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1.
Nutrients ; 12(6)2020 May 27.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1725878

ABSTRACT

The coronavirus-disease 2019 (COVID-19) was announced as a global pandemic by the World Health Organization. Challenges arise concerning how to optimally support the immune system in the general population, especially under self-confinement. An optimal immune response depends on an adequate diet and nutrition in order to keep infection at bay. For example, sufficient protein intake is crucial for optimal antibody production. Low micronutrient status, such as of vitamin A or zinc, has been associated with increased infection risk. Frequently, poor nutrient status is associated with inflammation and oxidative stress, which in turn can impact the immune system. Dietary constituents with especially high anti-inflammatory and antioxidant capacity include vitamin C, vitamin E, and phytochemicals such as carotenoids and polyphenols. Several of these can interact with transcription factors such as NF-kB and Nrf-2, related to anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects, respectively. Vitamin D in particular may perturb viral cellular infection via interacting with cell entry receptors (angiotensin converting enzyme 2), ACE2. Dietary fiber, fermented by the gut microbiota into short-chain fatty acids, has also been shown to produce anti-inflammatory effects. In this review, we highlight the importance of an optimal status of relevant nutrients to effectively reduce inflammation and oxidative stress, thereby strengthening the immune system during the COVID-19 crisis.


Subject(s)
Coronavirus Infections , Diet , Immune System/immunology , Inflammation/immunology , Nutrients/immunology , Oxidative Stress/immunology , Pandemics , Pneumonia, Viral , Antioxidants , Betacoronavirus , COVID-19 , Coronavirus Infections/immunology , Humans , Inflammation/prevention & control , Nutritional Status/immunology , Pneumonia, Viral/immunology , SARS-CoV-2
2.
Front Immunol ; 12: 778679, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1555320

ABSTRACT

Long-term care facility (LTCF) older residents display physiological alterations of cellular and humoral immunity that affect vaccine responses. Preliminary reports suggested a low early postvaccination antibody response against severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2). The aim of this study was to focus on the specific T-cell response. We quantified S1-specific IgG, neutralizing antibody titers, total specific IFNγ-secreting T cells by ELISpot, and functionality of CD4+- and CD8+-specific T cells by flow cytometry, after two doses of the BNT162b2 vaccine in younger and older people, with and without previous COVID-19 infection (hereafter referred to as COVID-19-recovered and COVID-19-naive subjects, respectively). Frailty, nutritional, and immunosenescence parameters were collected at baseline in COVID-19-naive older people. We analyzed the immune response in 129 young adults (median age 44.0 years) and 105 older residents living in a LCTF (median age 86.5 years), 3 months after the first injection. Humoral and cellular memory responses were dramatically impaired in the COVID-19-naive older (n = 54) compared with the COVID-19-naive younger adults (n = 121). Notably, older participants' neutralizing antibodies were 10 times lower than the younger's antibody titers (p < 0.0001) and LCTF residents also had an impaired functional T-cell response: the frequencies of IFNγ+ and IFNγ+IL-2+TNFα+ cells among specific CD4+ T cells, and the frequency of specific CD8+ T cells were lower in COVID-19-naive older participants than in COVID-19-naive young adults (p < 0.0001 and p = 0.0018, respectively). However, COVID-19-recovered older participants (n = 51) had greater antibody and T-cell responses, including IFNγ+ and IFNγ+IL-2+TNFα+-specific CD4+ T cells (p < 0.0001), as well as TNFα+-specific CD8+ T cells (p < 0.001), than COVID-19-naive older adults. We also observed that "inflammageing" and particularly high plasma levels of TNFα was associated to poor antibody response in the older participants. In conclusion, our results show that the COVID-19-naive older people had low counts and impaired specific CD4+ and CD8+ T cells, in addition to impaired antibody response, and that specific studies are warranted to assess the efficiency of SARS-CoV-2 mRNA-based vaccines, as in other immunocompromised subjects. Our study also shows that, despite their physiological alterations of immunity, vaccination is highly efficient in boosting the prior natural memory response in COVID-19-recovered older people.


Subject(s)
/immunology , COVID-19/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , T-Lymphocytes/immunology , Adult , Aged, 80 and over , Antibodies, Neutralizing/immunology , Antibodies, Viral/immunology , COVID-19/prevention & control , Female , Frailty/immunology , Humans , Immunogenicity, Vaccine , Immunosenescence/immunology , Male , Middle Aged , Nutritional Status/immunology
3.
J Med Virol ; 94(4): 1330-1335, 2022 Apr.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1540139

ABSTRACT

The efficacy of the vaccines varies between individuals and populations. The immunogenicity of the vaccine is influenced by various factors, including host factors. Previous studies have shown that host factors affect the effectiveness of vaccines, which may be true about COVID-19 vaccines. In this review, we evaluate the possible association of host factors with vaccine efficacy with a special focus on COVID-19 vaccines.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Vaccines/immunology , Age Factors , Body Mass Index , COVID-19/immunology , COVID-19/prevention & control , COVID-19/virology , Gastrointestinal Microbiome , Humans , Immunity , Immunogenicity, Vaccine , Nutritional Status/immunology , Obesity/immunology , Polymorphism, Genetic , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Sex Factors
4.
Molecules ; 26(17)2021 Sep 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1436074

ABSTRACT

Nutraceutical, a term derived from 'nutrition' and 'pharmaceutical', refers to any product isolated from herbs, nutrients, specific diets, processed foods, and beverages used not only for nutritional but also for medicinal purposes [...].


Subject(s)
Communicable Diseases/immunology , Dietary Supplements , Gastrointestinal Diseases/immunology , Inflammation/immunology , Neoplasms/immunology , Nutritional Status/immunology , Humans
5.
Food Funct ; 12(17): 7637-7650, 2021 Sep 07.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1319051

ABSTRACT

COVID-19 implications are still a threat to global health. In the face of this pandemic, food and nutrition are key issues that can boost the immune system. The bioactivity of functional foods and nutrients (probiotics, prebiotics, water- and fat-soluble vitamins, minerals, flavonoids, glutamine, arginine, nucleotides, and PUFAs) contributes to immune system modulation, which establishes the status of nutrients as a factor of immune competence. These foods can contribute, especially during a pandemic, to the minimization of complications of SARS-CoV-2 infection. Therefore, it is important to support the nutritional strategies for strengthening the immune status, associated with good eating habits, as a way to confront COVID-19.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/immunology , Functional Food , Immunomodulation , Nutrients/administration & dosage , Nutritional Status/immunology , Arginine , Fatty Acids, Omega-3 , Glutamine , Humans , Phenols , Prebiotics , Probiotics , SARS-CoV-2 , Trace Elements
6.
Nutrients ; 12(11)2020 Nov 20.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1160918

ABSTRACT

The relationship between nutrition and the immune system is a "complicated tango", as coined earlier this year in a review in Nutrients [...].


Subject(s)
Immunologic Factors , Nutritional Status/immunology , Vitamin D , Vitamins , COVID-19/complications , Humans , Vitamin D Deficiency/complications
7.
Br J Nutr ; 125(6): 678-684, 2021 03 28.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1139690

ABSTRACT

Recent scientific evidence has indicated that the elderly have increased risk of COVID-19 infections, with over 70s and 80s being hardest hit - especially residents of care homes and in clinical settings, ethnic minorities, people who work indoors and those who are overweight and obese. Other potential risk factors include lack of exposure to sunlight, darker skin pigmentation, co-morbidities, poor diet, certain medications, disadvantaged social and economic status, and lifestyle factors such as smoking and excessive consumption of alcohol. A key question is to understand how and why certain groups of people are more susceptible to COVID-19, whether they have weakened immune systems and what the roles of good nutrition and specific micronutrients are in supporting immune functions. A varied and balanced diet with an abundance of fruits and vegetables and the essential nutrients like vitamin D, vitamin A, B vitamins (folate, vitamin B6 and vitamin B12), vitamin C and the minerals, Fe, Cu, Se and Zn are all known to contribute to the normal functions of the immune system. Avoidance of deficiencies and identification of suboptimal intakes of these micronutrients in targeted groups of patients and in distinct and highly sensitive populations could help to strengthen the resilience of people to the COVID-19 pandemic. It is important to highlight evidence-based public health messages, to prevent false and misleading claims about the benefits of foods and food supplements and to communicate clearly that the extent of knowledge between micronutrients and COVID-19 infection is still being explored and that no diet will prevent or cure COVID-19 infection. Frequent handwashing and social distancing will be critical to reduce transmission.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/etiology , Diet/adverse effects , Micronutrients/immunology , Nutritional Status/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , COVID-19/immunology , Female , Humans , Male , Micronutrients/deficiency , Risk Factors , United Kingdom
8.
Nutrition ; 82: 111047, 2021 02.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-960019

ABSTRACT

Preliminary studies indicate that a robust immune response across different cell types is crucial in recovery from coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). An enormous number of investigations point to the vital importance of various micronutrients in the interactions between the host immune system and viruses, including COVID-19. There are complex and multifaceted links among micronutrient status, the host immune response, and the virulence of pathogenic viruses. Micronutrients play a critical role in the coordinated recruitment of innate and adaptive immune responses to viral infections, particularly in the regulation of pro- and anti-inflammatory host responses. Furthermore, inadequate amounts of micronutrients not only weaken the immune system in combating viral infections, but also contribute to the emergence of more virulent strains via alterations of the genetic makeup of the viral genome. The aim of this study was to evaluate the evidence that suggests the contribution of micronutrients in the spread as well as the morbidity and mortality of COVID-19. Both the presence of micronutrient deficiencies among infected individuals and the effect of micronutrient supplementation on the immune responses and overall outcome of the disease could be of great interest when weighing the use of micronutrients in the prevention and treatment of COVID-19 infection. These investigations could be of great value in dealing with future viral epidemics.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/immunology , Immune System Diseases/virology , Micronutrients/deficiency , Nutritional Status/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , COVID-19/virology , Humans , Immune System Diseases/immunology , Immunity/drug effects , Micronutrients/immunology
9.
Nutrients ; 12(9)2020 Sep 08.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-760945

ABSTRACT

The pandemic caused by the new coronavirus has caused shock waves in many countries, producing a global health crisis worldwide. Lack of knowledge of the biological mechanisms of viruses, plus the absence of effective treatments against the disease (COVID-19) and/or vaccines have pulled factors that can compromise the proper functioning of the immune system to fight against infectious diseases into the spotlight. The optimal status of specific nutrients is considered crucial to keeping immune components within their normal activity, helping to avoid and overcome infections. Specifically, the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) evaluated and deems six vitamins (D, A, C, Folate, B6, B12) and four minerals (zinc, iron, copper and selenium) to be essential for the normal functioning of the immune system, due to the scientific evidence collected so far. In this report, an update on the evidence of the contribution of nutritional factors as immune-enhancing aspects, factors that could reduce their bioavailability, and the role of the optimal status of these nutrients within the COVID-19 pandemic context was carried out. First, a non-systematic review of the current state of knowledge regarding the impact of an optimal nutritional status of these nutrients on the proper functioning of the immune system as well as their potential role in COVID-19 prevention/treatment was carried out by searching for available scientific evidence in PubMed and LitCovid databases. Second, a compilation from published sources and an analysis of nutritional data from 10 European countries was performed, and the relationship between country nutritional status and epidemiological COVID-19 data (available in the Worldometers database) was evaluated following an ecological study design. Furthermore, the potential effect of genetics was considered through the selection of genetic variants previously identified in Genome-Wide Association studies (GWAs) as influencing the nutritional status of these 10 considered nutrients. Therefore, access to genetic information in accessible databases (1000genomes, by Ensembl) of individuals from European populations enabled an approximation that countries might present a greater risk of suboptimal status of the nutrients studied. Results from the review approach show the importance of maintaining a correct nutritional status of these 10 nutrients analyzed for the health of the immune system, highlighting the importance of Vitamin D and iron in the context of COVID-19. Besides, the ecological study demonstrates that intake levels of relevant micronutrients-especially Vitamins D, C, B12, and iron-are inversely associated with higher COVID-19 incidence and/or mortality, particularly in populations genetically predisposed to show lower micronutrient status. In conclusion, nutrigenetic data provided by joint assessment of 10 essential nutrients for the functioning of the immune system and of the genetic factors that can limit their bioavailability can be a fundamental tool to help strengthen the immune system of individuals and prepare populations to fight against infectious diseases such as COVID-19.


Subject(s)
Coronavirus Infections , Nutrigenomics , Nutritional Status , Pandemics , Pneumonia, Viral , Adolescent , Adult , Betacoronavirus , COVID-19 , Coronavirus Infections/epidemiology , Coronavirus Infections/immunology , Coronavirus Infections/physiopathology , Female , Genome-Wide Association Study , Humans , Male , Metals, Heavy/blood , Middle Aged , Nutritional Status/genetics , Nutritional Status/immunology , Nutritional Status/physiology , Pneumonia, Viral/epidemiology , Pneumonia, Viral/immunology , Pneumonia, Viral/physiopathology , SARS-CoV-2 , Selenium/blood , Vitamins/blood , Young Adult
10.
Nutrients ; 12(5)2020 May 19.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-344364

ABSTRACT

The novel coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) has engulfed the world, affecting more than 180 countries. As a result, there has been considerable economic distress globally and a significant loss of life. Sadly, the vulnerable and immunocompromised in our societies seem to be more susceptible to severe COVID-19 complications. Global public health bodies and governments have ignited strategies and issued advisories on various handwashing and hygiene guidelines, social distancing strategies, and, in the most extreme cases, some countries have adopted "stay in place" or lockdown protocols to prevent COVID-19 spread. Notably, there are several significant risk factors for severe COVID-19 infection. These include the presence of poor nutritional status and pre-existing noncommunicable diseases (NCDs) such as diabetes mellitus, chronic lung diseases, cardiovascular diseases (CVD), obesity, and various other diseases that render the patient immunocompromised. These diseases are characterized by systemic inflammation, which may be a common feature of these NCDs, affecting patient outcomes against COVID-19. In this review, we discuss some of the anti-inflammatory therapies that are currently under investigation intended to dampen the cytokine storm of severe COVID-19 infections. Furthermore, nutritional status and the role of diet and lifestyle is considered, as it is known to affect patient outcomes in other severe infections and may play a role in COVID-19 infection. This review speculates the importance of nutrition as a mitigation strategy to support immune function amid the COVID-19 pandemic, identifying food groups and key nutrients of importance that may affect the outcomes of respiratory infections.


Subject(s)
Anti-Inflammatory Agents/administration & dosage , Betacoronavirus , Coronavirus Infections/therapy , Inflammation/therapy , Nutrition Therapy/methods , Nutritional Status , Pneumonia, Viral/therapy , COVID-19 , Coronavirus Infections/blood , Coronavirus Infections/immunology , Coronavirus Infections/virology , Cytokines/blood , Diet/methods , Humans , Inflammation/immunology , Nutritional Status/immunology , Pandemics , Pneumonia, Viral/blood , Pneumonia, Viral/immunology , Pneumonia, Viral/virology , SARS-CoV-2
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