolism , Female , Humans , Magnesium/immunology , Magnesium Deficiency/immunology , Magnesium Deficiency/metabolism , Male , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , X-Linked Combined Immunodeficiency Diseases/metabolism
15.
Int J Mol Sci ; 22(1)2020 Dec 29.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1067750

ABSTRACT

Recently, there has been a growing interest in the medical applications of Cannabis plants. They owe their unique properties to a group of secondary metabolites known as phytocannabinoids, which are specific for this genus. Phytocannabinoids, and cannabinoids generally, can interact with cannabinoid receptors being part of the endocannabinoid system present in animals. Over the years a growing body of scientific evidence has been gathered, suggesting that these compounds have therapeutic potential. In this article, we review the classification of cannabinoids, the molecular mechanisms of their interaction with animal cells as well as their potential application in the treatment of human diseases. Specifically, we focus on the research concerning the anticancer potential of cannabinoids in preclinical studies, their possible use in cancer treatment and palliative medicine, as well as their influence on the immune system. We also discuss their potential as therapeutic agents in infectious, autoimmune, and gastrointestinal inflammatory diseases. We postulate that the currently ongoing and future clinical trials should be accompanied by research focused on the cellular and molecular response to cannabinoids and Cannabis extracts, which will ultimately allow us to fully understand the mechanism, potency, and safety profile of cannabinoids as single agents and as complementary drugs.


Subject(s)
Cannabinoids/pharmacology , Cannabinoids/therapeutic use , Animals , Anti-Infective Agents/pharmacology , Anti-Infective Agents/therapeutic use , Antineoplastic Agents, Phytogenic/pharmacology , Antineoplastic Agents, Phytogenic/therapeutic use , Apoptosis/drug effects , Cannabinoids/chemistry , Cannabis/chemistry , Chemistry Techniques, Synthetic , Communicable Diseases/drug therapy , Communicable Diseases/microbiology , Communicable Diseases/virology , Humans , Immune System/drug effects , Immune System/immunology , Immune System/metabolism , Immunologic Factors/pharmacology , Immunologic Factors/therapeutic use , Neoplasms/drug therapy , Receptors, Cannabinoid/metabolism
16.
mBio ; 12(1)2021 01 12.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1030241

ABSTRACT

Despite being nearly 10 months into the COVID-19 (coronavirus disease 2019) pandemic, the definitive animal host for SARS-CoV-2 (severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2), the causal agent of COVID-19, remains unknown. Unfortunately, similar problems exist for other betacoronaviruses, and no vouchered specimens exist to corroborate host species identification for most of these pathogens. This most basic information is critical to the full understanding and mitigation of emerging zoonotic diseases. To overcome this hurdle, we recommend that host-pathogen researchers adopt vouchering practices and collaborate with natural history collections to permanently archive microbiological samples and host specimens. Vouchered specimens and associated samples provide both repeatability and extension to host-pathogen studies, and using them mobilizes a large workforce (i.e., biodiversity scientists) to assist in pandemic preparedness. We review several well-known examples that successfully integrate host-pathogen research with natural history collections (e.g., yellow fever, hantaviruses, helminths). However, vouchering remains an underutilized practice in such studies. Using an online survey, we assessed vouchering practices used by microbiologists (e.g., bacteriologists, parasitologists, virologists) in host-pathogen research. A much greater number of respondents permanently archive microbiological samples than archive host specimens, and less than half of respondents voucher host specimens from which microbiological samples were lethally collected. To foster collaborations between microbiologists and natural history collections, we provide recommendations for integrating vouchering techniques and archiving of microbiological samples into host-pathogen studies. This integrative approach exemplifies the premise underlying One Health initiatives, providing critical infrastructure for addressing related issues ranging from public health to global climate change and the biodiversity crisis.


Subject(s)
Biomedical Research/standards , Communicable Diseases/pathology , Natural History/standards , Zoonoses/pathology , Animals , Biodiversity , Biomedical Research/trends , COVID-19/pathology , COVID-19/virology , Communicable Diseases/microbiology , Communicable Diseases/parasitology , Communicable Diseases/virology , Host-Pathogen Interactions , Humans , Museums/standards , SARS-CoV-2/classification , SARS-CoV-2/physiology , Specimen Handling , Zoonoses/microbiology , Zoonoses/parasitology , Zoonoses/virology
17.
Nutrients ; 13(1)2021 Jan 08.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1016214

ABSTRACT

Reduced magnesium (Mg) intake is a frequent cause of deficiency with age together with reduced absorption, renal wasting, and polypharmacotherapy. Chronic Mg deficiency may result in increased oxidative stress and low-grade inflammation, which may be linked to several age-related diseases, including higher predisposition to infectious diseases. Mg might play a role in the immune response being a cofactor for immunoglobulin synthesis and other processes strictly associated with the function of T and B cells. Mg is necessary for the biosynthesis, transport, and activation of vitamin D, another key factor in the pathogenesis of infectious diseases. The regulation of cytosolic free Mg in immune cells involves Mg transport systems, such as the melastatin-like transient receptor potential 7 channel, the solute carrier family, and the magnesium transporter 1 (MAGT1). The functional importance of Mg transport in immunity was unknown until the description of the primary immunodeficiency XMEN (X-linked immunodeficiency with Mg defect, Epstein-Barr virus infection, and neoplasia) due to a genetic deficiency of MAGT1 characterized by chronic Epstein-Barr virus infection. This and other research reporting associations of Mg deficit with viral and bacterial infections indicate a possible role of Mg deficit in the recent coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) and its complications. In this review, we will discuss the importance of Mg for the immune system and for infectious diseases, including the recent pandemic of COVID-19.


Subject(s)
Aging/physiology , COVID-19/metabolism , Communicable Diseases/metabolism , Magnesium Deficiency/complications , Magnesium/metabolism , Aged , COVID-19/etiology , COVID-19/immunology , COVID-19/virology , Cation Transport Proteins/metabolism , Communicable Diseases/immunology , Communicable Diseases/microbiology , Communicable Diseases/virology , Epstein-Barr Virus Infections/metabolism , Female , Humans , Magnesium/immunology , Magnesium Deficiency/immunology , Magnesium Deficiency/metabolism , Male , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , X-Linked Combined Immunodeficiency Diseases/metabolism
18.
Biosensors (Basel) ; 11(1)2020 Dec 31.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1006988

ABSTRACT

The United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention considers saliva contact the lead transmission means of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), which causes the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). Saliva droplets or aerosols expelled by heavy breathing, talking, sneezing, and coughing may carry this virus. People in close distance may be exposed directly or indirectly to these droplets, especially those droplets that fall on surrounding surfaces and people may end up contracting COVID-19 after touching the mucosa tissue on their faces. It is of great interest to quickly and effectively detect the presence of SARS-CoV-2 in an environment, but the existing methods only work in laboratory settings, to the best of our knowledge. However, it may be possible to detect the presence of saliva in the environment and proceed with prevention measures. However, detecting saliva itself has not been documented in the literature. On the other hand, many sensors that detect different organic components in saliva to monitor a person's health and diagnose different diseases that range from diabetes to dental health have been proposed and they may be used to detect the presence of saliva. This paper surveys sensors that detect organic and inorganic components of human saliva. Humidity sensors are also considered in the detection of saliva because a large portion of saliva is water. Moreover, sensors that detect infectious viruses are also included as they may also be embedded into saliva sensors for a confirmation of the virus' presence. A classification of sensors by their working principle and the substance they detect is presented. This comparison lists their specifications, sample size, and sensitivity. Indications of which sensors are portable and suitable for field application are presented. This paper also discusses future research and challenges that must be resolved to realize practical saliva sensors. Such sensors may help minimize the spread of not only COVID-19 but also other infectious diseases.


Subject(s)
Biological Monitoring/instrumentation , COVID-19/prevention & control , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Saliva/chemistry , Saliva/virology , Biological Monitoring/methods , COVID-19/enzymology , COVID-19/etiology , COVID-19/immunology , Communicable Diseases/enzymology , Communicable Diseases/etiology , Communicable Diseases/immunology , Communicable Diseases/virology , Humans , Influenza A Virus, H1N1 Subtype/chemistry , Influenza A Virus, H1N1 Subtype/enzymology , Influenza A Virus, H1N1 Subtype/immunology , Influenza A Virus, H1N1 Subtype/isolation & purification , SARS-CoV-2/chemistry , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Saliva/enzymology , Saliva/immunology , Viruses/chemistry , Viruses/enzymology , Viruses/immunology , Viruses/isolation & purification
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