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1.
Int J Mol Sci ; 23(22)2022 Nov 18.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2143226

ABSTRACT

Although pulmonary fibrosis (PF) is considered a rare disease, the incidence thereof has increased steadily in recent years, while a safe and effective cure remains beyond reach. In this study, the potential of tocotrienol-rich fractions (TRF) and carotene to alleviate PF was explored. PF was induced in Sprague-Dawley rats via a single intratracheal bleomycin (BLM) (5 mg/kg) instillation. These rats were subsequently treated with TRF, carotene, pirfenidone (Pir) and nintedanib (Nin) for 28 days via gavage administration, whereafter histopathological performance, biochemical functions and molecular alterations were studied in the lung tissues. Our results showed that TRF, carotene, Nin and Pir all ameliorated PF by reducing inflammation and resisting oxidative stress to varying degrees. The related mechanisms involved the TGF-ß1/Smad, PI3K/Akt and NF-κB signaling pathways. Ultimately, our findings revealed that, when combined with TRF, the therapeutic effects of Nin and Pir on PF were enhanced, indicating that TRF may, indeed, provide promising potential for use in combination therapy in the treatment of PF.


Subject(s)
Pulmonary Fibrosis , Tocotrienols , Rats , Animals , Pulmonary Fibrosis/metabolism , Tocotrienols/pharmacology , Tocotrienols/therapeutic use , Phosphatidylinositol 3-Kinases/metabolism , Rats, Sprague-Dawley , Carotenoids/therapeutic use
2.
PLoS Negl Trop Dis ; 16(10): e0010898, 2022 Oct.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2098682

ABSTRACT

Rift Valley fever (RVF) is a disease of animals and humans associated with abortions in ruminants and late-gestation miscarriages in women. Here, we use a rat model of congenital RVF to identify tropisms, pathologies, and immune responses in the placenta during vertical transmission. Infection of late-gestation pregnant rats resulted in vertical transmission to the placenta and widespread infection throughout the decidua, basal zone, and labyrinth zone. Some pups from infected dams appeared normal while others had gross signs of teratogenicity including death. Histopathological lesions were detected in placenta from pups regardless of teratogenicity, while teratogenic pups had widespread hemorrhage throughout multiple placenta layers. Teratogenic events were associated with significant increases in placental pro-inflammatory cytokines, type I interferons, and chemokines. RVFV displays a high degree of tropism for all placental tissue layers and the degree of hemorrhage and inflammatory mediator production is highest in placenta from pups with adverse outcomes. Given the potential for RVFV to emerge in new locations and the recent evidence of emerging viruses, like Zika and SARS-CoV-2, to undergo vertical transmission, this study provides essential understanding regarding the mechanisms by which RVFV crosses the placenta barrier.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Rift Valley Fever , Rift Valley fever virus , Zika Virus Infection , Zika Virus , Humans , Female , Pregnancy , Rats , Animals , Rats, Sprague-Dawley , Placenta/pathology , SARS-CoV-2 , Ruminants
3.
Emerg Microbes Infect ; 11(1): 2724-2734, 2022 Dec.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2087655

ABSTRACT

The development of safe and effective vaccines to respond to COVID-19 pandemic/endemic remains a priority. We developed a novel subunit protein-peptide COVID-19 vaccine candidate (UB-612) composed of: (i) receptor binding domain of SARS-CoV-2 spike protein fused to a modified single-chain human IgG1 Fc; (ii) five synthetic peptides incorporating conserved helper and cytotoxic T lymphocyte (Th/CTL) epitopes derived from SARS-CoV-2 structural proteins (three from S2 subunit, one from membrane and one from nucleocapsid), and one universal Th peptide; (iii) aluminum phosphate as adjuvant. The immunogenicity and protective immunity induced by UB-612 vaccine were evaluated in four animal models: Sprague-Dawley rats, AAV-hACE2 transduced BALB/c mice, rhesus and cynomolgus macaques. UB-612 vaccine induced high levels of neutralizing antibody and T-cell responses, in all animals. The immune sera from vaccinated animals neutralized the SARS-CoV-2 original wild-type strains and multiple variants of concern, including Delta and Omicron. The vaccination significantly reduced viral loads, lung pathology scores, and disease progression after intranasal and intratracheal challenge with SARS-CoV-2 in mice, rhesus and cynomolgus macaques. UB-612 has been tested in primary regimens in Phase 1 and Phase 2 clinical studies and is currently being evaluated in a global pivotal Phase 3 clinical study as a single dose heterologous booster.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Viral Vaccines , Rats , Mice , Humans , Animals , SARS-CoV-2 , COVID-19 Vaccines , Broadly Neutralizing Antibodies , Pandemics/prevention & control , COVID-19/prevention & control , Rats, Sprague-Dawley , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus , Antibodies, Neutralizing , Vaccines, Subunit/genetics , Mice, Inbred BALB C , Macaca mulatta , Antibodies, Viral
4.
PLoS One ; 17(9): e0273715, 2022.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2021939

ABSTRACT

Alcohol use disorder is a medical condition that impacts millions of individuals worldwide. Although there are a few pharmacotherapeutic options for alcohol-dependent individuals; there is a need for the development of novel and more effective therapeutic approaches. Alcohol and nicotine are commonly co-abused, and there is evidence that neuronal nicotinic acetylcholine receptors (nAChRs) play a role in both alcohol and nicotine dependence. Desformylflustrabromine (dFBr), a positive allosteric modulator of the α4ß2 nAChRs has been shown to reduce nicotine intake, compulsive-like behavior and neuropathic pain in animal models. dFBr has also been previously shown to cross the blood-brain-barrier. We have recently shown that dFBr can attenuate the response to an acute, hypnotic dose of ethanol, via ß2 nAchR. Here, we have investigated the effect of dFBr in modulating ethanol consumption using the intermittent access two-bottle choice (IA2BC) model of voluntary ethanol consumption in male and female Sprague Dawley rats. We show that dFBr selectively reduced ethanol but not sucrose consumption in the IA2BC model. Furthermore, dFBr decreased preference for ethanol in both male and female rats. No rebound increase in ethanol intake was observed after the washout period after dFBr treatment. The ability of dFBr to decrease ethanol consumption, along with its previously demonstrated ability to decrease nicotine self-administration in rodents, suggest that dFBr is an attractive therapeutic candidate to target both nicotine and alcohol abuse.


Subject(s)
Nicotine , Receptors, Nicotinic , Animals , Ethanol , Female , Hydrocarbons, Brominated , Indole Alkaloids , Male , Nicotine/pharmacology , Rats , Rats, Sprague-Dawley
5.
EBioMedicine ; 81: 104095, 2022 Jul.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1914309

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Remdesivir was the first prodrug approved to treat coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) and has the potential to be used during pregnancy. However, it is not known whether remdesivir and its main metabolite, GS-441524 have the potential to cross the blood-placental barrier. We hypothesize that remdesivir and predominant metabolite GS-441524may cross the blood-placental barrier to reach the embryo tissues. METHODS: To test this hypothesis, ultra-high performance liquid chromatography tandem mass spectrometry (UHPLC-MS/MS) coupled with multisite microdialysis was used to monitor the levels of remdesivir and the nucleoside analogue GS-441524 in the maternal blood, fetus, placenta, and amniotic fluid of pregnant Sprague-Dawley rats. The transplacental transfer was evaluated using the pharmacokinetic parameters of AUC and mother-to-fetus transfer ratio (AUCfetus/AUCmother). FINDINGS: Our in-vivo results show that remdesivir is rapidly biotransformed into GS-441524 in the maternal blood, which then readily crossed the placenta with a mother-to-fetus transfer ratio of 0.51 ± 0.18. The Cmax and AUClast values of GS-441524 followed the order: maternal blood > amniotic fluid > fetus > placenta in rats. INTERPRETATION: While remdesivir does not directly cross into the fetus, however, its main metabolite, GS-441524 readily crosses the placenta and can reside there for at least 4 hours as shown in the pregnant Sprague-Dawley rat model. These findings suggest that careful consideration should be taken for the use of remdesivir in the treatment of COVID-19 in pregnancy. FUNDING: Ministry of Science and Technology of Taiwan.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Pregnancy Complications, Infectious , Adenosine/analogs & derivatives , Adenosine Monophosphate/analogs & derivatives , Alanine/analogs & derivatives , Amniotic Fluid , Animals , Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , Antiviral Agents/therapeutic use , Biotransformation , COVID-19/drug therapy , Female , Fetus/metabolism , Furans/metabolism , Placenta/metabolism , Pregnancy , Pregnancy Complications, Infectious/drug therapy , Pyrroles/metabolism , Rats , Rats, Sprague-Dawley , Tandem Mass Spectrometry/methods
6.
J Med Chem ; 64(19): 14465-14476, 2021 10 14.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1894373

ABSTRACT

In this work, a series of novel substituted polycyclic pyridone derivatives were designed and synthesized as potent anti-influenza agents. The cytopathic effect (CPE) assay and cytotoxicity assay indicated that all of the compounds possessed potent anti-influenza virus activity and relatively low cytotoxicity; some of them inhibited the replication of influenza A virus (IAV) at picomolar concentrations. Further studies revealed that, at a concentration of 3 nM, three compounds (10a, 10d, and 10g) could significantly reduce the M2 RNA amounts and M2 protein expression of IAV and inhibit the activity of RNA-dependent RNA polymerase (RdRp). Among them, (R)-12-(5H-dibenzo[a,d][7]annulen-5-yl)-7-hydroxy-3,4,12,12a-tetrahydro-1H-[1,4]oxazino[3,4-c]pyrido[2,1-f][1,2,4]triazine-6,8-dione (10a) was found to be a promising anti-influenza drug candidate with good human liver microsomal stability, as well as with better selectivity index and oral bioavailability than Baloxavir.


Subject(s)
Antiviral Agents/chemical synthesis , Antiviral Agents/pharmacology , Dibenzothiepins/chemistry , Influenza A virus/drug effects , Morpholines/chemistry , Pyridones/chemical synthesis , Pyridones/pharmacology , Triazines/chemistry , Animals , Cell Survival/drug effects , Cytopathogenic Effect, Viral/drug effects , Dogs , Humans , Madin Darby Canine Kidney Cells , Male , Pyridones/chemistry , Rats , Rats, Sprague-Dawley , Real-Time Polymerase Chain Reaction
7.
J Ethnopharmacol ; 296: 115472, 2022 Oct 05.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1895183

ABSTRACT

ETHNOPHARMACOLOGICAL RELEVANCE: Xuanfei Baidu prescription, consisting of 13 Chinese medicines, was formulated by academicians Boli Zhang and Professor Qingquan Liu based on their experience in first-line clinical treatment of COVID-19. Xuanfei Baidu granules (XFBD granules) are a proprietary Chinese medicine preparation developed based on Xuanfei Baidu prescription. It is recommended for the treatment of patients with the common wet toxin and lung stagnation syndrome of COVID-19. However, the pharmacokinetic characteristics of its major bioactive components in rats under different physiological and pathological conditions are unclear. MATERIALS AND METHODS: A rapid and sensitive analytical method, ultra-performance liquid chromatography coupled with mass spectrometry (UPLC-MS/MS), was developed and applied to 24 major bioactive components in normal and ARDS rats after oral administration of XFBD granules. We studied the metabolic process of XFBD granules in vivo to compare the differences in pharmacokinetic parameters between normal and model metabolic processes. RESULTS: This method was successfully applied to the pharmacokinetic investigation of 24 major components of XFBD granules following oral administration in normal and ARDS rats. Eight components, including ephedrine and amygdalin, were more highly absorbed and had shorter Tmax values than the model group; the absorption of six components, such as rhein, decreased in ARDS rats, and there was no significant difference in the absorption of ten components, such as verbenalin and naringin, between the normal and ARDS rats. The results showed that the peak times of other analytes were very short, and 80% of these target constituents were eliminated in both normal and ARDS rats within 6 h except for liquiritigenin and 18ß-glycyrrhetinic acid. CONCLUSIONS: In this study, a rapid and sensitive UPLC-MS/MS analytical method was developed and applied to 24 major bioactive components in normal and ARDS rats after the oral administration of XFBD granules. This will serve to form the basis for further studies on the pharmacokinetic-pharmacodynamic correlation of XFBD granules.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Drugs, Chinese Herbal , Respiratory Distress Syndrome , Administration, Oral , Animals , Chromatography, High Pressure Liquid/methods , Chromatography, Liquid/methods , Rats , Rats, Sprague-Dawley , Tandem Mass Spectrometry/methods
8.
Curr Med Sci ; 42(4): 863-870, 2022 Aug.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1889002

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVE: Lianhuaqingwen and Shuanghuanglian are drug treatment options for Corona Virus Disease 2019 (COVID-19). In China, use of traditional Chinese medicine with Shuanghuanglian or Lianhuaqingwen (for them, forsythiaside is the active antiviral and antibacterial component) in combination with azithromycin is common for the treatment of pediatric pneumonia. It is important to understand the reason why the combination of these compounds is better than a single drug treatment. This study aimed to explore the pharmacokinetic interaction between forsythiaside and azithromycin. METHODS: Twelve male Sprague-Dawley rats were randomly divided into an experimental group (Forsythia suspensa extract and azithromycin) and a control group (a single dose of Forsythia suspensa extract in 5% glucose solution). Plasma samples were collected at scheduled time points, and the high-performance liquid chromatography combined with ultraviolet method was used to determine the plasma forsythiaside concentration. Non-compartmental analysis and population pharmacokinetic methods were used to investigate the forsythiaside pharmacokinetic difference between the experimental and control group. RESULTS: Compared with a single administration, the area under the curve and half-life of forsythiaside increased, and forsythiaside clearance decreased significantly after co-administration with azithromycin. The in vivo behavior of forsythiaside could be described by the one compartment model. The forsythiaside clearance decreased when combined with azithromycin. Visual evaluation and bootstrap results suggested that the final model was precise and stable. CONCLUSION: Co-administration of azithromycin can significantly decrease the forsythiaside clearance and increase drug exposure. A lower dose of azithromycin can obtain sufficient forsythiaside concentration to provide antiviral and antibacterial activity.


Subject(s)
Azithromycin , COVID-19 , Animals , Anti-Bacterial Agents/pharmacology , Antiviral Agents , Azithromycin/pharmacokinetics , COVID-19/drug therapy , Glycosides , Humans , Male , Rats , Rats, Sprague-Dawley
9.
Stem Cell Res Ther ; 13(1): 145, 2022 04 04.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1775335

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: With the widespread of Coronavirus Disease 2019 pandemic, in spite of the newly emerging vaccines, mutated strains remain a great obstacle to supportive and preventive measures. Coronavirus 19 survivors continue to face great danger of contacting the disease again. As long as no specific treatment has yet to be approved, a great percentage of patients experience real complications, including among others, lung fibrosis. High oxygen inhalation especially for prolonged periods is per se destructive to the lungs. Nevertheless, oxygen remains the first line support for such patients. In the present study we aimed at investigating the role of amniotic fluid-mesenchymal stem cells in preventing versus treating the hyperoxia-induced lung fibrosis in rats. METHODS: The study was conducted on adult albino rats; 5 pregnant female rats were used as amniotic fluid donors, and 64 male rats were randomly divided into two groups: Control group; where 10 rats were kept in normal atmospheric air then sacrificed after 2 months, and hyperoxia-induced lung fibrosis group, where 54 rats were exposed to hyperoxia (100% oxygen for 6 h/day) in air-tight glass chambers for 1 month, then randomly divided into the following 5 subgroups: Hyperoxia group, cell-free media-treated group, stem cells-prophylactic group, stem cells-treated group and untreated group. Isolation, culture and proliferation of stem cells were done till passage 3. Pulmonary function tests, histological examination of lung tissue under light and electron microscopes, biochemical assessment of oxidative stress, IL-6 and Rho-A levels, and statistical analysis of data were performed. F-test (ANOVA) was used for normally distributed quantitative variables, to compare between more than two groups, and Post Hoc test (Tukey) for pairwise comparisons. RESULTS: Labelled amniotic fluid-mesenchymal stem cells homed to lung tissue. Stem cells administration in the stem cells-prophylactic group succeeded to maintain pulmonary functions near the normal values with no significant difference between their values and those of the control group. Moreover, histological examination of lung tissues showed that stem cells-prophylactic group were completely protected while stem cells-treated group still showed various degrees of tissue injury, namely; thickened interalveolar septa, atelectasis and interstitial pneumonia. Biochemical studies after stem cells injection also showed decreased levels of RhoA and IL-6 in the prophylactic group and to a lesser extent in the treated group, in addition to increased total antioxidant capacity and decreased malondialdehyde in the stem cells-injected groups. CONCLUSIONS: Amniotic fluid-mesenchymal stem cells showed promising protective and therapeutic results against hyperoxia-induced lung fibrosis as evaluated physiologically, histologically and biochemically.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Hyperoxia , Amniotic Fluid , Animals , Female , Humans , Hyperoxia/complications , Hyperoxia/pathology , Male , Pregnancy , Rats , Rats, Sprague-Dawley , Stem Cells/pathology
10.
Alcohol Clin Exp Res ; 45(11): 2246-2255, 2021 11.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1745994

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: We recently showed that alcohol and cannabis can interact prenatally, and in a recent review paper, we identified parvalbumin-positive (PV) interneurons in the hippocampus as a potential point of convergence for these teratogens. METHODS: A 2 (Ethanol [EtOH], Air) × 2 (tetrahydrocannabinol [THC], Vehicle) design was used to expose pregnant Sprague-Dawley rats to either EtOH or air, in addition to either THC or the inhalant vehicle solution, during gestational days 5-20. Immunohistochemistry was performed to detect PV interneurons in 1 male and 1 female pup from each litter at postnatal day 70. RESULTS: Significant between-group and subregion-specific effects were found in the dorsal cornu ammonis 1 (CA1) subfield and the ventral dentate gyrus (DG). In the dorsal CA1 subfield, there was an increase in the number of PV interneurons in both the EtOH and EtOH +THC groups, but a decrease with THC alone. There were fewer changes in interneuron numbers overall in the DG, though there was a sex difference, with a decrease in the number of PV interneurons in the THC-exposed group in males. There was also a greater cell layer volume in the DG in the EtOH +THC group than the control group, and in the CA1 region in the EtOH group compared to the control and THC groups. CONCLUSIONS: Prenatal exposure to alcohol and THC differentially affects parvalbumin-positive interneuron numbers in the hippocampus, indicating that both individual and combined exposure can impact the balance of excitation and inhibition in a structure critically involved in learning and memory processes.


Subject(s)
Cannabinoid Receptor Agonists/pharmacology , Hippocampus/metabolism , Interneurons/metabolism , Parvalbumins/metabolism , Prenatal Exposure Delayed Effects/metabolism , Animals , Cannabis/metabolism , Dentate Gyrus/drug effects , Female , Hippocampus/drug effects , Interneurons/drug effects , Parvalbumins/drug effects , Pregnancy , Rats , Rats, Sprague-Dawley
11.
Molecules ; 27(6)2022 Mar 14.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1742556

ABSTRACT

Nafamostat, a synthetic serine protease inhibitor, has been used for the treatment of inflammatory diseases such as pancreatitis. Recently, an increasing number of studies have shown the promising antiviral effects of nafamostat for the treatment of coronavirus disease-19 (COVID-19). This study aimed to develop a novel liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS) analysis and to characterize the pharmacokinetics of nafamostat in rats. Nafamostat in the rat plasma was extracted by solid phase extraction, and 13C6-nafamostat was used as an internal standard. The quantification limit of nafamostat in the rat plasma was 0.5 ng/mL. The LC-MS/MS method was fully validated and applied to characterize the pharmacokinetics of nafamostat in rats. Following intravenous injection (2 mg/kg), nafamostat in the plasma showed a multiexponential decline with an average elimination half-life (t1/2) of 1.39 h. Following oral administration of nafamostat solutions (20 mg/kg) in 10% dimethyl sulfoxide (DMSO) and in 10% DMSO with 10% Tween 80, nafamostat was rapidly absorbed, and the average oral bioavailability was 0.95% and 1.59%, respectively. The LC-MS/MS method and the pharmacokinetic information of nafamostat could be helpful for the further preclinical and clinical studies of nafamostat.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Tandem Mass Spectrometry , Animals , Benzamidines , Chromatography, Liquid/methods , Guanidines , Rats , Rats, Sprague-Dawley , Serine Proteinase Inhibitors/pharmacology , Tandem Mass Spectrometry/methods
12.
Nutrients ; 14(5)2022 Mar 05.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1732145

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Pulmonary fibrosis (PF) is a chronic, progressive, and, ultimately, terminal interstitial disease caused by a variety of factors, ranging from genetics, bacterial, and viral infections, to drugs and other influences. Varying degrees of PF and its rapid progress have been widely reported in post-COVID-19 patients and there is consequently an urgent need to develop an appropriate, cost-effective approach for the prevention and management of PF. AIM: The potential "therapeutic" effect of the tocotrienol-rich fraction (TRF) and carotene against bleomycin (BLM)-induced lung fibrosis was investigated in rats via the modulation of TGF-ß/Smad, PI3K/Akt/mTOR, and NF-κB signaling pathways. DESIGN/METHODS: Lung fibrosis was induced in Sprague-Dawley rats by a single intratracheal BLM (5 mg/kg) injection. These rats were subsequently treated with TRF (50, 100, and 200 mg/kg body wt/day), carotene (10 mg/kg body wt/day), or a combination of TRF (200 mg/kg body wt/day) and carotene (10 mg/kg body wt/day) for 28 days by gavage administration. A group of normal rats was provided with saline as a substitute for BLM as the control. Lung function and biochemical, histopathological, and molecular alterations were studied in the lung tissues. RESULTS: Both the TRF and carotene treatments were found to significantly restore the BLM-induced alterations in anti-inflammatory and antioxidant functions. The treatments appeared to show pneumoprotective effects through the upregulation of antioxidant status, downregulation of MMP-7 and inflammatory cytokine expressions, and reduction in collagen accumulation (hydroxyproline). We demonstrated that TRF and carotene ameliorate BLM-induced lung injuries through the inhibition of apoptosis, the induction of TGF-ß1/Smad, PI3K/Akt/mTOR, and NF-κB signaling pathways. Furthermore, the increased expression levels were shown to be significantly and dose-dependently downregulated by TRF (50, 100, and 200 mg/kg body wt/day) treatment in high probability. The histopathological findings further confirmed that the TRF and carotene treatments had significantly attenuated the BLM-induced lung injury in rats. CONCLUSION: The results of this study clearly indicate the ability of TRF and carotene to restore the antioxidant system and to inhibit proinflammatory cytokines. These findings, thus, revealed the potential of TRF and carotene as preventive candidates for the treatment of PF in the future.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Pulmonary Fibrosis , Tocotrienols , Animals , Bleomycin/toxicity , Carotenoids/adverse effects , Humans , NF-kappa B/metabolism , Phosphatidylinositol 3-Kinases/metabolism , Proto-Oncogene Proteins c-akt/metabolism , Pulmonary Fibrosis/chemically induced , Pulmonary Fibrosis/drug therapy , Pulmonary Fibrosis/prevention & control , Rats , Rats, Sprague-Dawley , SARS-CoV-2 , Signal Transduction , TOR Serine-Threonine Kinases/metabolism , Tocotrienols/adverse effects , Transforming Growth Factor beta/metabolism
13.
Arch Toxicol ; 96(5): 1437-1453, 2022 05.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1712224

ABSTRACT

Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) emerged in 2019 has rapidly expanded into a serious global pandemic. Due to the high morbidity and mortality of COVID-19, there is an urgent need to develop safe and effective vaccines. AdC68-19S is an investigational chimpanzee adenovirus serotype 68 (AdC68) vector-based vaccine which encodes the full-length spike protein of SARS-CoV-2. Here, we evaluated the immunogenicity, biodistribution and safety profiles of the candidate vaccine AdC68-19S in Sprague Dawley (SD) rat and rhesus macaque under GLP conditions. To characterize the biodistribution profile of AdC68-19S, SD rats were given a single intramuscular injection of AdC68-19S 2 × 1011 VP/dose. Designated organs were collected on day 1, day 2, day 4, day 8 and day 15. Genomic DNA was extracted from all samples and was further quantified by real-time quantitative polymerase chain reaction (qPCR). To characterize the toxicology and immunogenicity profiles of AdC68-19S, the rats and rhesus macaques were injected intramuscularly with AdC68-19S up to 2 × 1011vp/dose or 4 × 1011vp/dose (2 and fourfold the proposed clinical dose of 1 × 1011vp/dose) on two or three occasions with a 14-day interval period, respectively. In addition to the conventional toxicological evaluation indexes, the antigen-specific cellular and humoral responses were evaluated. We proved that multiple intramuscular injections could elicit effective and long-lasting neutralizing antibody responses and Th1 T cell responses. AdC68-19S was mainly distributed in injection sites and no AdC68-19S related toxicological reaction was observed. In conclusion, these results have shown that AdC68-19S could induce an effective immune response with a good safety profile, and is a promising candidate vaccine against COVID-19.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Vaccines , COVID-19 , Adenoviridae/genetics , Animals , Antibodies, Neutralizing , Antibodies, Viral , COVID-19/prevention & control , COVID-19 Vaccines/adverse effects , Humans , Macaca mulatta , Pan troglodytes , Rats , Rats, Sprague-Dawley , SARS-CoV-2 , Tissue Distribution
14.
Food Funct ; 13(5): 2846-2856, 2022 Mar 07.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1700242

ABSTRACT

Obesity is a serious global health issue, and the societal interventions during the COVID-19 pandemic may have perturbed energy homeostasis, which affects the condition of obesity. Tea is a traditional beverage in Asia and has been shown to provide many beneficial health effects. Oolong tea is semifermented, with its chemical composition comprising features of green (unfermented) and black (fermented) tea. Although green tea has anti-obesity properties, studies on the anti-obesity ability of oolong tea are still scarce. In this study, we analyzed the chemical composition of oolong tea extract (OTE) and investigated the effects of OTE on high-fat diet-induced obese rats. OTE contained more (-)-epigallocatechin-3-gallate, (-)-epigallocatechin, and (-)-gallocatechin-3-gallate than theaflavins and theasinensins. Rats fed with a high-fat diet (HFD) and treated with 0.5% OTE exhibited significantly reduced body weight and visceral fat weight compared with the HFD-only group. OTE also decreased adipocyte size, lipogenesis-related protein sterol regulatory element-binding protein 1 (SREBP1) and fatty acid synthase (FASN) protein expression and increased thermogenesis-related protein peroxisome proliferator-activated receptor gamma coactivator 1-alpha (PGC1α) and uncoupling protein 1 (UCP1) protein expression in epididymal adipose tissue compared with the HFD group. Moreover, the OTE groups had a significantly higher abundance of Candidatus arthromitus and Hydrogenoanaerobacterium and a lower abundance of Ruminococcus1, Oscillibacter, and Odoribacter compared with the HFD group. All these results show that OTE can alleviate weight gain by regulating lipid metabolism and modulating the distribution of the gut microbiota to decrease lipid accumulation in adipose tissue.


Subject(s)
Anti-Obesity Agents/pharmacology , Plant Extracts/pharmacology , Tea , Adipose Tissue/metabolism , Animals , Anti-Obesity Agents/chemistry , Diet, High-Fat , Disease Models, Animal , Gastrointestinal Microbiome/drug effects , Lipid Metabolism/drug effects , Male , Plant Extracts/chemistry , Rats , Rats, Sprague-Dawley
15.
Molecules ; 27(3)2022 Jan 29.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1667252

ABSTRACT

Aspirin (also known as acetylsalicylic acid) is a drug intended to treat fever, pain, or inflammation. Treatment of moderate to severe cases of COVID-19 using aspirin along with dexamethasone has gained major attention globally in recent times. Thus, the purpose of this study was to use High-Performance Liquid Chromatography (HPLC) to evaluate the in vitro inhibition of CYP3A2 enzyme activity using aspirin in rat liver microsomes (RLMs). In this study, an efficient and sensitive HPLC method was developed using a reversed phase C18 column (X Bridge 4.6 mm × 150 mm, 3.5 µm) at 243 nm using acetonitrile and water (70:30 v/v). The linearity (r2 > 0.999), precision (<15%), accuracy and recovery (80-120%), limit of detection (5.60 µM and 0.06 µM), limit of quantification (16.98 µM and 0.19 µM), and stability of the newly developed method were validated for dexamethasone and 6ß-hydroxydexamethasone, respectively, following International Conference on Harmonization (ICH) guidelines. This method was applied in vitro to measure CYP3A2 activity. The results showed that aspirin competitively inhibits 6ß-hydroxylation (CYP3A2 activity) with an inhibition constant (Ki) = 95.46 µM and the concentration of the inhibitor causing 50% inhibition of original enzyme activity (IC50) = 190.92 µM. This indicated that there is a minimal risk of toxicity when dexamethasone and aspirin are co-administrated and a very low risk of toxicity and drug interaction with drugs that are a substrate for CYP3A2 in healthcare settings.


Subject(s)
Aspirin/pharmacology , Chromatography, High Pressure Liquid/methods , Cytochrome P-450 CYP3A/metabolism , Animals , Aspirin/chemistry , COVID-19/drug therapy , Cytochrome P-450 CYP3A/drug effects , Cytochrome P-450 Enzyme Inhibitors/metabolism , Cytochrome P-450 Enzyme System/metabolism , Dexamethasone/analogs & derivatives , Dexamethasone/pharmacology , Male , Microsomes, Liver/metabolism , Pharmaceutical Preparations/metabolism , Protein Isoforms/metabolism , Rats , Rats, Sprague-Dawley , Reproducibility of Results , SARS-CoV-2/drug effects , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity
16.
Int J Environ Res Public Health ; 19(2)2022 01 12.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1637922

ABSTRACT

This study investigated the effects of partial replacement of dietary fat with krill oil (KO) or coconut oil (CO) on dyslipidemia and lipid metabolism in rats fed with a high-fat diet (HFD). Sprague Dawley rats were divided into three groups as follows: HFD, HFD + KO, and HFD + CO. The rats were fed each diet for 10 weeks and then intraperitoneally injected with phosphate-buffered saline (PBS) or lipopolysaccharide (LPS) (1 mg/kg). The KO- and CO-fed rats exhibited lower levels of serum lipids and aspartate aminotransferases than those of the HFD-fed rats. Rats fed with HFD + KO displayed significantly lower hepatic histological scores and hepatic triglyceride (TG) content than rats fed with HFD. The KO supplementation also downregulated the adipogenic gene expression in the liver. When treated with LPS, the HFD + KO and HFD + CO groups reduced the adipocyte size in the epididymal white adipose tissues (EAT) relative to the HFD group. These results suggest that KO and CO could improve lipid metabolism dysfunction.


Subject(s)
Dyslipidemias , Euphausiacea , Animals , Coconut Oil/metabolism , Coconut Oil/pharmacology , Diet, High-Fat/adverse effects , Dietary Fats , Euphausiacea/metabolism , Lipid Metabolism , Lipopolysaccharides/toxicity , Liver , Rats , Rats, Sprague-Dawley
17.
Sci Rep ; 12(1): 696, 2022 01 13.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1621270

ABSTRACT

Despite encouraging preclinical data, therapies to reduce ARDS mortality remains a globally unmet need, including during the COVID-19 pandemic. We previously identified extracellular nicotinamide phosphoribosyltransferase (eNAMPT) as a novel damage-associated molecular pattern protein (DAMP) via TLR4 ligation which regulates inflammatory cascade activation. eNAMPT is tightly linked to human ARDS by biomarker and genotyping studies in ARDS subjects. We now hypothesize that an eNAMPT-neutralizing mAb will significantly reduce the severity of ARDS lung inflammatory lung injury in diverse preclinical rat and porcine models. Sprague Dawley rats received eNAMPT mAb intravenously following exposure to intratracheal lipopolysaccharide (LPS) or to a traumatic blast (125 kPa) but prior to initiation of ventilator-induced lung injury (VILI) (4 h). Yucatan minipigs received intravenous eNAMPT mAb 2 h after initiation of septic shock and VILI (12 h). Each rat/porcine ARDS/VILI model was strongly associated with evidence of severe inflammatory lung injury with NFkB pathway activation and marked dysregulation of the Akt/mTORC2 signaling pathway. eNAMPT neutralization dramatically reduced inflammatory indices and the severity of lung injury in each rat/porcine ARDS/VILI model (~ 50% reduction) including reduction in serum lactate, and plasma levels of eNAMPT, IL-6, TNFα and Ang-2. The eNAMPT mAb further rectified NFkB pathway activation and preserved the Akt/mTORC2 signaling pathway. These results strongly support targeting the eNAMPT/TLR4 inflammatory pathway as a potential ARDS strategy to reduce inflammatory lung injury and ARDS mortality.


Subject(s)
Acute Chest Syndrome/metabolism , Mechanistic Target of Rapamycin Complex 2/metabolism , NF-kappa B/metabolism , Nicotinamide Phosphoribosyltransferase/metabolism , Proto-Oncogene Proteins c-akt/metabolism , Signal Transduction/physiology , Animals , Antibodies, Neutralizing/metabolism , Biomarkers/metabolism , COVID-19/metabolism , Disease Models, Animal , Inflammation/metabolism , Lipopolysaccharides/metabolism , Lung/metabolism , Male , Rats , Rats, Sprague-Dawley , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity , Swine
18.
Oral Dis ; 28 Suppl 2: 2456-2464, 2022 Nov.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1612915

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVES: Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) entry into the host cells depends on the expression of angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2) and transmembrane protease serine 2 (TMPRSS2). We investigated the distribution of ACE2- and TMPRSS2-expressing cells in various oral tissues to identify the underlying mechanism of oral manifestations in patients with coronavirus disease 2019. SUBJECTS: We analyzed the expression patterns of ACE2 and TMPRSS2 in the oral mucosa (tongue, palate, and buccal mucosa), trigeminal ganglion, vessels, and salivary glands of 9 Sprague-Dawley rats using immunohistochemistry and immunofluorescence. RESULTS: ACE2 and TMPRSS2 were strongly expressed in the intermediate layer of the squamous epithelia of tongue papillae and buccal mucosa. ACE2- and TMPRSS2-positive cells were observed in the taste buds of the tongue. Additionally, ACE2 and TMPRSS2 were co-expressed in the ductal epithelium and acinar cells of salivary glands. Furthermore, both ACE2 and TMPRSS2 were stained in the neuronal cell body of trigeminal ganglia, but not in Schwann cells. Moreover, ACE2 and TMPRSS2 were expressed in capillaries, but not in venules/arterioles. CONCLUSIONS: SARS-CoV-2 can spread the suprabasal area of squamous epithelia of the oral mucosa, invades taste bud, trigeminal nerve, parotid gland, and microvessel, resulting in oral manifestations.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Carcinoma, Squamous Cell , Animals , Rats , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2 , Peptidyl-Dipeptidase A/metabolism , Rats, Sprague-Dawley , SARS-CoV-2
19.
Cells ; 10(12)2021 12 11.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1598389

ABSTRACT

Both in utero exposure to maternal immune activation and cannabis use during adolescence have been associated with increased risk for the development of schizophrenia; however, whether these exposures exert synergistic effects on brain function is not known. In the present study, mild maternal immune activation (MIA) was elicited in mice with prenatal exposure to polyinosinic-polycytidylic acid (poly(I:C)), and ∆9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) was provided throughout adolescence in cereal (3 mg/kg/day for 5 days). Neither THC nor MIA pretreatments altered activity in assays used to characterize hyperdopaminergic states in adulthood: amphetamine hyperlocomotion and prepulse inhibition of the acoustic startle reflex. Adolescent THC treatment elicited deficits in spatial memory and enhanced spatial reversal learning in adult female mice in the Morris water maze, while exposure to MIA elicited female-specific deficits in fear extinction learning in adulthood. There were no effects in these assays in adult males, nor were there interactions between THC and MIA in adult females. While doses of poly(I:C) and THC were sufficient to elicit behavioral effects, particularly relating to cognitive performance in females, there was no evidence that adolescent THC exposure synergized with the risk imposed by MIA to worsen behavioral outcomes in adult mice of either sex.


Subject(s)
Aging/physiology , Behavior, Animal/drug effects , Dronabinol/pharmacology , Prenatal Exposure Delayed Effects/immunology , Amphetamine , Animals , Conditioning, Classical , Extinction, Psychological/drug effects , Fear/drug effects , Female , Locomotion/drug effects , Male , Maze Learning/physiology , Mice, Inbred C57BL , Pregnancy , Prepulse Inhibition/drug effects , Rats, Sprague-Dawley , Reflex, Startle/drug effects , Swimming
20.
Int J Mol Sci ; 23(1)2021 Dec 21.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1580702

ABSTRACT

Right ventricular (RV) and left ventricular (LV) dysfunction is common in a significant number of hospitalized coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) patients. This study was conducted to assess whether the improved mitochondrial bioenergetics by cardiometabolic drug meldonium can attenuate the development of ventricular dysfunction in experimental RV and LV dysfunction models, which resemble ventricular dysfunction in COVID-19 patients. Effects of meldonium were assessed in rats with pulmonary hypertension-induced RV failure and in mice with inflammation-induced LV dysfunction. Rats with RV failure showed decreased RV fractional area change (RVFAC) and hypertrophy. Treatment with meldonium attenuated the development of RV hypertrophy and increased RVFAC by 50%. Mice with inflammation-induced LV dysfunction had decreased LV ejection fraction (LVEF) by 30%. Treatment with meldonium prevented the decrease in LVEF. A decrease in the mitochondrial fatty acid oxidation with a concomitant increase in pyruvate metabolism was noted in the cardiac fibers of the rats and mice with RV and LV failure, respectively. Meldonium treatment in both models restored mitochondrial bioenergetics. The results show that meldonium treatment prevents the development of RV and LV systolic dysfunction by enhancing mitochondrial function in experimental models of ventricular dysfunction that resembles cardiovascular complications in COVID-19 patients.


Subject(s)
Cardiotonic Agents/pharmacology , Methylhydrazines/pharmacology , Animals , COVID-19/complications , COVID-19/drug therapy , Cardiotonic Agents/therapeutic use , Cardiotoxicity/drug therapy , Disease Models, Animal , Endothelium/drug effects , Heart Failure/drug therapy , Heart Failure/metabolism , Heart Ventricles/drug effects , Hydrogen Peroxide/metabolism , Lung/drug effects , Male , Methylhydrazines/therapeutic use , Mice, Inbred C57BL , Mitochondria/drug effects , Rats, Sprague-Dawley , Reactive Oxygen Species/metabolism , Reperfusion Injury/drug therapy , Stroke Volume/drug effects , Ventricular Dysfunction, Left/drug therapy , Ventricular Dysfunction, Right/drug therapy
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