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1.
Biomolecules ; 12(4)2022 04 05.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1776125

ABSTRACT

Extracellular HMGB1 protein is known to induce inflammatory responses leading to an inflammatory storm. The outbreak of the Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome COVID-19 due to the SARS-CoV-2 virus has resulted in a huge health concern worldwide. Recent data revealed that plasma/serum HMGB1 levels of patients suffering from inflammation-mediated disorders-such as COVID-19, cancer, and autoimmune disorders-correlate positively with disease severity and vice versa. A late release of HMGB1 in sepsis suggests the existence of a wide therapeutic window for treating sepsis. Rapid and accurate methods for the detection of HMGB1 levels in plasma/serum are, therefore, of great importance for monitoring the occurrence, treatment success, and survival prediction of patients with inflammation-mediated diseases. In this review, we briefly explain the role of HMGB1 in the cell, and particularly the involvement of extracellular HMGB1 (released from the cells) in inflammation-mediated diseases, with an emphasis on COVID-19. The current assays to measure HMGB1 levels in human plasma-Western blotting, ELISA, EMSA, and a new approach based on electrochemical immunosensors, including some of our preliminary results-are presented and thoroughly discussed.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , HMGB1 Protein , Sepsis , Biosensing Techniques , COVID-19/blood , COVID-19/diagnosis , HMGB1 Protein/blood , Humans , Immunoassay , Prognosis , SARS-CoV-2
2.
Int Immunopharmacol ; 104: 108502, 2022 03.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1641351

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: SARS-CoV-2 infection can lead to the abnormal induction of cytokines and a dysregulated hyperinflammatory state that is implicated in disease severity and risk of death. There are several molecules present in blood associated with immune cellular response, inflammation, and oxidative stress that could be used as severity markers in respiratory viral infections such as COVID-19. However, there is a lack of clinical studies evaluating the role of oxidative stress-related molecules including glial fibrillary acidic protein (GFAP), the receptor for advanced glycation end products (RAGE), high mobility group box-1 protein (HMGB1) and cyclo-oxygenase-2 (COX-2) in COVID-19 pathogenesis. AIM: To evaluate the role of oxidative stress-related molecules in COVID-19. METHOD: An observational study with 93 Brazilian participants from September 2020 to April 2021, comprising 23 patients with COVID-19 admitted to intensive care unit (ICU), 19 outpatients with COVID-19 with mild to moderate symptoms, 17 individuals reporting a COVID-19 history, and 34 healthy controls. Blood samples were taken from all participants and western blot assay was used to determine the RAGE, HMGB1, GFAP, and COX-2 immunocontent. RESULTS: We found that GFAP levels were higher in patients with severe or critical COVID-19 compared to outpatients (p = 0.030) and controls (p < 0.001). A significant increase in immunocontents of RAGE (p < 0.001) and HMGB1 (p < 0.001) were also found among patients admitted to the ICU compared to healthy controls, as well as an overexpression of the inducible COX-2 (p < 0.001). In addition, we found a moderate to strong correlation between RAGE, GFAP and HMGB1 proteins. CONCLUSION: SARS-CoV-2 infection induces the upregulation of GFAP, RAGE, HMGB1, and COX-2 in patients with the most severe forms of COVID-19.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/diagnosis , Adolescent , Adult , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , Biomarkers/blood , COVID-19/blood , COVID-19/immunology , COVID-19/virology , Case-Control Studies , Child , Cyclooxygenase 2/blood , Cyclooxygenase 2/metabolism , Female , Glial Fibrillary Acidic Protein/blood , Glial Fibrillary Acidic Protein/metabolism , HMGB1 Protein/blood , HMGB1 Protein/metabolism , Healthy Volunteers , Humans , Inflammation/blood , Inflammation/diagnosis , Inflammation/immunology , Inflammation/virology , Male , Middle Aged , Oxidative Stress/immunology , Receptor for Advanced Glycation End Products/blood , Receptor for Advanced Glycation End Products/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Severity of Illness Index , Up-Regulation/immunology , Young Adult
3.
J Immunotoxicol ; 18(1): 23-29, 2021 12.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1593522

ABSTRACT

The coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 of 2019 (COVID-19) causes a pandemic that has been diagnosed in more than 70 million people worldwide. Mild-to-moderate COVID-19 symptoms include coughing, fever, myalgia, shortness of breath, and acute inflammatory lung injury (ALI). In contrast, acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) and respiratory failure occur in patients diagnosed with severe COVID-19. ARDS is mediated, at least in part, by a dysregulated inflammatory response due to excessive levels of circulating cytokines, a condition known as the "cytokine-storm syndrome." Currently, there are FDA-approved therapies that attenuate the dysregulated inflammation that occurs in COVID-19 patients, such as dexamethasone or other corticosteroids and IL-6 inhibitors, including sarilumab, tocilizumab, and siltuximab. However, the efficacy of these treatments have been shown to be inconsistent. Compounds that activate the vagus nerve-mediated cholinergic anti-inflammatory reflex, such as the α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor agonist, GTS-21, attenuate ARDS/inflammatory lung injury by decreasing the extracellular levels of high mobility group box-1 (HMGB1) in the airways and the circulation. It is possible that HMGB1 may be an important mediator of the "cytokine-storm syndrome." Notably, high plasma levels of HMGB1 have been reported in patients diagnosed with severe COVID-19, and there is a significant negative correlation between HMGB1 plasma levels and clinical outcomes. Nicotine can activate the cholinergic anti-inflammatory reflex, which attenuates the up-regulation and the excessive release of pro-inflammatory cytokines/chemokines. Therefore, we hypothesize that low molecular weight compounds that activate the cholinergic anti-inflammatory reflex, such as nicotine or GTS-21, may represent a potential therapeutic approach to attenuate the dysregulated inflammatory responses in patients with severe COVID-19.


Subject(s)
Benzylidene Compounds/pharmacology , COVID-19/drug therapy , Cholinergic Agents/pharmacology , Inflammation/drug therapy , Nicotine/metabolism , Pyridines/pharmacology , SARS-CoV-2/physiology , Tobacco Use Disorder/drug therapy , Antibodies, Monoclonal, Humanized/therapeutic use , Cigarette Smoking/adverse effects , Dexamethasone/therapeutic use , HMGB1 Protein/blood , Humans , Pandemics , alpha7 Nicotinic Acetylcholine Receptor/agonists
4.
Cells ; 10(10)2021 09 26.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1438528

ABSTRACT

The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) is related to enhanced production of NETs, and autoimmune/autoinflammatory phenomena. We evaluated the proportion of low-density granulocytes (LDG) by flow cytometry, and their capacity to produce NETs was compared with that of conventional neutrophils. NETs and their protein cargo were quantified by confocal microscopy and ELISA. Antinuclear antibodies (ANA), anti-neutrophil cytoplasmic antibodies (ANCA) and the degradation capacity of NETs were addressed in serum. MILLIPLEX assay was used to assess the cytokine levels in macrophages' supernatant and serum. We found a higher proportion of LDG in severe and critical COVID-19 which correlated with severity and inflammatory markers. Severe/critical COVID-19 patients had higher plasmatic NE, LL-37 and HMGB1-DNA complexes, whilst ISG-15-DNA complexes were lower in severe patients. Sera from severe/critical COVID-19 patients had lower degradation capacity of NETs, which was reverted after adding hrDNase. Anti-NET antibodies were found in COVID-19, which correlated with ANA and ANCA positivity. NET stimuli enhanced the secretion of cytokines in macrophages. This study unveils the role of COVID-19 NETs as inducers of pro-inflammatory and autoimmune responses. The deficient degradation capacity of NETs may contribute to the accumulation of these structures and anti-NET antibodies are related to the presence of autoantibodies.


Subject(s)
Autoimmunity , COVID-19/blood , COVID-19/immunology , Extracellular Traps/immunology , Immunity, Humoral , Inflammation , Neutrophils/immunology , Antibodies, Antinuclear , Antimicrobial Cationic Peptides/blood , Autoantibodies/metabolism , Cross-Sectional Studies , Cytokines/metabolism , Cytokines/pharmacology , Flow Cytometry , Granulocytes/metabolism , HMGB1 Protein/blood , Healthy Volunteers , Humans , Microscopy, Confocal , Monocytes/cytology , Neutrophils/cytology , SARS-CoV-2 , Ubiquitins/pharmacology
5.
Front Immunol ; 12: 715072, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1430697

ABSTRACT

Background: Prediction of the severity of COVID-19 at its onset is important for providing adequate and timely management to reduce mortality. Objective: To study the prognostic value of damage parameters and cytokines as predictors of severity of COVID-19 using an extensive immunologic profiling and unbiased artificial intelligence methods. Methods: Sixty hospitalized COVID-19 patients (30 moderate and 30 severe) and 17 healthy controls were included in the study. The damage indicators high mobility group box 1 (HMGB1), lactate dehydrogenase (LDH), aspartate aminotransferase (AST), alanine aminotransferase (ALT), extensive biochemical analyses, a panel of 47 cytokines and chemokines were analyzed at weeks 1, 2 and 7 along with clinical complaints and CT scans of the lungs. Unbiased artificial intelligence (AI) methods (logistic regression and Support Vector Machine and Random Forest algorithms) were applied to investigate the contribution of each parameter to prediction of the severity of the disease. Results: On admission, the severely ill patients had significantly higher levels of LDH, IL-6, monokine induced by gamma interferon (MIG), D-dimer, fibrinogen, glucose than the patients with moderate disease. The levels of macrophage derived cytokine (MDC) were lower in severely ill patients. Based on artificial intelligence analysis, eight parameters (creatinine, glucose, monocyte number, fibrinogen, MDC, MIG, C-reactive protein (CRP) and IL-6 have been identified that could predict with an accuracy of 83-87% whether the patient will develop severe disease. Conclusion: This study identifies the prognostic factors and provides a methodology for making prediction for COVID-19 patients based on widely accepted biomarkers that can be measured in most conventional clinical laboratories worldwide.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/pathology , Diagnosis, Computer-Assisted/methods , Severity of Illness Index , Support Vector Machine , Alanine Transaminase/blood , Aspartate Aminotransferases/blood , Biomarkers/analysis , Cytokines/blood , Female , HMGB1 Protein/blood , Humans , L-Lactate Dehydrogenase/blood , Macrophages/immunology , Male , Middle Aged , Monocytes/immunology , Prognosis , Prospective Studies , SARS-CoV-2
6.
Mol Med ; 27(1): 48, 2021 05 11.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1224858

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Macrophage activation syndrome (MAS) is a potentially fatal complication of systemic inflammation. HMGB1 is a nuclear protein released extracellularly during proinflammatory lytic cell death or secreted by activated macrophages, NK cells, and additional cell types during infection or sterile injury. Extracellular HMGB1 orchestrates central events in inflammation as a prototype alarmin. TLR4 and the receptor for advanced glycation end products operate as key HMGB1 receptors to mediate inflammation. METHODS: Standard ELISA and cytometric bead array-based methods were used to examine the kinetic pattern for systemic release of HMGB1, ferritin, IL-18, IFN-γ, and MCP-1 before and during treatment of four children with critical MAS. Three of the patients with severe underlying systemic rheumatic diseases were treated with biologics including tocilizumab or anakinra when MAS developed. All patients required intensive care therapy due to life-threatening illness. Add-on etoposide therapy was administered due to insufficient clinical response with standard treatment. Etoposide promotes apoptotic rather than proinflammatory lytic cell death, conceivably ameliorating subsequent systemic inflammation. RESULTS: This therapeutic intervention brought disease control coinciding with a decline of the increased systemic HMGB1, IFN-γ, IL-18, and ferritin levels whereas MCP-1 levels evolved independently. CONCLUSION: Systemic HMGB1 levels in MAS have not been reported before. Our results suggest that the molecule is not merely a biomarker of inflammation, but most likely also contributes to the pathogenesis of MAS. These observations encourage further studies of HMGB1 antagonists. They also advocate therapeutic etoposide administration in severe MAS and provide a possible biological explanation for its mode of action.


Subject(s)
Biomarkers , Etoposide/administration & dosage , HMGB1 Protein/blood , Macrophage Activation Syndrome/blood , Macrophage Activation Syndrome/drug therapy , Adolescent , Antineoplastic Agents, Phytogenic/administration & dosage , Child , Child, Preschool , Cytokines/blood , Female , Humans , Immunosuppressive Agents/administration & dosage , Inflammation Mediators/blood , Macrophage Activation Syndrome/etiology , Male , Treatment Outcome
7.
Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A ; 118(10)2021 03 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1116057

ABSTRACT

Blood pH is tightly maintained between 7.35 and 7.45, and acidosis (pH <7.3) indicates poor prognosis in sepsis, wherein lactic acid from anoxic tissues overwhelms the buffering capacity of blood. Poor sepsis prognosis is also associated with low zinc levels and the release of High mobility group box 1 (HMGB1) from activated and/or necrotic cells. HMGB1 added to whole blood at physiological pH did not bind leukocyte receptors, but lowering pH with lactic acid to mimic sepsis conditions allowed binding, implying the presence of natural inhibitor(s) preventing binding at normal pH. Testing micromolar concentrations of divalent cations showed that zinc supported the robust binding of sialylated glycoproteins with HMGB1. Further characterizing HMGB1 as a sialic acid-binding lectin, we found that optimal binding takes place at normal blood pH and is markedly reduced when pH is adjusted with lactic acid to levels found in sepsis. Glycan array studies confirmed the binding of HMGB1 to sialylated glycan sequences typically found on plasma glycoproteins, with binding again being dependent on zinc and normal blood pH. Thus, HMGB1-mediated hyperactivation of innate immunity in sepsis requires acidosis, and micromolar zinc concentrations are protective. We suggest that the potent inflammatory effects of HMGB1 are kept in check via sequestration by plasma sialoglycoproteins at physiological pH and triggered when pH and zinc levels fall in late stages of sepsis. Current clinical trials independently studying zinc supplementation, HMGB1 inhibition, or pH normalization may be more successful if these approaches are combined and perhaps supplemented by infusions of heavily sialylated molecules.


Subject(s)
Acidosis/blood , HMGB1 Protein/blood , Sepsis/blood , Sialoglycoproteins/blood , Zinc/blood , Acidosis/immunology , Acidosis/metabolism , Acidosis/pathology , Carrier Proteins , HMGB1 Protein/pharmacology , Humans , Hydrogen-Ion Concentration , Immunity, Innate , Lipopolysaccharides/pharmacology , Polysaccharides/chemistry , Sepsis/immunology , Sepsis/pathology , Sialic Acids/chemistry , Sialoglycoproteins/chemistry , Zinc/metabolism
8.
Pediatr Allergy Immunol ; 31 Suppl 26: 63-65, 2020 11.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-944771

ABSTRACT

High-mobility group box 1 (HMGB1) is a nuclear protein involved in DNA replication, transcription, recombination, and repair. In the extracellular space, the HMGB1 plays an essential role in the onset and perpetuation of inflammation, belonging to the group of damage-associated molecular pattern (DAMP) molecules, also called alarmins. For this, HMGB1 has been studied in several acute and chronic inflammatory diseases as an early biomarker of inflammation. An increased concentration of HMGB1 has been detected in serum, as the expression of systemic inflammation, and in specific samples (such as stool, synovial fluid, nasal lavage fluid, sputum, and cerebrospinal fluid), as the expression of local production, in several infectious and/or inflammatory diseases. These data are particularly important because they open new futuristic possibilities for target therapies, potentially also for the COVID-19 treatment.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/drug therapy , HMGB1 Protein/physiology , SARS-CoV-2 , HMGB1 Protein/antagonists & inhibitors , HMGB1 Protein/blood , Humans
9.
Immunol Lett ; 217: 25-30, 2020 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-888577

ABSTRACT

In a previous work we demonstrated that inhibition of mouse indoleamine 2,3-dioxygenase (IDO) by methyltryptophan (MT) exacerbated the pathological actions of mouse hepatitis virus (MHV-A59) infection, suggesting that tryptophan (TRP) catabolism was involved in viral effects. Since there is a second enzyme that dioxygenates TRP, tryptophan-2, 3-dioxygenase (TDO), which is mainly located in liver, we decided to study its role in our model of MHV-infection. Results showed that in vivo TDO inhibition by LM10, a derivative of 3-(2-(pyridyl) ethenyl) indole, resulted in a decrease of anti- MHV Ab titers induced by the virus infection. Besides, a reduction of some alarmin release, i.e, uric acid and high-mobility group box1 protein (HMGB1), was observed. Accordingly, since alarmin liberation was related to the expression of autoantibodies (autoAb) to fumarylacetoacetate hydrolase (FAH), these autoAb also diminished. Moreover, PCR results indicated that TDO inhibition did not abolish viral replication. Furthermore, histological liver examination did not reveal strong pathologies, whereas mouse survival was hundred percent in control as well as in MHV-infected mice treated with LM10. Data presented in this work indicate that in spite of the various TDO actions already described, specific TDO blockage could also restrain some MHV actions, mainly suppressing autoimmune reactions. Such results should prompt further experiments with various viruses to confirm the possible use of a TDO inhibitor such as LM-10 to treat either viral infections or even autoimmune diseases triggered by a viral infection.


Subject(s)
Autoimmune Diseases/enzymology , Autoimmunity/drug effects , Coronavirus Infections/enzymology , Coronavirus Infections/immunology , Liver/enzymology , Murine hepatitis virus/immunology , Tryptophan Oxygenase/antagonists & inhibitors , Tryptophan Oxygenase/metabolism , Alarmins/metabolism , Animals , Autoantibodies/drug effects , Autoantibodies/immunology , Autoimmune Diseases/drug therapy , Autoimmune Diseases/immunology , Autoimmune Diseases/virology , Coronavirus Infections/drug therapy , Coronavirus Infections/virology , Female , HMGB1 Protein/blood , HMGB1 Protein/metabolism , Hydrolases/immunology , Indoles/therapeutic use , Liver/drug effects , Liver/immunology , Liver/pathology , Mice , Mice, Inbred BALB C , Murine hepatitis virus/drug effects , Murine hepatitis virus/growth & development , Tryptophan/metabolism , Tryptophan Oxygenase/genetics , Uric Acid/blood , Uric Acid/metabolism , Virus Replication/drug effects , Virus Replication/immunology
10.
Mol Diagn Ther ; 24(3): 251-262, 2020 06.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-634822

ABSTRACT

This opinion article discusses the increasing attention paid to the role of activating damage-associated molecular patterns (DAMPs) in initiation of inflammatory diseases and suppressing/inhibiting DAMPs (SAMPs) in resolution of inflammatory diseases and, consequently, to the future roles of these novel biomarkers as therapeutic targets and therapeutics. Since controlled production of DAMPs and SAMPs is needed to achieve full homeostatic restoration and repair from tissue injury, only their pathological, not their homeostatic, concentrations should be therapeutically tackled. Therefore, distinct caveats are proposed regarding choosing DAMPs and SAMPs for therapeutic purposes. For example, we discuss the need to a priori identify and define a context-dependent "homeostatic DAMP:SAMP ratio" in each case and a "homeostatic window" of DAMP and SAMP concentrations to guarantee a safe treatment modality to patients. Finally, a few clinical examples of how DAMPs and SAMPs might be used as therapeutic targets or therapeutics in the future are discussed, including inhibition of DAMPs in hyperinflammatory processes (e.g., systemic inflammatory response syndrome, as currently observed in Covid-19), administration of SAMPs in chronic inflammatory diseases, inhibition of SAMPs in hyperresolving processes (e.g., compensatory anti-inflammatory response syndrome), and administration/induction of DAMPs in vaccination procedures and anti-cancer therapy.


Subject(s)
Inflammation/drug therapy , Inflammation/metabolism , Molecular Targeted Therapy/methods , Biomarkers/blood , COVID-19/drug therapy , Cell-Free Nucleic Acids/blood , Chronic Disease , Coronavirus Infections/drug therapy , HMGB1 Protein/blood , Homeostasis , Humans , Immunity, Innate/drug effects , Immunity, Innate/physiology , Pathogen-Associated Molecular Pattern Molecules/metabolism , S100 Proteins/blood , Vaccination
11.
Cell Mol Immunol ; 17(9): 992-994, 2020 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-630398
12.
Mol Med ; 26(1): 63, 2020 06 29.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-617382

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Oxygen therapy, using supraphysiological concentrations of oxygen (hyperoxia), is routinely administered to patients who require respiratory support including mechanical ventilation (MV). However, prolonged exposure to hyperoxia results in acute lung injury (ALI) and accumulation of high mobility group box 1 (HMGB1) in the airways. We previously showed that airway HMGB1 mediates hyperoxia-induced lung injury in a mouse model of ALI. Cholinergic signaling through the α7 nicotinic acetylcholine receptor (α7nAChR) attenuates several inflammatory conditions. The aim of this study was to determine whether 3-(2,4 dimethoxy-benzylidene)-anabaseine dihydrochloride, GTS-21, an α7nAChR partial agonist, inhibits hyperoxia-induced HMGB1 accumulation in the airways and circulation, and consequently attenuates inflammatory lung injury. METHODS: Mice were exposed to hyperoxia (≥99% O2) for 3 days and treated concurrently with GTS-21 (0.04, 0.4 and 4 mg/kg, i.p.) or the control vehicle, saline. RESULTS: The systemic administration of GTS-21 (4 mg/kg) significantly decreased levels of HMGB1 in the airways and the serum. Moreover, GTS-21 (4 mg/kg) significantly reduced hyperoxia-induced acute inflammatory lung injury, as indicated by the decreased total protein content in the airways, reduced infiltration of inflammatory monocytes/macrophages and neutrophils into the lung tissue and airways, and improved lung injury histopathology. CONCLUSIONS: Our results indicate that GTS-21 can attenuate hyperoxia-induced ALI by inhibiting extracellular HMGB1-mediated inflammatory responses. This suggests that the α7nAChR represents a potential pharmacological target for the treatment regimen of oxidative inflammatory lung injury in patients receiving oxygen therapy.


Subject(s)
Acute Lung Injury/etiology , Acute Lung Injury/metabolism , Benzylidene Compounds/pharmacology , HMGB1 Protein/metabolism , Hyperoxia/complications , Nicotinic Agonists/pharmacology , Pyridines/pharmacology , Acute Lung Injury/drug therapy , Acute Lung Injury/pathology , Animals , Biomarkers , Disease Susceptibility , HMGB1 Protein/blood , HMGB1 Protein/genetics , Immunohistochemistry , Male , Mice , Models, Biological
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