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Life Sci ; 294: 120392, 2022 Apr 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1670857


The SARS coronavirus 2 (SARS CoV-2) causes Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19), is an emerging viral infection. SARS CoV-2 infects target cells by attaching to Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme (ACE2). SARS CoV-2 could cause cardiac damage in patients with severe COVID-19, as ACE2 is expressed in cardiac cells, including cardiomyocytes, pericytes, and fibroblasts, and coronavirus could directly infect these cells. Cardiovascular disorders are the most frequent comorbidity found in COVID-19 patients. Immune cells such as monocytes, macrophages, and T cells may produce inflammatory cytokines and chemokines that contribute to COVID-19 pathogenesis if their functions are uncontrolled. This causes a cytokine storm in COVID-19 patients, which has been associated with cardiac damage. Tregs are a subset of immune cells that regulate immune and inflammatory responses. Tregs suppress inflammation and improve cardiovascular function through a variety of mechanisms. This is an exciting research area to explore the cellular, molecular, and immunological mechanisms related to reducing risks of cardiovascular complications in severe COVID-19. This review evaluated whether Tregs can affect COVID-19-related cardiovascular complications, as well as the mechanisms through which Tregs act.

COVID-19/immunology , Cardiovascular Diseases/immunology , Cardiovascular Diseases/prevention & control , SARS-CoV-2 , T-Lymphocytes, Regulatory/physiology , Adoptive Transfer , Animals , Cardiovascular Diseases/virology , Cytokine Release Syndrome/immunology , Cytokine Release Syndrome/prevention & control , Humans , Inflammation/immunology , T-Lymphocytes, Regulatory/immunology
Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A ; 118(37)2021 09 14.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1373495


The hallmark of severe COVID-19 is an uncontrolled inflammatory response, resulting from poorly understood immunological dysfunction. We hypothesized that perturbations in FoxP3+ T regulatory cells (Treg), key enforcers of immune homeostasis, contribute to COVID-19 pathology. Cytometric and transcriptomic profiling revealed a distinct Treg phenotype in severe COVID-19 patients, with an increase in Treg proportions and intracellular levels of the lineage-defining transcription factor FoxP3, correlating with poor outcomes. These Tregs showed a distinct transcriptional signature, with overexpression of several suppressive effectors, but also proinflammatory molecules like interleukin (IL)-32, and a striking similarity to tumor-infiltrating Tregs that suppress antitumor responses. Most marked during acute severe disease, these traits persisted somewhat in convalescent patients. A screen for candidate agents revealed that IL-6 and IL-18 may individually contribute different facets of these COVID-19-linked perturbations. These results suggest that Tregs may play nefarious roles in COVID-19, by suppressing antiviral T cell responses during the severe phase of the disease, and by a direct proinflammatory role.

COVID-19/etiology , T-Lymphocytes, Regulatory/physiology , Adult , Aged , CD4-Positive T-Lymphocytes/virology , Female , Forkhead Transcription Factors/genetics , Forkhead Transcription Factors/metabolism , Gene Expression Profiling , Gene Expression Regulation , Humans , Inflammation/metabolism , Inflammation/virology , Interleukin-18/genetics , Interleukin-18/metabolism , Interleukin-2 Receptor alpha Subunit/genetics , Interleukin-2 Receptor alpha Subunit/metabolism , Interleukin-6/genetics , Interleukin-6/metabolism , Lymphocytes, Tumor-Infiltrating/physiology , Male , Middle Aged , Severity of Illness Index , T-Lymphocytes, Regulatory/immunology , T-Lymphocytes, Regulatory/virology , Transcription Factors/genetics , Transcription Factors/metabolism
Int Immunopharmacol ; 96: 107761, 2021 Jul.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1253056


Since the discovery of lymphocytes with immunosuppressive activity, increasing interest has arisen in their possible influence on the immune response induced by vaccines. Regulatory T cells (Tregs) are essential for maintaining peripheral tolerance, preventing autoimmune diseases, and limiting chronic inflammatory diseases. However, they also limit beneficial immune responses by suppressing anti-infectious and anti-tumor immunity. Mounting evidence suggests that Tregs are involved, at least in part, in the low effectiveness of immunization against various diseases where it has been difficult to obtain protective vaccines. Interestingly, increased activity of Tregs is associated with aging, suggesting a key role for these cells in the lower vaccine effectiveness observed in older people. In this review, we analyze the impact of Tregs on vaccination, with a focus on older adults. Finally, we address an overview of current strategies for Tregs modulation with potential application to improve the effectiveness of future vaccines targeting older populations.

Autoimmune Diseases/therapy , Chronic Disease/therapy , Inflammation/therapy , T-Lymphocytes, Regulatory/physiology , Vaccines/immunology , Age Factors , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , Animals , Autoimmune Diseases/immunology , Humans , Immunologic Factors/pharmacology , Immunomodulation/physiology , Immunosuppressive Agents/pharmacology , Inflammation/immunology , Membrane Proteins/metabolism , Middle Aged , Vaccination