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1.
Commun Biol ; 5(1): 242, 2022 03 18.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1751765

ABSTRACT

Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), the cause of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), has incited a global health crisis. Currently, there are limited therapeutic options for the prevention and treatment of SARS-CoV-2 infections. We evaluated the antiviral activity of sulforaphane (SFN), the principal biologically active phytochemical derived from glucoraphanin, the naturally occurring precursor present in high concentrations in cruciferous vegetables. SFN inhibited in vitro replication of six strains of SARS-CoV-2, including Delta and Omicron, as well as that of the seasonal coronavirus HCoV-OC43. Further, SFN and remdesivir interacted synergistically to inhibit coronavirus infection in vitro. Prophylactic administration of SFN to K18-hACE2 mice prior to intranasal SARS-CoV-2 infection significantly decreased the viral load in the lungs and upper respiratory tract and reduced lung injury and pulmonary pathology compared to untreated infected mice. SFN treatment diminished immune cell activation in the lungs, including significantly lower recruitment of myeloid cells and a reduction in T cell activation and cytokine production. Our results suggest that SFN should be explored as a potential agent for the prevention or treatment of coronavirus infections.


Subject(s)
Antiviral Agents/therapeutic use , Common Cold/drug therapy , Coronavirus Infections/drug therapy , Coronavirus OC43, Human , Isothiocyanates/therapeutic use , SARS-CoV-2 , Sulfoxides/therapeutic use , Adenosine Monophosphate/analogs & derivatives , Adenosine Monophosphate/therapeutic use , Alanine/analogs & derivatives , Alanine/therapeutic use , Animals , COVID-19/drug therapy , Caco-2 Cells , Chlorocebus aethiops , Common Cold/virology , Coronavirus Infections/immunology , Coronavirus Infections/virology , Cytokines/immunology , Drug Synergism , Humans , Lung/immunology , Lung/virology , Macrophages, Alveolar/immunology , Male , Mice, Transgenic , Spleen/immunology , T-Lymphocytes/immunology , Vero Cells , Viral Load
2.
Front Immunol ; 12: 656419, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1506563

ABSTRACT

Tuberculosis (TB) is the global health problem with the second highest number of deaths from a communicable disease after COVID-19. Although TB is curable, poor health infrastructure, long and grueling TB treatments have led to the spread of TB pandemic with alarmingly increasing multidrug-resistant (MDR)-TB prevalence. Alternative host modulating therapies can be employed to improve TB drug efficacies or dampen the exaggerated inflammatory responses to improve lung function. Here, we investigated the adjunct therapy of natural immune-modulatory compound berberine in C57BL/6 mouse model of pulmonary TB. Berberine treatment did not affect Mtb growth in axenic cultures; however, it showed increased bacterial killing in primary murine bone marrow-derived macrophages and human monocyte-derived macrophages. Ad libitum berberine administration was beneficial to the host in combination with rifampicin and isoniazid. Berberine adjunctive treatment resulted in decreased lung pathology with no additive or synergistic effects on bacterial burdens in mice. Lung immune cell flow cytometry analysis showed that adjunctive berberine treatment decreased neutrophil, CD11b+ dendritic cell and recruited interstitial macrophage numbers. Late onset of adjunctive berberine treatment resulted in a similar phenotype with consistently reduced numbers of neutrophils both in lungs and the spleen. Together, our results suggest that berberine can be supplemented as an immunomodulatory agent depending on the disease stage and inflammatory status of the host.


Subject(s)
Antitubercular Agents/therapeutic use , Berberine/therapeutic use , Immunologic Factors/therapeutic use , Isoniazid/therapeutic use , Rifampin/therapeutic use , Tuberculosis, Pulmonary/drug therapy , Animals , Antitubercular Agents/pharmacology , Berberine/pharmacology , Cytokines/immunology , Dendritic Cells/drug effects , Drug Therapy, Combination , Female , Humans , Immunologic Factors/pharmacology , Isoniazid/pharmacology , Lung/drug effects , Lung/immunology , Lung/microbiology , Lung/pathology , Macrophages/drug effects , Macrophages/immunology , Male , Mice, Inbred C3H , Mice, Inbred C57BL , Mycobacterium tuberculosis/drug effects , Mycobacterium tuberculosis/growth & development , Neutrophils/drug effects , Neutrophils/immunology , Rifampin/pharmacology , Spleen/drug effects , Spleen/immunology , Spleen/microbiology , Tuberculosis, Pulmonary/immunology , Tuberculosis, Pulmonary/microbiology , Tuberculosis, Pulmonary/pathology
3.
Am J Respir Cell Mol Biol ; 66(2): 196-205, 2022 02.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1495786

ABSTRACT

Immunopathology occurs in the lung and spleen in fatal coronavirus disease (COVID-19), involving monocytes/macrophages and plasma cells. Antiinflammatory therapy reduces mortality, but additional therapeutic targets are required. We aimed to gain mechanistic insight into COVID-19 immunopathology by targeted proteomic analysis of pulmonary and splenic tissues. Lung parenchymal and splenic tissue was obtained from 13 postmortem examinations of patients with fatal COVID-19. Control tissue was obtained from cancer resection samples (lung) and deceased organ donors (spleen). Protein was extracted from tissue by phenol extraction. Olink multiplex immunoassay panels were used for protein detection and quantification. Proteins with increased abundance in the lung included MCP-3, antiviral TRIM21, and prothrombotic TYMP. OSM and EN-RAGE/S100A12 abundance was correlated and associated with inflammation severity. Unsupervised clustering identified "early viral" and "late inflammatory" clusters with distinct protein abundance profiles, and differences in illness duration before death and presence of viral RNA. In the spleen, lymphocyte chemotactic factors and CD8A were decreased in abundance, and proapoptotic factors were increased. B-cell receptor signaling pathway components and macrophage colony stimulating factor (CSF-1) were also increased. Additional evidence for a subset of host factors (including DDX58, OSM, TYMP, IL-18, MCP-3, and CSF-1) was provided by overlap between 1) differential abundance in spleen and lung tissue; 2) meta-analysis of existing datasets; and 3) plasma proteomic data. This proteomic analysis of lung parenchymal and splenic tissue from fatal COVID-19 provides mechanistic insight into tissue antiviral responses, inflammation and disease stages, macrophage involvement, pulmonary thrombosis, splenic B-cell activation, and lymphocyte depletion.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/immunology , Gene Expression Regulation/immunology , Lung/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Spleen/immunology , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , Autopsy , Female , Humans , Inflammation/immunology , Male , Proteomics
4.
Pathol Res Pract ; 227: 153610, 2021 Nov.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1401790

ABSTRACT

The coronavirus disease 2019(COVID-19) is recognized as systemic inflammatory response syndrome. It was demonstrated that a rapid increase of cytokines in the serum of COVID-19 patients is associated with the severity of disease. However, the mechanisms of the cytokine release are not clear. By using immunofluorescence staining we found that the number of CD11b positive immune cells including macrophages in the spleens of died COVID-19 patients, was significantly higher than that of the control patients. The incidence of apoptosis as measured by two apoptotic markers, TUNEL and cleaved caspase-3, in COVID-19 patients' spleen cells is higher than that in control patients. By double immunostaining CD11b or CD68 and SARS-CoV-2 spike protein, it was found that up to 67% of these immune cells were positive for spike protein, suggesting that viral infection might be associated with apoptosis in these cells. Besides, we also stained the autophagy-related molecules (p-Akt、p62 and BCL-2) in spleen tissues, the results showed that the number of positive cells was significantly higher in COVID-19 group. And compared with non-COVID-19 patients, autophagy may be inhibited in COVID-19 patients. Our research suggest that SARS-CoV-2 may result in a higher rate of apoptosis and a lower rate of autophagy of immune cells in the spleen of COVID-19 patients. These discoveries may increase our understanding of the pathogenesis of COVID-19.


Subject(s)
Apoptosis , Autophagy , COVID-19/pathology , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity , Spleen/pathology , Antigens, CD/analysis , Antigens, Differentiation, Myelomonocytic/analysis , Autopsy , Biomarkers/analysis , CD11b Antigen/analysis , COVID-19/immunology , COVID-19/mortality , COVID-19/virology , Case-Control Studies , Caspase 3/analysis , Host-Pathogen Interactions , Humans , Immunohistochemistry , In Situ Nick-End Labeling , Phosphorylation , Proto-Oncogene Proteins c-akt/analysis , Proto-Oncogene Proteins c-bcl-2/analysis , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Sequestosome-1 Protein/analysis , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/analysis , Spleen/immunology , Spleen/virology
5.
STAR Protoc ; 2(3): 100499, 2021 09 17.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1275771

ABSTRACT

Location of immune cells that form the germinal center reaction within secondary lymphoid tissues can be characterized using confocal microscopy. Here, we present an optimized immunofluorescence staining protocol to image germinal center structures in fixed/frozen spleen sections from ChAdOx1 nCoV-19 immunized mice. This protocol can be adapted to identify other cell types within secondary lymphoid tissues. For complete information on the generation and use of this protocol to examine immune responses to the COVID vaccine ChAdOx1 nCoV-19, please refer to Silva-Cayetano et al. (2020).


Subject(s)
COVID-19/prevention & control , Fluorescent Antibody Technique/standards , Germinal Center/drug effects , Immunization, Secondary/methods , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Spleen/drug effects , Animals , COVID-19/diagnostic imaging , COVID-19/immunology , COVID-19/virology , Fluorescent Antibody Technique/methods , Germinal Center/immunology , Germinal Center/pathology , Germinal Center/virology , Immunogenicity, Vaccine , Male , Mice , Spleen/immunology , Spleen/pathology , Spleen/virology
6.
Mol Ther ; 29(11): 3293-3304, 2021 11 03.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1253754

ABSTRACT

Nucleoside-modified messenger RNA (mRNA)-lipid nanoparticles (LNPs) are the basis for the first two EUA (Emergency Use Authorization) COVID-19 vaccines. The use of nucleoside-modified mRNA as a pharmacological agent opens immense opportunities for therapeutic, prophylactic and diagnostic molecular interventions. In particular, mRNA-based drugs may specifically modulate immune cells, such as T lymphocytes, for immunotherapy of oncologic, infectious and other conditions. The key challenge, however, is that T cells are notoriously resistant to transfection by exogenous mRNA. Here, we report that conjugating CD4 antibody to LNPs enables specific targeting and mRNA interventions to CD4+ cells, including T cells. After systemic injection in mice, CD4-targeted radiolabeled mRNA-LNPs accumulated in spleen, providing ∼30-fold higher signal of reporter mRNA in T cells isolated from spleen as compared with non-targeted mRNA-LNPs. Intravenous injection of CD4-targeted LNPs loaded with Cre recombinase-encoding mRNA provided specific dose-dependent loxP-mediated genetic recombination, resulting in reporter gene expression in about 60% and 40% of CD4+ T cells in spleen and lymph nodes, respectively. T cell phenotyping showed uniform transfection of T cell subpopulations, with no variability in uptake of CD4-targeted mRNA-LNPs in naive, central memory, and effector cells. The specific and efficient targeting and transfection of mRNA to T cells established in this study provides a platform technology for immunotherapy of devastating conditions and HIV cure.


Subject(s)
CD4-Positive T-Lymphocytes/immunology , Lipids/genetics , Lipids/immunology , Nanoparticles/administration & dosage , RNA, Messenger/genetics , RNA, Messenger/immunology , Recombination, Genetic/genetics , Animals , COVID-19/immunology , COVID-19 Vaccines/immunology , Humans , Immunotherapy/methods , Lymph Nodes/immunology , Mice , Mice, Inbred C57BL , Recombination, Genetic/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Spleen/immunology , Transfection/methods
7.
Front Immunol ; 12: 661052, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1229177

ABSTRACT

While lymphocytopenia is a common characteristic of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), the mechanisms responsible for this lymphocyte depletion are unclear. Here, we retrospectively reviewed the clinical and immunological data from 18 fatal COVID-19 cases, results showed that these patients had severe lymphocytopenia, together with high serum levels of inflammatory cytokines (IL-6, IL-8 and IL-10), and elevation of many other mediators in routine laboratory tests, including C-reactive protein, lactate dehydrogenase, α-hydroxybutyrate dehydrogenase and natriuretic peptide type B. The spleens and hilar lymph nodes (LNs) from six additional COVID-19 patients with post-mortem examinations were also collected, histopathologic detection showed that both organs manifested severe tissue damage and lymphocyte apoptosis in these six cases. In situ hybridization assays illustrated that SARS-CoV-2 viral RNA accumulates in these tissues, and transmission electronic microscopy confirmed that coronavirus-like particles were visible in the LNs. SARS-CoV-2 Spike and Nucleocapsid protein (NP) accumulated in the spleens and LNs, and the NP antigen restricted in angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2) positive macrophages and dendritic cells (DCs). Furthermore, SARS-CoV-2 triggered the transcription of Il6, Il8 and Il1b genes in infected primary macrophages and DCs in vitro, and SARS-CoV-2-NP+ macrophages and DCs also manifested high levels of IL-6 and IL-1ß, which might directly decimate human spleens and LNs and subsequently lead to lymphocytopenia in vivo. Collectively, these results demonstrated that SARS-CoV-2 induced lymphocytopenia by promoting systemic inflammation and direct neutralization in human spleen and LNs.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/immunology , Lymph Nodes/immunology , Lymphopenia/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Spleen/immunology , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/immunology , COVID-19/complications , COVID-19/pathology , Coronavirus Nucleocapsid Proteins/immunology , Cytokines/immunology , Female , Humans , Inflammation/immunology , Inflammation/pathology , Lymph Nodes/ultrastructure , Lymphopenia/etiology , Lymphopenia/pathology , Middle Aged , Phosphoproteins/immunology , RNA, Messenger/immunology , Retrospective Studies , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity , SARS-CoV-2/ultrastructure , Spleen/ultrastructure
8.
J Allergy Clin Immunol ; 148(3): 843-857.e6, 2021 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1213300

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Prenatal exposure to infections can modify immune development. These environmental disturbances during early life potentially alter the incidence of inflammatory disorders as well as priming of immune responses. Infection with the helminth Schistosoma mansoni is widely studied for its ability to alter immune responsiveness and is associated with variations in coinfection, allergy, and vaccine efficacy in endemic populations. OBJECTIVE: Exposure to maternal schistosomiasis during early life, even without transmission of infection, can result in priming effects on offspring immune responses to bystander antigenic challenges as related to allergic responsiveness and vaccination, with this article seeking to further clarify the effects and underlying immunologic imprinting. METHODS: Here, we have combined a model of chronic maternal schistosomiasis infection with a thorough analysis of subsequent offspring immune responses to allergy and vaccination models, including viral challenge and steady-state changes to immune cell compartments. RESULTS: We have demonstrated that maternal schistosomiasis alters CD4+ responses during allergic sensitization and challenge in a skewed IL-4/B-cell-dominant response to antigenic challenge associated with limited inflammatory response. Beyond that, we have uncovered previously unidentified alterations to CD8+ T-cell responses during immunization that are dependent on vaccine formulation and have functional impact on the efficacy of vaccination against viral infection in a murine hepatitis B virus model. CONCLUSION: In addition to steady-state modifications to CD4+ T-cell polarization and B-cell priming, we have traced these modified CD8+ responses to an altered dendritic cell phenotype sustained into adulthood, providing evidence for complex priming effects imparted by infection via fetomaternal cross talk.


Subject(s)
Prenatal Exposure Delayed Effects/immunology , Respiratory Hypersensitivity/immunology , Schistosomiasis/immunology , Allergens/immunology , Animals , B-Lymphocytes/immunology , Cells, Cultured , Dendritic Cells/immunology , Female , Fetus/immunology , Gene Expression Profiling , Immunization , Lung/immunology , Lymph Nodes/immunology , Male , Mice, Inbred BALB C , Mice, Inbred C57BL , Ovalbumin/immunology , Pregnancy , Respiratory Hypersensitivity/genetics , Schistosoma mansoni , Spleen/immunology , T-Lymphocytes/immunology
9.
Science ; 372(6543): 738-741, 2021 05 14.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1180894

ABSTRACT

Vaccination and infection promote the formation, tissue distribution, and clonal evolution of B cells, which encode humoral immune memory. We evaluated pediatric and adult blood and deceased adult organ donor tissues to determine convergent antigen-specific antibody genes of similar sequences shared between individuals. B cell memory varied for different pathogens. Polysaccharide antigen-specific clones were not exclusive to the spleen. Adults had higher clone frequencies and greater class switching in lymphoid tissues than blood, while pediatric blood had abundant class-switched convergent clones. Consistent with reported serology, prepandemic children had class-switched convergent clones to severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 with weak cross-reactivity to other coronaviruses, while adult blood or tissues showed few such clones. These results highlight the prominence of early childhood B cell clonal expansions and cross-reactivity for future responses to novel pathogens.


Subject(s)
Antibodies, Viral/immunology , B-Lymphocytes/immunology , Coronavirus/immunology , Immunologic Memory , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Adolescent , Adult , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , Aging , Child, Preschool , Cross Reactions , Ebolavirus/immunology , Female , Fetal Blood/immunology , Genes, Immunoglobulin , Humans , Immunoglobulin Class Switching , Immunoglobulin D/genetics , Immunoglobulin D/immunology , Immunoglobulin Heavy Chains/immunology , Immunoglobulin M/genetics , Immunoglobulin M/immunology , Infant , Lymph Nodes/immunology , Male , Middle Aged , Receptors, Antigen, B-Cell/immunology , Somatic Hypermutation, Immunoglobulin , Spleen/immunology , Young Adult
11.
Sci Rep ; 10(1): 20836, 2020 11 30.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1059918

ABSTRACT

Impaired immune responses have been hypothesised to be a possible trigger of unfavourable outcomes in coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). We aimed to characterise IgM memory B cells in patients with COVID-19 admitted to an internal medicine ward in Northern Italy. Overall, 66 COVID-19 patients (mean age 74 ± 16.6 years; 29 females) were enrolled. Three patients (4.5%; 1 female) had been splenectomised and were excluded from further analyses. Fifty-five patients (87.3%) had IgM memory B cell depletion, and 18 (28.6%) died during hospitalisation (cumulative incidence rate 9.26/100 person-week; 5.8-14.7 95% CI). All patients who died had IgM memory B cell depletion. A superimposed infection was found in 6 patients (9.5%), all of them having IgM memory B cell depletion (cumulative incidence rate 3.08/100 person-week; 1.3-6.8 95% CI). At bivariable analyses, older age, sex, number of comorbidities, and peripheral blood lymphocyte count < 1500/µl were not correlated with IgM memory B cell depletion. A discrete-to-marked reduction of the B-cell compartment was also noticed in autoptic spleen specimens of two COVID-19 patients. We conclude that IgM memory B cells are commonly depleted in COVID-19 patients and this correlates with increased mortality and superimposed infections.


Subject(s)
B-Lymphocytes/cytology , COVID-19/mortality , Hospital Mortality , Immunologic Memory/immunology , Lymphocyte Depletion , Adult , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , B-Lymphocyte Subsets/cytology , B-Lymphocyte Subsets/immunology , B-Lymphocytes/immunology , COVID-19/pathology , Female , Humans , Immunoglobulin M/blood , Longitudinal Studies , Lymphocyte Count , Male , Middle Aged , Prospective Studies , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Spleen/cytology , Spleen/immunology
12.
Int J Infect Dis ; 103: 628-635, 2021 Feb.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1002639

ABSTRACT

OBJECTIVES: In coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), the adaptive immune response is of considerable importance, and detailed cellular immune reactions in the hematological system of patients with severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) infection are yet to be clarified. METHODS: This study reports the morphological characterization of both bone marrow and spleen in 11 COVID-19 decedents with respect to findings in the peripheral blood and pulmonary SARS-CoV-2 burden. RESULTS: In the bone marrow, activation and left shift were found in at least 55% of patients, which was mirrored by peripheral anaemia, granulocytic immaturity and multiple thromboembolic events. Signs of sepsis-acquired immunodeficiency were found in the setting of an abscess-forming superinfection of viral COVID-19 pneumonia. Furthermore, a severe B cell loss was observed in the bone marrow and/or spleen in 64% of COVID-19 patients. This was reflected by lymphocytopenia in the peripheral blood. As compared to B cell preservation, B cell loss was associated with a higher pulmonary SARS-CoV-2 burden and only a marginal decrease of of T cell counts. CONCLUSIONS: The results of this study suggest the presence of sepsis-related immunodeficiency in severe COVID-19 pneumonia with superinfection. Furthermore, our findings indicate that lymphocytopenia in COVID-19 is accompanied by B cell depletion in hematopoietic tissue, which might impede the durability of the humoral immune response to SARS-CoV-2.


Subject(s)
B-Lymphocytes/immunology , Bone Marrow/immunology , COVID-19/immunology , Lymphopenia/etiology , SARS-CoV-2 , Sepsis/immunology , Spleen/immunology , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , Female , Humans , Male , Middle Aged
13.
Sci Rep ; 10(1): 20085, 2020 11 18.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-933722

ABSTRACT

The COVID-19 pandemic is a worldwide health emergency which calls for an unprecedented race for vaccines and treatment. In developing a COVID-19 vaccine, we applied technology previously used for MERS-CoV to produce a prefusion-stabilized SARS-CoV-2 spike protein, S-2P. To enhance immunogenicity and mitigate the potential vaccine-induced immunopathology, CpG 1018, a Th1-biasing synthetic toll-like receptor 9 (TLR9) agonist was selected as an adjuvant candidate. S-2P in combination with CpG 1018 and aluminum hydroxide (alum) was found to be the most potent immunogen and induced high titer of neutralizing antibodies in sera of immunized mice against pseudotyped lentivirus reporter or live wild-type SARS-CoV-2. In addition, the antibodies elicited were able to cross-neutralize pseudovirus containing the spike protein of the D614G variant, indicating the potential for broad spectrum protection. A marked Th1 dominant response was noted from cytokines secreted by splenocytes of mice immunized with CpG 1018 and alum. No vaccine-related serious adverse effects were found in the dose-ranging study in rats administered single- or two-dose regimens of S-2P combined with CpG 1018 alone or CpG 1018 with alum. These data support continued development of CHO-derived S-2P formulated with CpG 1018 and alum as a candidate vaccine to prevent COVID-19 disease.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 Vaccines/immunology , Immunogenicity, Vaccine , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/immunology , Adjuvants, Immunologic/therapeutic use , Aluminum Hydroxide/therapeutic use , Animals , Antibodies, Neutralizing/blood , Antibodies, Neutralizing/immunology , Antibodies, Viral/blood , Antibodies, Viral/immunology , CHO Cells , COVID-19 Vaccines/adverse effects , COVID-19 Vaccines/therapeutic use , Cricetinae , Cricetulus , Cytokines/blood , Cytokines/metabolism , Female , HEK293 Cells , Humans , Mice , Mice, Inbred BALB C , Mice, Inbred C57BL , Oligodeoxyribonucleotides/therapeutic use , Rats , Rats, Sprague-Dawley , Spleen/immunology , Th1 Cells/immunology
14.
Cell ; 183(1): 143-157.e13, 2020 10 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-720447

ABSTRACT

Humoral responses in coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) are often of limited durability, as seen with other human coronavirus epidemics. To address the underlying etiology, we examined post mortem thoracic lymph nodes and spleens in acute SARS-CoV-2 infection and observed the absence of germinal centers and a striking reduction in Bcl-6+ germinal center B cells but preservation of AID+ B cells. Absence of germinal centers correlated with an early specific block in Bcl-6+ TFH cell differentiation together with an increase in T-bet+ TH1 cells and aberrant extra-follicular TNF-α accumulation. Parallel peripheral blood studies revealed loss of transitional and follicular B cells in severe disease and accumulation of SARS-CoV-2-specific "disease-related" B cell populations. These data identify defective Bcl-6+ TFH cell generation and dysregulated humoral immune induction early in COVID-19 disease, providing a mechanistic explanation for the limited durability of antibody responses in coronavirus infections, and suggest that achieving herd immunity through natural infection may be difficult.


Subject(s)
Coronavirus Infections/immunology , Germinal Center/immunology , Pneumonia, Viral/immunology , T-Lymphocytes, Helper-Inducer/immunology , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , B-Lymphocytes/immunology , COVID-19 , Female , Germinal Center/pathology , Humans , Male , Middle Aged , Pandemics , Proto-Oncogene Proteins c-bcl-6/genetics , Proto-Oncogene Proteins c-bcl-6/metabolism , Spleen/immunology , Spleen/pathology , Tumor Necrosis Factor-alpha/metabolism
15.
Nature ; 586(7830): 572-577, 2020 10.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-691301

ABSTRACT

Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) causes a respiratory disease called coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), the spread of which has led to a pandemic. An effective preventive vaccine against this virus is urgently needed. As an essential step during infection, SARS-CoV-2 uses the receptor-binding domain (RBD) of the spike protein to engage with the receptor angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2) on host cells1,2. Here we show that a recombinant vaccine that comprises residues 319-545 of the RBD of the spike protein induces a potent functional antibody response in immunized mice, rabbits and non-human primates (Macaca mulatta) as early as 7 or 14 days after the injection of a single vaccine dose. The sera from the immunized animals blocked the binding of the RBD to ACE2, which is expressed on the cell surface, and neutralized infection with a SARS-CoV-2 pseudovirus and live SARS-CoV-2 in vitro. Notably, vaccination also provided protection in non-human primates to an in vivo challenge with SARS-CoV-2. We found increased levels of RBD-specific antibodies in the sera of patients with COVID-19. We show that several immune pathways and CD4 T lymphocytes are involved in the induction of the vaccine antibody response. Our findings highlight the importance of the RBD domain in the design of SARS-CoV-2 vaccines and provide a rationale for the development of a protective vaccine through the induction of antibodies against the RBD domain.


Subject(s)
Antibodies, Viral/immunology , Betacoronavirus/immunology , Coronavirus Infections/immunology , Coronavirus Infections/prevention & control , Pandemics/prevention & control , Pneumonia, Viral/immunology , Pneumonia, Viral/prevention & control , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/chemistry , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/immunology , Viral Vaccines/immunology , Animals , Antibodies, Neutralizing/immunology , COVID-19 , COVID-19 Vaccines , Humans , Macaca mulatta/immunology , Macaca mulatta/virology , Mice , Mice, Inbred BALB C , Mice, Inbred C57BL , Models, Animal , Models, Molecular , Protein Domains , SARS-CoV-2 , Serum/immunology , Spleen/cytology , Spleen/immunology , T-Lymphocytes/immunology , Vaccination
16.
Arch Virol ; 165(4): 835-843, 2020 Apr.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-71756

ABSTRACT

Avian infectious bronchitis virus (IBV) is a coronavirus with great economic impact on the poultry industry, causing an acute and highly contagious disease in chickens that primarily affects the respiratory and reproductive systems. The cellular regulation of IBV pathogenesis and the host immune responses involved remain to be fully elucidated. MicroRNAs (miRNAs) have emerged as a class of crucial regulators of numerous cellular processes, including responses to viral infections. Here, we employed a high-throughput sequencing approach to analyze the miRNA composition of the spleen and the lungs of chicken embryos upon IBV infection. Compared to healthy chicken embryos, 13 and six miRNAs were upregulated in the spleen and the lungs, respectively, all predicted to influence viral transcription, cytokine production, and lymphocyte functioning. Subsequent downregulation of NFATC3, NFAT5, SPPL3, and TGFB2 genes in particular was observed only in the spleen, demonstrating the biological functionality of the miRNAs in this lymphoid organ. This is the first study that describes the modulation of miRNAs and the related host immune factors by IBV in chicken embryos. Our data provide novel insight into complex virus-host interactions and specifically highlight components that could affect the host's immune response to IBV infection.


Subject(s)
Coronavirus Infections/veterinary , Gammacoronavirus/physiology , MicroRNAs/immunology , Ovum/virology , Poultry Diseases/immunology , Animals , Chickens , Coronavirus Infections/genetics , Coronavirus Infections/immunology , Coronavirus Infections/virology , Cytokines/genetics , Cytokines/immunology , Gammacoronavirus/genetics , Lung/immunology , Lung/pathology , MicroRNAs/genetics , Ovum/immunology , Poultry Diseases/genetics , Poultry Diseases/pathology , Poultry Diseases/virology , Spleen/immunology , Spleen/pathology
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