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1.
Front Immunol ; 12: 714833, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1506100

ABSTRACT

Background: The most severe cases of Coronavirus-Disease-2019 (COVID-19) develop into Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome (ARDS). It has been proposed that oxygenation may be inhibited by extracellular deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) in the form of neutrophil extracellular traps (NETs). Dornase alfa (Pulmozyme, Genentech) is recombinant human deoxyribonuclease I that acts as a mucolytic by cleaving and degrading extracellular DNA. We performed a pilot study to evaluate the effects of dornase alfa in patients with ARDS secondary to COVID-19. Methods: We performed a pilot, non-randomized, case-controlled clinical trial of inhaled dornase for patients who developed ARDS secondary to COVID-19 pneumonia. Results: Improvement in arterial oxygen saturation to inhaled fraction of oxygen ratio (PaO2/FiO2) was noted in the treatment group compared to control at day 2 (95% CI, 2.96 to 95.66, P-value = 0.038), as well as in static lung compliance at days 3 through 5 (95% CI, 4.8 to 19.1 mL/cmH2O, 2.7 to 16.5 mL/cmH2O, and 5.3 to 19.2 mL/cmH2O, respectively). These effects were not sustained at 14 days. A reduction in bronchoalveolar lavage fluid (BALF) myeloperoxidase-DNA (DNA : MPO) complexes (95% CI, -14.7 to -1.32, P-value = 0.01) was observed after therapy with dornase alfa. Conclusion: Treatment with dornase alfa was associated with improved oxygenation and decreased DNA : MPO complexes in BALF. The positive effects, however, were limited to the time of drug delivery. These data suggest that degradation of extracellular DNA associated with NETs or other structures by inhaled dornase alfa can be beneficial. We propose a more extensive clinical trial is warranted. Clinical Trial Registration: ClinicalTrials.gov, Identifier: NCT04402970.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/drug therapy , Deoxyribonuclease I/therapeutic use , Respiratory Distress Syndrome/drug therapy , SARS-CoV-2/physiology , Administration, Inhalation , Adult , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , Case-Control Studies , DNA/metabolism , Extracellular Traps/metabolism , Female , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Oxygen Consumption/drug effects , Peroxidase/metabolism , Pilot Projects , Recombinant Proteins/therapeutic use , Young Adult
2.
Cells ; 10(9)2021 08 26.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1458477

ABSTRACT

The enlightenment of the formation of neutrophil extracellular traps (NETs) as a part of the innate immune system shed new insights into the pathologies of various diseases. The initial idea that NETs are a pivotal defense structure was gradually amended due to several deleterious effects in consecutive investigations. NETs formation is now considered a double-edged sword. The harmful effects are not limited to the induction of inflammation by NETs remnants but also include occlusions caused by aggregated NETs (aggNETs). The latter carries the risk of occluding tubular structures like vessels or ducts and appear to be associated with the pathologies of various diseases. In addition to life-threatening vascular clogging, other occlusions include painful stone formation in the biliary system, the kidneys, the prostate, and the appendix. AggNETs are also prone to occlude the ductal system of exocrine glands, as seen in ocular glands, salivary glands, and others. Last, but not least, they also clog the pancreatic ducts in a murine model of neutrophilia. In this regard, elucidating the mechanism of NETs-dependent occlusions is of crucial importance for the development of new therapeutic approaches. Therefore, the purpose of this review is to address the putative mechanisms of NETs-associated occlusions in the pathogenesis of disease, as well as prospective treatment modalities.


Subject(s)
Embolism/immunology , Extracellular Traps/physiology , Thrombosis/immunology , Animals , Body Fluids/immunology , Body Fluids/physiology , Embolism/physiopathology , Extracellular Traps/immunology , Extracellular Traps/metabolism , Humans , Inflammation/pathology , Neutrophils/immunology , Prospective Studies , Thrombosis/physiopathology
3.
J Clin Invest ; 130(11): 6151-6157, 2020 11 02.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1435146

ABSTRACT

Emerging data indicate that complement and neutrophils contribute to the maladaptive immune response that fuels hyperinflammation and thrombotic microangiopathy, thereby increasing coronavirus 2019 (COVID-19) mortality. Here, we investigated how complement interacts with the platelet/neutrophil extracellular traps (NETs)/thrombin axis, using COVID-19 specimens, cell-based inhibition studies, and NET/human aortic endothelial cell (HAEC) cocultures. Increased plasma levels of NETs, tissue factor (TF) activity, and sC5b-9 were detected in patients. Neutrophils of patients yielded high TF expression and released NETs carrying active TF. Treatment of control neutrophils with COVID-19 platelet-rich plasma generated TF-bearing NETs that induced thrombotic activity of HAECs. Thrombin or NETosis inhibition or C5aR1 blockade attenuated platelet-mediated NET-driven thrombogenicity. COVID-19 serum induced complement activation in vitro, consistent with high complement activity in clinical samples. Complement C3 inhibition with compstatin Cp40 disrupted TF expression in neutrophils. In conclusion, we provide a mechanistic basis for a pivotal role of complement and NETs in COVID-19 immunothrombosis. This study supports strategies against severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 that exploit complement or NETosis inhibition.


Subject(s)
Betacoronavirus , Complement Membrane Attack Complex , Coronavirus Infections , Extracellular Traps , Neutrophils , Pandemics , Pneumonia, Viral , Thromboplastin , Thrombosis , Aged , Betacoronavirus/immunology , Betacoronavirus/metabolism , COVID-19 , Complement Activation/drug effects , Complement Membrane Attack Complex/immunology , Complement Membrane Attack Complex/metabolism , Coronavirus Infections/blood , Coronavirus Infections/immunology , Extracellular Traps/immunology , Extracellular Traps/metabolism , Female , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Neutrophils/immunology , Neutrophils/metabolism , Peptides, Cyclic/pharmacology , Pneumonia, Viral/blood , Pneumonia, Viral/immunology , Receptor, Anaphylatoxin C5a/antagonists & inhibitors , Receptor, Anaphylatoxin C5a/blood , Receptor, Anaphylatoxin C5a/immunology , Respiratory Distress Syndrome/blood , Respiratory Distress Syndrome/immunology , Respiratory Distress Syndrome/virology , SARS-CoV-2 , Thrombin/immunology , Thrombin/metabolism , Thromboplastin/immunology , Thromboplastin/metabolism , Thrombosis/blood , Thrombosis/immunology , Thrombosis/virology
4.
JCI Insight ; 6(17)2021 09 08.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1413722

ABSTRACT

Neutrophil-mediated activation and injury of the endothelium play roles in the pathogenesis of diverse disease states ranging from autoimmunity to cancer to COVID-19. Neutralization of cationic proteins (such as neutrophil extracellular trap-derived [NET-derived] histones) with polyanionic compounds has been suggested as a potential strategy for protecting the endothelium from such insults. Here, we report that the US Food and Drug Administration-approved polyanionic agent defibrotide (a pleiotropic mixture of oligonucleotides) directly engages histones and thereby blocks their pathological effects on endothelium. In vitro, defibrotide counteracted endothelial cell activation and pyroptosis-mediated cell death, whether triggered by purified NETs or recombinant histone H4. In vivo, defibrotide stabilized the endothelium and protected against histone-accelerated inferior vena cava thrombosis in mice. Mechanistically, defibrotide demonstrated direct and tight binding to histone H4 as detected by both electrophoretic mobility shift assay and surface plasmon resonance. Taken together, these data provide insights into the potential role of polyanionic compounds in protecting the endothelium from thromboinflammation with potential implications for myriad NET- and histone-accelerated disease states.


Subject(s)
Fibrinolytic Agents/pharmacology , Human Umbilical Vein Endothelial Cells/drug effects , Polydeoxyribonucleotides/pharmacology , Thrombosis/drug therapy , Animals , Extracellular Traps/drug effects , Extracellular Traps/metabolism , Fibrinolytic Agents/therapeutic use , Histones/metabolism , Human Umbilical Vein Endothelial Cells/metabolism , Humans , Male , Mice , Mice, Inbred C57BL , Polydeoxyribonucleotides/therapeutic use , Pyroptosis
5.
Cells ; 10(7)2021 07 04.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1394870

ABSTRACT

Neutrophil extracellular traps (NETs) are web-like structures of decondensed extracellular chromatin fibers and neutrophil granule proteins released by neutrophils. NETs participate in host immune defense by entrapping pathogens. They are pro-inflammatory in function, and they act as an initiator of vascular coagulopathies by providing a platform for the attachment of various coagulatory proteins. NETs are diverse in their ability to alter physiological and pathological processes including infection and inflammation. In this review, we will summarize recent findings on the role of NETs in bacterial/viral infections associated with vascular inflammation, thrombosis, atherosclerosis and autoimmune disorders. Understanding the complex role of NETs in bridging infection and chronic inflammation as well as discussing important questions related to their contribution to pathologies outlined above may pave the way for future research on therapeutic targeting of NETs applicable to specific infections and inflammatory disorders.


Subject(s)
Cardiovascular System/pathology , Extracellular Traps/metabolism , Infections/pathology , Inflammation/pathology , Anti-Neutrophil Cytoplasmic Antibody-Associated Vasculitis/pathology , Humans , Infections/virology , Models, Biological
6.
Int J Med Sci ; 18(3): 846-851, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1389719

ABSTRACT

In the last 50 years we have experienced two big pandemics, the HIV pandemic and the pandemic caused by SARS-CoV-2. Both pandemics are caused by RNA viruses and have reached us from animals. These two viruses are different in the transmission mode and in the symptoms they generate. However, they have important similarities: the fear in the population, increase in proinflammatory cytokines that generate intestinal microbiota modifications or NETosis production by polymorphonuclear neutrophils, among others. They have been implicated in the clinical, prognostic and therapeutic attitudes.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/epidemiology , HIV Infections/epidemiology , HIV-1/pathogenicity , Pandemics/history , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity , COVID-19/immunology , COVID-19/psychology , COVID-19/transmission , Cytokines/blood , Cytokines/immunology , Extracellular Traps/immunology , Extracellular Traps/metabolism , Fear , Global Burden of Disease/statistics & numerical data , HIV Infections/immunology , HIV Infections/psychology , HIV Infections/transmission , HIV-1/immunology , HIV-1/isolation & purification , History, 20th Century , History, 21st Century , Host-Pathogen Interactions/immunology , Humans , Inflammation Mediators/blood , Inflammation Mediators/immunology , Mortality , Neutrophils/immunology , Neutrophils/metabolism , Pandemics/statistics & numerical data , Prognosis , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification
7.
Front Immunol ; 12: 631821, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1344260

ABSTRACT

Neutrophils or polymorphonuclear leukocytes (PMN) are key participants in the innate immune response for their ability to execute different effector functions. These cells express a vast array of membrane receptors that allow them to recognize and eliminate infectious agents effectively and respond appropriately to microenvironmental stimuli that regulate neutrophil functions, such as activation, migration, generation of reactive oxygen species, formation of neutrophil extracellular traps, and mediator secretion, among others. Currently, it has been realized that activated neutrophils can accomplish their effector functions and simultaneously activate mechanisms of cell death in response to different intracellular or extracellular factors. Although several studies have revealed similarities between the mechanisms of cell death of neutrophils and other cell types, neutrophils have distinctive properties, such as a high production of reactive oxygen species (ROS) and nitrogen species (RNS), that are important for their effector function in infections and pathologies such as cancer, autoimmune diseases, and immunodeficiencies, influencing their cell death mechanisms. The present work offers a synthesis of the conditions and molecules implicated in the regulation and activation of the processes of neutrophil death: apoptosis, autophagy, pyroptosis, necroptosis, NETosis, and necrosis. This information allows to understand the duality encountered by PMNs upon activation. The effector functions are carried out to eliminate invading pathogens, but in several instances, these functions involve activation of signaling cascades that culminate in the death of the neutrophil. This process guarantees the correct elimination of pathogenic agents, damaged or senescent cells, and the timely resolution of the inflammation that is essential for the maintenance of homeostasis in the organism. In addition, they alert the organism when the immunological system is being deregulated, promoting the activation of other cells of the immune system, such as B and T lymphocytes, which produce cytokines that potentiate the microbicide functions.


Subject(s)
Cell Death/immunology , Neutrophils/pathology , Apoptosis/immunology , Apoptosis Regulatory Proteins/metabolism , Autophagy/immunology , Extracellular Traps/immunology , Extracellular Traps/metabolism , Free Radicals/metabolism , Humans , Necroptosis/immunology , Necrosis/immunology , Necrosis/metabolism , Neutrophil Activation , Neutrophils/immunology , Neutrophils/metabolism , Phagocytosis/immunology , Pyroptosis/immunology , Receptors, Death Domain/metabolism
8.
Nat Commun ; 12(1): 4117, 2021 07 05.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1297301

ABSTRACT

Epidemiological and clinical reports indicate that SARS-CoV-2 virulence hinges upon the triggering of an aberrant host immune response, more so than on direct virus-induced cellular damage. To elucidate the immunopathology underlying COVID-19 severity, we perform cytokine and multiplex immune profiling in COVID-19 patients. We show that hypercytokinemia in COVID-19 differs from the interferon-gamma-driven cytokine storm in macrophage activation syndrome, and is more pronounced in critical versus mild-moderate COVID-19. Systems modelling of cytokine levels paired with deep-immune profiling shows that classical monocytes drive this hyper-inflammatory phenotype and that a reduction in T-lymphocytes correlates with disease severity, with CD8+ cells being disproportionately affected. Antigen presenting machinery expression is also reduced in critical disease. Furthermore, we report that neutrophils contribute to disease severity and local tissue damage by amplification of hypercytokinemia and the formation of neutrophil extracellular traps. Together our findings suggest a myeloid-driven immunopathology, in which hyperactivated neutrophils and an ineffective adaptive immune system act as mediators of COVID-19 disease severity.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/complications , COVID-19/immunology , Cytokine Release Syndrome/complications , Monocytes/pathology , Neutrophil Activation , Aged , Antigen-Presenting Cells/immunology , COVID-19/blood , COVID-19/virology , Case-Control Studies , Cytokine Release Syndrome/blood , Cytokine Release Syndrome/pathology , Cytokine Release Syndrome/virology , Cytokines/blood , Extracellular Traps/metabolism , Female , Histocompatibility Antigens Class II/metabolism , Humans , Immunophenotyping , Male , Middle Aged , SARS-CoV-2/physiology , Severity of Illness Index
9.
Front Immunol ; 12: 663303, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1291384

ABSTRACT

The release of neutrophil extracellular traps (NETs), a process termed NETosis, avoids pathogen spread but may cause tissue injury. NETs have been found in severe COVID-19 patients, but their role in disease development is still unknown. The aim of this study is to assess the capacity of NETs to drive epithelial-mesenchymal transition (EMT) of lung epithelial cells and to analyze the involvement of NETs in COVID-19. Bronchoalveolar lavage fluid of severe COVID-19 patients showed high concentration of NETs that correlates with neutrophils count; moreover, the analysis of lung tissues of COVID-19 deceased patients showed a subset of alveolar reactive pneumocytes with a co-expression of epithelial marker and a mesenchymal marker, confirming the induction of EMT mechanism after severe SARS-CoV2 infection. By airway in vitro models, cultivating A549 or 16HBE at air-liquid interface, adding alveolar macrophages (AM), neutrophils and SARS-CoV2, we demonstrated that to trigger a complete EMT expression pattern are necessary the induction of NETosis by SARS-CoV2 and the secretion of AM factors (TGF-ß, IL8 and IL1ß). All our results highlight the possible mechanism that can induce lung fibrosis after SARS-CoV2 infection.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/physiopathology , Epithelial-Mesenchymal Transition , Extracellular Traps/metabolism , Neutrophils/metabolism , Adult , Biopsy , Bronchoalveolar Lavage Fluid/cytology , COVID-19/complications , COVID-19/immunology , Cell Line , Epithelial Cells/pathology , Humans , Lung/pathology , Pulmonary Fibrosis/etiology , Pulmonary Fibrosis/metabolism
10.
Int J Mol Sci ; 22(13)2021 Jun 30.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1288907

ABSTRACT

Eosinophils are complex granulocytes with the capacity to react upon diverse stimuli due to their numerous and variable surface receptors, which allows them to respond in very different manners. Traditionally believed to be only part of parasitic and allergic/asthmatic immune responses, as scientific studies arise, the paradigm about these cells is continuously changing, adding layers of complexity to their roles in homeostasis and disease. Developing principally in the bone marrow by the action of IL-5 and granulocyte macrophage colony-stimulating factor GM-CSF, eosinophils migrate from the blood to very different organs, performing multiple functions in tissue homeostasis as in the gastrointestinal tract, thymus, uterus, mammary glands, liver, and skeletal muscle. In organs such as the lungs and gastrointestinal tract, eosinophils are able to act as immune regulatory cells and also to perform direct actions against parasites, and bacteria, where novel mechanisms of immune defense as extracellular DNA traps are key factors. Besides, eosinophils, are of importance in an effective response against viral pathogens by their nuclease enzymatic activity and have been lately described as involved in severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 immunity. The pleiotropic role of eosinophils is sustained because eosinophils can be also detrimental to human physiology, for example, in diseases like allergies, asthma, and eosinophilic esophagitis, where exosomes can be significant pathophysiologic units. These eosinophilic pathologies, require specific treatments by eosinophils control, such as new monoclonal antibodies like mepolizumab, reslizumab, and benralizumab. In this review, we describe the roles of eosinophils as effectors and regulatory cells and their involvement in pathological disorders and treatment.


Subject(s)
Eosinophils/physiology , Antibodies, Monoclonal/therapeutic use , Asthma/drug therapy , Asthma/immunology , Asthma/pathology , COVID-19/immunology , COVID-19/pathology , COVID-19/virology , Eosinophilic Esophagitis/drug therapy , Eosinophilic Esophagitis/immunology , Eosinophilic Esophagitis/pathology , Eosinophils/cytology , Eosinophils/immunology , Exosomes/metabolism , Extracellular Traps/metabolism , Humans , Plasma Cells/cytology , Plasma Cells/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification
11.
Cell Death Differ ; 28(11): 3125-3139, 2021 11.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1241944

ABSTRACT

SARS-CoV-2 infection poses a major threat to the lungs and multiple other organs, occasionally causing death. Until effective vaccines are developed to curb the pandemic, it is paramount to define the mechanisms and develop protective therapies to prevent organ dysfunction in patients with COVID-19. Individuals that develop severe manifestations have signs of dysregulated innate and adaptive immune responses. Emerging evidence implicates neutrophils and the disbalance between neutrophil extracellular trap (NET) formation and degradation plays a central role in the pathophysiology of inflammation, coagulopathy, organ damage, and immunothrombosis that characterize severe cases of COVID-19. Here, we discuss the evidence supporting a role for NETs in COVID-19 manifestations and present putative mechanisms, by which NETs promote tissue injury and immunothrombosis. We present therapeutic strategies, which have been successful in the treatment of immunο-inflammatory disorders and which target dysregulated NET formation or degradation, as potential approaches that may benefit patients with severe COVID-19.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/pathology , Extracellular Traps/metabolism , Neutrophils/immunology , COVID-19/complications , COVID-19/immunology , Citrullination , Complement Activation , Humans , Neutrophils/metabolism , Platelet Activation , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Severity of Illness Index , Thrombosis/etiology
12.
EBioMedicine ; 67: 103382, 2021 May.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1230443

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Coagulopathy and inflammation are hallmarks of Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) and are associated with increased mortality. Clinical and experimental data have revealed a role for neutrophil extracellular traps (NETs) in COVID-19 disease. The mechanisms that drive thrombo-inflammation in COVID-19 are poorly understood. METHODS: We performed proteomic analysis and immunostaining of postmortem lung tissues from COVID-19 patients and patients with other lung pathologies. We further compared coagulation factor XII (FXII) and DNase activities in plasma samples from COVID-19 patients and healthy control donors and determined NET-induced FXII activation using a chromogenic substrate assay. FINDINGS: FXII expression and activity were increased in the lung parenchyma, within the pulmonary vasculature and in fibrin-rich alveolar spaces of postmortem lung tissues from COVID-19 patients. In agreement with this, plasmaaac acafajföeFXII activation (FXIIa) was increased in samples from COVID-19 patients. Furthermore, FXIIa colocalized with NETs in COVID-19 lung tissue indicating that NETs accumulation leads to FXII contact activation in COVID-19. We further showed that an accumulation of NETs is partially due to impaired NET clearance by extracellular DNases as DNase substitution improved NET dissolution and reduced FXII activation in vitro. INTERPRETATION: Collectively, our study supports that the NET/FXII axis contributes to the pathogenic chain of procoagulant and proinflammatory responses in COVID-19. Targeting both NETs and FXIIa may offer a potential novel therapeutic strategy. FUNDING: This study was supported by the European Union (840189), the Werner Otto Medical Foundation Hamburg (8/95) and the German Research Foundation (FR4239/1-1, A11/SFB877, B08/SFB841 and P06/KFO306).


Subject(s)
COVID-19/metabolism , Extracellular Traps/metabolism , Factor XII/metabolism , Autopsy , Case-Control Studies , Deoxyribonucleases/blood , Deoxyribonucleases/metabolism , Humans , Lung/metabolism , Neutrophil Activation , Pneumonia , Proteomics
13.
Biomolecules ; 11(5)2021 05 06.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1223942

ABSTRACT

SARS-CoV-2 is a member of the family of coronaviruses associated with severe outbreaks of respiratory diseases in recent decades and is the causative agent of the COVID-19 pandemic. The recognition by and activation of the innate immune response recruits neutrophils, which, through their different mechanisms of action, form extracellular neutrophil traps, playing a role in infection control and trapping viral, bacterial, and fungal etiological agents. However, in patients with COVID-19, activation at the vascular level, combined with other cells and inflammatory mediators, leads to thrombotic events and disseminated intravascular coagulation, thus leading to a series of clinical manifestations in cerebrovascular, cardiac, pulmonary, and kidney disease while promoting severe disease and mortality. Previous studies of hospitalized patients with COVID-19 have shown that elevated levels of markers specific for NETs, such as free DNA, MPO, and H3Cit, are strongly associated with the total neutrophil count; with acute phase reactants that include CRP, D-dimer, lactate dehydrogenase, and interleukin secretion; and with an increased risk of severe COVID-19. This study analyzed the interactions between NETs and the activation pathways involved in immunothrombotic processes in patients with COVID-19.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/pathology , Extracellular Traps/metabolism , Thrombosis/immunology , Thrombosis/pathology , Biomarkers/metabolism , COVID-19/immunology , COVID-19/virology , Complement System Proteins/metabolism , Cytokine Release Syndrome/etiology , Cytokine Release Syndrome/pathology , Disseminated Intravascular Coagulation/etiology , Disseminated Intravascular Coagulation/pathology , Humans , Neutrophils/cytology , Neutrophils/immunology , Neutrophils/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Thrombosis/metabolism
14.
mBio ; 12(1)2021 02 16.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1088202

ABSTRACT

Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) is leading to public health crises worldwide. An understanding of the pathogenesis and the development of treatment strategies is of high interest. Recently, neutrophil extracellular traps (NETs) have been identified as a potential driver of severe SARS-CoV-2 infections in humans. NETs are extracellular DNA fibers released by neutrophils after contact with various stimuli and accumulate antimicrobial substances or host defense peptides. When massively released, NETs are described to contribute to immunothrombosis in acute respiratory distress syndrome and in vascular occlusions. Based on the increasing evidence that NETs contribute to severe COVID-19 cases, DNase treatment of COVID-19 patients to degrade NETs is widely discussed as a potential therapeutic strategy. Here, we discuss potential detrimental effects of NETs and their nuclease degradation, since NET fragments can boost certain bacterial coinfections and thereby increase the severity of the disease.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/metabolism , Coinfection/metabolism , Extracellular Traps/metabolism , Neutrophils/metabolism , Bacterial Infections/metabolism , Coinfection/microbiology , Coinfection/virology , Humans
15.
J Thromb Haemost ; 19(2): 351-354, 2021 Feb.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1083844

ABSTRACT

The complex COVID-19-associated coagulopathy appears to impair prognosis. Recently, we presented the hypothesis that children are to some extent protected by higher α2 -macroglobulin (α2 -M) levels from severe COVID-19. In addition to endothelial cells, thrombin, and platelets, neutrophil granulocytes also appear to play an important role. Neutrophils extrude extracellular nets, which are histone- and protease-coated web-like DNA structures; activate coagulation and platelets; and release radicals and proteases such as elastase. The unique phylogenetically ancient and "versatile" inhibitor α2 -M contributes particularly during childhood to the antithrombin activity of plasma, binds a broad spectrum of proteases, and interacts with other mediators of inflammation such as cytokines. It is suggested that the scope of basic research and clinical studies would include the potential role of α2 -M in COVID-19.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/metabolism , Inflammation/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity , Thrombosis/metabolism , alpha-Macroglobulins/metabolism , Animals , Blood Coagulation , COVID-19/complications , COVID-19/virology , Endothelial Cells/metabolism , Extracellular Traps/metabolism , Host-Pathogen Interactions , Humans , Inflammation/virology , Inflammation Mediators/metabolism , Thrombosis/virology
16.
Cells ; 10(1)2021 Jan 14.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1067689

ABSTRACT

Severe contagious respiratory disease-COVID-19-caused by the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus, can lead to fatal respiratory failure associated with an excessive inflammatory response. Infiltration and spread of SARS-CoV-2 are based on the interaction between the virus' structural protein S and the cell's receptor-angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2), with the simultaneous involvement of human trans-membrane protease, serine 2 (TMPRSS2). Many scientific reports stress the importance of elevated recruitment and activity of neutrophils, which can form extracellular neutrophil traps (NETs) playing a significant role in the mechanism of combating pathogens, in the pathogenesis of COVID-19. Excessive generation of NETs during prolonged periods of inflammation predisposes for the occurrence of undesirable reactions including thromboembolic complications and damage to surrounding tissues and organs. Within the present manuscript, we draw attention to the impact of NET generation on the severe course of COVID-19 in patients with concurrent cardiovascular and metabolic diseases. Additionally, we indicate the necessity to explore not only the cellular but also the molecular bases of COVID-19 pathogenesis, which may aid the development of dedicated therapies meant to improve chances for the successful treatment of patients. We also present new directions of research into medications that display NETs formation regulatory properties as potential significant therapeutic strategies in the progress of COVID-19.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/metabolism , Extracellular Traps/metabolism , Neutrophils/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2/metabolism , Animals , Humans
17.
Cells ; 10(1)2021 Jan 14.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1028912

ABSTRACT

Severe contagious respiratory disease-COVID-19-caused by the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus, can lead to fatal respiratory failure associated with an excessive inflammatory response. Infiltration and spread of SARS-CoV-2 are based on the interaction between the virus' structural protein S and the cell's receptor-angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2), with the simultaneous involvement of human trans-membrane protease, serine 2 (TMPRSS2). Many scientific reports stress the importance of elevated recruitment and activity of neutrophils, which can form extracellular neutrophil traps (NETs) playing a significant role in the mechanism of combating pathogens, in the pathogenesis of COVID-19. Excessive generation of NETs during prolonged periods of inflammation predisposes for the occurrence of undesirable reactions including thromboembolic complications and damage to surrounding tissues and organs. Within the present manuscript, we draw attention to the impact of NET generation on the severe course of COVID-19 in patients with concurrent cardiovascular and metabolic diseases. Additionally, we indicate the necessity to explore not only the cellular but also the molecular bases of COVID-19 pathogenesis, which may aid the development of dedicated therapies meant to improve chances for the successful treatment of patients. We also present new directions of research into medications that display NETs formation regulatory properties as potential significant therapeutic strategies in the progress of COVID-19.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/metabolism , Extracellular Traps/metabolism , Neutrophils/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2/metabolism , Animals , Humans
19.
JCI Insight ; 5(11)2020 06 04.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-980226

ABSTRACT

In severe cases of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), viral pneumonia progresses to respiratory failure. Neutrophil extracellular traps (NETs) are extracellular webs of chromatin, microbicidal proteins, and oxidant enzymes that are released by neutrophils to contain infections. However, when not properly regulated, NETs have the potential to propagate inflammation and microvascular thrombosis - including in the lungs of patients with acute respiratory distress syndrome. We now report that sera from patients with COVID-19 have elevated levels of cell-free DNA, myeloperoxidase-DNA (MPO-DNA), and citrullinated histone H3 (Cit-H3); the latter 2 are specific markers of NETs. Highlighting the potential clinical relevance of these findings, cell-free DNA strongly correlated with acute-phase reactants, including C-reactive protein, D-dimer, and lactate dehydrogenase, as well as absolute neutrophil count. MPO-DNA associated with both cell-free DNA and absolute neutrophil count, while Cit-H3 correlated with platelet levels. Importantly, both cell-free DNA and MPO-DNA were higher in hospitalized patients receiving mechanical ventilation as compared with hospitalized patients breathing room air. Finally, sera from individuals with COVID-19 triggered NET release from control neutrophils in vitro. Future studies should investigate the predictive power of circulating NETs in longitudinal cohorts and determine the extent to which NETs may be novel therapeutic targets in severe COVID-19.


Subject(s)
Cell-Free Nucleic Acids/metabolism , Coronavirus Infections/metabolism , Extracellular Traps/metabolism , Histones/metabolism , Neutrophils/metabolism , Peroxidase/metabolism , Pneumonia, Viral/metabolism , Adult , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , C-Reactive Protein/metabolism , COVID-19 , Case-Control Studies , Citrullination , Coronavirus Infections/blood , Coronavirus Infections/therapy , Female , Fibrin Fibrinogen Degradation Products/metabolism , Humans , In Vitro Techniques , L-Lactate Dehydrogenase/metabolism , Lymphocyte Count , Male , Middle Aged , Pandemics , Platelet Count , Pneumonia, Viral/blood , Pneumonia, Viral/therapy , Respiration, Artificial , Severity of Illness Index
20.
Arterioscler Thromb Vasc Biol ; 41(2): 988-994, 2021 02.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-955413

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVE: The full spectrum of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) infection ranges from asymptomatic to acute respiratory distress syndrome, characterized by hyperinflammation and thrombotic microangiopathy. The pathogenic mechanisms are poorly understood, but emerging evidence suggest that excessive neutrophil extracellular trap (NET) formation plays a key role in COVID-19 disease progression. Here, we evaluate if circulating markers of NETs are associated with COVID-19 disease severity and clinical outcome, as well as to markers of inflammation and in vivo coagulation and fibrinolysis. Approach and Results: One hundred six patients with COVID-19 with moderate to severe disease were enrolled shortly after hospital admission and followed for 4 months. Acute and convalescent plasma samples as well as plasma samples from 30 healthy individuals were assessed for markers of NET formation: citrullinated histone H3, cell-free DNA, NE (neutrophil elastase). We found that all plasma levels of NET markers were elevated in patients with COVID-19 relative to healthy controls, that they were associated with respiratory support requirement and short-term mortality, and declined to those found in healthy individuals 4 months post-infection. The levels of the NET markers also correlated with white blood cells, neutrophils, inflammatory cytokines, and C-reactive protein, as well as to markers of in vivo coagulation, fibrinolysis, and endothelial damage. CONCLUSIONS: Our findings suggest a role of NETs in COVID-19 disease progression, implicating their contribution to an immunothrombotic state. Further, we observed an association between circulating markers of NET formation and clinical outcome, demonstrating a potential role of NET markers in clinical decision-making, as well as for NETs as targets for novel therapeutic interventions in COVID-19.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/blood , COVID-19/complications , Extracellular Traps/metabolism , Aged , Biomarkers/blood , Cytokine Release Syndrome/blood , Disease Progression , Endothelium, Vascular/metabolism , Female , Fibrinolysis , Humans , Inflammation/blood , Male , Middle Aged , Prognosis , Prospective Studies , Thrombosis/virology
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