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1.
Int Immunopharmacol ; 103: 108463, 2022 Feb.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1587490

ABSTRACT

Therapeutics that impair the innate immune responses of the liver during the inflammatory cytokine storm like that occurring in COVID-19 are greatly needed. Much interest is currently directed toward Janus kinase (JAK) inhibitors as potential candidates to mitigate this life-threatening complication. Accordingly, this study investigated the influence of the novel JAK inhibitor ruxolitinib (RXB) on concanavalin A (Con A)-induced hepatitis and systemic hyperinflammation in mice to simulate the context occurring in COVID-19 patients. Mice were orally treated with RXB (75 and 150 mg/kg) 2 h prior to the intravenous administration of Con A (20 mg/kg) for a period of 12 h. The results showed that RXB pretreatments were efficient in abrogating Con A-instigated hepatocellular injury (ALT, AST, LDH), necrosis (histopathology), apoptosis (cleaved caspase-3) and nuclear proliferation due to damage (PCNA). The protective mechanism of RXB were attributed to i) prevention of Con A-enhanced hepatic production and systemic release of the proinflammatory cytokines TNF-α, IFN-γ and IL-17A, which coincided with decreasing infiltration of immune cells (monocytes, neutrophils), ii) reducing Con A-induced hepatic overexpression of IL-1ß and CD98 alongside NF-κB activation, and iii) lessening Con A-induced consumption of GSH and GSH peroxidase and generation of oxidative stress products (MDA, 4-HNE, NOx) in the liver. In summary, JAK inhibition by RXB led to eminent protection of the liver against Con A-deleterious manifestations primarily via curbing the inflammatory cytokine storm driven by TNF-α, IFN-γ and IL-17A.


Subject(s)
Concanavalin A/toxicity , Cytokine Release Syndrome/chemically induced , Cytokine Release Syndrome/drug therapy , Nitriles/pharmacology , Pyrazoles/pharmacology , Pyrimidines/pharmacology , Aldehydes/metabolism , Animals , Chemical and Drug Induced Liver Injury , Dose-Response Relationship, Drug , Inflammation/chemically induced , Liver/drug effects , Liver/metabolism , Male , Malondialdehyde/metabolism , Mice , Mice, Inbred BALB C , Nitrates/metabolism , Nitriles/administration & dosage , Nitrites/metabolism , Oxidative Stress , Peroxidase/metabolism , Pyrazoles/administration & dosage , Pyrimidines/administration & dosage
2.
Sci Rep ; 11(1): 23993, 2021 12 14.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1585801

ABSTRACT

Previous work indicates that SARS-CoV-2 virus entry proteins angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE-2) and the cell surface transmembrane protease serine 2 (TMPRSS-2) are regulated by sex hormones. However, clinical studies addressing this association have yielded conflicting results. We sought to analyze the impact of sex hormones, age, and cardiovascular disease on ACE-2 and TMPRSS-2 expression in different mouse models. ACE-2 and TMPRSS-2 expression was analyzed by immunostaining in a variety of tissues obtained from FVB/N mice undergoing either gonadectomy or sham-surgery and being subjected to ischemia-reperfusion injury or transverse aortic constriction surgery. In lung tissues sex did not have a significant impact on the expression of ACE-2 and TMPRSS-2. On the contrary, following myocardial injury, female sex was associated to a lower expression of ACE-2 at the level of the kidney tubules. In addition, after myocardial injury, a significant correlation between younger age and higher expression of both ACE-2 and TMPRSS-2 was observed for lung alveoli and bronchioli, kidney tubules, and liver sinusoids. Our experimental data indicate that gonadal hormones and biological sex do not alter ACE-2 and TMPRSS-2 expression in the respiratory tract in mice, independent of disease state. Thus, sex differences in ACE-2 and TMPRSS-2 protein expression observed in mice may not explain the higher disease burden of COVID-19 among men.


Subject(s)
Aging/metabolism , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/metabolism , Cardiomyopathies/metabolism , Castration/adverse effects , Serine Endopeptidases/metabolism , Animals , Bronchioles/metabolism , Disease Models, Animal , Female , Gene Expression Regulation , Kidney Tubules/metabolism , Liver/metabolism , Male , Mice , Pulmonary Alveoli/metabolism , Virus Internalization
4.
Sci Rep ; 11(1): 21514, 2021 11 02.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1500512

ABSTRACT

Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) is associated with systemic inflammation. A wide range of adipokines activities suggests they influence pathogenesis and infection course. The aim was to assess concentrations of chemerin, omentin, and vaspin among COVID-19 patients with an emphasis on adipokines relationship with COVID-19 severity, concomitant metabolic abnormalities and liver dysfunction. Serum chemerin, omentin and vaspin concentrations were measured in serum collected from 70 COVID-19 patients at the moment of admission to hospital, before any treatment was applied and 20 healthy controls. Serum chemerin and omentin concentrations were significantly decreased in COVID-19 patients compared to healthy volunteers (271.0 vs. 373.0 ng/ml; p < 0.001 and 482.1 vs. 814.3 ng/ml; p = 0.01, respectively). There were no correlations of analyzed adipokines with COVID-19 severity based on the presence of pneumonia, dyspnea, or necessity of Intensive Care Unit hospitalization (ICU). Liver test abnormalities did not influence adipokines levels. Elevated GGT activity was associated with ICU admission, presence of pneumonia and elevated concentrations of CRP, ferritin and interleukin 6. Chemerin and omentin depletion in COVID-19 patients suggests that this adipokines deficiency play influential role in disease pathogenesis. However, there was no relationship between lower adipokines level and frequency of COVID-19 symptoms as well as disease severity. The only predictive factor which could predispose to a more severe COVID-19 course, including the presence of pneumonia and ICU hospitalization, was GGT activity.


Subject(s)
Adipokines/blood , Chemokines/blood , Cytokines/blood , Lectins/blood , Serpins/blood , Aged , Body Mass Index , C-Reactive Protein/analysis , COVID-19/complications , COVID-19/metabolism , COVID-19/pathology , COVID-19/virology , Case-Control Studies , Female , GPI-Linked Proteins/blood , Hospitalization , Humans , Liver/metabolism , Male , Metabolic Syndrome/complications , Middle Aged , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , gamma-Glutamyltransferase/metabolism
5.
J Am Soc Nephrol ; 32(1): 99-114, 2021 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1496673

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: C3 glomerulopathy (C3G) is characterized by the alternative-pathway (AP) hyperactivation induced by nephritic factors or complement gene mutations. Mice deficient in complement factor H (CFH) are a classic C3G model, with kidney disease that requires several months to progress to renal failure. Novel C3G models can further contribute to understanding the mechanism behind this disease and developing therapeutic approaches. METHODS: A novel, rapidly progressing, severe, murine model of C3G was developed by replacing the mouse C3 gene with the human C3 homolog using VelociGene technology. Functional, histologic, molecular, and pharmacologic assays characterize the presentation of renal disease and enable useful pharmacologic interventions in the humanized C3 (C3hu/hu) mice. RESULTS: The C3hu/hu mice exhibit increased morbidity early in life and die by about 5-6 months of age. The C3hu/hu mice display elevated biomarkers of kidney dysfunction, glomerulosclerosis, C3/C5b-9 deposition, and reduced circulating C3 compared with wild-type mice. Administration of a C5-blocking mAb improved survival rate and offered functional and histopathologic benefits. Blockade of AP activation by anti-C3b or CFB mAbs also extended survival and preserved kidney function. CONCLUSIONS: The C3hu/hu mice are a useful model for C3G because they share many pathologic features consistent with the human disease. The C3G phenotype in C3hu/hu mice may originate from a dysregulated interaction of human C3 protein with multiple mouse complement proteins, leading to unregulated C3 activation via AP. The accelerated disease course in C3hu/hu mice may further enable preclinical studies to assess and validate new therapeutics for C3G.


Subject(s)
Complement C3/genetics , Disease Models, Animal , Glomerulonephritis, Membranoproliferative/genetics , Kidney Diseases/genetics , Animals , Complement C3/metabolism , Complement Pathway, Alternative/genetics , Exons , Gene Expression Regulation , Glomerulonephritis, Membranoproliferative/metabolism , Humans , Kidney Diseases/metabolism , Liver/metabolism , Male , Mice , Mice, Knockout , Microscopy, Fluorescence , Phenotype , Polymorphism, Single Nucleotide , Renal Insufficiency/genetics , Renal Insufficiency/metabolism
6.
Molecules ; 26(21)2021 Oct 31.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1488679

ABSTRACT

Zinc is the second most abundant trace element in the human body, and it plays a fundamental role in human physiology, being an integral component of hundreds of enzymes and transcription factors. The discovery that zinc atoms may compete with copper for their absorption in the gastrointestinal tract let to introduce zinc in the therapy of Wilson's disease, a congenital disorder of copper metabolism characterized by a systemic copper storage. Nowadays, zinc salts are considered one of the best therapeutic approach in patients affected by Wilson's disease. On the basis of the similarities, at histological level, between Wilson's disease and non-alcoholic liver disease, zinc has been successfully introduced in the therapy of non-alcoholic liver disease, with positive effects both on insulin resistance and oxidative stress. Recently, zinc deficiency has been indicated as a possible factor responsible for the susceptibility of elderly patients to undergo infection by SARS-CoV-2, the coronavirus responsible for the COVID-19 pandemic. Here, we present the data correlating zinc deficiency with the insurgence and progression of Covid-19 with low zinc levels associated with severe disease states. Finally, the relevance of zinc supplementation in aged people at risk for SARS-CoV-2 is underlined, with the aim that the zinc-based drug, classically used in the treatment of copper overload, might be recorded as one of the tools reducing the mortality of COVID-19, particularly in elderly people.


Subject(s)
Liver/drug effects , Liver/injuries , Zinc/pharmacology , COVID-19/complications , COVID-19/drug therapy , Chelating Agents/metabolism , Copper/metabolism , Hepatolenticular Degeneration/complications , Hepatolenticular Degeneration/drug therapy , Hepatolenticular Degeneration/metabolism , Humans , Liver/metabolism , Non-alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease/drug therapy , Non-alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity , Zinc/deficiency , Zinc/metabolism
7.
Lipids Health Dis ; 20(1): 126, 2021 Oct 03.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1448237

ABSTRACT

The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) is caused by the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus type 2 (SARS-CoV-2). At present, the COVID-19 has been prevalent worldwide for more than a year and caused more than four million deaths. Liver injury was frequently observed in patients with COVID-19. Recently, a new definition of metabolic dysfunction associated fatty liver disease (MAFLD) was proposed by a panel of international experts, and the relationship between MAFLD and COVID-19 has been actively investigated. Several previous studies indicated that the patients with MAFLD had a higher prevalence of COVID-19 and a tendency to develop severe type of respiratory infection, and others indicated that liver injury would be exacerbated in the patients with MAFLD once infected with COVID-19. The mechanism underlying the relationship between MAFLD and COVID-19 infection has not been thoroughly investigated, and recent studies indicated that multifactorial mechanisms, such as altered host angiotensin converting enzyme 2 (ACE2) receptor expression, direct viral attack, disruption of cholangiocyte function, systemic inflammatory reaction, drug-induced liver injury, hepatic ischemic and hypoxic injury, and MAFLD-related glucose and lipid metabolic disorders, might jointly contribute to both of the adverse hepatic and respiratory outcomes. In this review, we discussed the relationship between MAFLD and COVID-19 based on current available literature, and summarized the recommendations for clinical management of MAFLD patients during the pandemic of COVID-19.


Subject(s)
Anti-Inflammatory Agents/therapeutic use , COVID-19/complications , Chemical and Drug Induced Liver Injury/complications , Hypoxia/complications , Liver/metabolism , Non-alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease/complications , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity , Age Factors , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/genetics , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/metabolism , COVID-19/drug therapy , COVID-19/pathology , COVID-19/virology , Chemical and Drug Induced Liver Injury/drug therapy , Chemical and Drug Induced Liver Injury/pathology , Chemical and Drug Induced Liver Injury/virology , Cytokines/genetics , Cytokines/metabolism , Dipeptides/therapeutic use , Gene Expression Regulation , Glucose/metabolism , Glycyrrhizic Acid/therapeutic use , Humans , Hypoxia/drug therapy , Hypoxia/pathology , Hypoxia/virology , Liver/drug effects , Liver/pathology , Liver/virology , Lung/drug effects , Lung/metabolism , Lung/pathology , Lung/virology , Non-alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease/drug therapy , Non-alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease/pathology , Non-alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease/virology , Receptors, Virus/genetics , Receptors, Virus/metabolism , Severity of Illness Index
8.
Bratisl Lek Listy ; 122(10): 732-738, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1441311

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: The use of acetaminophen (APAP) is increasing recently, especially with COVID-19 outbreaks. APAP is safe at therapeutic levels, however, an overdose can cause severe liver injury. This study aims to explore possible mechanisms involved in APAP­induced hepatotoxicity and compare different hepatoprotective agents, namely vitamin E, hydrogen sulfide (H2S) and necrostatin-1 (NEC-1). METHODS: Adult male albino rats were divided into groups: Control group, APAP­induced hepatotoxicity group, Vitamin E­treated group, H2S­treated group and NEC-1­treated group. Serum levels for aspartate aminotransferase (AST), alanine aminotransferase (ALT), interleukin-33 (IL-33), tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-α), reduced glutathione (GSH) and lipid profile were measured. Histopathological examinations of liver tissue with H(et)E stain and immunohistochemistry for activated caspase-3 were also done. RESULTS: APAP­treated group showed elevated liver transaminases, hyperlipidemia, and deficient liver anti-oxidative response together with disturbed hepatic architecture and increased immune-expression of activated caspase-3 in hepatic tissue. Pretreatment with vitamin E, H2S or NEC-1 reversed the affected parameters. Vitamin E and H2S showed greater improvement when compared to NEC-1. CONCLUSION: Vitamin E, H2S and NEC-1 showed protective effects against APAP-induced hepatotoxicity, thus they may be used as an adjuvant therapy when APAP is indicated for long periods as is the case in COVID-19 patients (Tab. 2, Fig. 2, Ref. 45). Text in PDF www.elis.sk Keywords: acetaminophen, hepatotoxicity, apoptosis, necrostatin-1, vitamin E, H2S.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Chemical and Drug Induced Liver Injury , Hydrogen Sulfide , Acetaminophen/toxicity , Alanine Transaminase/metabolism , Animals , Aspartate Aminotransferases/metabolism , Chemical and Drug Induced Liver Injury/drug therapy , Chemical and Drug Induced Liver Injury/metabolism , Chemical and Drug Induced Liver Injury/prevention & control , Humans , Hydrogen Sulfide/metabolism , Imidazoles , Indoles , Liver/metabolism , Male , Oxidative Stress , Rats , SARS-CoV-2 , Vitamin E/pharmacology
9.
Sci Rep ; 11(1): 17810, 2021 09 08.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1402118

ABSTRACT

Transporters in the human liver play a major role in the clearance of endo- and xenobiotics. Apical (canalicular) transporters extrude compounds to the bile, while basolateral hepatocyte transporters promote the uptake of, or expel, various compounds from/into the venous blood stream. In the present work we have examined the in vitro interactions of some key repurposed drugs advocated to treat COVID-19 (lopinavir, ritonavir, ivermectin, remdesivir and favipiravir), with the key drug transporters of hepatocytes. These transporters included ABCB11/BSEP, ABCC2/MRP2, and SLC47A1/MATE1 in the canalicular membrane, as well as ABCC3/MRP3, ABCC4/MRP4, SLC22A1/OCT1, SLCO1B1/OATP1B1, SLCO1B3/OATP1B3, and SLC10A1/NTCP, residing in the basolateral membrane. Lopinavir and ritonavir in low micromolar concentrations inhibited BSEP and MATE1 exporters, as well as OATP1B1/1B3 uptake transporters. Ritonavir had a similar inhibitory pattern, also inhibiting OCT1. Remdesivir strongly inhibited MRP4, OATP1B1/1B3, MATE1 and OCT1. Favipiravir had no significant effect on any of these transporters. Since both general drug metabolism and drug-induced liver toxicity are strongly dependent on the functioning of these transporters, the various interactions reported here may have important clinical relevance in the drug treatment of this viral disease and the existing co-morbidities.


Subject(s)
ATP Binding Cassette Transporter, Subfamily B, Member 11/metabolism , Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , Liver-Specific Organic Anion Transporter 1/metabolism , Liver/drug effects , Organic Cation Transport Proteins/metabolism , ATP Binding Cassette Transporter, Subfamily B, Member 11/antagonists & inhibitors , Adenosine Monophosphate/analogs & derivatives , Adenosine Monophosphate/chemistry , Adenosine Monophosphate/metabolism , Adenosine Monophosphate/pharmacology , Adenosine Monophosphate/therapeutic use , Alanine/analogs & derivatives , Alanine/chemistry , Alanine/metabolism , Alanine/pharmacology , Alanine/therapeutic use , Antiviral Agents/chemistry , Antiviral Agents/metabolism , Antiviral Agents/therapeutic use , COVID-19/drug therapy , Comorbidity , Drug Repositioning , Humans , Liver/metabolism , Liver/pathology , Liver-Specific Organic Anion Transporter 1/antagonists & inhibitors , Lopinavir/chemistry , Lopinavir/metabolism , Lopinavir/pharmacology , Lopinavir/therapeutic use , Organic Cation Transport Proteins/antagonists & inhibitors , Ritonavir/chemistry , Ritonavir/metabolism , Ritonavir/pharmacology , Ritonavir/therapeutic use , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Substrate Specificity
10.
Int J Mol Sci ; 22(17)2021 Sep 02.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1390657

ABSTRACT

COVID-19 is a global threat that has spread since the end of 2019, causing severe clinical sequelae and deaths, in the context of a world pandemic. The infection of the highly pathogenetic and infectious SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus has been proven to exert systemic effects impacting the metabolism. Yet, the metabolic pathways involved in the pathophysiology and progression of COVID-19 are still unclear. Here, we present the results of a mass spectrometry-based targeted metabolomic analysis on a cohort of 52 hospitalized COVID-19 patients, classified according to disease severity as mild, moderate, and severe. Our analysis defines a clear signature of COVID-19 that includes increased serum levels of lactic acid in all the forms of the disease. Pathway analysis revealed dysregulation of energy production and amino acid metabolism. Globally, the variations found in the serum metabolome of COVID-19 patients may reflect a more complex systemic perturbation induced by SARS-CoV-2, possibly affecting carbon and nitrogen liver metabolism.


Subject(s)
Biomarkers/blood , Carbon/metabolism , Liver/metabolism , Metabolome , Nitrogen/metabolism , Amino Acids/metabolism , COVID-19/blood , COVID-19/pathology , COVID-19/virology , Cytokines/blood , Discriminant Analysis , Humans , Least-Squares Analysis , Metabolic Networks and Pathways/genetics , Metabolomics/methods , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Severity of Illness Index
11.
Viruses ; 13(8)2021 08 04.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1359300

ABSTRACT

Transcriptomics, proteomics and pathogen-host interactomics data are being explored for the in silico-informed selection of drugs, prior to their functional evaluation. The effectiveness of this kind of strategy has been put to the test in the current COVID-19 pandemic, and it has been paying off, leading to a few drugs being rapidly repurposed as treatment against SARS-CoV-2 infection. Several neglected tropical diseases, for which treatment remains unavailable, would benefit from informed in silico investigations of drugs, as performed in this work for Dengue fever disease. We analyzed transcriptomic data in the key tissues of liver, spleen and blood profiles and verified that despite transcriptomic differences due to tissue specialization, the common mechanisms of action, "Adrenergic receptor antagonist", "ATPase inhibitor", "NF-kB pathway inhibitor" and "Serotonin receptor antagonist", were identified as druggable (e.g., oxprenolol, digoxin, auranofin and palonosetron, respectively) to oppose the effects of severe Dengue infection in these tissues. These are good candidates for future functional evaluation and clinical trials.


Subject(s)
Antiviral Agents/therapeutic use , Dengue/drug therapy , Transcriptome , Adenosine Triphosphatases/antagonists & inhibitors , Adrenergic Antagonists/pharmacology , Adrenergic Antagonists/therapeutic use , Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , Brain/metabolism , Computer Simulation , Dengue/blood , Dengue/genetics , Dengue/metabolism , Drug Discovery , Drug Evaluation, Preclinical , Drug Repositioning , Humans , Liver/metabolism , Metabolic Networks and Pathways/drug effects , NF-kappa B/metabolism , Serotonin Antagonists/pharmacology , Serotonin Antagonists/therapeutic use , Severe Dengue/blood , Severe Dengue/drug therapy , Severe Dengue/genetics , Severe Dengue/metabolism , Spleen/metabolism
12.
Brief Bioinform ; 22(2): 914-923, 2021 03 22.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1343627

ABSTRACT

The novel coronavirus or COVID-19 has first been found in Wuhan, China, and became pandemic. Angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2) plays a key role in the host cells as a receptor of Spike-I Glycoprotein of COVID-19 which causes final infection. ACE2 is highly expressed in the bladder, ileum, kidney and liver, comparing with ACE2 expression in the lung-specific pulmonary alveolar type II cells. In this study, the single-cell RNAseq data of the five tissues from different humans are curated and cell types with high expressions of ACE2 are identified. Subsequently, the protein-protein interaction networks have been established. From the network, potential biomarkers which can form functional hubs, are selected based on k-means network clustering. It is observed that angiotensin PPAR family proteins show important roles in the functional hubs. To understand the functions of the potential markers, corresponding pathways have been researched thoroughly through the pathway semantic networks. Subsequently, the pathways have been ranked according to their influence and dependency in the network using PageRank algorithm. The outcomes show some important facts in terms of infection. Firstly, renin-angiotensin system and PPAR signaling pathway can play a vital role for enhancing the infection after its intrusion through ACE2. Next, pathway networks consist of few basic metabolic and influential pathways, e.g. insulin resistance. This information corroborate the fact that diabetic patients are more vulnerable to COVID-19 infection. Interestingly, the key regulators of the aforementioned pathways are angiontensin and PPAR family proteins. Hence, angiotensin and PPAR family proteins can be considered as possible therapeutic targets. Contact: sagnik.sen2008@gmail.com, umaulik@cse.jdvu.ac.in Supplementary information: Supplementary data are available online.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity , Algorithms , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/metabolism , COVID-19/virology , Humans , Ileum/metabolism , Ileum/pathology , Kidney/metabolism , Kidney/pathology , Liver/metabolism , Liver/pathology , Peroxisome Proliferator-Activated Receptors/metabolism , Protein Interaction Maps , Renin-Angiotensin System/physiology , Signal Transduction , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/metabolism , Urinary Bladder/metabolism , Urinary Bladder/pathology
13.
Elife ; 102021 07 06.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1298242

ABSTRACT

Background: To understand a causal role of modifiable lifestyle factors in angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2) expression (a putative severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 [SARS-CoV-2] receptor) across 44 human tissues/organs, and in coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) susceptibility and severity, we conducted a phenome-wide two-sample Mendelian randomization (MR) study. Methods: More than 500 genetic variants were used as instrumental variables to predict smoking and alcohol consumption. Inverse-variance weighted approach was adopted as the primary method to estimate a causal association, while MR-Egger regression, weighted median, and MR pleiotropy residual sum and outlier (MR-PRESSO) were performed to identify potential horizontal pleiotropy. Results: We found that genetically predicted smoking intensity significantly increased ACE2 expression in thyroid (ß=1.468, p=1.8×10-8), and increased ACE2 expression in adipose, brain, colon, and liver with nominal significance. Additionally, genetically predicted smoking initiation significantly increased the risk of COVID-19 onset (odds ratio=1.14, p=8.7×10-5). No statistically significant result was observed for alcohol consumption. Conclusions: Our work demonstrates an important role of smoking, measured by both status and intensity, in the susceptibility to COVID-19. Funding: XJ is supported by research grants from the Swedish Research Council (VR-2018-02247) and Swedish Research Council for Health, Working Life and Welfare (FORTE-2020-00884).


Subject(s)
Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/metabolism , COVID-19/pathology , Mendelian Randomization Analysis , SARS-CoV-2/physiology , Tobacco Smoking/adverse effects , Adipose Tissue/metabolism , Alcohol Drinking/genetics , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/genetics , Brain/metabolism , COVID-19/virology , Causality , Colon/metabolism , Gene Expression Regulation , Humans , Liver/metabolism , Polymorphism, Single Nucleotide , Thyroid Gland/metabolism
14.
World J Gastroenterol ; 27(22): 2944-2962, 2021 Jun 14.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1268364

ABSTRACT

Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 is a global pandemic and poses a major threat to human health worldwide. In addition to respiratory symptoms, COVID-19 is usually accompanied by systemic inflammation and liver damage in moderate and severe cases. Nuclear factor erythroid 2-related factor 2 (NRF2) is a transcription factor that regulates the expression of antioxidant proteins, participating in COVID-19-mediated inflammation and liver injury. Here, we show the novel reciprocal regulation between NRF2 and inflammatory mediators associated with COVID-19-related liver injury. Additionally, we describe some mechanisms and treatment strategies.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Inflammation Mediators , Liver Diseases/virology , NF-E2-Related Factor 2 , COVID-19/pathology , Humans , Inflammation Mediators/metabolism , Liver/metabolism , Liver/pathology , NF-E2-Related Factor 2/metabolism , Oxidative Stress , SARS-CoV-2 , Signal Transduction
15.
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
16.
Sci Rep ; 11(1): 8712, 2021 04 22.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1253973

ABSTRACT

Obesity is associated with both chronic and acute respiratory illnesses, such as asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) or increased susceptibility to infectious diseases. Anatomical but also systemic and local metabolic alterations are proposed contributors to the pathophysiology of lung diseases in the context of obesity. To bring perspective to this discussion, we used NMR to compare the obesity-associated metabolomic profiles of the lung with those of the liver, heart, skeletal muscles, kidneys, brain and serum from male C57Bl/6J mice fed with a high-fat and high-sucrose (HFHSD) diet vs. standard (SD) chow for 14 weeks. Our results showed that the lung was the second most affected organ after the liver, and that the two organs shared reduced one-carbon (1C) metabolism and increased lipid accumulation. Altered 1C metabolism was found in all organs and in the serum, but serine levels were increased only in the lung of HFHSD compared to SD. Lastly, tricarboxylic acid (TCA)-derived metabolites were specifically and oppositely regulated in the serum and kidneys but not in other organs. Collectively, our data highlighted that HFHSD induced specific metabolic changes in all organs, the lung being the second most affected organ, the main alterations affecting metabolite concentrations of the 1C pathway and, to a minor extend, TCA. The absolute metabolite quantification performed in this study reveals some metabolic specificities affecting both the liver and the lung, that may reveal common metabolic determinants to the ongoing pathological process.


Subject(s)
Diet, High-Fat , Dietary Sucrose/administration & dosage , Lipid Metabolism , Liver/metabolism , Lung/metabolism , Obesity/metabolism , Animals , Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy , Male , Mice , Mice, Inbred BALB C
17.
Cells ; 10(5)2021 05 04.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1223957

ABSTRACT

Liver injury in COVID-19 patients has progressively emerged, even in those without a history of liver disease, yet the mechanism of liver pathogenicity is still controversial. COVID-19 is frequently associated with increased serum ferritin levels, and hyperferritinemia was shown to correlate with illness severity. The liver is the major site for iron storage, and conditions of iron overload have been established to have a pathogenic role in development of liver diseases. We presented here six patients who developed severe COVID-19, with biochemical evidence of liver failure. Three cases were survived patients, who underwent liver biopsy; the other three were deceased patients, who were autopsied. None of the patients suffered underlying liver pathologies. Histopathological and ultrastructural analyses were performed. The most striking finding we demonstrated in all patients was iron accumulation into hepatocytes, associated with degenerative changes. Abundant ferritin particles were found enclosed in siderosomes, and large aggregates of hemosiderin were found, often in close contact with damaged mitochondria. Iron-caused oxidative stress may be responsible for mitochondria metabolic dysfunction. In agreement with this, association between mitochondria and lipid droplets was also found. Overall, our data suggest that hepatic iron overload could be the pathogenic trigger of liver injury associated to COVID-19.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/diagnosis , Iron Overload/etiology , Liver Failure/etiology , Liver/pathology , Severity of Illness Index , Adult , Aged , Antiviral Agents , Biopsy , COVID-19/complications , COVID-19/mortality , COVID-19/therapy , Female , Ferritins/analysis , Hepatocytes/cytology , Hepatocytes/pathology , Humans , Iron/analysis , Iron/metabolism , Iron Overload/mortality , Iron Overload/pathology , Iron Overload/therapy , Liver/cytology , Liver/metabolism , Liver Failure/mortality , Liver Failure/pathology , Liver Failure/therapy , Liver Function Tests , Male , Middle Aged , Mitochondria/pathology , Positive-Pressure Respiration , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification
18.
Nutrients ; 13(2)2021 Feb 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1218624

ABSTRACT

Cancer is often accompanied by worsening of the patient's iron profile, and the resulting anemia could be a factor that negatively impacts antineoplastic treatment efficacy and patient survival. The first line of therapy is usually based on oral or intravenous iron supplementation; however, many patients remain anemic and do not respond. The key might lie in the pathogenesis of the anemia itself. Cancer-related anemia (CRA) is characterized by a decreased circulating serum iron concentration and transferrin saturation despite ample iron stores, pointing to a more complex problem related to iron homeostatic regulation and additional factors such as chronic inflammatory status. This review explores our current understanding of iron homeostasis in cancer, shedding light on the modulatory role of hepcidin in intestinal iron absorption, iron recycling, mobilization from liver deposits, and inducible regulators by infections and inflammation. The underlying relationship between CRA and systemic low-grade inflammation will be discussed, and an integrated multitarget approach based on nutrition and exercise to improve iron utilization by reducing low-grade inflammation, modulating the immune response, and supporting antioxidant mechanisms will also be proposed. Indeed, a Mediterranean-based diet, nutritional supplements and exercise are suggested as potential individualized strategies and as a complementary approach to conventional CRA therapy.


Subject(s)
Anemia/complications , Iron/blood , Life Style , Neoplasms/complications , Anemia/blood , Anemia, Iron-Deficiency/blood , Animals , COVID-19 , Diet , Food, Fortified , Gastrointestinal Microbiome , Hepcidins/blood , Homeostasis , Humans , Inflammation/blood , Liver/metabolism , Muscle, Skeletal
19.
J Med Virol ; 93(4): 2365-2373, 2021 04.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1217386

ABSTRACT

Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) is a newly emerging infectious disease. Our understanding of the clinical characteristics of liver damage and the relationship with disease severity in COVID-19 is still limited. To investigate the serum hepatic enzyme activities in different phenotypes of COVID-19 patients, evaluate their relationship with the illness severity and analyze the correlation of glycyrrhizin treatment and abnormal liver enzyme activities, one hundred and forty-seven patients with COVID-19 were enrolled in a retrospective study that investigated hepatic dysfunction. Liver alanine aminotransferase (ALT), aspartate aminotransferase (AST), lactic dehydrogenase (LDH), Y-glutamyl transferase (GGT), superoxide dismutase (SOD), and alkaline phosphatase (ALP) were analyzed in these patients. Patients with diammonium glycyrrhizinate (DG) treatment were further investigated. Of the 147 patients, 56 (38.1%) had abnormal ALT activity and 80 (54.4%) had abnormal AST activity. The peak of abnormal hepatic enzyme activities occurred at 3 to 6 days after on admission. Serum AST and LDH levels were elevated, while the SOD level was decreased in severe and critical patients, compared with mild cases. DG treatment may alleviate the abnormal liver enzyme activities in non-critical COVID-19 patients. Abnormal liver functions may be observed in patients with COVID-19, and were associated with SARS-CoV-2-induced acute liver damage. Glycyrrhizin treatment may be an effective therapeutic approach for the outcome of abnormal hepatic enzyme activities in severe COVID-19 cases. Serum hepatic enzyme tests may reflect the illness severity and should be monitored.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/enzymology , Liver/enzymology , Adult , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , Alanine Transaminase/blood , Alkaline Phosphatase/blood , Aspartate Aminotransferases/blood , COVID-19/blood , COVID-19/metabolism , Female , Humans , Liver/metabolism , Liver Function Tests , Male , Middle Aged , Phenotype , Retrospective Studies , SARS-CoV-2 , Severity of Illness Index , Superoxide Dismutase/blood , Young Adult
20.
J Clin Invest ; 131(6)2021 03 15.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1172783

ABSTRACT

Monocyte homing to the liver and adhesion to the liver sinusoidal endothelial cells (LSECs) are key elements in nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH) pathogenesis. We reported previously that VCAM-1 mediates monocyte adhesion to LSECs. However, the pathogenic role of VCAM-1 in NASH is unclear. Herein, we report that VCAM-1 was a top upregulated adhesion molecule in the NASH mouse liver transcriptome. Open chromatin landscape profiling combined with genome-wide transcriptome analysis showed robust transcriptional upregulation of LSEC VCAM-1 in murine NASH. Moreover, LSEC VCAM-1 expression was significantly increased in human NASH. LSEC VCAM-1 expression was upregulated by palmitate treatment in vitro and reduced with inhibition of the mitogen-activated protein 3 kinase (MAP3K) mixed lineage kinase 3 (MLK3). Likewise, LSEC VCAM-1 expression was reduced in the Mlk3-/- mice with diet-induced NASH. Furthermore, VCAM-1 neutralizing Ab or pharmacological inhibition attenuated diet-induced NASH in mice, mainly via reducing the proinflammatory monocyte hepatic population as examined by mass cytometry by time of flight (CyTOF). Moreover, endothelium-specific Vcam1 knockout mice were also protected against NASH. In summary, lipotoxic stress enhances the expression of LSEC VCAM-1, in part, through MLK3 signaling. Inhibition of VCAM-1 was salutary in murine NASH and might serve as a potential therapeutic strategy for human NASH.


Subject(s)
Non-alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease/etiology , Vascular Cell Adhesion Molecule-1/metabolism , Animals , Antibodies, Neutralizing/administration & dosage , Disease Models, Animal , Endothelial Cells/drug effects , Endothelial Cells/metabolism , Gene Expression Profiling , Humans , Liver/drug effects , Liver/metabolism , Liver/pathology , MAP Kinase Signaling System/drug effects , Mice , Mice, Inbred C57BL , Mice, Knockout , Non-alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease/genetics , Non-alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease/metabolism , Palmitates/toxicity , RNA, Messenger/genetics , Up-Regulation/drug effects , Vascular Cell Adhesion Molecule-1/antagonists & inhibitors , Vascular Cell Adhesion Molecule-1/genetics
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