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1.
Int J Mol Sci ; 21(15)2020 Jul 22.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1934093

ABSTRACT

Tissue injury and inflammatory response trigger the development of fibrosis in various diseases. It has been recognized that both innate and adaptive immune cells are important players with multifaceted functions in fibrogenesis. The activated immune cells produce various cytokines, modulate the differentiation and functions of myofibroblasts via diverse molecular mechanisms, and regulate fibrotic development. The immune cells exhibit differential functions during different stages of fibrotic diseases. In this review, we summarized recent advances in understanding the roles of immune cells in regulating fibrotic development and immune-based therapies in different disorders and discuss the underlying molecular mechanisms with a focus on mTOR and JAK-STAT signaling pathways.


Subject(s)
Adaptive Immunity , Fibrosis/immunology , Immunity, Innate , Signal Transduction/immunology , Animals , B-Lymphocytes/immunology , Cytokines/metabolism , Dendritic Cells/immunology , Fibrosis/pathology , Fibrosis/therapy , Humans , Lymphopoiesis/immunology , Macrophages/immunology , Myofibroblasts/metabolism , Neutrophils/immunology , T-Lymphocytes/immunology
2.
Nat Cell Biol ; 23(12): 1314-1328, 2021 12.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1559292

ABSTRACT

The lung is the primary organ targeted by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), making respiratory failure a leading coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19)-related mortality. However, our cellular and molecular understanding of how SARS-CoV-2 infection drives lung pathology is limited. Here we constructed multi-omics and single-nucleus transcriptomic atlases of the lungs of patients with COVID-19, which integrate histological, transcriptomic and proteomic analyses. Our work reveals the molecular basis of pathological hallmarks associated with SARS-CoV-2 infection in different lung and infiltrating immune cell populations. We report molecular fingerprints of hyperinflammation, alveolar epithelial cell exhaustion, vascular changes and fibrosis, and identify parenchymal lung senescence as a molecular state of COVID-19 pathology. Moreover, our data suggest that FOXO3A suppression is a potential mechanism underlying the fibroblast-to-myofibroblast transition associated with COVID-19 pulmonary fibrosis. Our work depicts a comprehensive cellular and molecular atlas of the lungs of patients with COVID-19 and provides insights into SARS-CoV-2-related pulmonary injury, facilitating the identification of biomarkers and development of symptomatic treatments.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/genetics , Lung/metabolism , Transcriptome/genetics , Alveolar Epithelial Cells/metabolism , Alveolar Epithelial Cells/pathology , Alveolar Epithelial Cells/virology , COVID-19/metabolism , Fibrosis/metabolism , Fibrosis/pathology , Fibrosis/virology , Humans , Lung/pathology , Lung/virology , Proteomics/methods , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity
3.
J Autoimmun ; 125: 102741, 2021 12.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1482678

ABSTRACT

The COVID-19 pandemic is still raging across the world and vaccination is expected to lead us out of this pandemic. Although the efficacy of the vaccines is beyond doubt, safety still remains a concern. We report a case of a 65-year-old woman who experienced acute severe autoimmune hepatitis two weeks after receiving the first dose of Moderna-COVID-19 vaccine. Serum immunoglobulin G was elevated and antinuclear antibody was positive (1:100, speckled pattern). Liver histology showed a marked expansion of the portal tracts, severe interface hepatitis and multiple confluent foci of lobular necrosis. She started treatment with prednisolone, with a favorable clinical and analytical evolution. Some recent reports have been suggested that COVID-19 vaccination can lead to the development of autoimmune diseases. It is speculated that the vaccine can disturb self-tolerance and trigger autoimmune responses through cross-reactivity with host cells. Therefore, healthcare providers must remain vigilant during mass COVID-19 vaccination.


Subject(s)
/adverse effects , COVID-19/prevention & control , Hepatitis, Autoimmune/etiology , Jaundice/etiology , Vaccination/adverse effects , Antibodies, Antinuclear/blood , Bilirubin/blood , Female , Fibrosis/pathology , Hepatitis, Autoimmune/immunology , Humans , Jaundice/diagnosis , Liver/enzymology , Middle Aged , Molecular Mimicry/immunology , Prednisolone/therapeutic use , SARS-CoV-2/immunology
4.
Chembiochem ; 22(15): 2516-2520, 2021 08 03.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1400765

ABSTRACT

The outbreak of SARS-CoV-2 has been an extraordinary event that constituted a global health emergency. As the novel coronavirus is continuing to spread over the world, the need for therapeutic agents to control this pandemic is increasing. αV ß6 Integrin may be an intriguing target not only for the inhibition of SARS-CoV-2 entry, but also for the diagnosis/treatment of COVID-19 related fibrosis, an emerging type of fibrotic disease which will probably affect a significant part of the recovered patients. In this short article, the possible role of this integrin for fighting COVID-19 is discussed on the basis of recently published evidence, showing how its underestimated involvement may be interesting for the development of novel pharmacological tools.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/virology , Fibrosis/virology , Integrin beta Chains/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , COVID-19/metabolism , COVID-19/pathology , Fibrosis/metabolism , Fibrosis/pathology , Humans
5.
Ann Pathol ; 41(1): 9-22, 2021 Feb.
Article in French | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1226268

ABSTRACT

The infection due to the SARS-CoV-2 leads lesions mainly observed at the respiratory tract level, but not exclusively. The analyses of these lesions benefited from different autopsy studies. Thus, these lesions were observed in different organs, tissues and cells. These observations allowed us to rapidly improve the knowledge of the pathophysiological mechanisms associated with this emergent infectious disease. The virus can be detected in formalin fixed paraffin embedded tissues using immunohistochemistry, in situ hybridization, molecular biology and/or electron microscopy approaches. However, many uncertainties are still present concerning the direct role of the SARS-CoV-2 on the different lesions observed in different organs, outside the lung, such as the heart, the brain, the liver, the gastrointestinal tract, the kidney and the skin. In this context, it is pivotal to keep going to increase the different tissue and cellular studies in the COVID-19 positive patients aiming to better understanding the consequences of this new infectious disease, notably considering different epidemiological and co-morbidities associated factors. This could participate to the development of new therapeutic strategies too. The purpose of this review is to describe the main histological and cellular lesions associated with the infection due to the SARS-CoV-2.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/pathology , Autopsy , COVID-19/virology , Fibrosis/pathology , Fibrosis/virology , Histocytochemistry , Humans , Immunohistochemistry , In Situ Hybridization , Kidney/pathology , Kidney/virology , Liver/pathology , Liver/virology , Lung/pathology , Lung/virology , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity , Skin/pathology , Skin/virology , Thrombosis/pathology , Thrombosis/virology
6.
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
7.
Radiology ; 299(1): E177-E186, 2021 04.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1048709

ABSTRACT

Background Little is known about the long-term lung radiographic changes in patients who have recovered from coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), especially those with severe disease. Purpose To prospectively assess pulmonary sequelae and explore the risk factors for fibrotic-like changes in the lung at 6-month follow-up chest CT of survivors of severe COVID-19 pneumonia. Materials and Methods A total of 114 patients (80 [70%] men; mean age, 54 years ± 12) were studied prospectively. Initial and follow-up CT scans were obtained a mean of 17 days ± 11 and 175 days ± 20, respectively, after symptom onset. Lung changes (opacification, consolidation, reticulation, and fibrotic-like changes) and CT extent scores (score per lobe, 0-5; maximum score, 25) were recorded. Participants were divided into two groups on the basis of their 6-month follow-up CT scan: those with CT evidence of fibrotic-like changes (traction bronchiectasis, parenchymal bands, and/or honeycombing) (group 1) and those without CT evidence of fibrotic-like changes (group 2). Between-group differences were assessed with the Fisher exact test, two-sample t test, or Mann-Whitney U test. Multiple logistic regression analyses were performed to identify the independent predictive factors of fibrotic-like changes. Results At follow-up CT, evidence of fibrotic-like changes was observed in 40 of the 114 participants (35%) (group 1), whereas the remaining 74 participants (65%) showed either complete radiologic resolution (43 of 114, 38%) or residual ground-glass opacification or interstitial thickening (31 of 114, 27%) (group 2). Multivariable analysis identified age of greater than 50 years (odds ratio [OR]: 8.5; 95% CI: 1.9, 38; P = .01), heart rate greater than 100 beats per minute at admission (OR: 5.6; 95% CI: 1.1, 29; P = .04), duration of hospital stay greater than or equal to 17 days (OR: 5.5; 95% CI: 1.5, 21; P = .01), acute respiratory distress syndrome (OR: 13; 95% CI: 3.3, 55; P < .001), noninvasive mechanical ventilation (OR: 6.3; 95% CI: 1.3, 30; P = .02), and total CT score of 18 or more (OR: 4.2; 95% CI: 1.2, 14; P = .02) at initial CT as independent predictors for fibrotic-like changes in the lung at 6 months. Conclusion Six-month follow-up CT showed fibrotic-like changes in the lung in more than one-third of patients who survived severe coronavirus disease 2019 pneumonia. These changes were associated with an older age, acute respiratory distress syndrome, longer hospital stays, tachycardia, noninvasive mechanical ventilation, and higher initial chest CT score. © RSNA, 2021 Online supplemental material is available for this article. See also the editorial by Wells et al in this issue.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/diagnostic imaging , COVID-19/pathology , Lung/diagnostic imaging , Lung/pathology , Tomography, X-Ray Computed/methods , Female , Fibrosis/diagnostic imaging , Fibrosis/pathology , Follow-Up Studies , Humans , Longitudinal Studies , Male , Middle Aged , Prospective Studies , SARS-CoV-2
8.
Ann Pathol ; 41(1): 9-22, 2021 Feb.
Article in French | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1033558

ABSTRACT

The infection due to the SARS-CoV-2 leads lesions mainly observed at the respiratory tract level, but not exclusively. The analyses of these lesions benefited from different autopsy studies. Thus, these lesions were observed in different organs, tissues and cells. These observations allowed us to rapidly improve the knowledge of the pathophysiological mechanisms associated with this emergent infectious disease. The virus can be detected in formalin fixed paraffin embedded tissues using immunohistochemistry, in situ hybridization, molecular biology and/or electron microscopy approaches. However, many uncertainties are still present concerning the direct role of the SARS-CoV-2 on the different lesions observed in different organs, outside the lung, such as the heart, the brain, the liver, the gastrointestinal tract, the kidney and the skin. In this context, it is pivotal to keep going to increase the different tissue and cellular studies in the COVID-19 positive patients aiming to better understanding the consequences of this new infectious disease, notably considering different epidemiological and co-morbidities associated factors. This could participate to the development of new therapeutic strategies too. The purpose of this review is to describe the main histological and cellular lesions associated with the infection due to the SARS-CoV-2.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/pathology , Autopsy , COVID-19/virology , Fibrosis/pathology , Fibrosis/virology , Histocytochemistry , Humans , Immunohistochemistry , In Situ Hybridization , Kidney/pathology , Kidney/virology , Liver/pathology , Liver/virology , Lung/pathology , Lung/virology , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity , Skin/pathology , Skin/virology , Thrombosis/pathology , Thrombosis/virology
9.
Virchows Arch ; 478(3): 471-485, 2021 Mar.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-807933

ABSTRACT

Data on the pathology of COVID-19 are scarce; available studies show diffuse alveolar damage; however, there is scarce information on the chronologic evolution of COVID-19 lung lesions. The primary aim of the study is to describe the chronology of lung pathologic changes in COVID-19 by using a post-mortem transbronchial lung cryobiopsy approach. Our secondary aim is to correlate the histologic findings with computed tomography patterns. SARS-CoV-2-positive patients, who died while intubated and mechanically ventilated, were enrolled. The procedure was performed 30 min after death, and all lung lobes sampled. Histopathologic analysis was performed on thirty-nine adequate samples from eight patients: two patients (illness duration < 14 days) showed early/exudative phase diffuse alveolar damage, while the remaining 6 patients (median illness duration-32 days) showed progressive histologic patterns (3 with mid/proliferative phase; 3 with late/fibrotic phase diffuse alveolar damage, one of which with honeycombing). Immunohistochemistry for SARS-CoV-2 nucleocapsid protein was positive predominantly in early-phase lesions. Histologic patterns and tomography categories were correlated: early/exudative phase was associated with ground-glass opacity, mid/proliferative lesions with crazy paving, while late/fibrous phase correlated with the consolidation pattern, more frequently seen in the lower/middle lobes. This study uses an innovative cryobiopsy approach for the post-mortem sampling of lung tissues from COVID-19 patients demonstrating the progression of fibrosis in time and correlation with computed tomography features. These findings may prove to be useful in the correct staging of disease, and this could have implications for treatment and patient follow-up.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/pathology , Fibrosis/pathology , SARS-CoV-2/physiology , Aged , Autopsy , COVID-19/diagnostic imaging , COVID-19/virology , Female , Fibrosis/diagnostic imaging , Fibrosis/virology , Humans , Lung/diagnostic imaging , Lung/pathology , Lung/virology , Male , Middle Aged , Tomography, X-Ray Computed
10.
Int J Legal Med ; 134(4): 1285-1290, 2020 Jul.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-544132

ABSTRACT

Forensic investigations generally contain extensive morphological examinations to accurately diagnose the cause of death. Thus, the appearance of a new disease often creates emerging challenges in morphological examinations due to the lack of available data from autopsy- or biopsy-based research. Since late December 2019, an outbreak of a novel seventh coronavirus disease has been reported in China caused by "severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2" (SARS-CoV-2). On March 11, 2020, the new clinical condition COVID-19 (Corona-Virus-Disease-19) was declared a pandemic by the World Health Organization (WHO). Patients with COVID-19 mainly have a mild disease course, but severe disease onset might result in death due to proceeded lung injury with massive alveolar damage and progressive respiratory failure. However, the detailed mechanisms that cause organ injury still remain unclear. We investigated the morphological findings of a COVID-19 patient who died during self-isolation. Pathologic examination revealed massive bilateral alveolar damage, indicating early-phase "acute respiratory distress syndrome" (ARDS). This case emphasizes the possibility of a rapid severe disease onset in previously mild clinical condition and highlights the necessity of a complete autopsy to gain a better understanding of the pathophysiological changes in SARS-CoV-2 infections.


Subject(s)
Betacoronavirus , Coronavirus Infections/pathology , Lung/pathology , Pneumonia, Viral/pathology , Alveolar Epithelial Cells/pathology , Autopsy , COVID-19 , Cough/virology , Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2 , Fever/virology , Fibrin/metabolism , Fibrosis/pathology , Humans , Hyperplasia/pathology , Hypertension , Lung/metabolism , Lymphocytes/pathology , Macrophages/pathology , Male , Megakaryocytes/pathology , Metaplasia/pathology , Middle Aged , Neutrophils/pathology , Pandemics , Quarantine , SARS-CoV-2 , Tachycardia/virology , Thrombosis/pathology
11.
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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