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1.
Nat Commun ; 12(1): 1112, 2021 02 18.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1091491

ABSTRACT

Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) is a worldwide health threat. In a prospective multicentric study, we identify IL-3 as an independent prognostic marker for the outcome during SARS-CoV-2 infections. Specifically, low plasma IL-3 levels is associated with increased severity, viral load, and mortality during SARS-CoV-2 infections. Patients with severe COVID-19 exhibit also reduced circulating plasmacytoid dendritic cells (pDCs) and low plasma IFNα and IFNλ levels when compared to non-severe COVID-19 patients. In a mouse model of pulmonary HSV-1 infection, treatment with recombinant IL-3 reduces viral load and mortality. Mechanistically, IL-3 increases innate antiviral immunity by promoting the recruitment of circulating pDCs into the airways by stimulating CXCL12 secretion from pulmonary CD123+ epithelial cells, both, in mice and in COVID-19 negative patients exhibiting pulmonary diseases. This study identifies IL-3 as a predictive disease marker for SARS-CoV-2 infections and as a potential therapeutic target for pulmunory viral infections.


Subject(s)
/diagnosis , Interleukin-3/blood , Animals , Chemokine CXCL12/immunology , Dendritic Cells/cytology , Disease Models, Animal , Female , Germany , Humans , Immunity, Innate , Interferons/blood , Lung/immunology , Lung/virology , Mice , Mice, Inbred BALB C , Mice, Inbred C57BL , Mice, Knockout , Prospective Studies , Severity of Illness Index , T-Lymphocytes/cytology , Viral Load
2.
Front Immunol ; 11: 621441, 2020.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1081856

ABSTRACT

Although COVID-19 has become a major challenge to global health, there are currently no efficacious agents for effective treatment. Cytokine storm syndrome (CSS) can lead to acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS), which contributes to most COVID-19 mortalities. Research points to interleukin 6 (IL-6) as a crucial signature of the cytokine storm, and the clinical use of the IL-6 inhibitor tocilizumab shows potential for treatment of COVID-19 patient. In this study, we challenged wild-type and adenovirus-5/human angiotensin-converting enzyme 2-expressing BALB/c mice with a combination of polyinosinic-polycytidylic acid and recombinant SARS-CoV-2 spike-extracellular domain protein. High levels of TNF-α and nearly 100 times increased IL-6 were detected at 6 h, but disappeared by 24 h in bronchoalveolar lavage fluid (BALF) following immunostimulant challenge. Lung injury observed by histopathologic changes and magnetic resonance imaging at 24 h indicated that increased TNF-α and IL-6 may initiate CSS in the lung, resulting in the continual production of inflammatory cytokines. We hypothesize that TNF-α and IL-6 may contribute to the occurrence of CSS in COVID-19. We also investigated multiple monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) and inhibitors for neutralizing the pro-inflammatory phenotype of COVID-19: mAbs against IL-1α, IL-6, TNF-α, and granulocyte-macrophage colony-stimulating factor (GM-CSF), and inhibitors of p38 and JAK partially relieved CSS; mAbs against IL-6, TNF-α, and GM-CSF, and inhibitors of p38, extracellular signal-regulated kinase, and myeloperoxidase somewhat reduced neutrophilic alveolitis in the lung. This novel murine model opens a biologically safe, time-saving avenue for clarifying the mechanism of CSS/ARDS in COVID-19 and developing new therapeutic drugs.


Subject(s)
Anti-Inflammatory Agents/pharmacology , Cytokine Release Syndrome/immunology , Disease Models, Animal , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/immunology , Animals , Antibodies, Neutralizing/pharmacology , Antibodies, Viral/pharmacology , Cytokine Release Syndrome/virology , Cytokines/immunology , Male , Mice , Mice, Inbred BALB C , Poly I-C/immunology , /immunology
3.
Front Immunol ; 11: 602254, 2020.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1081589

ABSTRACT

Given the aggressive spread of COVID-19-related deaths, there is an urgent public health need to support the development of vaccine candidates to rapidly improve the available control measures against SARS-CoV-2. To meet this need, we are leveraging our existing vaccine platform to target SARS-CoV-2. Here, we generated cellular heat shock chaperone protein, glycoprotein 96 (gp96), to deliver SARS-CoV-2 protein S (spike) to the immune system and to induce cell-mediated immune responses. We showed that our vaccine platform effectively stimulates a robust cellular immune response against protein S. Moreover, we confirmed that gp96-Ig, secreted from allogeneic cells expressing full-length protein S, generates powerful, protein S polyepitope-specific CD4+ and CD8+ T cell responses in both lung interstitium and airways. These findings were further strengthened by the observation that protein-S -specific CD8+ T cells were induced in human leukocyte antigen HLA-A2.1 transgenic mice thus providing encouraging translational data that the vaccine is likely to work in humans, in the context of SARS-CoV-2 antigen presentation.


Subject(s)
CD8-Positive T-Lymphocytes/immunology , /prevention & control , Lung/immunology , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/administration & dosage , Animals , Genetic Vectors/immunology , Genetic Vectors/pharmacology , Humans , Immunoglobulin G/immunology , Membrane Glycoproteins/administration & dosage , Membrane Glycoproteins/immunology , Mice , Mice, Inbred C57BL , Recombinant Fusion Proteins/administration & dosage , Recombinant Fusion Proteins/immunology , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/immunology
4.
FASEB J ; 35(3): e21419, 2021 03.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1075599

ABSTRACT

In the early phase of the Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic, it was postulated that the renin-angiotensin-system inhibitors (RASi) increase the infection risk. This was primarily based on numerous reports, which stated that the RASi could increase the organ Angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2), the receptor of Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), in rodents. RASi can theoretically antagonize the potential influence of angiotensin II (Ang II) on ACE2. However, while Ang II decreases the ACE2 levels in cultured cells, there is little evidence that supports this phenomenon in living animals. In this study, we tested whether Ang II or Ang II combined with its antagonist would alter the ACE2 and other molecules associated with the infection of SARS-CoV-2. Male C57BL6/J mice were administered vehicle, Ang II (400 ng/kg/min), or Ang II with losartan (10 mg/kg/min) for 2 weeks. ACE2 knockout mice were used as a negative control for the ACE2 assay. We found that both Ang II, which elevated blood pressure by 30 mm Hg, and Ang II with losartan, had no effect on the expression or protein activity of ACE2 in the lung, left ventricle, kidney, and ileum. Likewise, these interventions had no effect on the expression of Transmembrane Protease Serine 2 (TMPRSS2) and Furin, proteases that facilitate the virus-cell fusion, and the expression or activity of Tumor Necrosis Factor α-Convertase (TACE) that cleaves cell-surface ACE2. Collectively, physiological concentrations of Ang II do not modulate the molecules associated with SARS-CoV-2 infection. These results support the recent observational studies suggesting that the use of RASi is not a risk factor for COVID-19.


Subject(s)
Angiotensin II Type 1 Receptor Blockers/pharmacology , Angiotensin II/pharmacology , /metabolism , Losartan/pharmacology , ADAM17 Protein/genetics , ADAM17 Protein/metabolism , Angiotensin II/administration & dosage , Angiotensin II Type 1 Receptor Blockers/administration & dosage , Animals , Furin/genetics , Furin/metabolism , Gene Expression Regulation, Enzymologic/drug effects , Losartan/administration & dosage , Male , Mice , Mice, Inbred C57BL , Mice, Knockout , Serine Endopeptidases/genetics , Serine Endopeptidases/metabolism , Vasoconstrictor Agents/pharmacology
5.
Cell Rep ; 34(4): 108666, 2021 01 26.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1064915

ABSTRACT

Although vaccines against severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) are under development, the antigen epitopes on the virus and their immunogenicity are poorly understood. Here, we simulate the 3D structures and predict the B cell epitopes on the spike (S), envelope (E), membrane (M), and nucleocapsid (N) proteins of SARS-CoV-2 using structure-based approaches and validate epitope immunogenicity by immunizing mice. Almost all 33 predicted epitopes effectively induce antibody production, six of these are immunodominant epitopes in individuals, and 23 are conserved within SARS-CoV-2, SARS-CoV, and bat coronavirus RaTG13. We find that the immunodominant epitopes of individuals with domestic (China) SARS-CoV-2 are different from those of individuals with imported (Europe) SARS-CoV-2, which may be caused by mutations on the S (G614D) and N proteins. Importantly, we find several epitopes on the S protein that elicit neutralizing antibodies against D614 and G614 SARS-CoV-2, which can contribute to vaccine design against coronaviruses.


Subject(s)
/immunology , Epitopes, B-Lymphocyte/immunology , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/immunology , Viral Matrix Proteins/immunology , /immunology , Adolescent , Adult , Aged , Animals , Antibodies, Neutralizing/immunology , Antibodies, Viral/immunology , Antigens, Viral/immunology , /therapy , Child , Epitopes, B-Lymphocyte/metabolism , Female , Humans , Male , Mice , Mice, Inbred BALB C , Middle Aged , Young Adult
6.
Cell ; 184(1): 106-119.e14, 2021 01 07.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1064913

ABSTRACT

The Coronaviridae are a family of viruses that cause disease in humans ranging from mild respiratory infection to potentially lethal acute respiratory distress syndrome. Finding host factors common to multiple coronaviruses could facilitate the development of therapies to combat current and future coronavirus pandemics. Here, we conducted genome-wide CRISPR screens in cells infected by SARS-CoV-2 as well as two seasonally circulating common cold coronaviruses, OC43 and 229E. This approach correctly identified the distinct viral entry factors ACE2 (for SARS-CoV-2), aminopeptidase N (for 229E), and glycosaminoglycans (for OC43). Additionally, we identified phosphatidylinositol phosphate biosynthesis and cholesterol homeostasis as critical host pathways supporting infection by all three coronaviruses. By contrast, the lysosomal protein TMEM106B appeared unique to SARS-CoV-2 infection. Pharmacological inhibition of phosphatidylinositol kinases and cholesterol homeostasis reduced replication of all three coronaviruses. These findings offer important insights for the understanding of the coronavirus life cycle and the development of host-directed therapies.


Subject(s)
/genetics , Coronavirus Infections/genetics , Coronavirus/physiology , Genome-Wide Association Study , Host-Pathogen Interactions , /physiology , A549 Cells , Animals , Biosynthetic Pathways/drug effects , Cell Line , Chlorocebus aethiops , Cholesterol/biosynthesis , Cholesterol/metabolism , Cluster Analysis , Clustered Regularly Interspaced Short Palindromic Repeats , Common Cold/genetics , Common Cold/virology , Coronavirus/classification , Coronavirus Infections/virology , Gene Knockout Techniques , Host-Pathogen Interactions/drug effects , Humans , Mice , Phosphatidylinositols/biosynthesis , Vero Cells , Virus Internalization/drug effects , Virus Replication
7.
JCI Insight ; 6(1)2021 01 11.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1066996

ABSTRACT

The rapid spread of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), coupled with a lack of therapeutics, has paralyzed the globe. Although significant effort has been invested in identifying antibodies that block infection, the ability of antibodies to target infected cells through Fc interactions may be vital to eliminate the virus. To explore the role of Fc activity in SARS-CoV-2 immunity, the functional potential of a cross-SARS-reactive antibody, CR3022, was assessed. CR3022 was able to broadly drive antibody effector functions, providing critical immune clearance at entry and upon egress. Using selectively engineered Fc variants, no protection was observed after administration of WT IgG1 in mice or hamsters. Conversely, the functionally enhanced Fc variant resulted in increased pathology in both the mouse and hamster models, causing weight loss in mice and enhanced viral replication and weight loss in the more susceptible hamster model, highlighting the pathological functions of Fc-enhancing mutations. These data point to the critical need for strategic Fc engineering for the treatment of SARS-CoV-2 infection.


Subject(s)
Antibodies, Neutralizing/pharmacology , Immunity, Innate/drug effects , Immunoglobulin Fc Fragments/genetics , Immunoglobulin G/pharmacology , Virus Replication/drug effects , Animals , Antibodies, Monoclonal , Antibodies, Neutralizing/genetics , Antibodies, Neutralizing/therapeutic use , /physiopathology , Cricetinae , Cross Reactions , Epitopes , Humans , Immunity, Innate/immunology , Immunoglobulin G/genetics , Immunoglobulin G/therapeutic use , Mesocricetus , Mice , Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus/drug effects , Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus/immunology , Protein Engineering , Receptors, Fc/immunology , SARS Virus/drug effects , SARS Virus/immunology , Severity of Illness Index , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/immunology , THP-1 Cells , Viral Load/drug effects , Weight Loss/drug effects
8.
Open Heart ; 7(2)2020 12.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1066930

ABSTRACT

SARS-CoV-2 is the virus responsible for the ongoing COVID-19 outbreak. The virus uses ACE2 receptor for viral entry. ACE2 is part of the counter-regulatory renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system and is also expressed in the lower respiratory tract along the alveolar epithelium. There is, however, significant controversy regarding the role of ACE2 expression in COVID-19 pathogenesis. Some have argued that decreasing ACE2 expression would result in decreased susceptibility to the virus by decreasing available binding sites for SARS-CoV-2 and restricting viral entry into the cells. Others have argued that, like the pathogenesis of other viral pneumonias, including those stemming from previous severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) viruses, once SARS-CoV-2 binds to ACE2, it downregulates ACE2 expression. Lack of the favourable effects of ACE2 might exaggerate lung injury by a variety of mechanisms. In order to help address this controversy, we conducted a literature search and review of relevant preclinical and clinical publications pertaining to SARS-CoV-2, COVID-19, ACE2, viral pneumonia, SARS, acute respiratory distress syndrome and lung injury. Our review suggests, although controversial, that patients at increased susceptibility to COVID-19 complications may have reduced baseline ACE2, and by modulating ACE2 expression one can possibly improve COVID-19 outcomes. Herein, we elucidate why and how this potential mechanism might work.


Subject(s)
/metabolism , /metabolism , Renin-Angiotensin System/drug effects , /genetics , Adult , Angiotensin Receptor Antagonists/pharmacology , Angiotensin Receptor Antagonists/therapeutic use , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme Inhibitors/pharmacology , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme Inhibitors/therapeutic use , Animals , /virology , Down-Regulation , Female , Humans , Immunity/immunology , Lung Injury/drug therapy , Lung Injury/physiopathology , Male , Mice , Middle Aged , Models, Animal , Pneumonia, Viral/drug therapy , Risk Factors , Virus Internalization/drug effects
9.
Science ; 371(6530): 735-741, 2021 02 12.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1066809

ABSTRACT

Protection against severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) and SARS-related emergent zoonotic coronaviruses is urgently needed. We made homotypic nanoparticles displaying the receptor binding domain (RBD) of SARS-CoV-2 or co-displaying SARS-CoV-2 RBD along with RBDs from animal betacoronaviruses that represent threats to humans (mosaic nanoparticles with four to eight distinct RBDs). Mice immunized with RBD nanoparticles, but not soluble antigen, elicited cross-reactive binding and neutralization responses. Mosaic RBD nanoparticles elicited antibodies with superior cross-reactive recognition of heterologous RBDs relative to sera from immunizations with homotypic SARS-CoV-2-RBD nanoparticles or COVID-19 convalescent human plasmas. Moreover, after priming, sera from mosaic RBD-immunized mice neutralized heterologous pseudotyped coronaviruses as well as or better than sera from homotypic SARS-CoV-2-RBD nanoparticle immunizations, demonstrating no loss of immunogenicity against particular RBDs resulting from co-display. A single immunization with mosaic RBD nanoparticles provides a potential strategy to simultaneously protect against SARS-CoV-2 and emerging zoonotic coronaviruses.


Subject(s)
Antibodies, Viral/immunology , Betacoronavirus/immunology , Nanoparticles , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/immunology , Animals , Antibodies, Neutralizing/blood , Antibodies, Neutralizing/immunology , Antibodies, Viral/blood , Coronavirus Infections/immunology , Cross Reactions , Enzyme-Linked Immunosorbent Assay , Female , Immune Sera/immunology , Immunization , Immunoglobulin G/blood , Immunoglobulin G/immunology , Mice , Mice, Inbred BALB C , Neutralization Tests , Protein Domains , Receptors, Antigen, B-Cell/immunology , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/chemistry , /virology
10.
Sci Adv ; 7(6)2021 02.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1066792

ABSTRACT

The profound consequences of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) mandate urgent development of effective vaccines. Here, we evaluated an Amphiphile (AMP) vaccine adjuvant, AMP-CpG, composed of diacyl lipid-modified CpG, admixed with the SARS-CoV-2 Spike-2 receptor binding domain protein as a candidate vaccine (ELI-005) in mice. AMP modification efficiently delivers CpG to lymph nodes, where innate and adaptive immune responses are generated. Compared to alum, immunization with AMP-CpG induced >25-fold higher antigen-specific T cells that produced multiple T helper 1 (TH1) cytokines and trafficked into lung parenchyma. Antibody responses favored TH1 isotypes (IgG2c and IgG3) and potently neutralized Spike-2-ACE2 receptor binding, with titers 265-fold higher than natural convalescent patient COVID-19 responses; T cell and antibody responses were maintained despite 10-fold dose reduction in Spike antigen. Both cellular and humoral immune responses were preserved in aged mice. These advantages merit clinical translation to SARS-CoV-2 and other protein subunit vaccines.


Subject(s)
/administration & dosage , Immunity, Cellular , Immunity, Humoral , Lymph Nodes/immunology , Surface-Active Agents/administration & dosage , Adjuvants, Immunologic/administration & dosage , Animals , Antibodies, Neutralizing/immunology , Antibodies, Viral/immunology , /immunology , Female , HEK293 Cells , Humans , Immunogenicity, Vaccine , Mice , Mice, Inbred BALB C , Mice, Inbred C57BL , Neutralization Tests , Oligodeoxyribonucleotides/administration & dosage , Oligodeoxyribonucleotides/immunology , Protein Interaction Domains and Motifs/immunology , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/chemistry , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/immunology , Treatment Outcome , Vaccination/methods , Vaccines, Subunit/immunology
11.
Sci Rep ; 11(1): 3125, 2021 02 04.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1065956

ABSTRACT

The outbreak of the SARS-CoV-2 virus and its rapid spread into a global pandemic made the urgent development of scalable vaccines to prevent coronavirus disease (COVID-19) a global health and economic imperative. Here, we characterized and compared the immunogenicity of two alphavirus-based DNA-launched self-replicating (DREP) vaccine candidates encoding either SARS-CoV-2 spike glycoprotein (DREP-S) or a spike ectodomain trimer stabilized in prefusion conformation (DREP-Secto). We observed that the two DREP constructs were immunogenic in mice inducing both binding and neutralizing antibodies as well as T cell responses. Interestingly, the DREP coding for the unmodified spike turned out to be more potent vaccine candidate, eliciting high titers of SARS-CoV-2 specific IgG antibodies that were able to efficiently neutralize pseudotyped virus after a single immunization. In addition, both DREP constructs were able to efficiently prime responses that could be boosted with a heterologous spike protein immunization. These data provide important novel insights into SARS-CoV-2 vaccine design using a rapid response DNA vaccine platform. Moreover, they encourage the use of mixed vaccine modalities as a strategy to combat SARS-CoV-2.


Subject(s)
/immunology , /immunology , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/immunology , Vaccines, DNA/immunology , Animals , Female , HEK293 Cells , Humans , Mice , Mice, Inbred C57BL
12.
Sci Rep ; 11(1): 821, 2021 01 12.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1065936

ABSTRACT

Influenza virus and coronavirus, belonging to enveloped RNA viruses, are major causes of human respiratory diseases. The aim of this study was to investigate the broad spectrum antiviral activity of a naturally existing sulfated polysaccharide, lambda-carrageenan (λ-CGN), purified from marine red algae. Cell culture-based assays revealed that the macromolecule efficiently inhibited both influenza A and B viruses with EC50 values ranging from 0.3 to 1.4 µg/ml, as well as currently circulating severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) with an EC50 value of 0.9 ± 1.1 µg/ml. No toxicity to the host cells was observed at concentrations up to 300 µg/ml. Plaque titration and western blot analysis verified that λ-CGN reduced expression of viral proteins in cell lysates and suppressed progeny virus production in culture supernatants in a dose-dependent manner. This polyanionic compound exerts antiviral activity by targeting viral attachment to cell surface receptors and preventing virus entry. Moreover, its intranasal administration to mice during influenza A viral challenge not only alleviated infection-mediated reductions in body weight but also protected 60% of mice from virus-induced mortality. Thus, λ-CGN could be a promising antiviral agent for preventing infection with several respiratory viruses.


Subject(s)
Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , Carrageenan/pharmacology , Orthomyxoviridae Infections/drug therapy , Orthomyxoviridae/drug effects , /drug effects , Animals , Antiviral Agents/therapeutic use , Carrageenan/therapeutic use , Dogs , Female , HEK293 Cells , Humans , Madin Darby Canine Kidney Cells , Mice , Mice, Inbred BALB C , Orthomyxoviridae/physiology , Virus Replication/drug effects
13.
Nat Commun ; 12(1): 776, 2021 02 03.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1062751

ABSTRACT

The rapid expansion of the COVID-19 pandemic has made the development of a SARS-CoV-2 vaccine a global health and economic priority. Taking advantage of versatility and rapid development, three SARS-CoV-2 mRNA vaccine candidates have entered clinical trials with a two-dose immunization regimen. However, the waning antibody response in convalescent patients after SARS-CoV-2 infection and the emergence of human re-infection have raised widespread concerns about a possible short duration of SARS-CoV-2 vaccine protection. Here, we developed a nucleoside-modified mRNA vaccine in lipid-encapsulated form that encoded the SARS-CoV-2 RBD, termed as mRNA-RBD. A single immunization of mRNA-RBD elicited both robust neutralizing antibody and cellular responses, and conferred a near-complete protection against wild SARS-CoV-2 infection in the lungs of hACE2 transgenic mice. Noticeably, the high levels of neutralizing antibodies in BALB/c mice induced by mRNA-RBD vaccination were maintained for at least 6.5 months and conferred a long-term notable protection for hACE2 transgenic mice against SARS-CoV-2 infection in a sera transfer study. These data demonstrated that a single dose of mRNA-RBD provided long-term protection against SARS-CoV-2 challenge.


Subject(s)
/immunology , /immunology , /genetics , /immunology , /genetics , Animals , Antibodies, Neutralizing/immunology , /genetics , Cell Line , Female , Humans , Mice , Mice, Inbred BALB C , Mice, Inbred C57BL , Mice, Transgenic , Pandemics/prevention & control , RNA, Messenger/genetics , RNA, Messenger/immunology , RNA, Viral/genetics , RNA, Viral/immunology , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/immunology , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/metabolism , Vaccines, Synthetic/administration & dosage , Vaccines, Synthetic/genetics , Vaccines, Synthetic/immunology , Viral Envelope Proteins/immunology
14.
Viruses ; 13(2)2021 02 03.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1060766

ABSTRACT

The long-term control strategy of SARS-CoV-2 and other major respiratory viruses needs to include antivirals to treat acute infections, in addition to the judicious use of effective vaccines. Whilst COVID-19 vaccines are being rolled out for mass vaccination, the modest number of antivirals in use or development for any disease bears testament to the challenges of antiviral development. We recently showed that non-cytotoxic levels of thapsigargin (TG), an inhibitor of the sarcoplasmic/endoplasmic reticulum (ER) Ca2+ ATPase pump, induces a potent host innate immune antiviral response that blocks influenza A virus replication. Here we show that TG is also highly effective in blocking the replication of respiratory syncytial virus (RSV), common cold coronavirus OC43, SARS-CoV-2 and influenza A virus in immortalized or primary human cells. TG's antiviral performance was significantly better than remdesivir and ribavirin in their respective inhibition of OC43 and RSV. Notably, TG was just as inhibitory to coronaviruses (OC43 and SARS-CoV-2) and influenza viruses (USSR H1N1 and pdm 2009 H1N1) in separate infections as in co-infections. Post-infection oral gavage of acid-stable TG protected mice against a lethal influenza virus challenge. Together with its ability to inhibit the different viruses before or during active infection, and with an antiviral duration of at least 48 h post-TG exposure, we propose that TG (or its derivatives) is a promising broad-spectrum inhibitor against SARS-CoV-2, OC43, RSV and influenza virus.


Subject(s)
Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , Betacoronavirus/drug effects , Coronavirus OC43, Human/drug effects , Influenza A Virus, H1N1 Subtype/drug effects , Respiratory Syncytial Virus, Human/drug effects , Thapsigargin/pharmacology , Animals , Antiviral Agents/therapeutic use , Betacoronavirus/physiology , Cell Line , Cell Line, Tumor , Cells, Cultured , Coronavirus OC43, Human/physiology , Endoplasmic Reticulum Stress , Humans , Influenza A Virus, H1N1 Subtype/physiology , Mice , Microbial Sensitivity Tests , Orthomyxoviridae Infections/drug therapy , Orthomyxoviridae Infections/virology , Respiratory Syncytial Virus, Human/physiology , Ribavirin/pharmacology , Thapsigargin/therapeutic use , Virus Replication/drug effects
15.
Cells ; 10(2)2021 02 02.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1060286

ABSTRACT

Since the beginning of the SARS-CoV-2(severe acute respiratory syndrome-coronavirus-2) pandemic, arace to develop a vaccine has been initiated, considering the massive and rather significant economic and healthcare hits that this virus has caused. The pathophysiology occurring following COVID-19(coronavirus disease-2019) infection has givenhints regarding the supportive and symptomatic treatments to establish for patients, as no specific anti-SARS-CoV-2 is available yet. Patient symptoms vary greatly and range from mild symptoms to severe fatal complications. Supportive treatments include antipyretics, antiviral therapies, different combinations of broad-spectrum antibiotics, hydroxychloroquine and plasma transfusion. Unfortunately, cancer patients are at higher risk of viral infection and more likely to develop serious complications due to their immunocompromised state, the fact that they are already administering multiple medications, as well as combined comorbidity compared to the general population. It may seem impossible to find a drug that possesses both potent antiviral and anticancer effects specifically against COVID-19 infection and its complications and the existing malignancy, respectively. Thymoquinone (TQ) is the most pharmacologically active ingredient in Nigella sativa seeds (black seeds); it is reported to have anticancer, anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects in various settings. In this review, we will discuss the multiple effects of TQ specifically against COVID-19, its beneficial effects against COVID-19 pathophysiology and multiple-organ complications, its use as an adjuvant for supportive COVID-19 therapy and cancer therapy, and finally, its anticancer effects.


Subject(s)
Antineoplastic Agents , Antiviral Agents , Benzoquinones , Drug Repositioning , Neoplasms , Animals , Antineoplastic Agents/pharmacology , Antineoplastic Agents/therapeutic use , Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , Antiviral Agents/therapeutic use , Benzoquinones/pharmacology , Benzoquinones/therapeutic use , /drug therapy , Cell Line, Tumor , Humans , Mice , Neoplasms/complications , Neoplasms/drug therapy , Rats
16.
Viruses ; 13(1)2021 Jan 19.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1060279

ABSTRACT

Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2) infection can cause neurological disease in humans, but little is known about the pathogenesis of SARS-CoV-2 infection in the central nervous system (CNS). Herein, using K18-hACE2 mice, we demonstrate that SARS-CoV-2 neuroinvasion and encephalitis is associated with mortality in these mice. Intranasal infection of K18-hACE2 mice with 105 plaque-forming units of SARS-CoV-2 resulted in 100% mortality by day 6 after infection. The highest virus titers in the lungs were observed on day 3 and declined on days 5 and 6 after infection. By contrast, very high levels of infectious virus were uniformly detected in the brains of all the animals on days 5 and 6. Onset of severe disease in infected mice correlated with peak viral levels in the brain. SARS-CoV-2-infected mice exhibited encephalitis hallmarks characterized by production of cytokines and chemokines, leukocyte infiltration, hemorrhage and neuronal cell death. SARS-CoV-2 was also found to productively infect cells within the nasal turbinate, eye and olfactory bulb, suggesting SARS-CoV-2 entry into the brain by this route after intranasal infection. Our data indicate that direct infection of CNS cells together with the induced inflammatory response in the brain resulted in the severe disease observed in SARS-CoV-2-infected K18-hACE2 mice.


Subject(s)
Brain/virology , Encephalitis, Viral/pathology , Lung/virology , /metabolism , /genetics , Animals , Brain/pathology , Cytokines/blood , Disease Models, Animal , Encephalitis, Viral/virology , Lung/pathology , Mice , Mice, Transgenic , Viral Load
17.
Cells ; 10(2)2021 02 02.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1060037

ABSTRACT

Many viruses disrupt host gene expression by degrading host mRNAs and/or manipulating translation activities to create a cellular environment favorable for viral replication. Often, virus-induced suppression of host gene expression, including those involved in antiviral responses, contributes to viral pathogenicity. Accordingly, clarifying the mechanisms of virus-induced disruption of host gene expression is important for understanding virus-host cell interactions and virus pathogenesis. Three highly pathogenic human coronaviruses (CoVs), including severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS)-CoV, Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS)-CoV, and SARS-CoV-2, have emerged in the past two decades. All of them encode nonstructural protein 1 (nsp1) in their genomes. Nsp1 of SARS-CoV and MERS-CoV exhibit common biological functions for inducing endonucleolytic cleavage of host mRNAs and inhibition of host translation, while viral mRNAs evade the nsp1-induced mRNA cleavage. SARS-CoV nsp1 is a major pathogenic determinant for this virus, supporting the notion that a viral protein that suppresses host gene expression can be a virulence factor, and further suggesting the possibility that SARS-CoV-2 nsp1, which has high amino acid identity with SARS-CoV nsp1, may serve as a major virulence factor. This review summarizes the gene expression suppression functions of nsp1 of CoVs, with a primary focus on SARS-CoV nsp1 and MERS-CoV nsp1.


Subject(s)
Betacoronavirus , Coronavirus Infections/virology , Viral Nonstructural Proteins/physiology , Animals , Betacoronavirus/pathogenicity , Betacoronavirus/physiology , Gene Expression Regulation , Host Microbial Interactions , Humans , Mice , RNA, Messenger/genetics , Virus Replication
18.
Drug Deliv ; 28(1): 325-342, 2021 Dec.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1057773

ABSTRACT

The aim of the present study was to investigate the pharmacological mechanism of matrine in treatment of COVID-19 combined with liver injury. Potential targets related to matrine, COVID-19 and liver injury were identified from several databases. We constructed PPI network and screened the core targets according to the degree value. Then, GO and KEGG enrichment were carried out. Molecular docking technology was used to verify the affinity between matrine and the crystal structure of core target protein. Finally, real-time RT-PCR was used to detect the effects of matrine on hub gene expression in liver tissue of liver injury mice and lung tissue of lung injury mice to further confirm the results of network pharmacological analysis. The results show that six core targets including AKT1, TP53, TNF, IL6, BCL2L1 and ATM were identified. The potential therapeutic mechanism of matrine on COVID-19 combined with liver injury is closely related to regulate antiviral process, improve immune system and regulate the level of inflammatory factors. Molecular docking showed that matrine could spontaneously bind to the receptor protein and had strong binding force. Real-time RT-PCR demonstrated that matrine could significantly reduce the expression of AKT1, TP53, TNF, IL6 and ATM in mice with liver injury or lung injury (P < 0.05), and increase the expression of BCL2L1 to a certain extent (P > 0.05). Our results indicate that matrine can achieve simultaneous intervention of COVID-19 combined with liver injury by multi-dimensional pharmacological mechanism.


Subject(s)
Alkaloids/pharmacology , /epidemiology , Chemical and Drug Induced Liver Injury/epidemiology , Molecular Docking Simulation/methods , Quinolizines/pharmacology , Alkaloids/administration & dosage , Animals , Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , Chemical and Drug Induced Liver Injury/etiology , Dose-Response Relationship, Drug , Humans , Lipopolysaccharides/pharmacology , Liver/drug effects , Male , Mice , Mice, Inbred C57BL , Quinolizines/administration & dosage , Real-Time Polymerase Chain Reaction , Signal Transduction/drug effects
19.
Eur Rev Med Pharmacol Sci ; 25(1): 556-566, 2021 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1055413

ABSTRACT

A novel coronavirus named severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2) is a current outbreak of infection termed Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) by the World Health Organization (WHO). COVID-19 is currently a global pandemic that may cause close to half a billion deaths around the world. Until now, there is no effective treatment for COVID-19. Quinacrine (Qx) has been used since the 1930s as preventive antimalarial compound. It is a recognized small molecule inhibitor of RNA virus replication, with known anti-prion activity, and identified as a potent Ebola virus inhibitor both in vitro and in vivo. Recently, Qx has showed anti-SARS-CoV-2 activity. Herein, we review the potential mechanisms associated with quinacrine as an antiviral compound.


Subject(s)
Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , Quinacrine/pharmacology , Animals , Antiviral Agents/administration & dosage , Antiviral Agents/adverse effects , Cell Line , Cytokine Release Syndrome/immunology , Cytokine Release Syndrome/prevention & control , Cytokines/immunology , Humans , Mice , Quinacrine/administration & dosage , Quinacrine/adverse effects , Virus Replication/drug effects
20.
PLoS Pathog ; 17(1): e1009287, 2021 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1054892

ABSTRACT

The COVID-19 pandemic has revealed that infection with SARS-CoV-2 can result in a wide range of clinical outcomes in humans. An incomplete understanding of immune correlates of protection represents a major barrier to the design of vaccines and therapeutic approaches to prevent infection or limit disease. This deficit is largely due to the lack of prospectively collected, pre-infection samples from individuals that go on to become infected with SARS-CoV-2. Here, we utilized data from genetically diverse Collaborative Cross (CC) mice infected with SARS-CoV to determine whether baseline T cell signatures are associated with a lack of viral control and severe disease upon infection. SARS-CoV infection of CC mice results in a variety of viral load trajectories and disease outcomes. Overall, a dysregulated, pro-inflammatory signature of circulating T cells at baseline was associated with severe disease upon infection. Our study serves as proof of concept that circulating T cell signatures at baseline can predict clinical and virologic outcomes upon SARS-CoV infection. Identification of basal immune predictors in humans could allow for identification of individuals at highest risk of severe clinical and virologic outcomes upon infection, who may thus most benefit from available clinical interventions to restrict infection and disease.


Subject(s)
/immunology , /physiology , T-Lymphocytes/immunology , Animals , Female , Humans , Male , Mice , Mice, Inbred C57BL , Phenotype , Viral Load
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