Your browser doesn't support javascript.
Show: 20 | 50 | 100
Results 1 - 19 de 19
Filter
1.
Emerg Microbes Infect ; 12(1): e2161422, 2023 Dec.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2237111

ABSTRACT

The rapid evolution of SARS-CoV-2 Omicron sublineages mandates a better understanding of viral replication and cross-neutralization among these sublineages. Here we used K18-hACE2 mice and primary human airway cultures to examine the viral fitness and antigenic relationship among Omicron sublineages. In both K18-hACE2 mice and human airway cultures, Omicron sublineages exhibited a replication order of BA.5 ≥ BA.2 ≥ BA.2.12.1 > BA.1; no difference in body weight loss was observed among different sublineage-infected mice. The BA.1-, BA.2-, BA.2.12.1-, and BA.5-infected mice developed distinguishable cross-neutralizations against Omicron sublineages, but exhibited little neutralization against the index virus (i.e. USA-WA1/2020) or the Delta variant. Surprisingly, the BA.5-infected mice developed higher neutralization activity against heterologous BA.2 and BA.2.12.1 than that against homologous BA.5; serum neutralizing titres did not always correlate with viral replication levels in infected animals. Our results revealed a distinct antigenic cartography of Omicron sublineages and support the bivalent vaccine approach.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Humans , Animals , Mice , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Melphalan , Antibodies, Viral , Antibodies, Neutralizing
2.
Nat Commun ; 13(1): 5929, 2022 10 07.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2062208

ABSTRACT

Variant of concern (VOC) Omicron-BA.1 has achieved global predominance in early 2022. Therefore, surveillance and comprehensive characterization of Omicron-BA.1 in advanced primary cell culture systems and animal models are urgently needed. Here, we characterize Omicron-BA.1 and recombinant Omicron-BA.1 spike gene mutants in comparison with VOC Delta in well-differentiated primary human nasal and bronchial epithelial cells in vitro, followed by in vivo fitness characterization in hamsters, ferrets and hACE2-expressing mice, and immunized hACE2-mice. We demonstrate a spike-mediated enhancement of early replication of Omicron-BA.1 in nasal epithelial cultures, but limited replication in bronchial epithelial cultures. In hamsters, Delta shows dominance over Omicron-BA.1, and in ferrets Omicron-BA.1 infection is abortive. In hACE2-knock-in mice, Delta and a Delta spike clone also show dominance over Omicron-BA.1 and an Omicron-BA.1 spike clone, respectively. Interestingly, in naïve K18-hACE2 mice, we observe Delta spike-mediated increased replication and pathogenicity and Omicron-BA.1 spike-mediated reduced replication and pathogenicity, suggesting that the spike gene is a major determinant of replication and pathogenicity. Finally, the Omicron-BA.1 spike clone is less well-controlled by mRNA-vaccination in K18-hACE2-mice and becomes more competitive compared to the progenitor and Delta spike clones, suggesting that spike gene-mediated immune evasion is another important factor that led to Omicron-BA.1 dominance.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Animals , Cricetinae , Ferrets , Humans , Melphalan , Mice , Phenotype , RNA, Messenger , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/genetics , gamma-Globulins
3.
Front Immunol ; 13: 948431, 2022.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2022730

ABSTRACT

Emergence of variants of concern (VOC) during the COVID-19 pandemic has contributed to the decreased efficacy of therapeutic monoclonal antibody treatments for severe cases of SARS-CoV-2 infection. In addition, the cost of creating these therapeutic treatments is high, making their implementation in low- to middle-income countries devastated by the pandemic very difficult. Here, we explored the use of polyclonal EpF(ab')2 antibodies generated through the immunization of horses with SARS-CoV-2 WA-1 RBD conjugated to HBsAg nanoparticles as a low-cost therapeutic treatment for severe cases of disease. We determined that the equine EpF(ab')2 bind RBD and neutralize ACE2 receptor binding by virus for all VOC strains tested except Omicron. Despite its relatively quick clearance from peripheral circulation, a 100µg dose of EpF(ab')2 was able to fully protect mice against severe disease phenotypes following intranasal SARS-CoV-2 challenge with Alpha and Beta variants. EpF(ab')2 administration increased survival while subsequently lowering disease scores and viral RNA burden in disease-relevant tissues. No significant improvement in survival outcomes or disease scores was observed in EpF(ab')2-treated mice challenged using the Delta variant at 10µg or 100µg doses. Overall, the data presented here provide a proof of concept for the use of EpF(ab')2 in the prevention of severe SARS-CoV-2 infections and underscore the need for either variant-specific treatments or variant-independent therapeutics for COVID-19.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Animals , COVID-19/prevention & control , Horses , Humans , Immunization, Passive , Melphalan , Mice , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , gamma-Globulins
4.
PLoS One ; 17(8): e0273430, 2022.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2021918

ABSTRACT

The COVID-19 pandemic has been fueled by SARS-CoV-2 novel variants of concern (VOC) that have increased transmissibility, receptor binding affinity, and other properties that enhance disease. The goal of this study is to characterize unique pathogenesis of the Delta VOC strain in the K18-hACE2-mouse challenge model. Challenge studies suggested that the lethal dose of Delta was higher than Alpha or Beta strains. To characterize the differences in the Delta strain's pathogenesis, a time-course experiment was performed to evaluate the overall host response to Alpha or Delta variant challenge. qRT-PCR analysis of Alpha- or Delta-challenged mice revealed no significant difference between viral RNA burden in the lung, nasal wash or brain. However, histopathological analysis revealed high lung tissue inflammation and cell infiltration following Delta- but not Alpha-challenge at day 6. Additionally, pro-inflammatory cytokines were highest at day 6 in Delta-challenged mice suggesting enhanced pneumonia. Total RNA-sequencing analysis of lungs comparing challenged to no challenge mice revealed that Alpha-challenged mice have more total genes differentially activated. Conversely, Delta-challenged mice have a higher magnitude of differential gene expression. Delta-challenged mice have increased interferon-dependent gene expression and IFN-γ production compared to Alpha. Analysis of TCR clonotypes suggested that Delta challenged mice have increased T-cell infiltration compared to Alpha challenged. Our data suggest that Delta has evolved to engage interferon responses in a manner that may enhance pathogenesis. The in vivo and in silico observations of this study underscore the need to conduct experiments with VOC strains to best model COVID-19 when evaluating therapeutics and vaccines.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Pneumonia , Animals , Antiviral Agents , COVID-19/genetics , Disease Models, Animal , Humans , Interferons , Melphalan , Mice , Mice, Transgenic , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2 , gamma-Globulins
5.
Cells ; 11(16)2022 08 18.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1997525

ABSTRACT

Clinical and experimental data indicate that severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus (SARS-CoV)-2 infection is associated with significant changes in the composition and function of intestinal microbiota. However, the relevance of these effects for SARS-CoV-2 pathophysiology is unknown. In this study, we analyzed the impact of microbiota depletion after antibiotic treatment on the clinical and immunological responses of K18-hACE2 mice to SARS-CoV-2 infection. Mice were treated with a combination of antibiotics (kanamycin, gentamicin, metronidazole, vancomycin, and colistin, Abx) for 3 days, and 24 h later, they were infected with SARS-CoV-2 B lineage. Here, we show that more than 80% of mice succumbed to infection by day 11 post-infection. Treatment with Abx had no impact on mortality. However, Abx-treated mice presented better clinical symptoms, with similar weight loss between infected-treated and non-treated groups. We observed no differences in lung and colon histopathological scores or lung, colon, heart, brain and kidney viral load between groups on day 5 of infection. Despite some minor differences in the expression of antiviral and inflammatory markers in the lungs and colon, no robust change was observed in Abx-treated mice. Together, these findings indicate that microbiota depletion has no impact on SARS-CoV-2 infection in mice.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Drug Treatment , Microbiota , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2 , Animals , Anti-Bacterial Agents/pharmacology , Anti-Bacterial Agents/therapeutic use , Disease Models, Animal , Melphalan , Mice , Mice, Transgenic , Peptidyl-Dipeptidase A/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2 , gamma-Globulins
6.
mSphere ; 7(4): e0024322, 2022 08 31.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1992945

ABSTRACT

The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic has contributed largely to the global vaccine disparity. Development of protein subunit vaccines can help alleviate shortages of COVID-19 vaccines delivered to low-income countries. Here, we evaluated the efficacy of a three-dose virus-like particle (VLP) vaccine composed of hepatitis B surface antigen (HBsAg) decorated with the receptor binding domain (RBD) from the Wuhan or Beta SARS-CoV-2 strain adjuvanted with either aluminum hydroxide (alum) or squalene in water emulsion (SWE). RBD HBsAg vaccines were compared to the standard two doses of Pfizer mRNA vaccine. Alum-adjuvanted vaccines were composed of either HBsAg conjugated with Beta RBD alone (ß RBD HBsAg+Al) or a combination of both Beta RBD HBsAg and Wuhan RBD HBsAg (ß/Wu RBD HBsAg+Al). RBD vaccines adjuvanted with SWE were formulated with Beta RBD HBsAg (ß RBD HBsAg+SWE) or without HBsAg (ß RBD+SWE). Both alum-adjuvanted RBD HBsAg vaccines generated functional RBD IgG against multiple SARS-CoV-2 variants of concern (VOC), decreased viral RNA burden, and lowered inflammation in the lung against Alpha or Beta challenge in K18-hACE2 mice. However, only ß/Wu RBD HBsAg+Al was able to afford 100% survival to mice challenged with Alpha or Beta VOC. Furthermore, mice immunized with ß RBD HBsAg+SWE induced cross-reactive neutralizing antibodies against major VOC of SARS-CoV-2, lowered viral RNA burden in the lung and brain, and protected mice from Alpha or Beta challenge similarly to mice immunized with Pfizer mRNA. However, RBD+SWE immunization failed to protect mice from VOC challenge. Our findings demonstrate that RBD HBsAg VLP vaccines provided similar protection profiles to the approved Pfizer mRNA vaccines used worldwide and may offer protection against SARS-CoV-2 VOC. IMPORTANCE Global COVID-19 vaccine distribution to low-income countries has been a major challenge of the pandemic. To address supply chain issues, RBD virus-like particle (VLP) vaccines that are cost-effective and capable of large-scale production were developed and evaluated for efficacy in preclinical mouse studies. We demonstrated that RBD-VLP vaccines protected K18-hACE2 mice against Alpha or Beta challenge similarly to Pfizer mRNA vaccination. Our findings showed that the VLP platform can be utilized to formulate immunogenic and efficacious COVID-19 vaccines.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Vaccines, Virus-Like Particle , Alum Compounds , Animals , Antibodies, Viral , COVID-19/prevention & control , COVID-19 Vaccines , Emulsions , Hepatitis B Surface Antigens/genetics , Humans , Melphalan , Mice , Mice, Inbred BALB C , Pandemics , RNA, Messenger , RNA, Viral , SARS-CoV-2 , Squalene , Vaccines, Synthetic , Water , gamma-Globulins , mRNA Vaccines
7.
Viruses ; 14(8)2022 07 26.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1957458

ABSTRACT

The COVID-19 pandemic caused by the SARS-CoV-2 infection induced lung inflammation characterized by cytokine storm and fulminant immune response of both resident and migrated immune cells, accelerating alveolar damage. In this work we identified members of the matrix metalloprotease (MMPs) family associated with lung extra-cellular matrix (ECM) destruction using K18-hACE2-transgenic mice (K18-hACE2) infected intranasally with SARS-CoV-2. Five days post infection, the lungs exhibited overall alveolar damage of epithelial cells and massive leukocytes infiltration. A substantial pulmonary increase in MMP8, MMP9, and MMP14 in the lungs post SARS-CoV-2 infection was associated with degradation of ECM components including collagen, laminin, and proteoglycans. The process of tissue damage and ECM degradation during SARS-CoV-2 lung infection is suggested to be associated with activity of members of the MMPs family, which in turn may be used as a therapeutic intervention.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2 , Animals , Disease Models, Animal , Humans , Lung/pathology , Melphalan , Mice , Mice, Transgenic , Pandemics , Peptidyl-Dipeptidase A/metabolism , gamma-Globulins
8.
Molecules ; 27(13)2022 Jun 28.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1911489

ABSTRACT

COVID-19, caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), is a global pandemic that might lead to very serious consequences. Notably, mental status change, brain confusion, and smell and taste disorders along with neurological complaints have been reported in patients infected with SARS-CoV-2. Furthermore, human brain tissue autopsies from COVID-19 patients show the presence of SARS-CoV-2 neuroinvasion, which correlates with the manifestation of meningitis, encephalitis, leukocyte infiltration, and neuronal damage. The olfactory mucosa has been suggested as a way of entry into the brain. SARS-CoV-2 infection is also known to provoke a hyper-inflammatory reaction with an exponential increase in the production of pro-inflammatory cytokines leading to systemic responses, even in the absence of direct infection of brain cells. Angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2), the entry receptor of SARS-CoV-2, has been extensively demonstrated to be present in the periphery, neurons, and glial cells in different brain regions. To dissect the details of neurological complications and develop therapies helping COVID-19 survivors regain pre-infection quality of life, the development of robust clinical models is highly warranted. Several human angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (hACE2) transgenic mouse models have been developed and used for antiviral drug screening and vaccine development, as well as for better understanding of the molecular pathogenetic mechanisms of SARS-CoV-2 infection. In this review, we summarize recent results from the studies involving two such mouse models, namely K18- and CAG-hACE2 transgenics, to evaluate the direct and indirect impact of SARS-CoV-2 infection on the central nervous system.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/genetics , Animals , Disease Models, Animal , Melphalan , Mice , Mice, Transgenic , Peptidyl-Dipeptidase A , Quality of Life , gamma-Globulins
9.
JCI Insight ; 7(11)2022 06 08.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1892019

ABSTRACT

SARS-CoV-2 has been confirmed in over 450 million confirmed cases since 2019. Although several vaccines have been certified by the WHO and people are being vaccinated on a global scale, it has been reported that multiple SARS-CoV-2 variants can escape neutralization by antibodies, resulting in vaccine breakthrough infections. Bacillus Calmette-Guérin (BCG) is known to induce heterologous protection based on trained immune responses. Here, we investigated whether BCG-induced trained immunity protected against SARS-CoV-2 in the K18-hACE2 mouse model. Our data demonstrate that i.v. BCG (BCG-i.v.) vaccination induces robust trained innate immune responses and provides protection against WT SARS-CoV-2, as well as the B.1.617.1 and B.1.617.2 variants. Further studies suggest that myeloid cell differentiation and activation of the glycolysis pathway are associated with BCG-induced training immunity in K18-hACE2 mice. Overall, our study provides the experimental evidence that establishes a causal relationship between BCG-i.v. vaccination and protection against SARS-CoV-2 challenge.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Animals , BCG Vaccine , COVID-19/prevention & control , Humans , Melphalan , Mice , gamma-Globulins
10.
Virol J ; 19(1): 86, 2022 05 20.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1854813

ABSTRACT

To investigate the protective efficacy and mechanism of ZF2001 (a protein subunit vaccine with conditional approval in China) to SARS-CoV-2 Delta variant-induced severe pneumonia, the lethal challenge model of K18-hACE2 transgenic mice was used in this study. An inactivated-virus vaccine at the research and development stage (abbreviated as RDINA) was compared to ZF2001. We found that ZF2001 and RDINA could provide the protective effect against Delta variant-induced severe cases, as measured by the improved survival rates, the reduced virus loads, the alleviated lung histopathology and the high neutralizing antibody geomean titers, compared to aluminum adjuvant group. To prevent and control Omicron or other variant epidemics, further improvements in vaccine design and compatibilities with the novel adjuvant are required to achieve better immunogenicity.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Animals , COVID-19/prevention & control , Melphalan , Mice , Mice, Transgenic , Vaccines, Inactivated , gamma-Globulins
11.
mBio ; 13(3): e0068322, 2022 06 28.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1788919

ABSTRACT

Compared to the original ancestral strain of SARS-CoV-2, the Delta variant of concern has shown increased transmissibility and resistance toward COVID-19 vaccines and therapies. However, the pathogenesis of the disease associated with Delta is still not clear. In this study, using K18-hACE2 transgenic mice, we assessed the pathogenicity of the Delta variant by characterizing the immune response following infection. We found that Delta induced the same clinical disease manifestations as the ancestral SARS-CoV-2, but with significant dissemination to multiple tissues, such as brain, intestine, and kidney. Histopathological analysis showed that tissue pathology and cell infiltration in the lungs of Delta-infected mice were the same as in mice infected with the ancestral SARS-CoV-2. Delta infection caused perivascular inflammation in the brain and intestinal wall thinning in K18-hACE2 transgenic mice. Increased cell infiltration in the kidney was observed in both ancestral strain- and Delta-infected mice, with no clear visible tissue damage identified in either group. Interestingly, compared with mice infected with the ancestral strain, the numbers of CD45+ cells, T cells, B cells, inflammatory monocytes, and dendritic cells were all significantly lower in the lungs of the Delta-infected mice, although there was no significant difference in the levels of proinflammatory cytokines between the two groups. Our results showed distinct immune response patterns in the lungs of K18-hACE2 mice infected with either the ancestral SARS-CoV-2 or Delta variant of concern, which may help to guide therapeutic interventions for emerging SARS-CoV-2 variants. IMPORTANCE SARS-CoV-2 variants, with the threat of increased transmissibility, infectivity, and immune escape, continue to emerge as the COVID-19 pandemic progresses. Detailing the pathogenesis of disease caused by SARS-CoV-2 variants, such as Delta, is essential to better understand the clinical threat caused by emerging variants and associated disease. This study, using the K18-hACE2 mouse model of severe COVID-19, provides essential observation and analysis on the pathogenicity and immune response of Delta infection. These observations shed light on the changing disease profile associated with emerging SARS-CoV-2 variants and have potential to guide COVID-19 treatment strategies.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Drug Treatment , Hepatitis D , Animals , COVID-19 Vaccines , Disease Models, Animal , Humans , Melphalan , Mice , Mice, Transgenic , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , gamma-Globulins
12.
Viruses ; 14(3)2022 03 05.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1732242

ABSTRACT

Animal models recapitulating COVID-19 are critical to enhance our understanding of SARS-CoV-2 pathogenesis. Intranasally inoculated transgenic mice expressing human angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 under the cytokeratin 18 promoter (K18-hACE2) represent a lethal model of SARS-CoV-2 infection. We evaluated the clinical and virological dynamics of SARS-CoV-2 using two intranasal doses (104 and 106 PFUs), with a detailed spatiotemporal pathologic analysis of the 106 dose cohort. Despite generally mild-to-moderate pneumonia, clinical decline resulting in euthanasia or death was commonly associated with hypothermia and viral neurodissemination independent of inoculation dose. Neuroinvasion was first observed at 4 days post-infection, initially restricted to the olfactory bulb suggesting axonal transport via the olfactory neuroepithelium as the earliest portal of entry. Absence of viremia suggests neuroinvasion occurs independently of transport across the blood-brain barrier. SARS-CoV-2 tropism was neither restricted to ACE2-expressing cells (e.g., AT1 pneumocytes), nor inclusive of some ACE2-positive cell lineages (e.g., bronchiolar epithelium and brain vasculature). Absence of detectable ACE2 protein expression in neurons but overexpression in neuroepithelium suggest this as the most likely portal of neuroinvasion, with subsequent ACE2 independent lethal neurodissemination. A paucity of epidemiological data and contradicting evidence for neuroinvasion and neurodissemination in humans call into question the translational relevance of this model.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , SARS-CoV-2 , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2 , Animals , Humans , Keratin-18 , Melphalan , Mice , Mice, Transgenic , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Viral Tropism , gamma-Globulins
13.
Am J Health Syst Pharm ; 79(12): 1011-1018, 2022 06 07.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1692261

ABSTRACT

PURPOSE: To compare the chemical stability of Captisol-enabled (CE) melphalan ("CE-melphalan"; Evomela, Acrotech Biopharma LLC) and propylene glycol (PG)-based melphalan ("PG-melphalan"; Alkeran, GlaxoSmithKline) admixtures prepared with 0.9% sodium chloride injection in polyvinyl chloride (PVC) bags or reconstituted vials stored at room temperature (RT) and under refrigeration. METHODS: Lyophilized CE-melphalan and generic PG-melphalan were reconstituted to 5 mg/mL with 0.9% sodium chloride injection or manufacturer-supplied diluent, respectively. The reconstituted vials were then diluted to the desired concentrations with 0.9% sodium chloride injection in PVC bags and were stored at RT (23oC) or under refrigeration (4oC). Aliquots were withdrawn from the bags and reconstituted vials of CE-melphalan and PG-melphalan immediately after preparation and at predetermined time intervals. Melphalan concentrations were measured using a validated high-performance liquid chromatography method. RESULTS: CE-melphalan reconstituted in PVC bags at concentrations of 1 and 2 mg/mL was stable for 6 and 24 hours, respectively, at RT and for 8 and 24 hours, respectively, at 4oC. PG-melphalan reconstituted in bags at 1, 1.5, and 2 mg/mL was stable for 1, 2, and 2 hours, respectively, at RT and for 2, 4, and 4 hours, respectively, at 4oC. Reconstituted CE-melphalan vials were stable for 48 hours at both RT and 4oC, whereas PG-melphalan vials were stable for 6 hours at RT but formed precipitate within 2 hours at 4oC. CONCLUSION: CE-melphalan remained stable longer than generic PG-melphalan under the test conditions. CE-melphalan at 2 mg/mL has 24-hour stability at RT and can be used for extended infusion times or may be compounded ahead of time. Reconstituted CE-melphalan vials are stable for 48 hours at both RT and 4oC.


Subject(s)
Melphalan , Refrigeration , Chromatography, High Pressure Liquid , Drug Packaging , Drug Stability , Drug Storage , Humans , Melphalan/chemistry , Polyvinyl Chloride/chemistry , Propylene Glycols , Sodium Chloride/chemistry , Temperature , beta-Cyclodextrins
14.
Vet Pathol ; 59(4): 602-612, 2022 07.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1662392

ABSTRACT

Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2) causes severe viral pneumonia and is associated with a high fatality rate. A substantial proportion of patients infected by SARS-CoV-2 suffer from mild hyposmia to complete loss of olfactory function, resulting in anosmia. However, the pathogenesis of the olfactory dysfunction and comparative pathology of upper respiratory infections with SARS-CoV-2 are unknown. We describe the histopathological, immunohistochemical, and in situ hybridization findings from rodent models of SARS-CoV-2 infection. The main histopathological findings in the olfactory epithelia of K8-hACE2 Tg mice, hACE2 Tg mice, and hamsters were varying degrees of inflammatory lesions, including disordered arrangement, necrosis, exfoliation, and macrophage infiltration of the olfactory epithelia, and inflammatory exudation. On the basis of these observations, the nasal epithelia of these rodent models appeared to develop moderate, mild, and severe rhinitis, respectively. Correspondingly, SARS-CoV-2 viral RNA and antigen were mainly identified in the olfactory epithelia and lamina propria. Moreover, viral RNA was abundant in the cerebrum of K18-hACE2 Tg mice, including the olfactory bulb. The K8-hACE2 Tg mouse, hACE2 Tg mouse, and hamster models could be used to investigate the pathology of SARS-CoV-2 infection in the upper respiratory tract and central nervous system. These models could help to provide a better understanding of the pathogenic process of this virus and to develop effective medications and prophylactic treatments.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Rodent Diseases , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2 , Animals , COVID-19/veterinary , Cricetinae , Disease Models, Animal , Lung/pathology , Melphalan , Mice , Mice, Transgenic , Nasal Mucosa , Peptidyl-Dipeptidase A/genetics , RNA, Viral , Rodent Diseases/pathology , SARS-CoV-2 , gamma-Globulins
15.
Lancet Haematol ; 9(2): e98-e110, 2022 Feb.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1616877

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Melphalan flufenamide (melflufen), an alkylating peptide-drug conjugate, plus dexamethasone showed clinical activity and manageable safety in the phase 2 HORIZON study. We aimed to determine whether melflufen plus dexamethasone would provide a progression-free survival benefit compared with pomalidomide plus dexamethasone in patients with previously treated multiple myeloma. METHODS: In this randomised, open-label, head-to-head, phase 3 study (OCEAN), adult patients (aged ≥18 years) were recruited from 108 university hospitals, specialist hospitals, and community-based centres in 21 countries across Europe, North America, and Asia. Eligible patients had an ECOG performance status of 0-2; must have had relapsed or refractory multiple myeloma, refractory to lenalidomide (within 18 months of randomisation) and to the last line of therapy; and have received two to four previous lines of therapy (including lenalidomide and a proteasome inhibitor). Patients were randomly assigned (1:1), stratified by age, number of previous lines of therapy, and International Staging System score, to either 28-day cycles of melflufen and dexamethasone (melflufen group) or pomalidomide and dexamethasone (pomalidomide group). All patients received dexamethasone 40 mg orally on days 1, 8, 15, and 22 of each cycle. In the melflufen group, patients received melflufen 40 mg intravenously over 30 min on day 1 of each cycle and in the pomalidomide group, patients received pomalidomide 4 mg orally daily on days 1 to 21 of each cycle. The primary endpoint was progression-free survival assessed by an independent review committee in the intention-to-treat (ITT) population. Safety was assessed in patients who received at least one dose of study medication. This study is registered with ClinicalTrials.gov, NCT03151811, and is ongoing. FINDINGS: Between June 12, 2017, and Sept 3, 2020, 246 patients were randomly assigned to the melflufen group (median age 68 years [IQR 60-72]; 107 [43%] were female) and 249 to the pomalidomide group (median age 68 years [IQR 61-72]; 109 [44%] were female). 474 patients received at least one dose of study drug (melflufen group n=228; pomalidomide group n=246; safety population). Data cutoff was Feb 3, 2021. Median progression-free survival was 6·8 months (95% CI 5·0-8·5; 165 [67%] of 246 patients had an event) in the melflufen group and 4·9 months (4·2-5·7; 190 [76%] of 249 patients had an event) in the pomalidomide group (hazard ratio [HR] 0·79, [95% CI 0·64-0·98]; p=0·032), at a median follow-up of 15·5 months (IQR 9·4-22·8) in the melflufen group and 16·3 months (10·1-23·2) in the pomalidomide group. Median overall survival was 19·8 months (95% CI 15·1-25·6) at a median follow-up of 19·8 months (IQR 12·0-25·0) in the melflufen group and 25·0 months (95% CI 18·1-31·9) in the pomalidomide group at a median follow-up of 18·6 months (IQR 11·8-23·7; HR 1·10 [95% CI 0·85-1·44]; p=0·47). The most common grade 3 or 4 treatment-emergent adverse events were thrombocytopenia (143 [63%] of 228 in the melflufen group vs 26 [11%] of 246 in the pomalidomide group), neutropenia (123 [54%] vs 102 [41%]), and anaemia (97 [43%] vs 44 [18%]). Serious treatment-emergent adverse events occurred in 95 (42%) patients in the melflufen group and 113 (46%) in the pomalidomide group, the most common of which were pneumonia (13 [6%] vs 21 [9%]), COVID-19 pneumonia (11 [5%] vs nine [4%]), and thrombocytopenia (nine [4%] vs three [1%]). 27 [12%] patients in the melflufen group and 32 [13%] in the pomalidomide group had fatal treatment-emergent adverse events. Fatal treatment-emergent adverse events were considered possibly treatment related in two patients in the melflufen group (one with acute myeloid leukaemia, one with pancytopenia and acute cardiac failure) and four patients in the pomalidomide group (two patients with pneumonia, one with myelodysplastic syndromes, one with COVID-19 pneumonia). INTERPRETATION: Melflufen plus dexamethasone showed superior progression-free survival than pomalidomide plus dexamethasone in patients with relapsed or refractory multiple myeloma. FUNDING: Oncopeptides AB.


Subject(s)
Antineoplastic Combined Chemotherapy Protocols , Multiple Myeloma , Aged , Antineoplastic Combined Chemotherapy Protocols/adverse effects , Dexamethasone/adverse effects , Female , Humans , Lenalidomide/adverse effects , Male , Melphalan/adverse effects , Melphalan/analogs & derivatives , Middle Aged , Multiple Myeloma/drug therapy , Phenylalanine/adverse effects , Phenylalanine/analogs & derivatives , SARS-CoV-2 , Thalidomide/adverse effects , Thalidomide/analogs & derivatives , COVID-19 Drug Treatment
17.
Microbiol Spectr ; 9(1): e0053621, 2021 09 03.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1352542

ABSTRACT

Transmission of the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) has resulted in millions of deaths and declining economies around the world. K18-hACE2 mice develop disease resembling severe SARS-CoV-2 infection in a virus dose-dependent manner. The relationship between SARS-CoV-2 and the intestinal or respiratory microbiome is not fully understood. In this context, we characterized the cecal and lung microbiomes of SARS-CoV-2-challenged K18-hACE2 transgenic mice in the presence or absence of treatment with the Mpro inhibitor GC-376. Cecum microbiome showed decreased Shannon and inverse (Inv) Simpson diversity indexes correlating with SARS-CoV-2 infection dosage and a difference of Bray-Curtis dissimilarity distances among control and infected mice. Bacterial phyla such as Firmicutes, particularly, Lachnospiraceae and Oscillospiraceae, were significantly less abundant, while Verrucomicrobia, particularly, the family Akkermansiaceae, were increasingly more prevalent during peak infection in mice challenged with a high virus dose. In contrast to the cecal microbiome, the lung microbiome showed similar microbial diversity among the control, low-, and high-dose challenge virus groups, independent of antiviral treatment. Bacterial phyla in the lungs such as Bacteroidetes decreased, while Firmicutes and Proteobacteria were significantly enriched in mice challenged with a high dose of SARS-CoV-2. In summary, we identified changes in the cecal and lung microbiomes of K18-hACE2 mice with severe clinical signs of SARS-CoV-2 infection. IMPORTANCE The COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in millions of deaths. The host's respiratory and intestinal microbiome can affect directly or indirectly the immune system during viral infections. We characterized the cecal and lung microbiomes in a relevant mouse model challenged with a low or high dose of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) in the presence or absence of an antiviral Mpro inhibitor, GC-376. Decreased microbial diversity and taxonomic abundances of the phyla Firmicutes, particularly, Lachnospiraceae, correlating with infection dosage were observed in the cecum. In addition, microbes within the family Akkermansiaceae were increasingly more prevalent during peak infection, which is observed in other viral infections. The lung microbiome showed similar microbial diversity to that of the control, independent of antiviral treatment. Decreased Bacteroidetes and increased Firmicutes and Proteobacteria were observed in the lungs in a virus dose-dependent manner. These studies add to a better understanding of the complexities associated with the intestinal microbiome during respiratory infections.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/immunology , COVID-19/microbiology , Gastrointestinal Microbiome/physiology , SARS-CoV-2 , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2 , Animals , Antiviral Agents , Biodiversity , Disease Models, Animal , Female , Lung/immunology , Melphalan , Mice , Mice, Transgenic , Virus Diseases/immunology , gamma-Globulins
18.
Transfus Apher Sci ; 60(5): 103197, 2021 Oct.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1275746

ABSTRACT

High-dose chemotherapy followed by autologous stem cell transplantation is a major component in the treatment of patients with multiple myeloma. As a prerequisite, the successful collection of a sufficient number of viable peripheral blood hematopoietic CD34+ cells is critical. A common standard protocol for mobilization is currently not defined and critically discussed especially in German-speaking Europe. In times of the Covid-19 pandemic, safe and effective strategies have to be chosen to minimize hospitalization times and severe courses. In this single-center retrospective analysis, safety and efficacy of cyclophosphamide plus etoposide (CE) and growth-factor support (n = 33) was compared to cyclophosphamide mono treatment and growth-factor support (n = 49) in 82 patients with multiple myeloma at first diagnosis. CE was superior to cyclophosphamide mono with a significantly higher number of collected CD34+ cells (15.46 × 106 CD34+ cells/kg vs. 9.92 × 106 CD34+ cells/kg), significantly faster engraftment of granulocytes after stem cell transplantation (day 10.5 vs. day 11.6), shorter duration of the inpatient stay (17.47 days vs. 19.16 days) and significantly less transfusions (8.82 % vs. 30.61 % patients receiving transfusions). The safety profile was comparable in both groups and in line with published data. We conclude that CE is a safe and highly effective mobilization protocol in patients with multiple myeloma at first diagnosis and appears to be superior to the commonly used cyclophosphamide mono regimen.


Subject(s)
Antineoplastic Combined Chemotherapy Protocols/pharmacology , Cyclophosphamide/pharmacology , Etoposide/pharmacology , Hematopoietic Stem Cell Mobilization/methods , Hematopoietic Stem Cells/drug effects , Multiple Myeloma/therapy , Peripheral Blood Stem Cell Transplantation/methods , Aged , Antineoplastic Combined Chemotherapy Protocols/therapeutic use , COVID-19 , Cyclophosphamide/administration & dosage , Cyclophosphamide/adverse effects , Etoposide/administration & dosage , Etoposide/adverse effects , Female , Granulocyte Colony-Stimulating Factor/pharmacology , Humans , Male , Melphalan/administration & dosage , Middle Aged , Multiple Myeloma/blood , Myeloma Proteins/analysis , Pandemics , Retrospective Studies , SARS-CoV-2 , Transplantation, Autologous
SELECTION OF CITATIONS
SEARCH DETAIL