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1.
Front Immunol ; 13: 837443, 2022.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1742219

ABSTRACT

An ideal protective vaccine against SARS-CoV-2 should not only be effective in preventing disease, but also in preventing virus transmission. It should also be well accepted by the population and have a simple logistic chain. To fulfill these criteria, we developed a thermostable, orally administered vaccine that can induce a robust mucosal neutralizing immune response. We used our platform based on retrovirus-derived enveloped virus-like particles (eVLPs) harnessed with variable surface proteins (VSPs) from the intestinal parasite Giardia lamblia, affording them resistance to degradation and the triggering of robust mucosal cellular and antibody immune responses after oral administration. We made eVLPs expressing various forms of the SARS-CoV-2 Spike protein (S), with or without membrane protein (M) expression. We found that prime-boost administration of VSP-decorated eVLPs expressing a pre-fusion stabilized form of S and M triggers robust mucosal responses against SARS-CoV-2 in mice and hamsters, which translate into complete protection from a viral challenge. Moreover, they dramatically boosted the IgA mucosal response of intramuscularly injected vaccines. We conclude that our thermostable orally administered eVLP vaccine could be a valuable addition to the current arsenal against SARS-CoV-2, in a stand-alone prime-boost vaccination strategy or as a boost for existing vaccines.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Vaccines/immunology , COVID-19/immunology , Coronavirus M Proteins/immunology , Giardia lamblia/immunology , Intestinal Mucosa/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/physiology , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/immunology , Animals , Antigens, Protozoan/immunology , Cricetinae , Humans , Immunity , Immunization, Secondary , Immunoglobulin A/metabolism , Male , Mice , Mice, Inbred BALB C , Temperature , Vaccine Potency , Vaccines, Virus-Like Particle
2.
Front Immunol ; 13: 838328, 2022.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1731785

ABSTRACT

Confirmed SARS-coronavirus-2 infection with gastrointestinal symptoms and changes in microbiota associated with coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) severity have been previously reported, but the disease impact on the architecture and cellularity of ileal Peyer's patches (PP) remains unknown. Here we analysed post-mortem tissues from throughout the gastrointestinal (GI) tract of patients who died with COVID-19. When virus was detected by PCR in the GI tract, immunohistochemistry identified virus in epithelium and lamina propria macrophages, but not in lymphoid tissues. Immunohistochemistry and imaging mass cytometry (IMC) analysis of ileal PP revealed depletion of germinal centres (GC), disruption of B cell/T cell zonation and decreased potential B and T cell interaction and lower nuclear density in COVID-19 patients. This occurred independent of the local viral levels. The changes in PP demonstrate that the ability to mount an intestinal immune response is compromised in severe COVID-19, which could contribute to observed dysbiosis.


Subject(s)
Atrophy/immunology , COVID-19/immunology , Germinal Center/immunology , Intestinal Mucosa/immunology , Peyer's Patches/immunology , B-Lymphocytes/immunology , Humans , Lymphoid Tissue/immunology , Macrophages/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , T-Lymphocytes/immunology
3.
Adv Drug Deliv Rev ; 177: 113928, 2021 10.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1355523

ABSTRACT

Infectious diseases continue to inflict a high global disease burden. The consensus is that vaccination is the most effective option against infectious diseases. Oral vaccines have unique advantages in the prevention of global pandemics due to their ease of use, high compliance, low cost, and the ability to induce both systemic and mucosal immune responses. However, challenges of adapting vaccines for oral administration remain significant. Foremost among these are enzymatic and pH-dependent degradation of antigens in the stomach and intestines, the low permeability of mucus barrier, the nonspecific uptake of antigens at the intestinal mucosal site, and the immune suppression result from the elusive immune tolerance mechanisms. Innovative delivery techniques promise great potential for improving the flexibility and efficiency of oral vaccines. A better understanding of the delivery approaches and the immunological mechanisms of oral vaccine delivery systems may provide new scientific insight and tools for developing the next-generation oral vaccine. Here, an overview of the advanced technologies in the field of oral vaccination is proposed, including mucus-penetrating nanoparticle (NP), mucoadhesive delivery vehicles, targeting antigen-presenting cell (APC) nanocarriers and enhanced paracellular delivery strategies and so on. Meanwhile, the mechanisms of delivery vectors interact with mucosal barriers are discussed.


Subject(s)
Drug Delivery Systems , Immunity, Mucosal , Intestinal Mucosa/immunology , Vaccines/administration & dosage , Administration, Oral , Animals , Humans
4.
Mucosal Immunol ; 14(6): 1381-1392, 2021 11.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1366810

ABSTRACT

The SARS-CoV-2 pandemic has so far claimed over three and a half million lives worldwide. Though the SARS-CoV-2 mediated disease COVID-19 has first been characterized by an infection of the upper airways and the lung, recent evidence suggests a complex disease including gastrointestinal symptoms. Even if a direct viral tropism of intestinal cells has recently been demonstrated, it remains unclear, whether gastrointestinal symptoms are caused by direct infection of the gastrointestinal tract by SARS-CoV-2 or whether they are a consequence of a systemic immune activation and subsequent modulation of the mucosal immune system. To better understand the cause of intestinal symptoms we analyzed biopsies of the small intestine from SARS-CoV-2 infected individuals. Applying qRT-PCR and immunohistochemistry, we detected SARS-CoV-2 RNA and nucleocapsid protein in duodenal mucosa. In addition, applying imaging mass cytometry and immunohistochemistry, we identified histomorphological changes of the epithelium, which were characterized by an accumulation of activated intraepithelial CD8+ T cells as well as epithelial apoptosis and subsequent regenerative proliferation in the small intestine of COVID-19 patients. In summary, our findings indicate that intraepithelial CD8+ T cells are activated upon infection of intestinal epithelial cells with SARS-CoV-2, providing one possible explanation for gastrointestinal symptoms associated with COVID-19.


Subject(s)
CD8-Positive T-Lymphocytes/immunology , COVID-19/immunology , Duodenum/immunology , Immunity, Mucosal , Intestinal Diseases/immunology , Intestinal Mucosa/immunology , Intraepithelial Lymphocytes/immunology , Lymphocyte Activation , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Adult , Aged , Animals , Apoptosis , CD8-Positive T-Lymphocytes/virology , COVID-19/pathology , COVID-19/virology , Case-Control Studies , Cell Proliferation , Chlorocebus aethiops , Duodenum/pathology , Duodenum/virology , Female , Host-Pathogen Interactions , Humans , Intestinal Diseases/pathology , Intestinal Diseases/virology , Intestinal Mucosa/pathology , Intestinal Mucosa/virology , Intraepithelial Lymphocytes/virology , Male , Re-Epithelialization , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity , Vero Cells , Viral Load
5.
Front Immunol ; 12: 660179, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1264332

ABSTRACT

The complex interplay between the gut microbiota, the intestinal barrier, the immune system and the liver is strongly influenced by environmental and genetic factors that can disrupt the homeostasis leading to disease. Among the modulable factors, diet has been identified as a key regulator of microbiota composition in patients with metabolic syndrome and related diseases, including the metabolic dysfunction-associated fatty liver disease (MAFLD). The altered microbiota disrupts the intestinal barrier at different levels inducing functional and structural changes at the mucus lining, the intercellular junctions on the epithelial layer, or at the recently characterized vascular barrier. Barrier disruption leads to an increased gut permeability to bacteria and derived products which challenge the immune system and promote inflammation. All these alterations contribute to the pathogenesis of MAFLD, and thus, therapeutic approaches targeting the gut-liver-axis are increasingly being explored. In addition, the specific changes induced in the intestinal flora may allow to characterize distinctive microbial signatures for non-invasive diagnosis, severity stratification and disease monitoring.


Subject(s)
Gastrointestinal Microbiome/immunology , Intestinal Mucosa/immunology , Liver/immunology , Metabolic Syndrome/immunology , Non-alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease/immunology , Animals , CCR5 Receptor Antagonists/therapeutic use , Dysbiosis/immunology , Dysbiosis/microbiology , Humans , Imidazoles/therapeutic use , Intestinal Mucosa/metabolism , Intestinal Mucosa/microbiology , Liver/metabolism , Liver/pathology , Metabolic Syndrome/drug therapy , Metabolic Syndrome/metabolism , Non-alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease/drug therapy , Non-alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease/metabolism , Sulfoxides/therapeutic use
6.
Front Immunol ; 12: 672808, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1236674

ABSTRACT

The anti-inflammatory role of extra-adrenal glucocorticoid (GC) synthesis at epithelial barriers is of increasing interest with regard to the search for alternatives to synthetic corticosteroids in the therapy of inflammatory disorders. Despite being very effective in many situations the use of synthetic corticosteroids is often controversial, as exemplified in the treatment of influenza patients and only recently in the current COVID-19 pandemic. Exploring the regulatory capacity of locally produced GCs in balancing immune responses in barrier tissues and in pathogenic disorders that lead to symptoms in multiple organs, could provide new perspectives for drug development. Intestine, skin and lung represent the first contact zones between potentially harmful pathogens or substances and the body, and are therefore important sites of immunoregulatory mechanisms. Here, we review the role of locally produced GCs in the regulation of type 2 immune responses, like asthma, atopic dermatitis and ulcerative colitis, as well as type 1 and type 3 infectious, inflammatory and autoimmune diseases, like influenza infection, psoriasis and Crohn's disease. In particular, we focus on the role of locally produced GCs in the interorgan communication, referred to as gut-skin axis, gut-lung axis or lung-skin axis, all of which are interconnected in the pathogenic crosstalk atopic march.


Subject(s)
Glucocorticoids/immunology , Intestinal Mucosa/immunology , Lung/immunology , Skin/immunology , Anti-Inflammatory Agents , Autoimmune Diseases/immunology , Autoimmune Diseases/pathology , Dermatitis, Atopic/immunology , Dermatitis, Atopic/pathology , Epithelium/immunology , Glucocorticoids/biosynthesis , Humans , Inflammation , Intestinal Mucosa/pathology , Lung/pathology , Skin/pathology
7.
Front Immunol ; 12: 639329, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1219713

ABSTRACT

Background: Infection with the novel severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) causes a wide range of symptoms including gastrointestinal manifestations, and intestinal epithelial cells are a target of the virus. However, it is unknown how the intestinal immune system contributes to systemic immune responses in coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). Methods: We characterized peripheral blood lymphocytes from patients with active COVID-19 and convalescent patients as well as healthy controls by flow cytometry. Results: The frequency and absolute number of circulating memory T and B cells expressing the gut homing integrin α4ß7 integrin was reduced during COVID-19, whether gastrointestinal symptoms were present or not. While total IgA-expressing B cells were increased, gut-imprinted B cells with IgA expression were stable. Conclusion: COVID-19 is associated with a decrease in circulating adaptive immune cells expressing the key gut homing marker α4ß7 suggesting that these cells are preferentially recruited to extra-intestinal tissues independently of α4ß7 or that the systemic immune response against SARS-CoV-2 is at least numerically dominated by extraintestinal, particularly pulmonary, immune cell priming.


Subject(s)
B-Lymphocytes/metabolism , COVID-19/immunology , Integrin alpha4/metabolism , Integrins/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , T-Lymphocytes/metabolism , Adult , B-Lymphocytes/immunology , Biomarkers/analysis , COVID-19/pathology , Female , Humans , Immunologic Memory/immunology , Intestinal Mucosa/cytology , Intestinal Mucosa/immunology , Lymphocyte Count , Male , Middle Aged , T-Lymphocytes/immunology
8.
Diagn Pathol ; 16(1): 40, 2021 May 05.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1216913

ABSTRACT

AIMS: Patients with COVID-19 can also have enteric symptoms. Here we analyzed the histopathology of intestinal detachment tissue from a patient with COVID-19. METHODS: The enteric tissue was examined by hematoxylin & eosin stain, PAS (Periodic acid-Schiff) staining, Gram staining, Ziehl-Neelsen stain and Grocott's Methenamine Silver (GMS) Stain. The distribution of CD3, CD4, CK20 and CD68, cytomegalovirus (CMV) and Herpes Simplex Virus (HSV) antigen were determined by immunohistochemistry. In situ hybridization (ISH) of SARS-CoV-2 and Epstein-Barr virus-encoded small RNA (EBER) were also performed. RESULTS: We observed mucosal epithelium shedding, intestinal mucosal erosion, focal inflammatory necrosis with hemorrhage, massive neutrophil infiltration, macrophage proliferation accompanied by minor lymphocyte infiltration. Fungal spores and gram positive cocci but not mycobacteria tuberculosis were identified. Immunohistochemistry staining showed abundant CD68+ macrophages but few lymphocytes infiltration. HSV, CMV and EBV were negative. ISH of SARS-CoV-2 RNA showed positive signal which mostly overlapped with CD68 positivity. CONCLUSIONS: The in situ detection of SARS-CoV-2 RNA in intestinal macrophages implicates a possible route for gastrointestinal infection. Further study is needed to further characterize the susceptibility of enteric cells to SARS-CoV-2 infection.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/pathology , Gastrointestinal Diseases/pathology , Intestinal Mucosa/pathology , Macrophages/virology , RNA, Viral/isolation & purification , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Aged , Biomarkers/metabolism , COVID-19/diagnosis , COVID-19/immunology , COVID-19/microbiology , COVID-19 Testing , Gastrointestinal Diseases/diagnosis , Gastrointestinal Diseases/immunology , Gastrointestinal Diseases/microbiology , Humans , Immunohistochemistry , In Situ Hybridization , Intestinal Mucosa/immunology , Intestinal Mucosa/metabolism , Intestinal Mucosa/microbiology , Macrophages/metabolism , Male
9.
Curr Opin Virol ; 49: 21-26, 2021 08.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1198681

ABSTRACT

Impacts of respiratory tract viruses have long been appreciated to highly heterogeneous both between and within various populations. The SARS-CoV-2 pandemic, which is the first time that a pathogen's spread across the globe has been extensively monitored by direct detection of the pathogen itself rather just than the morbidity left in its wake, indicates such heterogeneity is not limited to outcomes of infections but whether infection of a particular host occurs at all. This suggests an important role for yet to be discovered environmental (i.e. non-genetic) factors that influence whether an exposure to the virus initiates a productive infection and, moreover, the severity of disease that results. This article discusses the emerging hypothesis that the composition of a host's commensal microbial communities, that is, its 'microbiome', may be one such determinant that influences outcomes following encounters with respiratory viral pathogens in general and SARS-CoV-2 in particular. Specifically, we will review the rationales and evidence that supports this hypothesis and, moreover, speculate as to possible approaches to manipulate microbiota to ameliorate disease induced by respiratory viral pathogens.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/microbiology , COVID-19/therapy , Microbiota/physiology , Adaptive Immunity , COVID-19/epidemiology , COVID-19/immunology , Gastrointestinal Microbiome , Host-Pathogen Interactions , Humans , Intestinal Mucosa/immunology , Intestinal Mucosa/microbiology , Intestinal Mucosa/virology , Microbial Interactions , Respiratory Tract Infections/immunology , Respiratory Tract Infections/microbiology , Respiratory Tract Infections/virology , SARS-CoV-2
10.
Gastroenterology ; 160(7): 2435-2450.e34, 2021 06.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1116737

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND & AIMS: Given that gastrointestinal (GI) symptoms are a prominent extrapulmonary manifestation of COVID-19, we investigated intestinal infection with SARS-CoV-2, its effect on pathogenesis, and clinical significance. METHODS: Human intestinal biopsy tissues were obtained from patients with COVID-19 (n = 19) and uninfected control individuals (n = 10) for microscopic examination, cytometry by time of flight analyses, and RNA sequencing. Additionally, disease severity and mortality were examined in patients with and without GI symptoms in 2 large, independent cohorts of hospitalized patients in the United States (N = 634) and Europe (N = 287) using multivariate logistic regressions. RESULTS: COVID-19 case patients and control individuals in the biopsy cohort were comparable for age, sex, rates of hospitalization, and relevant comorbid conditions. SARS-CoV-2 was detected in small intestinal epithelial cells by immunofluorescence staining or electron microscopy in 15 of 17 patients studied. High-dimensional analyses of GI tissues showed low levels of inflammation, including down-regulation of key inflammatory genes including IFNG, CXCL8, CXCL2, and IL1B and reduced frequencies of proinflammatory dendritic cells compared with control individuals. Consistent with these findings, we found a significant reduction in disease severity and mortality in patients presenting with GI symptoms that was independent of sex, age, and comorbid illnesses and despite similar nasopharyngeal SARS-CoV-2 viral loads. Furthermore, there was reduced levels of key inflammatory proteins in circulation in patients with GI symptoms. CONCLUSIONS: These data highlight the absence of a proinflammatory response in the GI tract despite detection of SARS-CoV-2. In parallel, reduced mortality in patients with COVID-19 presenting with GI symptoms was observed. A potential role of the GI tract in attenuating SARS-CoV-2-associated inflammation needs to be further examined.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/virology , Gastrointestinal Diseases/virology , Immunity, Mucosal , Intestinal Mucosa/virology , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , COVID-19/diagnosis , COVID-19/immunology , COVID-19/mortality , Case-Control Studies , Cells, Cultured , Cytokines/blood , Female , Gastrointestinal Diseases/diagnosis , Gastrointestinal Diseases/immunology , Gastrointestinal Diseases/mortality , Host-Pathogen Interactions , Humans , Inflammation Mediators/blood , Intestinal Mucosa/immunology , Italy , Male , Middle Aged , New York City , Prognosis , Risk Assessment , Risk Factors , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Viral Load
11.
Mucosal Immunol ; 14(3): 566-573, 2021 05.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1091501

ABSTRACT

Viral infections with SARS-CoV-2 can cause a multi-facetted disease, which is not only characterized by pneumonia and overwhelming systemic inflammatory immune responses, but which can also directly affect the digestive system and infect intestinal epithelial cells. Here, we review the current understanding of intestinal tropism of SARS-CoV-2 infection, its impact on mucosal function and immunology and summarize the effect of immune-suppression in patients with inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) on disease outcome of COVID-19 and discuss IBD-relevant implications for the clinical management of SARS-CoV-2 infected individuals.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/complications , COVID-19/immunology , Host-Pathogen Interactions/immunology , Immunity, Mucosal , Inflammatory Bowel Diseases/complications , Inflammatory Bowel Diseases/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/physiology , Biomarkers , COVID-19/diagnosis , COVID-19/virology , Humans , Immunity, Innate , Inflammatory Bowel Diseases/diagnosis , Intestinal Mucosa/immunology , Intestinal Mucosa/metabolism , Intestinal Mucosa/pathology , Severity of Illness Index , Symptom Assessment , Viral Tropism , Virus Internalization
12.
EMBO Mol Med ; 13(4): e13191, 2021 04 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1068062

ABSTRACT

SARS-CoV-2, the agent that causes COVID-19, invades epithelial cells, including those of the respiratory and gastrointestinal mucosa, using angiotensin-converting enzyme-2 (ACE2) as a receptor. Subsequent inflammation can promote rapid virus clearance, but severe cases of COVID-19 are characterized by an inefficient immune response that fails to clear the infection. Using primary epithelial organoids from human colon, we explored how the central antiviral mediator IFN-γ, which is elevated in COVID-19, affects epithelial cell differentiation, ACE2 expression, and susceptibility to infection with SARS-CoV-2. In mouse and human colon, ACE2 is mainly expressed by surface enterocytes. Inducing enterocyte differentiation in organoid culture resulted in increased ACE2 production. IFN-γ treatment promoted differentiation into mature KRT20+ enterocytes expressing high levels of ACE2, increased susceptibility to SARS-CoV-2 infection, and resulted in enhanced virus production in infected cells. Similarly, infection-induced epithelial interferon signaling promoted enterocyte maturation and enhanced ACE2 expression. We here reveal a mechanism by which IFN-γ-driven inflammatory responses induce a vulnerable epithelial state with robust replication of SARS-CoV-2, which may have an impact on disease outcome and virus transmission.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/etiology , Interferon-gamma/immunology , Models, Immunological , SARS-CoV-2 , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/genetics , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/metabolism , Animals , COVID-19/immunology , COVID-19/pathology , Cell Differentiation/immunology , Colon/immunology , Colon/pathology , Colon/virology , Disease Susceptibility , Enterocytes/metabolism , Enterocytes/pathology , Enterocytes/virology , Gene Expression , Host Microbial Interactions/immunology , Humans , Interferon-gamma/administration & dosage , Intestinal Mucosa/immunology , Intestinal Mucosa/pathology , Intestinal Mucosa/virology , Mice , Organoids/immunology , Organoids/pathology , Organoids/virology , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity , Virus Replication/immunology
13.
Eur J Gastroenterol Hepatol ; 33(5): 610-612, 2021 05 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-900651

ABSTRACT

The main symptoms of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) are respiratory manifestations, while some confirmed patients developed gastrointestinal symptoms or even initially presented digestive symptoms. The link between pneumonia and gastrointestinal symptoms caused by severe acute respiratory symptoms coronavirus 2 focused our attention on the concept of 'gut-lung axis'. In this review, we discuss the inevitability and possible mechanisms of the occurrence of intestinal symptoms or intestinal dysfunction in COVID-19 from the perspective of the gut-lung axis, as well as the influence of the imbalance of intestinal homeostasis on the respiratory symptoms of COVID-19. The interaction between lung and intestine might lead to a vicious cycle of pulmonary and intestinal inflammation which may be a potential factor leading to the death of patients with COVID-19.


Subject(s)
Abdominal Pain/physiopathology , COVID-19/physiopathology , Diarrhea/physiopathology , Intestines/physiopathology , Lung/physiopathology , Vomiting/physiopathology , Feces/virology , Gastrointestinal Microbiome/immunology , Humans , Intestinal Mucosa/immunology , Intestines/immunology , Lung/immunology , Respiratory Mucosa/immunology , SARS-CoV-2
14.
Front Immunol ; 11: 2192, 2020.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-868961

ABSTRACT

During the last years probiotics gained the attention of clinicians for their use in the prevention and treatment of multiple diseases. Probiotics main mechanisms of action include enhanced mucosal barrier function, direct antagonism with pathogens, inhibition of bacterial adherence and invasion capacity in the intestinal epithelium, boosting of the immune system and regulation of the central nervous system. It is accepted that there is a mutual communication between the gut microbiota and the liver, the so-called "microbiota-gut-liver axis" as well as a reciprocal communication between the intestinal microbiota and the central nervous system through the "microbiota-gut-brain axis." Moreover, recently the "gut-lung axis" in bacterial and viral infections is considerably discussed for bacterial and viral infections, as the intestinal microbiota amplifies the alveolar macrophage activity having a protective role in the host defense against pneumonia. The importance of the normal human intestinal microbiota is recognized in the preservation of health. Disease states such as, infections, autoimmune conditions, allergy and other may occur when the intestinal balance is disturbed. Probiotics seem to be a promising approach to prevent and even reduce the symptoms of such clinical states as an adjuvant therapy by preserving the balance of the normal intestinal microbiota and improving the immune system. The present review states globally all different disorders in which probiotics can be given. To date, Stronger data in favor of their clinical use are provided in the prevention of gastrointestinal disorders, antibiotic-associated diarrhea, allergy and respiratory infections. We hereby discuss the role of probiotics in the reduction of the respiratory infection symptoms and we focus on the possibility to use them as an adjuvant to the therapeutic approach of the pandemic COVID-19. Nevertheless, it is accepted by the scientific community that more clinical studies should be undertaken in large samples of diseased populations so that the assessment of their therapeutic potential provide us with strong evidence for their efficacy and safety in clinical use.


Subject(s)
Bacteria/immunology , Betacoronavirus/immunology , Coronavirus Infections , Gastrointestinal Microbiome/immunology , Pandemics , Pneumonia, Viral , Probiotics/therapeutic use , Bacterial Adhesion/immunology , Brain/immunology , Brain/microbiology , COVID-19 , Coronavirus Infections/epidemiology , Coronavirus Infections/immunology , Coronavirus Infections/microbiology , Coronavirus Infections/therapy , Humans , Intestinal Mucosa/immunology , Intestinal Mucosa/microbiology , Pneumonia, Viral/epidemiology , Pneumonia, Viral/immunology , Pneumonia, Viral/microbiology , Pneumonia, Viral/therapy , SARS-CoV-2
15.
PLoS One ; 15(4): e0231723, 2020.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-827309

ABSTRACT

Understanding the immune responses against Porcine epidemic diarrhea virus (PEDV) is important to prevent infection and to design control strategies. We evaluated both systemic and mucosal immune responses to PEDV in pigs and assessed if prior exposure to virus protects against re-infection. Three-week-old pigs were infected with PEDV and immune response in blood, intestine, and mesenteric lymph node (MLN) was evaluated. At 30 dpi, virus exposed pigs were challenged with a field isolate of PEDV and immune response at 5 d post challenge was evaluated. We found that PEDV RNA persists in the intestine even after fecal shedding of the virus was stopped at 28 dpi and pigs previously exposed to PEDV are protected from virus shedding after re-infection. PEDV infection induced both humoral and cell mediated immune response with an increase in PEDV specific IgA and IgG antibodies in intestine and serum. Flow cytometry analysis showed a significantly higher frequency of B cells and lower frequency of T cells at 4 dpi. The frequency of CD4/CD8 double positive (DP) memory T cells was significantly increased in the MLN of challenged animals. These studies may provide further insights into understanding the mucosal immune response to PEDV and its role in protection against disease.


Subject(s)
Antibodies, Viral/analysis , Coronavirus Infections/immunology , Diarrhea/immunology , Porcine epidemic diarrhea virus/immunology , Animals , Antibodies, Viral/immunology , Antibodies, Viral/metabolism , B-Lymphocytes/immunology , Coronavirus Infections/blood , Coronavirus Infections/veterinary , Coronavirus Infections/virology , Diarrhea/blood , Diarrhea/veterinary , Diarrhea/virology , Disease Resistance/immunology , Feces/microbiology , Immunity, Cellular , Immunity, Humoral , Immunity, Mucosal , Immunoglobulin A/analysis , Immunoglobulin A/immunology , Immunoglobulin A/metabolism , Immunoglobulin G/analysis , Immunoglobulin G/immunology , Immunoglobulin G/metabolism , Intestinal Mucosa/immunology , Intestinal Mucosa/metabolism , Porcine epidemic diarrhea virus/genetics , Porcine epidemic diarrhea virus/isolation & purification , RNA, Viral/isolation & purification , Swine , T-Lymphocytes/immunology , Virus Shedding
16.
Viruses ; 12(1)2020 01 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-830212

ABSTRACT

Porcine deltacoronavirus (PDCoV) is a porcine enteropathogenic coronavirus that causes watery diarrhea, vomiting, and frequently death in piglets, causing serious economic losses to the pig industry. The strain CHN-JS-2017 was isolated and identified by cytopathology, immunofluorescence assays, transmission electron microscopy, and sequence analysis. A nucleotide sequence alignment showed that the whole genome of CHN-JS-2017 is 97.4%-99.6% identical to other PDCoV strains. The pathogenicity of the CHN-JS-2017 strain was investigated in orally inoculated five-day-old piglets; the piglets developed acute, watery diarrhea, but all recovered and survived. CHN-JS-2017 infection-induced microscopic lesions were observed, and viral antigens were detected mainly by immunohistochemical staining in the small intestine. The neonatal Fc receptor (FcRn) and polymeric immunoglobulin receptor (pIgR) are crucial immunoglobulin (Ig) receptors for the transcytosis ofimmunoglobulin G (IgG), IgA, or IgM. Importantly, CHN-JS-2017 infected five-day-old piglets could significantly down-regulate the expression of FcRn, pIgR, and nuclear factor-kappa B (NF-κB)in the intestinal mucosa. Note that the level of FcRn mRNA in the intestinal mucosa of normal piglets is positively correlated with pIgR and NF-κB. At the same time, the expressions of FcRn, pIgR, and NF-κB mRNA are also positively correlated in infected piglets. These results may help explain the immunological and pathological changes associated with porcine deltacorononirus infection.


Subject(s)
Coronavirus Infections/veterinary , Coronavirus/classification , Histocompatibility Antigens Class I/immunology , Intestinal Mucosa/immunology , Receptors, Fc/immunology , Receptors, Polymeric Immunoglobulin/immunology , Swine Diseases/virology , Animals , Antigens, Viral/analysis , Coronavirus/isolation & purification , Coronavirus Infections/immunology , Diarrhea/veterinary , Diarrhea/virology , Gene Expression Regulation , Intestinal Mucosa/virology , Intestine, Small/immunology , Intestine, Small/virology , NF-kappa B/immunology , Phylogeny , RNA, Viral/analysis , Sequence Alignment , Sequence Analysis, DNA , Swine , Swine Diseases/immunology , Virus Shedding
17.
J Intern Med ; 289(4): 523-531, 2021 04.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-796040

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: A high proportion of COVID-19 patients have cardiac involvement, even those without known cardiac disease. Downregulation of angiotensin converting enzyme 2 (ACE2), a receptor for SARS-CoV-2 and the renin-angiotensin system, as well as inflammatory mechanisms have been suggested to play a role. ACE2 is abundant in the gut and associated with gut microbiota composition. We hypothesized that gut leakage of microbial products, and subsequent inflammasome activation could contribute to cardiac involvement in COVID-19 patients. METHODS: Plasma levels of a gut leakage marker (LPS-binding protein, LBP), a marker of enterocyte damage (intestinal fatty acid binding protein, IFABP), a gut homing marker (CCL25, ligand for chemokine receptor CCR9) and markers of inflammasome activation (IL-1ß, IL-18 and their regulatory proteins) were measured at three time points (day 1, 3-5 and 7-10) in 39 hospitalized COVID-19 patients and related to cardiac involvement. RESULTS: Compared to controls, COVID-19 patients had elevated plasma levels of LBP and CCL25 but not IFABP, suggesting impaired gut barrier function and accentuated gut homing of T cells without excessive enterocyte damage. Levels of LBP were twice as high at baseline in patients with elevated cardiac markers compared with those without and remained elevated during hospitalization. Also, markers of inflammasome activation were moderately elevated in patients with cardiac involvement. LBP was associated with higher NT-pro-BNP levels, whereas IL-18, IL-18BP and IL-1Ra were associated with higher troponin levels. CONCLUSION: Patients with cardiac involvement had elevated markers of gut leakage and inflammasome activation, suggestive of a potential gut-heart axis in COVID-19.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Chemokines, CC/metabolism , Gastrointestinal Microbiome/immunology , Heart Diseases , Inflammasomes/metabolism , Intestinal Mucosa , SARS-CoV-2 , Acute-Phase Proteins/metabolism , COVID-19/complications , COVID-19/immunology , Carrier Proteins/metabolism , Correlation of Data , Heart Diseases/immunology , Heart Diseases/virology , Humans , Interleukin-18/metabolism , Interleukin-1beta/metabolism , Intestinal Mucosa/immunology , Intestinal Mucosa/microbiology , Intestinal Mucosa/physiopathology , Membrane Glycoproteins/metabolism , Natriuretic Peptide, Brain/blood , Peptide Fragments/blood , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity , SARS-CoV-2/physiology , Troponin/blood
18.
J Infect ; 81(4): e1-e10, 2020 10.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-665494

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVES: Respiratory and intestinal tract are two primary target organs of SARS-CoV-2 infection. However, detailed characterization of the host-virus interplay in infected human lung and intestinal epithelial cells is lacking. METHODS: We utilized immunofluorescence assays, flow cytometry, and RT-qPCR to delineate the virological features and the innate immune response of the host cells against SARS-CoV-2 infection in two prototype human cell lines representing the human lung (Calu3) and intestinal (Caco2) epithelium when compared with SARS-CoV. RESULTS: Lung epithelial cells were significantly more susceptible to SARS-CoV-2 compared to SARS-CoV. However, SARS-CoV-2 infection induced an attenuated pro-inflammatory cytokines/chemokines induction and type I and type II IFN responses. A single dose of 10 U/mL interferon-ß (IFNß) pretreatment potently protected both Calu3 and Caco2 against SARS-CoV-2 infection. Interestingly, SARS-CoV-2 was more sensitive to the pretreatment with IFNß and IFN inducer than SARS-CoV in Calu3. CONCLUSIONS: Despite robust infection in both human lung and intestinal epithelial cells, SARS-CoV-2 could attenuate the virus-induced pro-inflammatory response and IFN response. Pre-activation of the type I IFN signaling pathway primed a highly efficient antiviral response in the host against SARS-CoV-2 infection, which could serve as a potential therapeutic and prophylactic maneuver to COVID-19 patients.


Subject(s)
Coronavirus Infections/immunology , Interferon Inducers/pharmacology , Interferon-beta/pharmacology , Intestinal Mucosa/immunology , Pneumonia, Viral/immunology , Respiratory Mucosa/immunology , Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome/immunology , Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , Betacoronavirus/immunology , COVID-19 , Caco-2 Cells , Cell Line, Tumor , Coronavirus Infections/drug therapy , Epithelial Cells/virology , Humans , Immunity, Innate , Lung/immunology , Pandemics , SARS Virus/immunology , SARS-CoV-2
19.
Cell Rep ; 32(1): 107863, 2020 07 07.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-610468

ABSTRACT

Severe acute respiratory syndrome-related coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2) is an unprecedented worldwide health problem that requires concerted and global approaches to stop the coronavirus 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic. Although SARS-CoV-2 primarily targets lung epithelium cells, there is growing evidence that the intestinal epithelium is also infected. Here, using both colon-derived cell lines and primary non-transformed colon organoids, we engage in the first comprehensive analysis of the SARS-CoV-2 life cycle in human intestinal epithelial cells (hIECs). Our results demonstrate that hIECs fully support SARS-CoV-2 infection, replication, and production of infectious de novo virus particles. We found that viral infection elicits an extremely robust intrinsic immune response where interferon-mediated responses are efficient at controlling SARS-CoV-2 replication and de novo virus production. Taken together, our data demonstrate that hIECs are a productive site of SARS-CoV-2 replication and suggest that the enteric phase of SARS-CoV-2 may participate in the pathologies observed in COVID-19 patients by contributing to increasing patient viremia and fueling an exacerbated cytokine response.


Subject(s)
Betacoronavirus/growth & development , Colon/virology , Epithelial Cells/immunology , Interferons/immunology , Intestinal Mucosa/immunology , Betacoronavirus/immunology , COVID-19 , Caco-2 Cells , Cell Line, Tumor , Colon/cytology , Colon/immunology , Coronavirus Infections/immunology , Coronavirus Infections/pathology , Cytokine Release Syndrome/immunology , Cytokine Release Syndrome/virology , Cytokines/blood , Epithelial Cells/virology , Humans , Intestinal Mucosa/cytology , Intestinal Mucosa/virology , Pandemics , Pneumonia, Viral/immunology , Pneumonia, Viral/pathology , SARS-CoV-2 , Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome/immunology , Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome/pathology , Virus Replication/immunology
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