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1.
Sci Rep ; 12(1): 965, 2022 01 19.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1638855

ABSTRACT

Hospitalized patients who die from Covid-19 often have pre-existing heart disease. The SARS-CoV-2 virus is dependent on the ACE2 receptor to be able to infect cells. It is possible that the strong link between cardiovascular comorbidities and a poor outcome following a SARS-CoV-2 infection is sometimes due to viral myocarditis. The aim was to examine the expression of ACE2 in normal hearts and hearts from patients with terminal heart failure. The ACE2 expression was measured by global quantitative proteomics and RT-qPCR in left ventricular (LV) tissue from explanted hearts. Immunohistochemistry was used to examine ACE2 expression in cardiomyocytes, fibroblasts and endothelial cells. In total, tissue from 14 organ donors and 11 patients with terminal heart failure were included. ACE2 expression was 2.6 times higher in 4 hearts from patients with terminal heart failure compared with 6 healthy donor hearts. The results were confirmed by immunohistochemistry where more than half of cardiomyocytes or fibroblasts showed expression of ACE2 in hearts from patients with terminal heart failure. In healthy donor hearts ACE2 was not expressed or found in few fibroblasts. A small subpopulation of endothelial cells expressed ACE2 in both groups. Upregulated ACE2 expression in cardiomyocytes may increase the risk of SARS-CoV-2 myocarditis in patients with heart failure.


Subject(s)
Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/metabolism , Endothelial Cells/pathology , Fibroblasts/pathology , Heart Failure/pathology , Myocytes, Cardiac/pathology , Tissue Donors/supply & distribution , Adult , Aged , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/genetics , Case-Control Studies , Endothelial Cells/metabolism , Female , Fibroblasts/metabolism , Heart Failure/genetics , Heart Failure/metabolism , Heart Failure/therapy , Heart Transplantation/methods , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Myocytes, Cardiac/metabolism , Young Adult
2.
Cell ; 184(26): 6243-6261.e27, 2021 12 22.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1536467

ABSTRACT

COVID-19-induced "acute respiratory distress syndrome" (ARDS) is associated with prolonged respiratory failure and high mortality, but the mechanistic basis of lung injury remains incompletely understood. Here, we analyze pulmonary immune responses and lung pathology in two cohorts of patients with COVID-19 ARDS using functional single-cell genomics, immunohistology, and electron microscopy. We describe an accumulation of CD163-expressing monocyte-derived macrophages that acquired a profibrotic transcriptional phenotype during COVID-19 ARDS. Gene set enrichment and computational data integration revealed a significant similarity between COVID-19-associated macrophages and profibrotic macrophage populations identified in idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis. COVID-19 ARDS was associated with clinical, radiographic, histopathological, and ultrastructural hallmarks of pulmonary fibrosis. Exposure of human monocytes to SARS-CoV-2, but not influenza A virus or viral RNA analogs, was sufficient to induce a similar profibrotic phenotype in vitro. In conclusion, we demonstrate that SARS-CoV-2 triggers profibrotic macrophage responses and pronounced fibroproliferative ARDS.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/pathology , COVID-19/virology , Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis/pathology , Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis/virology , Macrophages/pathology , Macrophages/virology , SARS-CoV-2/physiology , Antigens, CD/metabolism , Antigens, Differentiation, Myelomonocytic/metabolism , COVID-19/diagnostic imaging , Cell Communication , Cohort Studies , Fibroblasts/pathology , Gene Expression Regulation , Humans , Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis/diagnostic imaging , Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis/genetics , Mesenchymal Stem Cells/pathology , Phenotype , Proteome/metabolism , Receptors, Cell Surface/metabolism , Respiratory Distress Syndrome/diagnostic imaging , Respiratory Distress Syndrome/pathology , Respiratory Distress Syndrome/virology , Tomography, X-Ray Computed , Transcription, Genetic
3.
Immunol Rev ; 302(1): 228-240, 2021 07.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1241009

ABSTRACT

The COVID-19 pandemic rapidly spread around the world following the first reports in Wuhan City, China in late 2019. The disease, caused by the novel SARS-CoV-2 virus, is primarily a respiratory condition that can affect numerous other bodily systems including the cardiovascular and gastrointestinal systems. The disease ranges in severity from asymptomatic through to severe acute respiratory distress requiring intensive care treatment and mechanical ventilation, which can lead to respiratory failure and death. It has rapidly become evident that COVID-19 patients can develop features of interstitial pulmonary fibrosis, which in many cases persist for as long as we have thus far been able to follow the patients. Many questions remain about how such fibrotic changes occur within the lung of COVID-19 patients, whether the changes will persist long term or are capable of resolving, and whether post-COVID-19 pulmonary fibrosis has the potential to become progressive, as in other fibrotic lung diseases. This review brings together our existing knowledge on both COVID-19 and pulmonary fibrosis, with a particular focus on lung epithelial cells and fibroblasts, in order to discuss common pathways and processes that may be implicated as we try to answer these important questions in the months and years to come.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/pathology , Epithelial Cells/pathology , Fibroblasts/pathology , Pulmonary Fibrosis/pathology , Pulmonary Fibrosis/virology , Respiratory Mucosa/pathology , COVID-19/complications , Humans , SARS-CoV-2
4.
Nature ; 595(7865): 114-119, 2021 07.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1207147

ABSTRACT

Respiratory failure is the leading cause of death in patients with severe SARS-CoV-2 infection1,2, but the host response at the lung tissue level is poorly understood. Here we performed single-nucleus RNA sequencing of about 116,000 nuclei from the lungs of nineteen individuals who died of COVID-19 and underwent rapid autopsy and seven control individuals. Integrated analyses identified substantial alterations in cellular composition, transcriptional cell states, and cell-to-cell interactions, thereby providing insight into the biology of lethal COVID-19. The lungs from individuals with COVID-19 were highly inflamed, with dense infiltration of aberrantly activated monocyte-derived macrophages and alveolar macrophages, but had impaired T cell responses. Monocyte/macrophage-derived interleukin-1ß and epithelial cell-derived interleukin-6 were unique features of SARS-CoV-2 infection compared to other viral and bacterial causes of pneumonia. Alveolar type 2 cells adopted an inflammation-associated transient progenitor cell state and failed to undergo full transition into alveolar type 1 cells, resulting in impaired lung regeneration. Furthermore, we identified expansion of recently described CTHRC1+ pathological fibroblasts3 contributing to rapidly ensuing pulmonary fibrosis in COVID-19. Inference of protein activity and ligand-receptor interactions identified putative drug targets to disrupt deleterious circuits. This atlas enables the dissection of lethal COVID-19, may inform our understanding of long-term complications of COVID-19 survivors, and provides an important resource for therapeutic development.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/pathology , COVID-19/virology , Lung/pathology , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity , Single-Cell Analysis , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , Alveolar Epithelial Cells/pathology , Alveolar Epithelial Cells/virology , Atlases as Topic , Autopsy , COVID-19/immunology , Case-Control Studies , Female , Fibroblasts/pathology , Fibrosis/pathology , Fibrosis/virology , Humans , Inflammation/pathology , Inflammation/virology , Macrophages/pathology , Macrophages/virology , Macrophages, Alveolar/pathology , Macrophages, Alveolar/virology , Male , Middle Aged , Plasma Cells/immunology , T-Lymphocytes/immunology
5.
Biochim Biophys Acta Mol Basis Dis ; 1867(4): 166044, 2021 04 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1103717

ABSTRACT

Diabetes-associated morbidity and mortality is predominantly due to complications of the disease that may cause debilitating conditions, such as heart and renal failure, hepatic insufficiency, retinopathy or peripheral neuropathy. Fibrosis, the excessive and inappropriate deposition of extracellular matrix in various tissues, is commonly found in patients with advanced type 1 or type 2 diabetes, and may contribute to organ dysfunction. Hyperglycemia, lipotoxic injury and insulin resistance activate a fibrotic response, not only through direct stimulation of matrix synthesis by fibroblasts, but also by promoting a fibrogenic phenotype in immune and vascular cells, and possibly also by triggering epithelial and endothelial cell conversion to a fibroblast-like phenotype. High glucose stimulates several fibrogenic pathways, triggering reactive oxygen species generation, stimulating neurohumoral responses, activating growth factor cascades (such as TGF-ß/Smad3 and PDGFs), inducing pro-inflammatory cytokines and chemokines, generating advanced glycation end-products (AGEs) and stimulating the AGE-RAGE axis, and upregulating fibrogenic matricellular proteins. Although diabetes-activated fibrogenic signaling has common characteristics in various tissues, some organs, such as the heart, kidney and liver develop more pronounced and clinically significant fibrosis. This review manuscript summarizes current knowledge on the cellular and molecular pathways involved in diabetic fibrosis, discussing the fundamental links between metabolic perturbations and fibrogenic activation, the basis for organ-specific differences, and the promises and challenges of anti-fibrotic therapies for diabetic patients.


Subject(s)
Diabetes Mellitus, Type 1/pathology , Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2/pathology , Animals , Diabetes Mellitus, Type 1/genetics , Diabetes Mellitus, Type 1/metabolism , Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2/genetics , Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2/metabolism , Disease Progression , Epigenesis, Genetic , Fibroblasts/metabolism , Fibroblasts/pathology , Fibrosis , Glucose/genetics , Glucose/metabolism , Humans , Inflammation/genetics , Inflammation/metabolism , Inflammation/pathology , Signal Transduction
6.
Am J Forensic Med Pathol ; 42(2): 164-169, 2021 Jun 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1035550

ABSTRACT

ABSTRACT: As of August 23, 2020, the 2019 novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) has infected more than 23,518,340 people and caused more than 810,492 deaths worldwide including 4,717 deaths in China. We present a case of a 53-year-old woman who was admitted to the hospital because of dry coughs and high fever on January 26, 2020, in Wuhan, China. She was not tested for SARS-CoV-2 RNA until on hospital day 11 (illness day 21) because of a significant shortage of test kits at the local hospital. Then, her test was positive for COVID-19 on hospital day 20. Despite intensive medical treatments, she developed respiratory failure with secondary bacterial infection and expired on hospital day 23 (3 days after she was tested positive for SARS-CoV-2 RNA). A systemic autopsy examination, including immunohistochemistry and ultrastructural studies, demonstrates that SARS-CoV-2 can infect multiple organs with profound adverse effect on the immune system, and the lung pathology is characterized by diffuse alveolar damage. Extrapulmonary SARS-CoV-2 RNA was detected in several organs postmortem. The detailed pathological features are described. In addition, this report highlights the value of forensic autopsy in studying SARS-CoV-2 infection and the importance of clinicopathological correlation in better understanding the pathogenesis of COVID-19.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/diagnosis , Autopsy , Epiglottitis/pathology , Female , Fibroblasts/pathology , Humans , Infarction/pathology , Intracranial Thrombosis/pathology , Kidney/blood supply , Kidney/pathology , Lung/pathology , Lymph Nodes/pathology , Lymphocytes/pathology , Middle Aged , Myocytes, Cardiac/pathology , Myofibroblasts/pathology , Necrosis , RNA, Viral/analysis , Splenic Infarction/pathology , Subarachnoid Hemorrhage/pathology , Thromboembolism/pathology , Thrombosis/pathology , Thyroiditis, Autoimmune/pathology , Urinary Bladder/pathology
7.
Nat Commun ; 12(1): 4, 2021 01 04.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1007630

ABSTRACT

Age is a major risk factor for severe coronavirus disease-2019 (COVID-19). Here, we interrogate the transcriptional features and cellular landscape of the aging human lung. By intersecting these age-associated changes with experimental data on SARS-CoV-2, we identify several factors that may contribute to the heightened severity of COVID-19 in older populations. The aging lung is transcriptionally characterized by increased cell adhesion and stress responses, with reduced mitochondria and cellular replication. Deconvolution analysis reveals that the proportions of alveolar type 2 cells, proliferating basal cells, goblet cells, and proliferating natural killer/T cells decrease with age, whereas alveolar fibroblasts, pericytes, airway smooth muscle cells, endothelial cells and IGSF21+ dendritic cells increase with age. Several age-associated genes directly interact with the SARS-CoV-2 proteome. Age-associated genes are also dysregulated by SARS-CoV-2 infection in vitro and in patients with severe COVID-19. These analyses illuminate avenues for further studies on the relationship between age and COVID-19.


Subject(s)
Aging/genetics , COVID-19/genetics , Lung/physiology , A549 Cells , Adult , Aged , Aging/metabolism , Aging/pathology , COVID-19/metabolism , COVID-19/pathology , COVID-19/virology , Endothelial Cells/pathology , Female , Fibroblasts/pathology , Gene Expression , Humans , Lung/metabolism , Lung/pathology , Lung/virology , Male , Middle Aged , Pericytes/pathology , RNA-Seq , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Transcriptome , Young Adult
8.
Eur Rev Med Pharmacol Sci ; 24(23): 12609-12622, 2020 12.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-995022

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVE: In human pathology, SARS-CoV-2 utilizes multiple molecular pathways to determine structural and biochemical changes within the different organs and cell types. The clinical picture of patients with COVID-19 is characterized by a very large spectrum. The reason for this variability has not been clarified yet, causing the inability to make a prognosis on the evolution of the disease. MATERIALS AND METHODS: PubMed search was performed focusing on the role of ACE 2 receptors in allowing the viral entry into cells, the role of ACE 2 downregulation in triggering the tissue pathology or in accelerating previous disease states, the role of increased levels of Angiotensin II in determining endothelial dysfunction and the enhanced vascular permeability, the role of the dysregulation of the renin angiotensin system in COVID-19 and the role of cytokine storm. RESULTS: The pathological changes induced by SARS-CoV-2 infection in the different organs, the correlations between the single cell types targeted by the virus in the different human organs and the clinical consequences, COVID-19 chronic pathologies in liver fibrosis, cardiac fibrosis and atrial arrhythmias, glomerulosclerosis and pulmonary fibrosis, due to the systemic fibroblast activation induced by angiotensin II are discussed. CONCLUSIONS: The main pathways involved showed different pathological changes in multiple tissues and the different clinical presentations. Even if ACE2 is the main receptor of SARS-CoV-2 and the main entry point into cells for the virus, ACE2 expression does not always explain the observed marked inter-individual variability in clinical presentation and outcome, evidencing the complexity of this disorder. The proper interpretation of the growing data available might allow to better classifying COVID-19 in human pathology.


Subject(s)
Angiotensin II/metabolism , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/metabolism , COVID-19/metabolism , Cardiomyopathies/metabolism , Cytokine Release Syndrome/metabolism , Endothelium, Vascular/physiopathology , Liver Cirrhosis/metabolism , Systemic Inflammatory Response Syndrome/metabolism , Thrombosis/metabolism , Angiotensin I/metabolism , Atrial Fibrillation/metabolism , Atrial Fibrillation/physiopathology , Blood Coagulation , COVID-19/pathology , COVID-19/physiopathology , Capillary Permeability , Cardiomyopathies/pathology , Cardiomyopathies/physiopathology , Cytokine Release Syndrome/physiopathology , Cytokines/metabolism , Fibroblasts/metabolism , Fibroblasts/pathology , Fibrosis , Humans , Liver Cirrhosis/pathology , Liver Cirrhosis/physiopathology , Myocarditis/metabolism , Myocarditis/pathology , Myocarditis/physiopathology , Receptors, Coronavirus/metabolism , Renin-Angiotensin System , SARS-CoV-2/metabolism , Systemic Inflammatory Response Syndrome/physiopathology , Thrombosis/physiopathology , Virus Internalization
9.
Mol Med ; 26(1): 95, 2020 10 14.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-873932

ABSTRACT

Pulmonary fibrosis arises from the repeated epithelial mild injuries and insufficient repair lead to over activation of fibroblasts and excessive deposition of extracellular matrix, which result in a mechanical stretched niche. However, increasing mechanical stress likely exists before the establishment of fibrosis since early micro injuries increase local vascular permeability and prompt cytoskeletal remodeling which alter cellular mechanical forces. It is noteworthy that COVID-19 patients with severe hypoxemia will receive mechanical ventilation as supportive treatment and subsequent pathology studies indicate lung fibrosis pattern. At advanced stages, mechanical stress originates mainly from the stiff matrix since boundaries between stiff and compliant parts of the tissue could generate mechanical stress. Therefore, mechanical stress has a significant role in the whole development process of pulmonary fibrosis. The alveoli are covered by abundant capillaries and function as the main gas exchange unit. Constantly subject to variety of damages, the alveolar epithelium injuries were recently recognized to play a vital role in the onset and development of idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis. In this review, we summarize the literature regarding the effects of mechanical stress on the fundamental cells constituting the alveoli in the process of pulmonary fibrosis, particularly on epithelial cells, capillary endothelial cells, fibroblasts, mast cells, macrophages and stem cells. Finally, we briefly review this issue from a more comprehensive perspective: the metabolic and epigenetic regulation.


Subject(s)
Coronavirus Infections/immunology , Epigenesis, Genetic/immunology , Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis/immunology , Mechanotransduction, Cellular/immunology , Pneumonia, Viral/immunology , Pulmonary Embolism/immunology , Respiratory Insufficiency/immunology , Alveolar Epithelial Cells/immunology , Alveolar Epithelial Cells/pathology , Betacoronavirus/immunology , Betacoronavirus/pathogenicity , Biomechanical Phenomena , COVID-19 , Coronavirus Infections/genetics , Coronavirus Infections/pathology , Coronavirus Infections/virology , Cytokines/genetics , Cytokines/immunology , Endothelial Cells/immunology , Endothelial Cells/pathology , Fibroblasts/immunology , Fibroblasts/pathology , Humans , Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis/genetics , Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis/pathology , Idiopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis/virology , Lung/blood supply , Lung/immunology , Lung/pathology , Macrophages/immunology , Macrophages/pathology , Mechanotransduction, Cellular/genetics , Pandemics , Pneumonia, Viral/genetics , Pneumonia, Viral/pathology , Pneumonia, Viral/virology , Pulmonary Embolism/genetics , Pulmonary Embolism/pathology , Pulmonary Embolism/virology , Respiratory Insufficiency/genetics , Respiratory Insufficiency/pathology , Respiratory Insufficiency/virology , SARS-CoV-2 , Stress, Mechanical
10.
Forensic Sci Med Pathol ; 17(2): 279-296, 2021 06.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-834059

ABSTRACT

Although many clinical reports have been published, little is known about the pathological post-mortem findings from people who have died of the novel coronavirus disease. The need for postmortem information is urgent to improve patient management of mild and severe illness, and treatment strategies. The present systematic review was carried out according to the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Review (PRISMA) standards. A systematic literature search and a critical review of the collected studies were conducted. An electronic search of PubMed, Science Direct Scopus, Google Scholar, and Excerpta Medica Database (EMBASE) from database inception to June 2020 was performed. We found 28 scientific papers; the total amount of cases is 341. The major histological feature in the lung is diffuse alveolar damage with hyaline membrane formation, alongside microthrombi in small pulmonary vessels. It appears that there is a high incidence of deep vein thrombosis and pulmonary embolism among COVID-19 decedents, suggesting endothelial involvement, but more studies are needed. A uniform COVID-19 post-mortem diagnostic protocol has not yet been developed. In a time in which international collaboration is essential, standardized diagnostic criteria are fundamental requirements.


Subject(s)
Autopsy , COVID-19/pathology , Lung/pathology , Alveolar Epithelial Cells/pathology , Brain/pathology , Fibrin/metabolism , Fibroblasts/pathology , Humans , Kidney/pathology , Leukocytes, Mononuclear/pathology , Myositis/pathology , Respiratory Mucosa/pathology , Thrombosis/pathology
11.
Am J Hum Genet ; 107(4): 763-777, 2020 10 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-758482

ABSTRACT

Distal hereditary motor neuropathies (HMNs) and axonal Charcot-Marie-Tooth neuropathy (CMT2) are clinically and genetically heterogeneous diseases characterized primarily by motor neuron degeneration and distal weakness. The genetic cause for about half of the individuals affected by HMN/CMT2 remains unknown. Here, we report the identification of pathogenic variants in GBF1 (Golgi brefeldin A-resistant guanine nucleotide exchange factor 1) in four unrelated families with individuals affected by sporadic or dominant HMN/CMT2. Genomic sequencing analyses in seven affected individuals uncovered four distinct heterozygous GBF1 variants, two of which occurred de novo. Other known HMN/CMT2-implicated genes were excluded. Affected individuals show HMN/CMT2 with slowly progressive distal muscle weakness and musculoskeletal deformities. Electrophysiological studies confirmed axonal damage with chronic neurogenic changes. Three individuals had additional distal sensory loss. GBF1 encodes a guanine-nucleotide exchange factor that facilitates the activation of members of the ARF (ADP-ribosylation factor) family of small GTPases. GBF1 is mainly involved in the formation of coatomer protein complex (COPI) vesicles, maintenance and function of the Golgi apparatus, and mitochondria migration and positioning. We demonstrate that GBF1 is present in mouse spinal cord and muscle tissues and is particularly abundant in neuropathologically relevant sites, such as the motor neuron and the growth cone. Consistent with the described role of GBF1 in Golgi function and maintenance, we observed marked increase in Golgi fragmentation in primary fibroblasts derived from all affected individuals in this study. Our results not only reinforce the existing link between Golgi fragmentation and neurodegeneration but also demonstrate that pathogenic variants in GBF1 are associated with HMN/CMT2.


Subject(s)
Axons/metabolism , Charcot-Marie-Tooth Disease/genetics , Guanine Nucleotide Exchange Factors/genetics , Muscle Weakness/genetics , Muscular Atrophy, Spinal/genetics , Musculoskeletal Abnormalities/genetics , Adult , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , Amino Acid Sequence , Animals , Axons/pathology , COP-Coated Vesicles/metabolism , COP-Coated Vesicles/pathology , Charcot-Marie-Tooth Disease/diagnosis , Charcot-Marie-Tooth Disease/metabolism , Charcot-Marie-Tooth Disease/pathology , Female , Fibroblasts/metabolism , Fibroblasts/pathology , Gene Expression , Golgi Apparatus/metabolism , Golgi Apparatus/pathology , Guanine Nucleotide Exchange Factors/metabolism , Heterozygote , Humans , Male , Mice , Middle Aged , Mitochondria/metabolism , Mitochondria/pathology , Motor Neurons/metabolism , Motor Neurons/pathology , Muscle Weakness/diagnosis , Muscle Weakness/metabolism , Muscle Weakness/pathology , Muscular Atrophy, Spinal/diagnosis , Muscular Atrophy, Spinal/metabolism , Muscular Atrophy, Spinal/pathology , Musculoskeletal Abnormalities/diagnosis , Musculoskeletal Abnormalities/metabolism , Musculoskeletal Abnormalities/pathology , Mutation , Pedigree , Primary Cell Culture , Spinal Cord/abnormalities , Spinal Cord/metabolism
12.
FEBS Lett ; 594(20): 3363-3370, 2020 10.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-716193

ABSTRACT

We used transcriptomic (RNA-seq) analyses to determine whether patients suffering from all types and subtypes of mucopolysaccharidosis (MPS), a severe inherited metabolic disease, may be more susceptible to coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). The expression levels of genes encoding proteins potentially involved in SARS-CoV-2 development were estimated in MPS cell lines. Four genes (GTF2F2, RAB18, TMEM97, PDE4DIP) coding for proteins potentially facilitating virus development were down-regulated, while two genes (FBN1, MFGE8), the products of which potentially interfere with virus propagation, were up-regulated in most MPS types. Although narrowing of respiratory tract and occurrence of thick mucus, characteristic of MPS, are risk factors for COVID-19, transcriptomic analyses suggest that MPS cells might be less, rather than more, susceptible to SARS-CoV-2 infection.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/genetics , Mucopolysaccharidoses/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/physiology , Virus Internalization , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/genetics , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/metabolism , COVID-19/metabolism , COVID-19/pathology , COVID-19/prevention & control , Cells, Cultured , Fibroblasts/metabolism , Fibroblasts/pathology , Fibroblasts/virology , Gene Expression Profiling , Genetic Predisposition to Disease , Humans , Mucopolysaccharidoses/metabolism , Mucopolysaccharidoses/pathology , Mucopolysaccharidoses/virology , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity , Serine Endopeptidases/genetics , Serine Endopeptidases/metabolism , Transcriptome
13.
Int J Legal Med ; 134(4): 1275-1284, 2020 Jul.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-526787

ABSTRACT

Autopsies of deceased with a confirmed severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) infection can provide important insights into the novel disease and its course. Furthermore, autopsies are essential for the correct statistical recording of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) deaths. In the northern German Federal State of Hamburg, all deaths of Hamburg citizens with ante- or postmortem PCR-confirmed SARS-CoV-2 infection have been autopsied since the outbreak of the pandemic in Germany. Our evaluation provides a systematic overview of the first 80 consecutive full autopsies. A proposal for the categorisation of deaths with SARS-CoV-2 infection is presented (category 1: definite COVID-19 death; category 2: probable COVID-19 death; category 3: possible COVID-19 death with an equal alternative cause of death; category 4: SARS-CoV-2 detection with cause of death not associated to COVID-19). In six cases, SARS-CoV-2 infection was diagnosed postmortem by a positive PCR test in a nasopharyngeal or lung tissue swab. In the other 74 cases, SARS-CoV-2 infection had already been known antemortem. The deceased were aged between 52 and 96 years (average 79.2 years, median 82.4 years). In the study cohort, 34 deceased were female (38%) and 46 male (62%). Overall, 38% of the deceased were overweight or obese. All deceased, except for two women, in whom no significant pre-existing conditions were found autoptically, had relevant comorbidities (in descending order of frequency): (1) diseases of the cardiovascular system, (2) lung diseases, (3) central nervous system diseases, (4) kidney diseases, and (5) diabetes mellitus. A total of 76 cases (95%) were classified as COVID-19 deaths, corresponding to categories 1-3. Four deaths (5%) were defined as non-COVID-19 deaths with virus-independent causes of death. In eight cases, pneumonia was combined with a fulminant pulmonary artery embolism. Peripheral pulmonary artery embolisms were found in nine other cases. Overall, deep vein thrombosis has been found in 40% of the cases. This study provides the largest overview of autopsies of SARS-CoV-2-infected patients presented so far.


Subject(s)
Betacoronavirus , Coronavirus Infections/mortality , Coronavirus Infections/pathology , Lung/pathology , Pneumonia, Viral/mortality , Pneumonia, Viral/pathology , Age Distribution , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , Alveolar Epithelial Cells/pathology , Autopsy , Betacoronavirus/genetics , Betacoronavirus/isolation & purification , COVID-19 , Comorbidity , Cross Infection/mortality , Exudates and Transudates , Female , Fibroblasts/pathology , Fibrosis/pathology , Germany/epidemiology , Giant Cells/pathology , Humans , Male , Megakaryocytes/pathology , Middle Aged , Nursing Homes/statistics & numerical data , Organ Size , Overweight/epidemiology , Pandemics , Polymerase Chain Reaction , Pulmonary Embolism/pathology , Residential Facilities/statistics & numerical data , SARS-CoV-2 , Sex Distribution , Travel-Related Illness , Venous Thrombosis/pathology
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