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1.
Sci Rep ; 12(1): 298, 2022 01 07.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1612205

ABSTRACT

Inappropriate sinus tachycardia (IST) is a common observation in patients with post-COVID-19 syndrome (PCS) but has not yet been fully described to date. To investigate the prevalence and the mechanisms underlying IST in a prospective population of PCS patients. Consecutive patients admitted to the PCS Unit between June and December 2020 with a resting sinus rhythm rate ≥ 100 bpm were prospectively enrolled in this study and further examined by an orthostatic test, 2D echocardiography, 24-h ECG monitoring (heart rate variability was a surrogate for cardiac autonomic activity), quality-of-life and exercise capacity testing, and blood sampling. To assess cardiac autonomic function, a 2:1:1 comparative sub-analysis was conducted against both fully recovered patients with previous SARS-CoV-2 infection and individuals without prior SARS-CoV-2 infection. Among 200 PCS patients, 40 (20%) fulfilled the diagnostic criteria for IST (average age of 40.1 ± 10 years, 85% women, 83% mild COVID-19). No underlying structural heart disease, pro-inflammatory state, myocyte injury, or hypoxia were identified. IST was accompanied by a decrease in most heart rate variability parameters, especially those related to cardiovagal tone: pNN50 (cases 3.2 ± 3 vs. recovered 10.5 ± 8 vs. non-infected 17.3 ± 10; p < 0.001) and HF band (246 ± 179 vs. 463 ± 295 vs. 1048 ± 570, respectively; p < 0.001). IST is prevalent condition among PCS patients. Cardiac autonomic nervous system imbalance with decreased parasympathetic activity may explain this phenomenon.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/complications , Tachycardia, Sinus/etiology , Adult , COVID-19/diagnosis , COVID-19/pathology , COVID-19/physiopathology , Female , Heart Rate , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Myocardium/pathology , Prevalence , Prospective Studies , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Tachycardia, Sinus/diagnosis , Tachycardia, Sinus/pathology , Tachycardia, Sinus/physiopathology
2.
Elife ; 102021 12 21.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1597375

ABSTRACT

For the first time, we have used phase-contrast X-ray tomography to characterize the three-dimensional (3d) structure of cardiac tissue from patients who succumbed to Covid-19. By extending conventional histopathological examination by a third dimension, the delicate pathological changes of the vascular system of severe Covid-19 progressions can be analyzed, fully quantified and compared to other types of viral myocarditis and controls. To this end, cardiac samples with a cross-section of 3.5mm were scanned at a laboratory setup as well as at a parallel beam setup at a synchrotron radiation facility the synchrotron in a parallel beam configuration. The vascular network was segmented by a deep learning architecture suitable for 3d datasets (V-net), trained by sparse manual annotations. Pathological alterations of vessels, concerning the variation of diameters and the amount of small holes, were observed, indicative of elevated occurrence of intussusceptive angiogenesis, also confirmed by high-resolution cone beam X-ray tomography and scanning electron microscopy. Furthermore, we implemented a fully automated analysis of the tissue structure in the form of shape measures based on the structure tensor. The corresponding distributions show that the histopathology of Covid-19 differs from both influenza and typical coxsackie virus myocarditis.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/complications , Myocarditis/pathology , Myocarditis/virology , Myocardium/pathology , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Artificial Intelligence , COVID-19/pathology , Heart/diagnostic imaging , Heart/virology , Humans , Imaging, Three-Dimensional , Myocarditis/diagnostic imaging , Myocarditis/etiology , Synchrotrons , Tomography, X-Ray Computed
3.
Front Immunol ; 12: 748417, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1528820

ABSTRACT

Rationale: Myocardial injury associates significantly and independently with mortality in COVID-19 patients. However, the pathogenesis of myocardial injury in COVID-19 remains unclear, and cardiac involvement by SARS-CoV-2 presents a major challenge worldwide. Objective: This histological and immunohistochemical study sought to clarify the pathogenesis and propose a mechanism with pathways involved in COVID-19 myocardial injury. Methods and Results: Postmortem minimally invasive autopsies were performed in six patients who died from COVID-19, and the myocardium samples were compared to a control group (n=11). Histological analysis was performed using hematoxylin-eosin and toluidine blue staining. Immunohistochemical (IHC) staining was performed using monoclonal antibodies against targets: caspase-1, caspase-9, gasdermin-d, ICAM-1, IL-1ß, IL-4, IL-6, CD163, TNF-α, TGF-ß, MMP-9, type 1 and type 3 collagen. The samples were also assessed for apoptotic cells by TUNEL. Histological analysis showed severe pericardiocyte interstitial edema and higher mast cells counts per high-power field in all COVID-19 myocardium samples. The IHC analysis showed increased expression of caspase-1, ICAM-1, IL-1ß, IL-6, MMP-9, TNF-α, and other markers in the hearts of COVID-19 patients. Expression of caspase-9 did not differ from the controls, while gasdermin-d expression was less. The TUNEL assay was positive in all the COVID-19 samples supporting endothelial apoptosis. Conclusions: The pathogenesis of COVID-19 myocardial injury does not seem to relate to primary myocardiocyte involvement but to local inflammation with associated interstitial edema. We found heightened TGF-ß and interstitial collagen expression in COVID-affected hearts, a potential harbinger of chronic myocardial fibrosis. These results suggest a need for continued clinical surveillance of patients for myocardial dysfunction and arrythmias after recovery from the acute phase of COVID-19.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/metabolism , Heart Injuries/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2 , Aged , Apoptosis , Biopsy , COVID-19/pathology , Caspase 1/metabolism , Collagen/metabolism , Cytokines/metabolism , Female , Heart Injuries/pathology , Humans , Immunohistochemistry , Intercellular Adhesion Molecule-1/metabolism , Male , Matrix Metalloproteinase 9/metabolism , Myocardium/metabolism , Myocardium/pathology
4.
Front Immunol ; 12: 740260, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1506482

ABSTRACT

Increased left ventricular fibrosis has been reported in patients hospitalized with coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). It is unclear whether this fibrosis is a consequence of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus type 2 (SARS-CoV-2) infection or a risk factor for severe disease progression. We observed increased fibrosis in the left ventricular myocardium of deceased COVID-19 patients, compared with matched controls. We also detected increased mRNA levels of soluble interleukin-1 receptor-like 1 (sIL1-RL1) and transforming growth factor ß1 (TGF-ß1) in the left ventricular myocardium of deceased COVID-19 patients. Biochemical analysis of blood sampled from patients admitted to the emergency department (ED) with COVID-19 revealed highly elevated levels of TGF-ß1 mRNA in these patients compared to controls. Left ventricular strain measured by echocardiography as a marker of pre-existing cardiac fibrosis correlated strongly with blood TGF-ß1 mRNA levels and predicted disease severity in COVID-19 patients. In the left ventricular myocardium and lungs of COVID-19 patients, we found increased neuropilin-1 (NRP-1) RNA levels, which correlated strongly with the prevalence of pulmonary SARS-CoV-2 nucleocapsid. Cardiac and pulmonary fibrosis may therefore predispose these patients to increased cellular viral entry in the lung, which may explain the worse clinical outcome observed in our cohort. Our study demonstrates that patients at risk of clinical deterioration can be identified early by echocardiographic strain analysis and quantification of blood TGF-ß1 mRNA performed at the time of first medical contact.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/physiopathology , Heart Ventricles/pathology , Myocardium/pathology , Pulmonary Fibrosis/physiopathology , SARS-CoV-2/physiology , Adult , Aged , COVID-19/immunology , Female , Fibrosis , Heart Ventricles/metabolism , Humans , Interleukin-1 Receptor-Like 1 Protein/genetics , Interleukin-1 Receptor-Like 1 Protein/metabolism , Male , Middle Aged , Myocardium/metabolism , Neuropilin-1/genetics , Neuropilin-1/metabolism , Pulmonary Fibrosis/immunology , Risk , Severity of Illness Index , Transforming Growth Factor beta1/genetics , Transforming Growth Factor beta1/metabolism , Viral Load
5.
BMC Cardiovasc Disord ; 21(1): 522, 2021 10 29.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1486551

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: With the high prevalence of COVID-19 infections worldwide, the multisystem inflammatory syndrome in adults (MIS-A) is becoming an increasingly recognized entity. This syndrome presents in patients several weeks after infection with COVID-19 and is associated with thrombosis, elevated inflammatory markers, hemodynamic compromise and cardiac dysfunction. Treatment is often with steroids and intravenous immunoglobulin (IVIg). The pathologic basis of myocardial injury in MIS-A, however, is not well characterized. In our case report, we obtained endomyocardial biopsy that revealed a pattern of myocardial injury similar to that found in COVID-19 cardiac specimens. CASE PRESENTATION: A 26-year-old male presented with fevers, chills, headache, nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea 5 weeks after his COVID-19 infection. His SARS-CoV-2 PCR was negative and IgG was positive, consistent with prior infection. He was found to be in cardiogenic shock with biventricular failure, requiring inotropes and diuretics. Given concern for acute fulminant myocarditis, an endomyocardial biopsy (EMB) was performed, showing an inflammatory infiltrate consisting predominantly of interstitial macrophages with scant T lymphocytes. The histologic pattern was similar to that of cardiac specimens from COVID-19 patients, helping rule out myocarditis as the prevailing diagnosis. His case was complicated by persistent hypoxemia, and a computed tomography scan revealed pulmonary emboli. He received IVIg, steroids, and anticoagulation with rapid recovery of biventricular function. CONCLUSIONS: MIS-A should be considered as the diagnosis in patients presenting several weeks after COVID-19 infection with severe inflammation and multi-organ involvement. In our case, EMB facilitated identification of MIS-A and guided therapy. The patient's biventricular function recovered with IVIg and steroids.


Subject(s)
Anticoagulants/administration & dosage , COVID-19 , Myocarditis/diagnosis , Shock, Cardiogenic , Systemic Inflammatory Response Syndrome , Adult , Biopsy/methods , COVID-19/complications , COVID-19/diagnosis , COVID-19/drug therapy , COVID-19/immunology , COVID-19/physiopathology , Cardiotonic Agents/administration & dosage , Diagnosis, Differential , Diuretics/administration & dosage , Electrocardiography/methods , Humans , Immunoglobulins, Intravenous/administration & dosage , Male , Myocardium/pathology , Radiography, Thoracic/methods , SARS-CoV-2 , Shock, Cardiogenic/diagnosis , Shock, Cardiogenic/drug therapy , Shock, Cardiogenic/etiology , Shock, Cardiogenic/physiopathology , Systemic Inflammatory Response Syndrome/diagnosis , Systemic Inflammatory Response Syndrome/drug therapy , Systemic Inflammatory Response Syndrome/physiopathology , Treatment Outcome
7.
J Korean Med Sci ; 36(40): e286, 2021 Oct 18.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1477789

ABSTRACT

We present autopsy findings of a 22-year-old man who developed chest pain 5 days after the first dose of the BNT162b2 mRNA vaccine and died 7 hours later. Histological examination of the heart revealed isolated atrial myocarditis, with neutrophil and histiocyte predominance. Immunohistochemical C4d staining revealed scattered single-cell necrosis of myocytes which was not accompanied by inflammatory infiltrates. Extensive contraction band necrosis was observed in the atria and ventricles. There was no evidence of microthrombosis or infection in the heart and other organs. The primary cause of death was determined to be myocarditis, causally-associated with the BNT162b2 vaccine.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Vaccines/adverse effects , Death, Sudden/etiology , Myocarditis/complications , Vaccination/adverse effects , Adult , Autopsy , Death, Sudden/pathology , Humans , Male , Myocarditis/pathology , Myocardium/pathology
8.
Viruses ; 13(10)2021 10 07.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1463839

ABSTRACT

SARS-CoV-2 infection in children can trigger cardiovascular manifestations potentially requiring an intensive treatment and defining a new entity named Multisystem Inflammatory Syndrome in Children (MIS-C), whose features partially overlap with Kawasaki Disease (KD). A cross-sectional study including all diagnoses of MIS-C and KD from April 2020 to May 2021 in our metropolitan area was conducted evaluating clinical, laboratory (including immunological response, cytokines, and markers of myocardial damage), and cardiac (coronary and non-coronary) features at onset of the diseases. Evolution of ventricular dysfunction, valve regurgitations, and coronary lesions was documented. The severity of the disease was also considered based on the need for inotropic support and ICU admission. Twenty-four MIS-C were diagnosed (14 boys, median age 82 months): 13/24 cases (54.17%) presented left ventricular dysfunction, 12/24 (50%) required inotropic support, and 10/24 (41.67%) developed coronary anomalies (CALs). All patients received steroids and IVIG at a median time of 5 days (IQR1:4, IQR3:6.5) from onset of fever and heart function normalized 6 days (IQR1: 5, IQR3: 7) after therapy, while CALs persisted in one. One patient (12.5%) required infliximab because of refractory disease and still presented CALs 18 days after therapy. During the same study period, 15 KD were diagnosed: none had ventricular dysfunction, while 7/15 (46.67%) developed CALs. Three out of 15 patients (20%) still presented CALs 46 days from onset. Compared to KD, MIS-C pts have significantly higher IL8 and similar lymphocytes subpopulations. Despite a more severe presentation and initial cardiac findings compared to KD, the myocardial injury in MIS-C has a rapid response to immunomodulatory treatment (median time 6 days), in terms of ventricular function, valve regurgitations, and troponin. Incidence of CALs is similar at onset, but it tends to regress in most of the cases of MIS-C differently than in KD where CALs persist in up to 40% in the subacute stage after treatment.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/complications , COVID-19/pathology , Mucocutaneous Lymph Node Syndrome/pathology , Myocardium/pathology , Systemic Inflammatory Response Syndrome/pathology , Ventricular Dysfunction, Left/pathology , Adolescent , COVID-19/diagnosis , COVID-19/epidemiology , Child , Child, Preschool , Cross-Sectional Studies , Female , Humans , Infant , Infant, Newborn , Interleukin-10/blood , Interleukin-8/blood , Italy/epidemiology , Male , Mucocutaneous Lymph Node Syndrome/diagnosis , Prospective Studies , SARS-CoV-2/metabolism , Systemic Inflammatory Response Syndrome/diagnosis , Systemic Inflammatory Response Syndrome/epidemiology , Ventricular Dysfunction, Left/virology
9.
Int J Mol Sci ; 22(18)2021 Sep 13.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1409702

ABSTRACT

The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic with high infectivity and mortality has caused severe social and economic impacts worldwide. Growing reports of COVID-19 patients with multi-organ damage indicated that severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV2) may also disturb the cardiovascular system. Herein, we used human induced pluripotent stem cell (iPSC)-derived cardiomyocytes (iCMs) as the in vitro platform to examine the consequence of SARS-CoV2 infection on iCMs. Differentiated iCMs expressed the primary SARS-CoV2 receptor angiotensin-converting enzyme-II (ACE2) and the transmembrane protease serine type 2 (TMPRSS2) receptor suggesting the susceptibility of iCMs to SARS-CoV2. Following the infection of iCMs with SARS-CoV2, the viral nucleocapsid (N) protein was detected in the host cells, demonstrating the successful infection. Bioinformatics analysis revealed that the SARS-CoV2 infection upregulates several inflammation-related genes, including the proinflammatory cytokine tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α). The pretreatment of iCMs with TNF-α for 24 h, significantly increased the expression of ACE2 and TMPRSS2, SASR-CoV2 entry receptors. The TNF-α pretreatment enhanced the entry of GFP-expressing SARS-CoV2 pseudovirus into iCMs, and the neutralization of TNF-α ameliorated the TNF-α-enhanced viral entry. Collectively, SARS-CoV2 elevated TNF-α expression, which in turn enhanced the SARS-CoV2 viral entry. Our findings suggest that, TNF-α may participate in the cytokine storm and aggravate the myocardial damage in COVID-19 patients.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/complications , Cardiovascular Diseases/immunology , Cytokine Release Syndrome/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Tumor Necrosis Factor-alpha/metabolism , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/metabolism , COVID-19/immunology , COVID-19/pathology , COVID-19/virology , Cardiovascular Diseases/virology , Cell Differentiation , Cell Line , Computational Biology , Coronavirus Nucleocapsid Proteins/metabolism , Cytokine Release Syndrome/pathology , Cytokine Release Syndrome/virology , Humans , Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells , Myocardium/cytology , Myocardium/immunology , Myocardium/pathology , Myocytes, Cardiac/metabolism , Myocytes, Cardiac/virology , Phosphoproteins/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity , Serine Endopeptidases/metabolism , Tumor Necrosis Factor-alpha/antagonists & inhibitors , Up-Regulation/immunology , Virus Internalization/drug effects
10.
J Cardiovasc Magn Reson ; 23(1): 100, 2021 09 03.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1388773

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: The prevalence of abnormal cardiovascular magnetic resonance (CMR) findings in recovered coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) patients is unclear. This study aimed to investigate the prevalence of abnormal CMR findings in recovered COVID-19 patients. METHODS: A systematic literature search was performed to identify studies that report the prevalence of abnormal CMR findings in recovered COVID-19 patients. The number of patients with abnormal CMR findings and diagnosis of myocarditis on CMR (based on the Lake Louise criteria) and each abnormal CMR parameter were extracted. Subgroup analyses were performed according to patient characteristics (athletes vs. non-athletes and normal vs. undetermined cardiac enzyme levels). The pooled prevalence and 95% confidence interval (CI) of each CMR finding were calculated. Study heterogeneity was assessed, and meta-regression analysis was performed to investigate factors associated with heterogeneity. RESULTS: In total, 890 patients from 16 studies were included in the analysis. The pooled prevalence of one or more abnormal CMR findings in recovered COVID-19 patients was 46.4% (95% CI 43.2%-49.7%). The pooled prevalence of myocarditis and late gadolinium enhancement (LGE) was 14.0% (95% CI 11.6%-16.8%) and 20.5% (95% CI 17.7%-23.6%), respectively. Further, heterogeneity was observed (I2 > 50%, p < 0.1). In the subgroup analysis, the pooled prevalence of abnormal CMR findings and myocarditis was higher in non-athletes than in athletes (62.5% vs. 17.1% and 23.9% vs. 2.5%, respectively). Similarly, the pooled prevalence of abnormal CMR findings and LGE was higher in the undetermined than in the normal cardiac enzyme level subgroup (59.4% vs. 35.9% and 45.5% vs. 8.3%, respectively). Being an athlete was a significant independent factor related to heterogeneity in multivariate meta-regression analysis (p < 0.05). CONCLUSIONS: Nearly half of recovered COVID-19 patients exhibited one or more abnormal CMR findings. Athletes and patients with normal cardiac enzyme levels showed a lower prevalence of abnormal CMR findings than non-athletes and patients with undetermined cardiac enzyme levels. Trial registration The study protocol was registered in the PROSPERO database (registration number: CRD42020225234).


Subject(s)
COVID-19/epidemiology , Cardiovascular Diseases/diagnosis , Magnetic Resonance Imaging, Cine/methods , Myocardium/pathology , COVID-19/diagnosis , Cardiovascular Diseases/epidemiology , Comorbidity , Global Health , Humans , Pandemics , Predictive Value of Tests , Prevalence , SARS-CoV-2
12.
J Korean Med Sci ; 36(32): e229, 2021 Aug 16.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1360704

ABSTRACT

Increasing rates of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) vaccination coverage will result in more vaccine-related side effects, including acute myocarditis. In Korea, we present a 24-year-old male with acute myocarditis following COVID-19 vaccination (BNT162b2). His chest pain developed the day after vaccination and cardiac biomarkers were elevated. Echocardiography showed minimal pericardial effusion but normal myocardial contractility. Electrocardiography revealed diffuse ST elevation in lead II, and V2-5. Cardiac magnetic resonance images showed the high signal intensity of T2- short tau inversion recovery image, the high value of T2 mapping sequence, and late gadolinium enhancement in basal inferior and inferolateral wall. It was presumed that COVID-19 mRNA vaccination was probably responsible for acute myocarditis. Clinical course of the patient was favorable and he was discharged without any adverse event.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Vaccines/adverse effects , Heart/diagnostic imaging , Myocarditis/diagnostic imaging , Myocarditis/pathology , Myocardium/pathology , COVID-19/immunology , COVID-19/prevention & control , Chest Pain/pathology , Echocardiography , Electrocardiography , Humans , Magnetic Resonance Imaging , Male , Republic of Korea , Vaccination/adverse effects , Young Adult
13.
Hamostaseologie ; 41(5): 366-370, 2021 Oct.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1356592

ABSTRACT

Diagnosing myocarditis is still challenging due to its varying presentation ranging from none or mild symptoms to sudden cardiac death. Clinical presentation, electrocardiography, and cardiac biomarkers seem not to be sufficient for a reliable diagnosis. In fact, an unequivocal myocardial characterization is needed, applying endomyocardial biopsy (EMB) and cardiac magnetic resonance (CMR), a technique which demonstrates high accuracy to histology. Besides the assessment of functional parameters (volumes, ejection fraction), established late gadolinium enhancement and recent T1 and T2 mapping techniques including the calculation of extracellular volume fraction allow distinct myocardial tissue analysis by a noninvasive approach without the need of radiation. However, EMB is the only method which allows the identification of the underlying etiology of cardiac inflammation. Since myocardial damage and inflammation seem to be prevalent in a considerable number of patients even in the mid-term range after COVID-19, CMR and EMB seem to be adequate tools to further investigate these findings. In this article, we will (1) review current knowledge about the role of CMR in the COVID-19 pandemic and (2) report about our own EMB findings in COVID-19 patients in the Cardiopathology Center of our University Hospital.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/complications , Myocarditis/diagnosis , Myocarditis/etiology , SARS-CoV-2 , Adolescent , Adult , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , Biopsy/methods , Endocardium/pathology , Female , Heart Disease Risk Factors , Humans , Magnetic Resonance Imaging/methods , Male , Middle Aged , Myocarditis/diagnostic imaging , Myocardium/pathology , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity , Young Adult
14.
Front Immunol ; 12: 624703, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1354863

ABSTRACT

Accumulating evidence suggests that the breakdown of immune tolerance plays an important role in the development of myocarditis triggered by cardiotropic microbial infections. Genetic deletion of immune checkpoint molecules that are crucial for maintaining self-tolerance causes spontaneous myocarditis in mice, and cancer treatment with immune checkpoint inhibitors can induce myocarditis in humans. These results suggest that the loss of immune tolerance results in myocarditis. The tissue microenvironment influences the local immune dysregulation in autoimmunity. Recently, tenascin-C (TN-C) has been found to play a role as a local regulator of inflammation through various molecular mechanisms. TN-C is a nonstructural extracellular matrix glycoprotein expressed in the heart during early embryonic development, as well as during tissue injury or active tissue remodeling, in a spatiotemporally restricted manner. In a mouse model of autoimmune myocarditis, TN-C was detectable before inflammatory cell infiltration and myocytolysis became histologically evident; it was strongly expressed during active inflammation and disappeared with healing. TN-C activates dendritic cells to generate pathogenic autoreactive T cells and forms an important link between innate and acquired immunity.


Subject(s)
Autoimmune Diseases/metabolism , Autoimmunity , Cardiomyopathies/metabolism , Inflammation Mediators/metabolism , Myocarditis/metabolism , Myocardium/metabolism , Tenascin/metabolism , Animals , Autoimmune Diseases/immunology , Autoimmune Diseases/pathology , Cardiomyopathies/immunology , Cardiomyopathies/pathology , Cellular Microenvironment , Humans , Myocarditis/immunology , Myocarditis/pathology , Myocardium/immunology , Myocardium/pathology , Self Tolerance , Signal Transduction
15.
Cardiovasc Diabetol ; 20(1): 165, 2021 08 12.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1352662

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: COVID-19 diabetic adults are at increased risk of severe forms irrespective of obesity. In patients with type-II diabetes, fat distribution is characterized by visceral and ectopic adipose tissues expansion, resulting in systemic inflammation, which may play a role in driving the COVID-19 cytokine storm. Our aim was to determine if cardiac adipose tissue, combined to interleukin-6 levels, could predict adverse short-term outcomes, death and ICU requirement, in COVID-19 diabetic patients during the 21 days after admission. METHODS: Eighty one consecutive patients with type-II diabetes admitted for COVID-19 were included. Interleukin-6 measurement and chest computed tomography with total cardiac adipose tissue index (CATi) measurement were performed at admission. The primary outcome was death during the 21 days following admission while intensive care requirement with or without early death (ICU-R) defined the secondary endpoint. Associations of CATi and IL-6 and threshold values to predict the primary and secondary endpoints were determined. RESULTS: Of the enrolled patients (median age 66 years [IQR: 59-74]), 73% male, median body mass index (BMI) 27 kg/m2 [IQR: 24-31]) 20 patients had died from COVID-19, 20 required intensive care and 41 were in conventional care at day 21 after admission. Increased CATi and IL-6 levels were both significantly related to increased early mortality (respectively OR = 6.15, p = 0.002; OR = 18.2, p < 0.0001) and ICU-R (respectively OR = 3.27, p = 0.01; OR = 4.86, p = 0.002). These associations remained significant independently of age, sex, BMI as well as troponin-T level and pulmonary lesion extension in CT. We combined CATi and IL-6 levels as a multiplicative interaction score (CATi*IL-6). The cut-point for this score was ≥ 6386 with a sensitivity of 0.90 and a specificity of 0.87 (AUC = 0.88) and an OR of 59.6 for early mortality (p < 0.0001). CONCLUSIONS: Cardiac adipose tissue index and IL-6 determination at admission could help physicians to better identify diabetic patients with a potentially severe and lethal short term course irrespective of obesity. Diabetic patients with high CATi at admission, a fortiori associated with high IL-6 levels could be a relevant target population to promptly initiate anti-inflammatory therapies.


Subject(s)
Adipose Tissue/pathology , COVID-19/blood , Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2/complications , Interleukin-6/blood , Myocardium/pathology , Adipose Tissue/diagnostic imaging , Aged , COVID-19/complications , COVID-19/diagnostic imaging , COVID-19/mortality , Female , Heart/diagnostic imaging , Hospital Mortality , Humans , Intensive Care Units , Male , Middle Aged , Organ Size , Prognosis , SARS-CoV-2 , Severity of Illness Index , Tomography, X-Ray Computed
17.
Eur Rev Med Pharmacol Sci ; 25(15): 5063-5069, 2021 08.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1346861

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVE: Vaccine-induced immune thrombocytopenia (VITT) is a new syndrome occurring primarily in healthy young adults, with a female predominance, after receiving the first dose of ChAdOx1 nCoV-19 vaccine. We describe VITT syndrome characterized by severe thrombosis and thrombocytopenia found in our patient, with fatal outcome. CASE REPORT: A 58-year-old man, after 13 days from the first administration of ChAdOx1 nCoV-19 vaccine (AstraZeneca), presented with abdominal pain, diarrhea and vomitus. Laboratory tests revealed a severe thrombocytopenia, low fibrinogen serum levels and marked increase of D-dimer serum levels. The patient quickly developed a multiple organ failure, till death, three days after the hospital admission. RESULTS: At histology, in the lungs, interalveolar septa appeared thickened with microthrombi in the capillaries and veins. Interalveolar septa appeared thickened and showed vascular proliferation. Thrombi were detected in the capillaries of glomerular tufts. In the hearth, thrombi were observed in veins and capillaries. In the liver, voluminous fibrin thrombi were diffusely observed in the branches of the portal vein. Microthrombi were also found in the vasa vasorum of the wall of abdominal aorta. In the brain, microthrombi were observed in the capillaries of the choroid plexuses. Diffuse hemorrhagic necrosis was observed in the intestinal wall with marked congestion of the venous vessels. CONCLUSIONS: In our patient, the majority of data necessary for a VITT final diagnosis were present: thrombocytopenia and thrombosis in pulmonary, portal, hepatic, renal and mesenteric veins, associated with a marked increase of D-dimer serum levels. The finding of cerebral thrombosis in choroid plexuses, is a new finding in VITT. These features are suggestive for a very aggressive form of VITT.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Vaccines/adverse effects , COVID-19/prevention & control , Purpura, Thrombocytopenic, Idiopathic/etiology , Thrombosis/etiology , Aorta/pathology , COVID-19/blood , COVID-19 Vaccines/administration & dosage , Choroid Plexus/pathology , Fibrin Fibrinogen Degradation Products/metabolism , Humans , Ileum/pathology , Kidney/pathology , Liver/pathology , Lung/pathology , Male , Middle Aged , Myocardium/pathology , Purpura, Thrombocytopenic, Idiopathic/blood , Thrombosis/blood
18.
Clin Res Cardiol ; 110(11): 1822-1831, 2021 Nov.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1317539

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVE: Despite growing evidence about myocardial injury in hospitalized COronaVIrus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) patients, the mechanism behind this injury is only poorly understood and little is known about its association with SARS-CoV-2-mediated myocarditis. Furthermore, definite evidence of the presence and role of SARS-CoV-2 in cardiomyocytes in the clinical scenario is still lacking. METHODS: We histologically characterized myocardial tissue of 40 patients deceased with severe SARS-CoV-2 infection during the first wave of the pandemic. Clinical data were also recorded and analyzed. In case of findings supportive of myocardial inflammation, histological analysis was complemented by RT-PCR and immunohistochemistry for SARS-CoV-2 viral antigens and in situ RNA hybridization for the detection of viral genomes. RESULTS: Both chronic and acute myocardial damage was invariably present, correlating with the age and comorbidities of our population. Myocarditis of overt entity was found in one case (2.5%). SARS-CoV-2 genome was not found in the cardiomyocytes of the patient with myocarditis, while it was focally and negligibly present in cardiomyocytes of patients with known viral persistence in the lungs and no signs of myocardial inflammation. The presence of myocardial injury was not associated with myocardial inflammatory infiltrates. CONCLUSIONS: In this autopsy cohort of COVID-19 patients, myocarditis is rarely found and not associated with SARS-CoV-2 presence in cardiomyocytes. Chronic and acute forms of myocardial damage are constantly found and correlate with the severity of COVID-19 disease and pre-existing comorbidities.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/complications , Inflammation/virology , Myocarditis/virology , Myocardium/pathology , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , Autopsy , Cohort Studies , Female , Humans , Inflammation/epidemiology , Male , Myocarditis/epidemiology , Myocytes, Cardiac/virology , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Severity of Illness Index
19.
PLoS Pathog ; 17(7): e1009705, 2021 07.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1311291

ABSTRACT

COVID-19 (coronavirus disease 2019) caused by SARS-CoV-2 (severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2) infection is a disease affecting several organ systems. A model that captures all clinical symptoms of COVID-19 as well as long-haulers disease is needed. We investigated the host responses associated with infection in several major organ systems including the respiratory tract, the heart, and the kidneys after SARS-CoV-2 infection in Syrian hamsters. We found significant increases in inflammatory cytokines (IL-6, IL-1beta, and TNF) and type II interferons whereas type I interferons were inhibited. Examination of extrapulmonary tissue indicated inflammation in the kidney, liver, and heart which also lacked type I interferon upregulation. Histologically, the heart had evidence of myocarditis and microthrombi while the kidney had tubular inflammation. These results give insight into the multiorgan disease experienced by people with COVID-19 and possibly the prolonged disease in people with post-acute sequelae of SARS-CoV-2 (PASC).


Subject(s)
COVID-19/immunology , Down-Regulation/immunology , Interferon Type I/immunology , Kidney/immunology , Myocardium/immunology , Respiratory System/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Animals , COVID-19/pathology , Cricetinae , Disease Models, Animal , Humans , Inflammation/immunology , Inflammation/pathology , Kidney/pathology , Kidney/virology , Male , Mesocricetus , Myocardium/pathology , Respiratory System/pathology , Respiratory System/virology
20.
Cardiovasc Pathol ; 54: 107370, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1309178

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) is commonly associated with myocardial injury and heart failure. The pathophysiology behind this phenomenon remains unclear, with many diverse and multifaceted hypotheses. To contribute to this understanding, we describe the underlying cardiac findings in fifty patients who died with coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). METHODS: Included were autopsies performed on patients with a positive SARS-CoV-2 reverse-transcriptase-polymerase-chain reaction test from the index hospitalization. In the case of out-of-hospital death, patients were included if post-mortem testing was positive. Complete autopsies were performed according to a COVID-19 safety protocol, and all patients underwent both macroscopic and microscopic examination. If available, laboratory findings and echocardiograms were reported. RESULTS: The median age of the decedents was 63.5 years. The most common comorbidities included hypertension (90.0%), diabetes (56.0%) and obesity (50.0%). Lymphocytic inflammatory infiltrates in the heart were present in eight (16.0%) patients, with focal myocarditis present in two (4.0%) patients. Acute myocardial ischemia was observed in eight (16.0%) patients. The most common findings were myocardial fibrosis (80.0%), hypertrophy (72.0%), and microthrombi (66.0%). The most common causes of death were COVID-19 pneumonia in 18 (36.0%), COVID-19 pneumonia with bacterial superinfection in 12 (24.0%), and COVID-19 pneumonia with pulmonary embolism in 10 (20.0%) patients. CONCLUSIONS: Cardiovascular comorbidities were prevalent, and pathologic changes associated with hypertensive and atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease were the most common findings. Despite markedly elevated inflammatory markers and cardiac enzymes, few patients exhibited inflammatory infiltrates or necrosis within cardiac myocytes. A unifying pathophysiologic mechanism behind myocardial injury in COVID-19 remains elusive, and additional autopsy studies are needed.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/pathology , Heart Diseases/pathology , Myocardium/pathology , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity , Adult , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , Atherosclerosis/mortality , Atherosclerosis/pathology , Autopsy , COVID-19/immunology , COVID-19/mortality , COVID-19/virology , Comorbidity , Female , Heart Diseases/immunology , Heart Diseases/mortality , Heart Diseases/virology , Host-Pathogen Interactions , Humans , Hypertension/mortality , Hypertension/pathology , Inflammation Mediators/analysis , Male , Middle Aged , Myocardium/immunology , Necrosis , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Up-Regulation
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