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2.
Front Immunol ; 12: 794780, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1662581

ABSTRACT

Various metabolites identified with therapeutic mushrooms have been found from different sources and are known to have antibacterial, antiviral, and anticancer properties. Over thousands soil growth-based mushroom metabolites have been discovered, and utilized worldwide to combat malignancy. In this study, psilocybin-mushroom that contains the psychedelic compounds such as psilacetin, psilocin, and psilocybine were screened and found to be inhibitors of SARS-CoV-2 Mprotease. It has been found that psilacetin, psilocin, and psilocybine bind to Mprotease with -6.0, -5.4, and -5.8 kcal/mol, respectively. Additionally, the psilacetin was found to inhibit human interleukin-6 receptors to reduce cytokine storm. The binding of psilacetin to Mprotease of SARS-CoV-2 and human interleukin-6 receptors changes the structural dynamics and Gibbs free energy patterns of proteins. These results suggested that psilocybin-mushroom could be utilized as viable potential chemotherapeutic agents for SARS-CoV-2.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/drug therapy , Cytokine Release Syndrome/drug therapy , Psilocybin/therapeutic use , Receptors, Interleukin-6/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/drug effects , Agaricales/chemistry , Antiviral Agents/therapeutic use , COVID-19/immunology , Cytokine Release Syndrome/immunology , Humans , Interleukin-6/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Virus Replication/drug effects
3.
Small Methods ; 5(5): e2001108, 2021 05.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1599126

ABSTRACT

During the global outbreak of COVID-19 pandemic, "cytokine storm" conditions are regarded as the fatal step resulting in most mortality. Hemoperfusion is widely used to remove cytokines from the blood of severely ill patients to prevent uncontrolled inflammation induced by a cytokine storm. This article discoveres, for the first time, that 2D Ti3 C2 Tx MXene sheet demonstrates an ultrahigh removal capability for typical cytokine interleukin-6. In particular, MXene shows a 13.4 times higher removal efficiency over traditional activated carbon absorbents. Molecular-level investigations reveal that MXene exhibits a strong chemisorption mechanism for immobilizing cytokine interleukin-6 molecules, which is different from activated carbon absorbents. MXene sheet also demonstrates excellent blood compatibility without any deleterious side influence on the composition of human blood. This work can open a new avenue to use MXene sheets as an ultraefficient hemoperfusion absorbent to eliminate the cytokine storm syndrome in treatment of severe COVID-19 patients.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/immunology , Cytokine Release Syndrome/drug therapy , Hemoperfusion/methods , Nanostructures/administration & dosage , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Titanium/administration & dosage , Adsorption , COVID-19/transmission , COVID-19/virology , Cytokine Release Syndrome/blood , Cytokine Release Syndrome/virology , Humans , Interleukin-6/immunology , Nanostructures/chemistry , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Titanium/chemistry
4.
J Allergy Clin Immunol ; 149(2): 569-578, 2022 02.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1587444

ABSTRACT

Our understanding of risk factors and interventions influencing outcomes from coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) has continued to evolve, revealing advances emerging from hypotheses formed at the start of the pandemic. Epidemiologic studies have shown that asthma control, rather than a diagnosis of asthma, is a determinant of COVID-19 severity. Clinical outcomes in patients with primary immunodeficiencies, even in those with impaired cellular immunity, are variable. IL-6 has emerged as a reliable biomarker of COVID-19 severity, and large clinical trials have shown the potential for improving outcomes through inhibition of IL-6 signaling in some patients. Studies of genetic risk factors for severe COVID-19 have also revealed the importance of interferon homeostasis in the defense against severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2. Because COVID-19 vaccines constitute the primary tool for ending this pandemic, strategies have been developed to address potential allergic and immune-mediated reactions. Here, we discuss advances in our understanding of COVID-19 risk factors and outcomes within the context of allergic and immunologic mechanisms.


Subject(s)
Antiviral Agents/therapeutic use , Asthma/therapy , Biological Products/therapeutic use , COVID-19/therapy , Immunologic Deficiency Syndromes/therapy , SARS-CoV-2/drug effects , Antibodies, Monoclonal/therapeutic use , Asthma/immunology , Asthma/mortality , Asthma/virology , Azetidines/therapeutic use , Biomarkers/metabolism , COVID-19/immunology , COVID-19/mortality , COVID-19/virology , COVID-19 Vaccines/administration & dosage , Humans , Immunologic Deficiency Syndromes/immunology , Immunologic Deficiency Syndromes/mortality , Immunologic Deficiency Syndromes/virology , Interleukin 1 Receptor Antagonist Protein/therapeutic use , Interleukin-6/antagonists & inhibitors , Interleukin-6/genetics , Interleukin-6/immunology , Prognosis , Purines/therapeutic use , Pyrazoles/therapeutic use , Risk Factors , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity , Sulfonamides/therapeutic use , Survival Analysis , Treatment Outcome
5.
Biomed Pharmacother ; 145: 112419, 2022 Jan.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1574950

ABSTRACT

Interleukin-6 (IL-6) is a multi-tasking cytokine that represents high activity in patients with severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) and cancer. High concentration of this pleiotropic cytokine accounts for hyperinflammation and cytokine storm, and is related to multi-organ failure in patients with SARS-CoV-2 induced disease. IL-6 promotes lymphopenia and increases C-reactive protein (CRP) in such cases. However, blockade of IL-6 is not a full-proof of complete response. Hypoxia, hypoxemia, aberrant angiogenesis and chronic inflammation are inter-related events occurring as a response to the SARS-CoV-2 stimulatory effect on high IL-6 activity. Taking both pro- and anti-inflammatory activities will make complex targeting IL-6 in patient with SARS-CoV-2 induced disease. The aim of this review was to discuss about interactions occurring within the body of patients with SARS-CoV-2 induced disease who are representing high IL-6 levels, and to determine whether IL-6 inhibition therapy is effective for such patients or not. We also address the interactions and targeted therapies in cancer patients who also have SARS-CoV-2 induced disease.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Immune Checkpoint Inhibitors/pharmacology , Interleukin-6 , Multiple Organ Failure , Neoplasms , Antibodies, Monoclonal, Humanized/pharmacology , COVID-19/complications , COVID-19/drug therapy , COVID-19/immunology , Humans , Interleukin-6/antagonists & inhibitors , Interleukin-6/immunology , Multiple Organ Failure/etiology , Multiple Organ Failure/immunology , Neoplasms/complications , Neoplasms/drug therapy , Neoplasms/immunology , SARS-CoV-2
6.
Int Immunol ; 33(10): 515-519, 2021 09 25.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1574756

ABSTRACT

Blockade of IL-6 function by an anti-IL-6 receptor (IL-6R) antibody (tocilizumab, trade name Actemra) has been shown to be effective for the treatment of chronic autoimmune inflammatory diseases including rheumatoid arthritis. Interestingly, treatment with tocilizumab has also been found to alleviate the cytokine storm induced by chimeric antigen receptor (CAR)-T-cell therapy. Patients with serious cases of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) exhibit cytokine release syndrome (CRS), which suggested that tocilizumab might be an effective therapeutic for serious cases of COVID-19. In the first part of this short review, the therapeutic effect of tocilizumab for the disease induced by IL-6 overproduction is described. CRS induced by CAR-T-cell therapy and COVID-19 is then discussed.


Subject(s)
Arthritis/immunology , COVID-19/immunology , Interleukin-6/immunology , Receptors, Chimeric Antigen/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Cell- and Tissue-Based Therapy/methods , Cytokine Release Syndrome/immunology , Humans
7.
Int Immunopharmacol ; 101(Pt B): 108254, 2021 Dec.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1549846

ABSTRACT

With the outbreak and rapid spread of COVID-19, the world health situation is unprecedentedly severe. Systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) is a common autoimmune disease, which can cause multiple organ damage. Numerous studies have shown that immune factors have important roles in the pathogenesis of both COVID-19 and SLE. In the early stages of COVID-19 and SLE pathogenesis, IFN-α expression is frequently increased, which aggravates the virus infection and promotes SLE development. In addition, increased IL-6 levels, caused by different mechanisms, are observed in the peripheral blood of patients with severe COVID-19 and SLE, stimulating a series of immune cascades that lead to a cytokine storm, as well as causing B cell hyperfunction and production of numerous of antibodies, aggravating both COVID-19 and SLE. In this review, we explore the background immunopathological mechanisms in COVID-19 and SLE and analyze the advantages and disadvantages of commonly used SLE drugs for patients with COVID-19, to optimize treatment plans for patients with SLE who develop COVID-19.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/drug therapy , COVID-19/immunology , Interferon-alpha/immunology , Interleukin-6/immunology , Lupus Erythematosus, Systemic/immunology , SARS-CoV-2 , Animals , Humans , Lupus Erythematosus, Systemic/drug therapy
8.
Ann Hematol ; 101(3): 513-520, 2022 Mar.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1549412

ABSTRACT

Hyperferritinemia comes to light frequently in general practice. However, the characteristics of COVID-19-associated hyperferritinemia and the relationship with the prognosis were not well described. The retrospective study included 268 documented COVID-19 patients. They were divided into the hyperferritinemia group (≥ 500 µg/L) and the non-hyperferritinemia group (< 500 µg/L). The prevalence of fever and thrombocytopenia and the proportion of patients with mechanical ventilator support and in-hospital death were much higher in the hyperferritinemia group (P < 0.001). The hyperferritinemia patients showed higher median IL-6, D-dimer, and hsCRP (P < 0.001) and lowered FIB level (P = 0.036). The hyperferritinemia group had a higher proportion of patients with AKI, ARDS, and CSAC (P < 0.001). According to the multivariate analysis, age, chronic pulmonary disease, and hyperferritinemia were found to be significant independent predictors for in-hospital mortality [HR 1.041 (95% CI 1.015-1.068), P = 0.002; HR 0.427 (95% CI 0.206-0.882), P = 0.022; HR 6.176 (95% CI 2.447-15.587), P < 0.001, respectively]. The AUROC curve was 0.88, with a cut-off value of ≥ 971 µg/L. COVID-19 patients with hyperferritinemia had a high proportion of organ dysfunction, were more likely to show hyper-inflammation, progressed to hemophagocytic lymphohistiocytosis, and indicated a higher proportion of death.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/blood , Hyperferritinemia/blood , Phagocytosis , SARS-CoV-2/metabolism , Aged , C-Reactive Protein/immunology , C-Reactive Protein/metabolism , COVID-19/complications , COVID-19/mortality , Female , Fibrin Fibrinogen Degradation Products/immunology , Fibrin Fibrinogen Degradation Products/metabolism , Hospital Mortality , Humans , Hyperferritinemia/etiology , Hyperferritinemia/immunology , Hyperferritinemia/mortality , Inflammation/blood , Inflammation/immunology , Inflammation/mortality , Interleukin-6/blood , Interleukin-6/immunology , Male , Middle Aged , Prevalence , Retrospective Studies , SARS-CoV-2/immunology
10.
J Am Soc Nephrol ; 32(3): 708-722, 2021 03.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1496675

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Late antibody-mediated rejection (ABMR) is a leading cause of transplant failure. Blocking IL-6 has been proposed as a promising therapeutic strategy. METHODS: We performed a phase 2 randomized pilot trial to evaluate the safety (primary endpoint) and efficacy (secondary endpoint analysis) of the anti-IL-6 antibody clazakizumab in late ABMR. The trial included 20 kidney transplant recipients with donor-specific, antibody-positive ABMR ≥365 days post-transplantation. Patients were randomized 1:1 to receive 25 mg clazakizumab or placebo (4-weekly subcutaneous injections) for 12 weeks (part A), followed by a 40-week open-label extension (part B), during which time all participants received clazakizumab. RESULTS: Five (25%) patients under active treatment developed serious infectious events, and two (10%) developed diverticular disease complications, leading to trial withdrawal. Those receiving clazakizumab displayed significantly decreased donor-specific antibodies and, on prolonged treatment, modulated rejection-related gene-expression patterns. In 18 patients, allograft biopsies after 51 weeks revealed a negative molecular ABMR score in seven (38.9%), disappearance of capillary C4d deposits in five (27.8%), and resolution of morphologic ABMR activity in four (22.2%). Although proteinuria remained stable, the mean eGFR decline during part A was slower with clazakizumab compared with placebo (-0.96; 95% confidence interval [95% CI], -1.96 to 0.03 versus -2.43; 95% CI, -3.40 to -1.46 ml/min per 1.73 m2 per month, respectively, P=0.04). During part B, the slope of eGFR decline for patients who were switched from placebo to clazakizumab improved and no longer differed significantly from patients initially allocated to clazakizumab. CONCLUSIONS: Although safety data indicate the need for careful patient selection and monitoring, our preliminary efficacy results suggest a potentially beneficial effect of clazakizumab on ABMR activity and progression.


Subject(s)
Antibodies, Monoclonal, Humanized/therapeutic use , Graft Rejection/therapy , Interleukin-6/antagonists & inhibitors , Kidney Transplantation/adverse effects , Adult , Allografts , Antibodies, Monoclonal, Humanized/adverse effects , Double-Blind Method , Female , Glomerular Filtration Rate , Graft Rejection/immunology , Graft Rejection/physiopathology , Humans , Infections/etiology , Interleukin-6/immunology , Isoantibodies/blood , Male , Middle Aged , Tissue Donors , Treatment Outcome , Young Adult
11.
Br J Haematol ; 196(4): 923-927, 2022 02.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1488181

ABSTRACT

Patients who are severely affected by coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) may develop a delayed onset 'cytokine storm', which includes an increase in interleukin-6 (IL-6). This may be followed by a pro-thrombotic state and increased D-dimers. It was anticipated that tocilizumab (TCZ), an anti-IL-6 receptor monoclonal antibody, would mitigate inflammation and coagulation in patients with COVID-19. However, clinical trials with TCZ have recorded an increase in D-dimer levels. In contrast to TCZ, colchicine reduced D-dimer levels in patients with COVID-19. To understand how the two anti-inflammatory agents have diverse effects on D-dimer levels, we present data from two clinical trials that we performed. In the first trial, TCZ was administered (8 mg/kg) to patients who had a positive polymerase chain reaction test for COVID-19. In the second trial, colchicine was given (0·5 mg twice a day). We found that TCZ significantly increased IL-6, α-Defensin (α-Def), a pro-thrombotic peptide, and D-dimers. In contrast, treatment with colchicine reduced α-Def and Di-dimer levels. In vitro studies show that IL-6 stimulated the release of α-Def from human neutrophils but in contrast to colchicine, TCZ did not inhibit the stimulatory effect of IL-6; raising the possibility that the increase in IL-6 in patients with COVID-19 treated with TCZ triggers the release of α-Def, which promotes pro-thrombotic events reflected in an increase in D-dimer levels.


Subject(s)
Anti-Inflammatory Agents/therapeutic use , Antibodies, Monoclonal, Humanized/therapeutic use , COVID-19/drug therapy , Colchicine/therapeutic use , Fibrin Fibrinogen Degradation Products/analysis , alpha-Defensins/immunology , Aged , Blood Coagulation/drug effects , COVID-19/blood , COVID-19/immunology , Cytokine Release Syndrome/blood , Cytokine Release Syndrome/drug therapy , Cytokine Release Syndrome/immunology , Female , Fibrin Fibrinogen Degradation Products/immunology , Humans , Interleukin-6/blood , Interleukin-6/immunology , Male , Middle Aged , Neutrophils/drug effects , Neutrophils/immunology
12.
Int Immunopharmacol ; 101(Pt A): 108280, 2021 Dec.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1487771

ABSTRACT

The COVID-19 pandemic, caused by a highly virulent and transmissible pathogen, has proven to be devastating to society. Mucosal vaccines that can induce antigen-specific immune responses in both the systemic and mucosal compartments are considered an effective measure to overcome infectious diseases caused by pathogenic microbes. We have recently developed a nasal vaccine system using cationic liposomes composed of 1,2-dioleoyl-3-trimethylammonium-propane and cholesteryl 3ß-N-(dimethylaminoethyl)carbamate in mice. However, the comprehensive molecular mechanism(s), especially the host soluble mediator involved in this process, by which cationic liposomes promote antigen-specific mucosal immune responses, remain to be elucidated. Herein, we show that intranasal administration of cationic liposomes elicited interleukin-6 (IL-6) expression at the site of administration. Additionally, both nasal passages and splenocytes from mice nasally immunized with cationic liposomes plus ovalbumin (OVA) were polarized to produce IL-6 when re-stimulated with OVA in vitro. Furthermore, pretreatment with anti-IL-6R antibody, which blocks the biological activities of IL-6, attenuated the production of OVA-specific nasal immunoglobulin A (IgA) but not OVA-specific serum immunoglobulin G (IgG) responses. In this study, we demonstrated that IL-6, exerted by nasally administered cationic liposomes, plays a crucial role in antigen-specific IgA induction.


Subject(s)
Immunity, Mucosal/immunology , Immunoglobulin A/metabolism , Interleukin-6/immunology , Vaccines/immunology , Administration, Intranasal , Animals , Antibody Formation/drug effects , Antigens/immunology , COVID-19/prevention & control , Cations/immunology , Cations/therapeutic use , Fatty Acids, Monounsaturated/immunology , Fatty Acids, Monounsaturated/therapeutic use , Female , Immunity, Mucosal/drug effects , Immunoglobulin G/blood , Interleukin-6/antagonists & inhibitors , Interleukin-6/genetics , Interleukin-6/metabolism , Liposomes/immunology , Liposomes/therapeutic use , Mice , Nasal Mucosa/immunology , Nasal Mucosa/metabolism , Ovalbumin/immunology , Quaternary Ammonium Compounds/immunology , Quaternary Ammonium Compounds/therapeutic use , Spleen/metabolism , Vaccines/administration & dosage
13.
Adv Sci (Weinh) ; 8(23): e2103266, 2021 12.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1479368

ABSTRACT

Activation of endothelial cells following severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) infection is thought to be the primary driver for the increasingly recognized thrombotic complications in coronavirus disease 2019 patients, potentially due to the SARS-CoV-2 Spike protein binding to the human angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (hACE2). Vaccination therapies use the same Spike sequence or protein to boost host immune response as a protective mechanism against SARS-CoV-2 infection. As a result, cases of thrombotic events are reported following vaccination. Although vaccines are generally considered safe, due to genetic heterogeneity, age, or the presence of comorbidities in the population worldwide, the prediction of severe adverse outcome in patients remains a challenge. To elucidate Spike proteins underlying patient-specific-vascular thrombosis, the human microcirculation environment is recapitulated using a novel microfluidic platform coated with human endothelial cells and exposed to patient specific whole blood. Here, the blood coagulation effect is tested after exposure to Spike protein in nanoparticles and Spike variant D614G in viral vectors and the results are corroborated using live SARS-CoV-2. Of note, two potential strategies are also examined to reduce blood clot formation, by using nanoliposome-hACE2 and anti-Interleukin (IL) 6 antibodies.


Subject(s)
Blood Coagulation/physiology , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/metabolism , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/chemistry , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/genetics , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/metabolism , Antibodies/chemistry , Antibodies/immunology , Antibodies/metabolism , COVID-19/diagnosis , COVID-19/virology , Endothelial Cells/chemistry , Endothelial Cells/cytology , Endothelial Cells/metabolism , Fibrin/chemistry , Fibrin/metabolism , Genetic Vectors/genetics , Genetic Vectors/metabolism , Humans , Interleukin-6/immunology , Liposomes/chemistry , Microfluidics/methods , Mutation , Nanoparticles/chemistry , Platelet Aggregation , SARS-CoV-2/metabolism , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/analysis , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics
14.
J Virol ; 96(2): e0106321, 2022 01 26.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1476388

ABSTRACT

COVID-19 affects multiple organs. Clinical data from the Mount Sinai Health System show that substantial numbers of COVID-19 patients without prior heart disease develop cardiac dysfunction. How COVID-19 patients develop cardiac disease is not known. We integrated cell biological and physiological analyses of human cardiomyocytes differentiated from human induced pluripotent stem cells (hiPSCs) infected with severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) in the presence of interleukins (ILs) with clinical findings related to laboratory values in COVID-19 patients to identify plausible mechanisms of cardiac disease in COVID-19 patients. We infected hiPSC-derived cardiomyocytes from healthy human subjects with SARS-CoV-2 in the absence and presence of IL-6 and IL-1ß. Infection resulted in increased numbers of multinucleated cells. Interleukin treatment and infection resulted in disorganization of myofibrils, extracellular release of troponin I, and reduced and erratic beating. Infection resulted in decreased expression of mRNA encoding key proteins of the cardiomyocyte contractile apparatus. Although interleukins did not increase the extent of infection, they increased the contractile dysfunction associated with viral infection of cardiomyocytes, resulting in cessation of beating. Clinical data from hospitalized patients from the Mount Sinai Health System show that a significant portion of COVID-19 patients without history of heart disease have elevated troponin and interleukin levels. A substantial subset of these patients showed reduced left ventricular function by echocardiography. Our laboratory observations, combined with the clinical data, indicate that direct effects on cardiomyocytes by interleukins and SARS-CoV-2 infection might underlie heart disease in COVID-19 patients. IMPORTANCE SARS-CoV-2 infects multiple organs, including the heart. Analyses of hospitalized patients show that a substantial number without prior indication of heart disease or comorbidities show significant injury to heart tissue, assessed by increased levels of troponin in blood. We studied the cell biological and physiological effects of virus infection of healthy human iPSC-derived cardiomyocytes in culture. Virus infection with interleukins disorganizes myofibrils, increases cell size and the numbers of multinucleated cells, and suppresses the expression of proteins of the contractile apparatus. Viral infection of cardiomyocytes in culture triggers release of troponin similar to elevation in levels of COVID-19 patients with heart disease. Viral infection in the presence of interleukins slows down and desynchronizes the beating of cardiomyocytes in culture. The cell-level physiological changes are similar to decreases in left ventricular ejection seen in imaging of patients' hearts. These observations suggest that direct injury to heart tissue by virus can be one underlying cause of heart disease in COVID-19.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/immunology , Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells , Interleukin-10/immunology , Interleukin-1beta/immunology , Interleukin-6/immunology , Myocytes, Cardiac , Cells, Cultured , Humans , Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells/immunology , Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells/pathology , Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells/virology , Myocytes, Cardiac/immunology , Myocytes, Cardiac/pathology , Myocytes, Cardiac/virology
15.
Inflammation ; 45(1): 172-179, 2022 Feb.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1474041

ABSTRACT

Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) infection (COVID-19) is associated with uncontrolled inflammatory responses. Loss of pulmonary angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2) function has been associated with SARS-CoV-2 infection. The aberrant signalling and dysregulated inflammation characteristic of lung cancer have marked similarities with SARS-CoV-2 infection. Spearman's correlation analysis of The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA) datasets indicated an inverse correlation between ACE2 and IL6 in lung adenocarcinoma. qRT-PCR analysis revealed CoV-2-SRBD-mediated diminished ACE2 expression in lung cancer cells that was concomitant with increased IL6 expression. Western blot and qRT-PCR analysis suggested that treatment with methotrexate (MTx) dampened CoV-2-SRBD-mediated increase in JAK1/STAT3 phosphorylation, gp130, IL6, and folate-binding protein (FBP) expressions. MTx also rescued the diminished expression of ACE2 in CoV-2-SRBD transfected cells. As lung tissue injury in severely affected COVID-19 patients is characterised by aberrant inflammatory response, repurposing MTx as an effective therapy against critical regulators of inflammation in SARS-CoV-2 infection warrants investigation.


Subject(s)
Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/metabolism , COVID-19/drug therapy , Glycyrrhizic Acid/therapeutic use , Immunosuppressive Agents/therapeutic use , Interleukin-6/biosynthesis , Methotrexate/therapeutic use , A549 Cells , Adenocarcinoma of Lung/pathology , Anti-Inflammatory Agents/therapeutic use , COVID-19/immunology , COVID-19/pathology , Cell Line, Tumor , Cytokine Receptor gp130/biosynthesis , Folate Receptor 2/biosynthesis , HMGB1 Protein/antagonists & inhibitors , HMGB1 Protein/metabolism , Humans , Interleukin-6/immunology , Janus Kinase 1/metabolism , Lung Neoplasms/pathology , Phosphorylation/drug effects , SARS-CoV-2/drug effects , STAT3 Transcription Factor/metabolism , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/immunology
16.
Int J Mol Sci ; 22(19)2021 Oct 03.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1444234

ABSTRACT

Our objective is to reveal the molecular mechanism of the anti-inflammatory action of low-molecular-weight heparin (LMWH) based on its influence on the activity of two key cytokines, IFNγ and IL-6. The mechanism of heparin binding to IFNγ and IL-6 and the resulting inhibition of their activity were studied by means of extensive molecular-dynamics simulations. The effect of LMWH on IFNγ signalling inside stimulated WISH cells was investigated by measuring its antiproliferative activity and the translocation of phosphorylated STAT1 in the nucleus. We found that LMWH binds with high affinity to IFNγ and is able to fully inhibit the interaction with its cellular receptor. It also influences the biological activity of IL-6 by binding to either IL-6 or IL-6/IL-6Rα, thus preventing the formation of the IL-6/IL-6Rα/gp130 signalling complex. These findings shed light on the molecular mechanism of the anti-inflammatory action of LMWH and underpin its ability to influence favourably conditions characterised by overexpression of these two cytokines. Such conditions are not only associated with autoimmune diseases, but also with inflammatory processes, in particular with COVID-19. Our results put forward heparin as a promising means for the prevention and suppression of severe CRS and encourage further investigations on its applicability as an anti-inflammatory agent.


Subject(s)
Anti-Inflammatory Agents/pharmacology , Anticoagulants/pharmacology , Heparin, Low-Molecular-Weight/pharmacology , Interferon-gamma/immunology , Interleukin-6/immunology , COVID-19/drug therapy , COVID-19/immunology , Cell Line , Humans , Models, Molecular , Receptors, Interleukin-6/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/drug effects , SARS-CoV-2/immunology
17.
Signal Transduct Target Ther ; 6(1): 328, 2021 09 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1392810

ABSTRACT

Understanding the pathological features of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) infection in an animal model is crucial for the treatment of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). Here, we compared immunopathological changes in young and old rhesus macaques (RMs) before and after SARS-CoV-2 infection at the tissue level. Quantitative analysis of multiplex immunofluorescence staining images of formalin-fixed paraffin-embedded (FFPE) sections showed that SARS-CoV-2 infection specifically induced elevated levels of apoptosis, autophagy, and nuclear factor kappa-B (NF-κB) activation of angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2)+ cells, and increased interferon α (IFN-α)- and interleukin 6 (IL-6)-secreting cells and C-X-C motif chemokine receptor 3 (CXCR3)+ cells in lung tissue of old RMs. This pathological pattern, which may be related to the age-related pro-inflammatory microenvironment in both lungs and spleens, was significantly correlated with the systemic accumulation of CXCR3+ cells in lungs, spleens, and peripheral blood. Furthermore, the ratio of CXCR3+ to T-box protein expression in T cell (T-bet)+ (CXCR3+/T-bet+ ratio) in CD8+ cells may be used as a predictor of severe COVID-19. These findings uncovered the impact of aging on the immunopathology of early SARS-CoV-2 infection and demonstrated the potential application of CXCR3+ cells in predicting severe COVID-19.


Subject(s)
CD8-Positive T-Lymphocytes/immunology , COVID-19/immunology , Cellular Microenvironment/immunology , Lung/immunology , Receptors, CXCR3/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/immunology , Animals , CD8-Positive T-Lymphocytes/pathology , COVID-19/pathology , Disease Models, Animal , Inflammation/immunology , Inflammation/pathology , Interferon-alpha/immunology , Interleukin-6/immunology , Lung/pathology , Lung/virology , Macaca mulatta , Male
18.
Signal Transduct Target Ther ; 6(1): 289, 2021 07 29.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1333903

ABSTRACT

Pregnant women are generally more susceptible to viral infection. Although the impact of SARS-CoV-2 in pregnancy remains to be determined, evidence indicates that the risk factors for severe COVID-19 are similar in pregnancy to the general population. Here we systemically analyzed the clinical characteristics of pregnant and non-pregnant female COVID-19 patients who were hospitalized during the same period and found that pregnant patients developed marked lymphopenia and higher inflammation evident by higher C-reactive protein and IL-6. To elucidate the pathways that might contribute to immunopathology or protective immunity against COVID-19 during pregnancy, we applied single-cell mRNA sequencing to profile peripheral blood mononuclear cells from four pregnant and six non-pregnant female patients after recovery along with four pregnant and three non-pregnant healthy donors. We found normal clonal expansion of T cells in the pregnant patients, heightened activation and chemotaxis in NK, NKT, and MAIT cells, and differential interferon responses in the monocyte compartment. Our data present a unique feature in both innate and adaptive immune responses in pregnant patients recovered from COVID-19.


Subject(s)
Adaptive Immunity , COVID-19/immunology , Immunity, Innate , Lymphocytes/immunology , Pregnancy Complications, Infectious/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Adult , C-Reactive Protein/immunology , Female , Humans , Interleukin-6/immunology , Pregnancy , Retrospective Studies , Sequence Analysis, RNA , Single-Cell Analysis
19.
J Biol Chem ; 296: 100630, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1333548

ABSTRACT

Unchecked inflammation can result in severe diseases with high mortality, such as macrophage activation syndrome (MAS). MAS and associated cytokine storms have been observed in COVID-19 patients exhibiting systemic hyperinflammation. Interleukin-18 (IL-18), a proinflammatory cytokine belonging to the IL-1 family, is elevated in both MAS and COVID-19 patients, and its level is known to correlate with the severity of COVID-19 symptoms. IL-18 binds its specific receptor IL-1 receptor 5 (IL-1R5, also known as IL-18 receptor alpha chain), leading to the recruitment of the coreceptor, IL-1 receptor 7 (IL-1R7, also known as IL-18 receptor beta chain). This heterotrimeric complex then initiates downstream signaling, resulting in systemic and local inflammation. Here, we developed a novel humanized monoclonal anti-IL-1R7 antibody to specifically block the activity of IL-18 and its inflammatory signaling. We characterized the function of this antibody in human cell lines, in freshly obtained peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs) and in human whole blood cultures. We found that the anti-IL-1R7 antibody significantly suppressed IL-18-mediated NFκB activation, reduced IL-18-stimulated IFNγ and IL-6 production in human cell lines, and reduced IL-18-induced IFNγ, IL-6, and TNFα production in PBMCs. Moreover, the anti-IL-1R7 antibody significantly inhibited LPS- and Candida albicans-induced IFNγ production in PBMCs, as well as LPS-induced IFNγ production in whole blood cultures. Our data suggest that blocking IL-1R7 could represent a potential therapeutic strategy to specifically modulate IL-18 signaling and may warrant further investigation into its clinical potential for treating IL-18-mediated diseases, including MAS and COVID-19.


Subject(s)
Anti-Inflammatory Agents/pharmacology , Antibodies, Monoclonal/pharmacology , Antibodies, Neutralizing/pharmacology , Immunologic Factors/pharmacology , Interleukin-18/genetics , Receptors, Interleukin-18/genetics , Anti-Inflammatory Agents/metabolism , Antibodies, Monoclonal/biosynthesis , Antibodies, Neutralizing/biosynthesis , COVID-19/drug therapy , Candida albicans/growth & development , Candida albicans/pathogenicity , Gene Expression Regulation , HEK293 Cells , Humans , Immunologic Factors/biosynthesis , Inflammation , Interferon-gamma/genetics , Interferon-gamma/immunology , Interleukin-18/immunology , Interleukin-6/genetics , Interleukin-6/immunology , Leukocytes, Mononuclear/drug effects , Leukocytes, Mononuclear/immunology , Leukocytes, Mononuclear/microbiology , Lipopolysaccharides/antagonists & inhibitors , Lipopolysaccharides/pharmacology , Macrophage Activation Syndrome/drug therapy , NF-kappa B/genetics , NF-kappa B/immunology , Primary Cell Culture , Receptors, Interleukin-18/antagonists & inhibitors , Receptors, Interleukin-18/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity , Signal Transduction/drug effects , Tumor Necrosis Factor-alpha/genetics , Tumor Necrosis Factor-alpha/immunology
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