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1.
Int J Mol Sci ; 23(3)2022 Jan 19.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1625612

ABSTRACT

Repurposing of the anthelminthic drug niclosamide was proposed as an effective treatment for inflammatory airway diseases such as asthma, cystic fibrosis, and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. Niclosamide may also be effective for the treatment of viral respiratory infections, such as SARS-CoV-2, respiratory syncytial virus, and influenza. While systemic application of niclosamide may lead to unwanted side effects, local administration via aerosol may circumvent these problems, particularly when the drug is encapsulated into small polyethylene glycol (PEG) hydrospheres. In the present study, we examined whether PEG-encapsulated niclosamide inhibits the production of mucus and affects the pro-inflammatory mediator CLCA1 in mouse airways in vivo, while effects on mucociliary clearance were assessed in excised mouse tracheas. The potential of encapsulated niclosamide to inhibit TMEM16A whole-cell Cl- currents and intracellular Ca2+ signalling was assessed in airway epithelial cells in vitro. We achieved encapsulation of niclosamide in PEG-microspheres and PEG-nanospheres (Niclo-spheres). When applied to asthmatic mice via intratracheal instillation, Niclo-spheres strongly attenuated overproduction of mucus, inhibited secretion of the major proinflammatory mediator CLCA1, and improved mucociliary clearance in tracheas ex vivo. These effects were comparable for niclosamide encapsulated in PEG-nanospheres and PEG-microspheres. Niclo-spheres inhibited the Ca2+ activated Cl- channel TMEM16A and attenuated mucus production in CFBE and Calu-3 human airway epithelial cells. Both inhibitory effects were explained by a pronounced inhibition of intracellular Ca2+ signals. The data indicate that poorly dissolvable compounds such as niclosamide can be encapsulated in PEG-microspheres/nanospheres and deposited locally on the airway epithelium as encapsulated drugs, which may be advantageous over systemic application.


Subject(s)
Niclosamide/administration & dosage , Pneumonia/drug therapy , Respiratory System/drug effects , Animals , Asthma/drug therapy , Asthma/metabolism , Asthma/pathology , COVID-19/complications , COVID-19/drug therapy , Cells, Cultured , Disease Models, Animal , Drug Carriers/chemistry , Drug Compounding , Humans , Hydrogels/chemistry , Instillation, Drug , Mice , Microspheres , Mucus/drug effects , Mucus/metabolism , Nanospheres/administration & dosage , Nanospheres/chemistry , Niclosamide/chemistry , Niclosamide/pharmacokinetics , Pneumonia/pathology , Polyethylene Glycols/chemistry , Respiratory Mucosa/drug effects , Respiratory Mucosa/metabolism , Respiratory System/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2/drug effects , SARS-CoV-2/physiology , Trachea
2.
Adv Drug Deliv Rev ; 180: 114079, 2022 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1620432

ABSTRACT

Polyethylene glycol or PEG has a long history of use in medicine. Many conventional formulations utilize PEG as either an active ingredient or an excipient. PEG found its use in biotechnology therapeutics as a tool to slow down drug clearance and shield protein therapeutics from undesirable immunogenicity. Nanotechnology field applies PEG to create stealth drug carriers with prolonged circulation time and decreased recognition and clearance by the mononuclear phagocyte system (MPS). Most nanomedicines approved for clinical use and experimental nanotherapeutics contain PEG. Among the most recent successful examples are two mRNA-based COVID-19 vaccines that are delivered by PEGylated lipid nanoparticles. The breadth of PEG use in a wide variety of over the counter (OTC) medications as well as in drug products and vaccines stimulated research which uncovered that PEG is not as immunologically inert as it was initially expected. Herein, we review the current understanding of PEG's immunological properties and discuss them in the context of synthesis, biodistribution, safety, efficacy, and characterization of PEGylated nanomedicines. We also review the current knowledge about immunological compatibility of other polymers that are being actively investigated as PEG alternatives.


Subject(s)
Drug Carriers , Nanomedicine , Polyethylene Glycols/chemistry , Animals , COVID-19 Vaccines/chemistry , COVID-19 Vaccines/immunology , Drug Delivery Systems , Humans
3.
Int J Mol Sci ; 22(21)2021 Nov 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1488619

ABSTRACT

The COVID-19 pandemic caused by SARS-CoV-2 infection poses a serious threat to global public health and the economy. The enzymatic product of cholesterol 25-hydroxylase (CH25H), 25-Hydroxycholesterol (25-HC), was reported to have potent anti-SARS-CoV-2 activity. Here, we found that the combination of 25-HC with EK1 peptide, a pan-coronavirus (CoV) fusion inhibitor, showed a synergistic antiviral activity. We then used the method of 25-HC modification to design and synthesize a series of 25-HC-modified peptides and found that a 25-HC-modified EK1 peptide (EK1P4HC) was highly effective against infections caused by SARS-CoV-2, its variants of concern (VOCs), and other human CoVs, such as HCoV-OC43 and HCoV-229E. EK1P4HC could protect newborn mice from lethal HCoV-OC43 infection, suggesting that conjugation of 25-HC with a peptide-based viral inhibitor was a feasible and universal strategy to improve its antiviral activity.


Subject(s)
Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , Hydroxycholesterols/chemistry , Lipopeptides/chemistry , SARS-CoV-2/drug effects , Amino Acid Sequence , Animals , Antiviral Agents/chemistry , Antiviral Agents/therapeutic use , Body Weight/drug effects , COVID-19/drug therapy , COVID-19/virology , Coronavirus 229E, Human/drug effects , Coronavirus 229E, Human/pathogenicity , Coronavirus Infections/drug therapy , Coronavirus Infections/mortality , Coronavirus Infections/virology , Coronavirus OC43, Human/drug effects , Coronavirus OC43, Human/pathogenicity , Disease Models, Animal , Drug Synergism , Humans , Hydroxycholesterols/pharmacology , Hydroxycholesterols/therapeutic use , Lipopeptides/pharmacology , Lipopeptides/therapeutic use , Mice , Mice, Inbred BALB C , Polyethylene Glycols/chemistry , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , SARS-CoV-2/physiology , Survival Rate , Virus Internalization/drug effects
4.
Nat Commun ; 12(1): 5552, 2021 09 21.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1434105

ABSTRACT

Sepsis is a life-threatening condition caused by the extreme release of inflammatory mediators into the blood in response to infection (e.g., bacterial infection, COVID-19), resulting in the dysfunction of multiple organs. Currently, there is no direct treatment for sepsis. Here we report an abiotic hydrogel nanoparticle (HNP) as a potential therapeutic agent for late-stage sepsis. The HNP captures and neutralizes all variants of histones, a major inflammatory mediator released during sepsis. The highly optimized HNP has high capacity and long-term circulation capability for the selective sequestration and neutralization of histones. Intravenous injection of the HNP protects mice against a lethal dose of histones through the inhibition of platelet aggregation and migration into the lungs. In vivo administration in murine sepsis model mice results in near complete survival. These results establish the potential for synthetic, nonbiological polymer hydrogel sequestrants as a new intervention strategy for sepsis therapy and adds to our understanding of the importance of histones to this condition.


Subject(s)
Hydrogels/therapeutic use , Nanoparticles/therapeutic use , Sepsis/drug therapy , Animals , Blood Platelets/drug effects , Cell Adhesion , Cell Survival/drug effects , Disease Models, Animal , Histones/antagonists & inhibitors , Histones/metabolism , Histones/toxicity , Hydrogels/chemistry , Hydrogels/metabolism , Hydrogels/pharmacology , Lung/drug effects , Lung/metabolism , Lung/pathology , Mice , Nanoparticles/chemistry , Nanoparticles/metabolism , Platelet Aggregation/drug effects , Polyethylene Glycols/chemistry , Polyethylene Glycols/metabolism , Polyethylene Glycols/pharmacology , Polyethylene Glycols/therapeutic use , Protein Binding , Sepsis/mortality , Survival Rate
5.
ACS Appl Mater Interfaces ; 13(36): 43696-43707, 2021 Sep 15.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1392772

ABSTRACT

Graphene is a two-dimensional semiconducting material whose application for diagnostics has been a real game-changer in terms of sensitivity and response time, variables of paramount importance to stop the COVID-19 spreading. Nevertheless, strategies for the modification of docking recognition and antifouling elements to obtain covalent-like stability without the disruption of the graphene band structure are still needed. In this work, we conducted surface engineering of graphene through heterofunctional supramolecular-covalent scaffolds based on vinylsulfonated-polyamines (PA-VS). In these scaffolds, one side binds graphene through multivalent π-π interactions with pyrene groups, and the other side presents vinylsulfonated pending groups that can be used for covalent binding. The construction of PA-VS scaffolds was demonstrated by spectroscopic ellipsometry, Raman spectroscopy, and contact angle measurements. The covalent binding of -SH, -NH2, or -OH groups was confirmed, and it evidenced great chemical versatility. After field-effect studies, we found that the PA-VS-based scaffolds do not disrupt the semiconducting properties of graphene. Moreover, the scaffolds were covalently modified with poly(ethylene glycol) (PEG), which improved the resistance to nonspecific proteins by almost 7-fold compared to the widely used PEG-monopyrene approach. The attachment of recognition elements to PA-VS was optimized for concanavalin A (ConA), a model lectin with a high affinity to glycans. Lastly, the platform was implemented for the rapid, sensitive, and regenerable recognition of SARS-CoV-2 spike protein and human ferritin in lab-made samples. Those two are the target molecules of major importance for the rapid detection and monitoring of COVID-19-positive patients. For that purpose, monoclonal antibodies (mAbs) were bound to the scaffolds, resulting in a surface coverage of 436 ± 30 ng/cm2. KD affinity constants of 48.4 and 2.54 nM were obtained by surface plasmon resonance (SPR) spectroscopy for SARS-CoV-2 spike protein and human ferritin binding on these supramolecular scaffolds, respectively.


Subject(s)
Biomarkers/analysis , COVID-19/diagnosis , Graphite/chemistry , Immunoassay/methods , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/analysis , Antibodies, Monoclonal/chemistry , Antibodies, Monoclonal/immunology , Ethylenes/chemistry , Ferritins/immunology , Ferritins/metabolism , Humans , Point-of-Care Systems , Polyamines/chemistry , Polyethylene Glycols/chemistry , Pyrenes/chemistry , Quantum Theory , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , SARS-CoV-2/metabolism , Semiconductors , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/immunology , Sulfonic Acids/chemistry , Surface Plasmon Resonance
6.
Molecules ; 26(16)2021 Aug 19.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1376915

ABSTRACT

G-quadruplexes (G4s) are higher-order supramolecular structures, biologically important in the regulation of many key processes. Among all, the recent discoveries relating to RNA-G4s, including their potential involvement as antiviral targets against COVID-19, have triggered the ever-increasing need to develop selective molecules able to interact with parallel G4s. Naphthalene diimides (NDIs) are widely exploited as G4 ligands, being able to induce and strongly stabilize these structures. Sometimes, a reversible NDI-G4 interaction is also associated with an irreversible one, due to the cleavage and/or modification of G4s by functional-NDIs. This is the case of NDI-Cu-DETA, a copper(II) complex able to cleave G4s in the closest proximity to the target binding site. Herein, we present two original Cu(II)-NDI complexes, inspired by NDI-Cu-DETA, differently functionalized with 2-(2-aminoethoxy)ethanol side-chains, to selectively drive redox-catalyzed activity towards parallel G4s. The selective interaction toward parallel G4 topology, controlled by the presence of 2-(2-aminoethoxy)ethanol side chains, was already firmly demonstrated by us using core-extended NDIs. In the present study, the presence of protonable moieties and the copper(II) cavity, increases the binding affinity and specificity of these two NDIs for a telomeric RNA-G4. Once defined the copper coordination relationship and binding constants by competition titrations, ability in G4 stabilization, and ROS-induced cleavage were analyzed. The propensity in the stabilization of parallel topology was highlighted for both of the new compounds HP2Cu and PE2Cu. The results obtained are particularly promising, paving the way for the development of new selective functional ligands for binding and destructuring parallel G4s.


Subject(s)
Coordination Complexes/chemistry , Copper/chemistry , G-Quadruplexes , Imides/chemistry , Naphthalenes/chemistry , Binding Sites , DEET/chemistry , Ligands , Oxidation-Reduction , Polyethylene Glycols/chemistry , Structure-Activity Relationship
7.
Food Environ Virol ; 13(3): 303-315, 2021 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1321887

ABSTRACT

Wastewater surveillance of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) is an emerging public health tool to understand the spread of Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) in communities. The performance of different virus concentration methods and PCR methods needs to be evaluated to ascertain their suitability for use in the detection of SARS-CoV-2 in wastewater. We evaluated ultrafiltration and polyethylene glycol (PEG) precipitation methods to concentrate SARS-CoV-2 from sewage in wastewater treatment plants and upstream in the wastewater network (e.g., manholes, lift stations). Recovery of viruses by different concentration methods was determined using Phi6 bacteriophage as a surrogate for enveloped viruses. Additionally, the presence of SARS-CoV-2 in all wastewater samples was determined using reverse transcription quantitative PCR (RT-qPCR) and reverse transcription droplet digital PCR (RT-ddPCR), targeting three genetic markers (N1, N2 and E). Using spiked samples, the Phi6 recoveries were estimated at 2.6-11.6% using ultrafiltration-based methods and 22.2-51.5% using PEG precipitation. There was no significant difference in recovery efficiencies (p < 0.05) between the PEG procedure with and without a 16 h overnight incubation, demonstrating the feasibility of obtaining same day results. The SARS-CoV-2 genetic markers were more often detected by RT-ddPCR than RT-qPCR with higher sensitivity and precision. While all three SARS-CoV-2 genetic markers were detected using RT-ddPCR, the levels of E gene were almost below the limit of detection using RT-qPCR. Collectively, our study suggested PEG precipitation is an effective low-cost procedure which allows a large number of samples to be processed simultaneously in a routine wastewater monitoring for SARS-CoV-2. RT-ddPCR can be implemented for the absolute quantification of SARS-CoV-2 genetic markers in different wastewater matrices.


Subject(s)
Chemical Fractionation/methods , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , Ultrafiltration/methods , Waste Water/chemistry , Waste Water/virology , Chemical Precipitation , Environmental Monitoring , Polyethylene Glycols/chemistry , Public Health , Reverse Transcriptase Polymerase Chain Reaction/methods , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Sewage/chemistry , Sewage/virology , Viral Proteins/genetics , Water Pollution/analysis
8.
J Am Chem Soc ; 143(30): 11544-11553, 2021 08 04.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1319014

ABSTRACT

Exponential molecular amplification such as the polymerase chain reaction is a powerful tool that allows ultrasensitive biodetection. Here, we report a new exponential amplification strategy based on photoredox autocatalysis, where eosin Y, a photocatalyst, amplifies itself by activating a nonfluorescent eosin Y derivative (EYH3-) under green light. The deactivated photocatalyst is stable and rapidly activated under low-intensity light, making the eosin Y amplification suitable for resource-limited settings. Through steady-state kinetic studies and reaction modeling, we found that EYH3- is either oxidized to eosin Y via one-electron oxidation by triplet eosin Y and subsequent 1e-/H+ transfer, or activated by singlet oxygen with the risk of degradation. By reducing the rate of the EYH3- degradation, we successfully improved EYH3--to-eosin Y recovery, achieving efficient autocatalytic eosin Y amplification. Additionally, to demonstrate its flexibility in output signals, we coupled the eosin Y amplification with photoinduced chromogenic polymerization, enabling sensitive visual detection of analytes. Finally, we applied the exponential amplification methods in developing bioassays for detection of biomarkers including SARS-CoV-2 nucleocapsid protein, an antigen used in the diagnosis of COVID-19.


Subject(s)
Coronavirus Nucleocapsid Proteins/analysis , Eosine Yellowish-(YS)/analogs & derivatives , Spectrometry, Fluorescence/methods , 3,3'-Diaminobenzidine/chemistry , Biomarkers/chemistry , Catalysis/radiation effects , Eosine Yellowish-(YS)/chemical synthesis , Eosine Yellowish-(YS)/radiation effects , Fluorescence , Light , Limit of Detection , Oxidation-Reduction/radiation effects , Phosphoproteins/analysis , Polyethylene Glycols/chemistry , Polymerization , Proof of Concept Study , SARS-CoV-2/chemistry
9.
J Allergy Clin Immunol ; 148(1): 91-95, 2021 07.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1291943

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: The mechanisms underpinning allergic reactions to the BNT162b2 (Pfizer) COVID-19 vaccine remain unknown, with polyethylene glycol (PEG) contained in the lipid nanoparticle suspected as being the cause. OBJECTIVE: Our aim was to evaluate the performance of skin testing and basophil activation testing to PEG, polysorbate 80, and the BNT162b2 (Pfizer) and AZD1222 (AstraZeneca) COVID-19 vaccines in patients with a history of PEG allergy. METHODS: Three known individuals with PEG allergy and 3 healthy controls were recruited and evaluated for hypersensitivity to the BNT162b2 and AZD1222 vaccines, and to related compounds by skin testing and basophil activation, as measured by CD63 upregulation using flow cytometry. RESULTS: We found that the BNT162b2 vaccine induced positive skin test results in patients with PEG allergy, whereas the result of traditional PEG skin testing was negative in 2 of 3 patients. One patient was found to be cosensitized to both the BNT162b2 and AZD1222 vaccines because of cross-reactive PEG and polysorbate allergy. The BNT162b2 vaccine, but not PEG alone, induced dose-dependent activation of all patients' basophils ex vivo. Similar basophil activation could be induced by PEGylated liposomal doxorubicin, suggesting that PEGylated lipids within nanoparticles, but not PEG in its native state, are able to efficiently induce degranulation. CONCLUSIONS: Our findings implicate PEG, as covalently modified and arranged on the vaccine lipid nanoparticle, as a potential trigger of anaphylaxis in response to BNT162b2, and highlight shortcomings of current skin testing protocols for allergy to PEGylated liposomal drugs.


Subject(s)
Anaphylaxis/immunology , Basophils/immunology , COVID-19 Vaccines/immunology , COVID-19/immunology , Doxorubicin/analogs & derivatives , Drug Hypersensitivity/immunology , Nanoparticles/adverse effects , Polyethylene Glycols/adverse effects , SARS-CoV-2/physiology , Adult , Cell Degranulation , Cells, Cultured , Doxorubicin/adverse effects , Doxorubicin/chemistry , Female , Humans , Lipids/chemistry , Male , Middle Aged , Nanoparticles/chemistry , Polyethylene Glycols/chemistry , Skin Tests , Young Adult
12.
PLoS One ; 15(10): e0241006, 2020.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-902048

ABSTRACT

Gene therapy is now an effective approach to treat many forms of retinal degeneration. Delivery agents that are cell-specific, allow for multiple dosing regimens, and have low immunogenicity are needed to expand the utility of gene therapy for the retina. We generated eight novel lipid nanoparticles (LNPs) ranging in size from 50 nm to 150 nm by changing the PEG content from 5% to 0.5%, respectively. Subretinal injections of LNP-mRNA encoding luciferase revealed that 0.5% PEG content within nanoparticles elicits the highest expression. Similar injections of LNP delivered cre mRNA into Ai9 mice revealed cell-specific protein expression in the retinal pigment epithelium (RPE), confirmed by fundus photography and immunohistochemistry of whole globe cross-sections. To investigate mechanisms of LNP delivery to the eye, we injected mCherry mRNA using the subretinal approach in apoE-/- and Mertk-/- mice. RPE transfection was observed in both mouse models suggesting that LNP intracellular delivery is not solely dependent on apolipoprotein adsorption or phagocytosis. To investigate LNP penetration, particles were delivered to the vitreous chamber via an intravitreal injection. The 0.5% PEG particles mediated the highest luciferase activity and expression was observed in the Müller glia, the optic nerve head and the trabecular meshwork, but failed to reach the RPE. Overall, particles containing less PEG (~150 nm in size) mediated the highest expression in the eye. Thus far, these particles successfully transfect RPE, Müller cells, the optic nerve head and the trabecular meshwork based on route of administration which can expand the utility of LNP-mediated gene therapies for the eye.


Subject(s)
Gene Transfer Techniques , Nanoparticles/administration & dosage , Nanoparticles/chemistry , Polyethylene Glycols/chemistry , RNA, Messenger/administration & dosage , Animals , Drug Delivery Systems , Female , Fundus Oculi , Intravitreal Injections , Lipids/chemistry , Luminescent Proteins/genetics , Male , Mice, Inbred BALB C , Mice, Inbred C57BL , Mice, Knockout, ApoE , Particle Size , Retinal Pigment Epithelium/drug effects
13.
J Virol Methods ; 286: 113977, 2020 12.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-800505

ABSTRACT

The development of medical countermeasures against severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) requires robust viral assays. Here we have adapted a protocol for polyethylene glycol (PEG)-mediated precipitation of SARS-CoV-2 stocks without the need for ultracentrifugation. Virus precipitation resulted in a ∼1.5 log10 increase in SARS-CoV-2 titres of virus prepared in VeroE6 cells and enabled the infection of several immortalized human cell lines (Caco-2 and Calu-3) at a high multiplicity of infection not practically achievable without virus concentration. This protocol underscores the utility of PEG-mediated precipitation for SARS-CoV-2 and provides a resource for a range of coronavirus research areas.


Subject(s)
Betacoronavirus/isolation & purification , Clinical Laboratory Techniques/methods , Coronavirus Infections/virology , Pneumonia, Viral/virology , Polyethylene Glycols/chemistry , Animals , COVID-19 , COVID-19 Testing , Caco-2 Cells , Chlorocebus aethiops , Coronavirus Infections/diagnosis , Humans , Pandemics , Pneumonia, Viral/diagnosis , Reverse Transcriptase Polymerase Chain Reaction , SARS-CoV-2 , Ultracentrifugation/methods , Vero Cells
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