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1.
Hum Genomics ; 16(1): 59, 2022 Nov 15.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2119172

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: AU-rich elements (AREs) are located in the 3'UTRs of 22% of human mRNAs, including most transiently expressed inflammatory mediators. By default, AREs mark mRNAs for decay and translational inhibition, but this activity can be temporarily inhibited in case of infection to allow the onset of inflammation. Morbidity and mortality in COVID-19 patients have been associated with dysregulated inflammation, a process that may include aberrant ARE activity. RESULTS: RNA-seq data from available transcriptomic studies were analyzed to investigate a possible differential expression of mRNAs that contain AREs in the context of SARS-CoV-2 infections. ARE-mRNAs turned out to be significantly overrepresented among the upregulated mRNAs after SARS-CoV-2 infection (up to 42%). In contrast, ARE-mRNAs were underrepresented (16%) in the downregulated group. Consequently, at a global scale, ARE-mRNAs are significantly more upregulated after SARS-CoV-2 infection compared to non-ARE mRNAs. This observation was apparent in lung cell line models such as A549 and Calu-3 and with infections with other respiratory viruses and cell lines. Most importantly, at the clinical level, the elevated ARE-mRNA response appeared strongest in blood cells of COVID-19 patients with mild disease. It diminished with disease severity and was least apparent in patients in need of intubation and respiratory-related death. Gene function and clustering analysis suggest that the ARE-response is rather global and the upregulated ARE-mRNAs in patients with mild disease do not particularly cluster in specific functional groups. CONCLUSIONS: Compared to the rest of the transcriptome, ARE-containing mRNAs are preferentially upregulated in response to viral infections at a global level. In the context of COVID-19, they are most upregulated in mild disease. Due to their large number, their levels measured by RNA-seq may provide a reliable indication of COVID-19 severity.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Humans , RNA, Messenger/genetics , RNA, Messenger/metabolism , COVID-19/genetics , Up-Regulation/genetics , SARS-CoV-2 , Inflammation
2.
Cell Death Dis ; 13(10): 846, 2022 Oct 03.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2050337

ABSTRACT

The severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) is the pathogen responsible for the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic. Of particular interest for this topic are the signaling cascades that regulate cell survival and death, two opposite cell programs whose control is hijacked by viral infections. The AKT and the Unfolded Protein Response (UPR) pathways, which maintain cell homeostasis by regulating these two programs, have been shown to be deregulated during SARS-CoVs infection as well as in the development of cancer, one of the most important comorbidities in relation to COVID-19. Recent evidence revealed two way crosstalk mechanisms between the AKT and the UPR pathways, suggesting that they might constitute a unified homeostatic control system. Here, we review the role of the AKT and UPR pathways and their interaction in relation to SARS-CoV-2 infection as well as in tumor onset and progression. Feedback regulation between AKT and UPR pathways emerges as a master control mechanism of cell decision making in terms of survival or death and therefore represents a key potential target for developing treatments for both viral infection and cancer. In particular, drug repositioning, the investigation of existing drugs for new therapeutic purposes, could significantly reduce time and costs compared to de novo drug discovery.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Neoplasms , Humans , Neoplasms/genetics , Proto-Oncogene Proteins c-akt , SARS-CoV-2 , Up-Regulation
3.
Sci Rep ; 12(1): 16019, 2022 09 26.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2042336

ABSTRACT

Cytokines are major players in orchestrating inflammation, disease pathogenesis and severity during COVID-19 disease. However, the role of IL-19 in COVID-19 pathogenesis remains elusive. Herein, through the analysis of transcriptomic datasets of SARS-CoV-2 infected lung cells, nasopharyngeal swabs, and lung autopsies of COVID-19 patients, we report that expression levels of IL-19 and its receptor, IL-20R2, were upregulated following SARS-CoV-2 infection. Of 202 adult COVID-19 patients, IL-19 protein level was significantly higher in blood and saliva of asymptomatic patients compared to healthy controls when adjusted for patients' demographics (P < 0.001). Interestingly, high saliva IL-19 level was also associated with COVID-19 severity (P < 0.0001), need for mechanical ventilation (P = 0.002), and/or death (P = 0.010) within 29 days of admission, after adjusting for patients' demographics, diabetes mellitus comorbidity, and COVID-19 serum markers of severity such as D-dimer, C-reactive protein, and ferritin. Moreover, patients who received interferon beta during their hospital stay had lower plasma IL-19 concentrations (24 pg mL-1) than those who received tocilizumab (39.2 pg mL-1) or corticosteroids (42.5 pg mL-1). Our findings indicate that high saliva IL-19 level was associated with COVID-19 infectivity and disease severity.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Adult , Biomarkers , C-Reactive Protein , Cytokines , Ferritins , Humans , Interferon-beta , Interleukins/genetics , SARS-CoV-2 , Saliva , Up-Regulation
4.
Respir Res ; 23(1): 249, 2022 Sep 17.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2038754

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) is a life-threatening disease caused by the induction of inflammatory cytokines and chemokines in the lungs. There is a dearth of drug applications that can be used to prevent cytokine storms in ARDS treatment. This study was designed to investigate the effects of tocilizumab and dexamethasone on oxidative stress, antioxidant parameters, and cytokine storms in acute lung injury caused by oleic acid in rats. METHODS: Adult male rats were divided into five groups: the CN (healthy rats, n = 6), OA (oleic acid administration, n = 6), OA + TCZ-2 (oleic acid and tocilizumab at 2 mg/kg, n = 6), OA + TCZ-4 (oleic acid and tocilizumab at 4 mg/kg, n = 6), and OA + DEX-10 (oleic acid and dexamethasone at 10 mg/kg, n = 6) groups. All animals were euthanized after treatment for histopathological, immunohistochemical, biochemical, PCR, and SEM analyses. RESULTS: Expressions of TNF-α, IL-1ß, IL-6, and IL-8 cytokines in rats with acute lung injury induced by oleic acid were downregulated in the TCZ and DEX groups compared to the OA group (P < 0.05). The MDA level in lung tissues was statistically lower in the OA + TCZ-4 group compared to the OA group. It was further determined that SOD, GSH, and CAT levels were decreased in the OA group and increased in the TCZ and DEX groups (P < 0.05). Histopathological findings such as thickening of the alveoli, hyperemia, and peribronchial cell infiltration were found to be similar when lung tissues of the TCZ and DEX groups were compared to the control group. With SEM imaging of the lung tissues, it was found that the alveolar lining layer had become indistinct in the OA, OA + TCZ-2, and OA + TCZ-4 groups. CONCLUSIONS: In this model of acute lung injury caused by oleic acid, tocilizumab and dexamethasone were effective in preventing cytokine storms by downregulating the expression of proinflammatory cytokines including TNF-α, IL-1ß, IL-6, and IL-8. Against the downregulation of antioxidant parameters such as SOD and GSH in the lung tissues caused by oleic acid, tocilizumab and dexamethasone upregulated them and showed protective effects against cell damage.


Subject(s)
Acute Lung Injury , Respiratory Distress Syndrome , Acute Lung Injury/chemically induced , Acute Lung Injury/drug therapy , Acute Lung Injury/prevention & control , Animals , Antibodies, Monoclonal, Humanized , Antioxidants/adverse effects , Cytokine Release Syndrome , Cytokines/pharmacology , Dexamethasone/pharmacology , Down-Regulation , Interleukin-6 , Interleukin-8 , Lung , Male , Oleic Acid/toxicity , Rats , Respiratory Distress Syndrome/chemically induced , Respiratory Distress Syndrome/drug therapy , Superoxide Dismutase , Tumor Necrosis Factor-alpha/pharmacology , Up-Regulation
5.
J Clin Lab Anal ; 36(10): e24666, 2022 Oct.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1999875

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: SARS-CoV-2 is one of the most contagious viruses in the Coronaviridae (CoV) family, which has become a pandemic. The aim of this study is to understand more about the role of hsa_circ_0004812 in the SARS-CoV-2 related cytokine storm and its associated molecular mechanisms. MATERIALS AND METHODS: cDNA synthesis was performed after total RNA was extracted from the peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMC) of 46 patients with symptomatic COVID-19, 46 patients with asymptomatic COVID-19, and 46 healthy controls. The expression levels of hsa_circ_0004812, hsa-miR-1287-5p, IL6R, and RIG-I were determined using qRT-PCR, and the potential interaction between these molecules was confirmed by bioinformatics tools and correlation analysis. RESULTS: hsa_circ_0004812, IL6R, and RIG-I are expressed higher in the severe symptom group compared with the negative control group. Also, the relative expression of these genes in the asymptomatic group is lower than in the severe symptom group. The expression level of hsa-miR-1287-5p was positively correlated with symptoms in patients. The results of the bioinformatics analysis predicted the sponging effect of hsa_circ_0004812 as a competing endogenous RNA on hsa-miR-1287-5p. Moreover, there was a significant positive correlation between hsa_circ_0004812, RIG-I, and IL-6R expressions, and also a negative expression correlation between hsa_circ_0004812 and hsa-miR-1287-5p and between hsa-miR-1287-5p, RIG-I, and IL-6R. CONCLUSION: The results of this in-vitro and in silico study show that hsa_circ_0004812/hsa-miR-1287-5p/IL6R, RIG-I can play an important role in the outcome of COVID-19.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , MicroRNAs , Receptors, Cell Surface/metabolism , COVID-19/genetics , Cell Proliferation/physiology , Cytokine Release Syndrome , DNA, Complementary , Humans , Leukocytes, Mononuclear/metabolism , MicroRNAs/genetics , MicroRNAs/metabolism , RNA, Circular/genetics , Receptors, Interleukin-6/genetics , Receptors, Interleukin-6/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2 , Up-Regulation/genetics
6.
J Immunol Res ; 2022: 9764002, 2022.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1973966

ABSTRACT

COVID-19 has several mechanisms that can lead to lymphocyte depletion/exhaustion. The checkpoint inhibitor molecule programmed death protein 1 (PD-1) and its programmed death-ligand 1 (PDL-1) play an important role in inhibiting cellular activity as well as the depletion of these cells. In this study, we evaluated PD-1 expression in TCD4+, TCD8+, and CD19+ lymphocytes from SARS-CoV-2-infected patients. A decreased frequency of total lymphocytes and an increased PD-1 expression in TCD4+ and CD19+ lymphocytes were verified in severe/critical COVID-19 patients. In addition, we found a decreased frequency of total monocytes with an increased PD-1 expression on CD14+ monocytes in severe/critical patients in association with the time of infection. Moreover, we observed an increase in sPD-L1 circulant levels associated with the severity of the disease. Overall, these data indicate an important role of the PD-1/PDL-1 axis in COVID-19 and may provide a severity-associated biomarker and therapeutic target during SARS-CoV-2 infection.


Subject(s)
B7-H1 Antigen , COVID-19 , Programmed Cell Death 1 Receptor , B7-H1 Antigen/genetics , B7-H1 Antigen/metabolism , COVID-19/diagnosis , COVID-19/pathology , Humans , Monocytes/metabolism , Programmed Cell Death 1 Receptor/genetics , Programmed Cell Death 1 Receptor/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2 , Up-Regulation
7.
Int J Mol Sci ; 21(9)2020 Apr 30.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1934078

ABSTRACT

Severe acute respiratory syndrome-associated coronavirus (SARS-CoV) initiates the cytokine/chemokine storm-mediated lung injury. The SARS-CoV unique domain (SUD) with three macrodomains (N, M, and C), showing the G-quadruplex binding activity, was examined the possible role in SARS pathogenesis in this study. The chemokine profile analysis indicated that SARS-CoV SUD significantly up-regulated the expression of CXCL10, CCL5 and interleukin (IL)-1ß in human lung epithelial cells and in the lung tissues of the mice intratracheally instilled with the recombinant plasmids. Among the SUD subdomains, SUD-MC substantially activated AP-1-mediated CXCL10 expression in vitro. In the wild type mice, SARS-CoV SUD-MC triggered the pulmonary infiltration of macrophages and monocytes, inducing CXCL10-mediated inflammatory responses and severe diffuse alveolar damage symptoms. Moreover, SUD-MC actuated NOD-, LRR- and pyrin domain-containing protein 3 (NLRP3) inflammasome-dependent pulmonary inflammation, as confirmed by the NLRP3 inflammasome inhibitor and the NLRP3-/- mouse model. This study demonstrated that SARS-CoV SUD modulated NLRP3 inflammasome-dependent CXCL10-mediated pulmonary inflammation, providing the potential therapeutic targets for developing the antiviral agents.


Subject(s)
Chemokine CXCL10/metabolism , Inflammasomes/metabolism , NLR Family, Pyrin Domain-Containing 3 Protein/metabolism , Viral Proteins/metabolism , Animals , Bronchoalveolar Lavage Fluid/chemistry , Bronchoalveolar Lavage Fluid/immunology , Cell Line , Chemokine CXCL10/genetics , Disease Models, Animal , Humans , Lung/metabolism , Lung/pathology , Mice , Mice, Inbred C57BL , Mice, Knockout , Monocytes/immunology , Monocytes/metabolism , NLR Family, Pyrin Domain-Containing 3 Protein/deficiency , NLR Family, Pyrin Domain-Containing 3 Protein/genetics , Pneumonia/pathology , Pneumonia/virology , Promoter Regions, Genetic , Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome/pathology , Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome/virology , Up-Regulation , Viral Proteins/chemistry , Viral Proteins/genetics
8.
Sci Rep ; 12(1): 9583, 2022 06 10.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1921701

ABSTRACT

TACSTD2 encodes a transmembrane glycoprotein Trop2 commonly overexpressed in carcinomas. While the Trop2 protein was discovered already in 1981 and first antibody-drug conjugate targeting Trop2 were recently approved for cancer therapy, the physiological role of Trop2 is still not fully understood. In this article, we show that TACSTD2/Trop2 expression is evolutionarily conserved in lungs of various vertebrates. By analysis of publicly available transcriptomic data we demonstrate that TACSTD2 level consistently increases in lungs infected with miscellaneous, but mainly viral pathogens. Single cell and subpopulation based transcriptomic data revealed that the major source of TACSTD2 transcript are lung epithelial cells and their progenitors and that TACSTD2 is induced directly in lung epithelial cells following infection. Increase in TACSTD2 expression may represent a mechanism to maintain/restore epithelial barrier function and contribute to regeneration process in infected/damaged lungs.


Subject(s)
Antigens, Neoplasm , Cell Adhesion Molecules , Animals , Antigens, Neoplasm/metabolism , Cell Adhesion Molecules/metabolism , Epithelial Cells/metabolism , Lung/metabolism , Up-Regulation
9.
PLoS One ; 17(6): e0270418, 2022.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1910682

ABSTRACT

Thymidine kinase 2 (TK2) deficiency in humans leads to a myopathic form of mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) deficiency. Here we present a skeletal and cardiac muscle specific TK2 knockout mouse (mTk2 KO). The mice showed dilated hearts and markedly reduced adipose tissue during week 12 to 16. A severe decrease of mtDNA was found only in skeletal muscle and heart tissue in mTk2 KO mice. Expression analysis of key metabolic genes of 16 weeks knockout mice showed significant changes of genes involved in lipid metabolism, with different patterns in heart and skeletal muscle. Our study further suggests that lipoprotein lipase (LPL) from liver supports the metabolism when heart and skeletal muscle were impaired due to mitochondrial dysfunction. The angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2), which is involved in glucose homeostasis, was also affected by mtDNA deficiency in our study. Interestingly, both the gene and protein expression of ACE2 were increased in cardiac tissue of mTk2 KO mice. Since ACE2 is a receptor for the SARS-CoV-2 virus, its regulation in relation to mitochondrial function may have important clinical implications.


Subject(s)
Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2 , COVID-19 , Lipid Metabolism Disorders , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/genetics , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/metabolism , Animals , COVID-19/genetics , COVID-19/metabolism , DNA, Mitochondrial/genetics , DNA, Mitochondrial/metabolism , Lipid Metabolism , Lipid Metabolism Disorders/genetics , Lipid Metabolism Disorders/metabolism , Lipid Metabolism Disorders/virology , Mice , Mice, Knockout , Mitochondria/genetics , Mitochondria/metabolism , Muscle, Skeletal/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2 , Up-Regulation
10.
Cells ; 11(10)2022 05 19.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1862727

ABSTRACT

Recent evidence suggests that SARS-CoV-2 hinders immune responses via dopamine (DA)-related mechanisms. Nonetheless, studies addressing the specific role of DA in the frame of SARS-CoV-2 infection are still missing. In the present study, we investigate the role of DA in SARS-CoV-2 replication along with potential links with innate immune pathways in CaLu-3 human epithelial lung cells. We document here for the first time that, besides DA synthetic pathways, SARS-CoV-2 alters the expression of D1 and D2 DA receptors (D1DR, D2DR), while DA administration reduces viral replication. Such an effect occurs at non-toxic, micromolar-range DA doses, which are known to induce receptor desensitization and downregulation. Indeed, the antiviral effects of DA were associated with a robust downregulation of D2DRs both at mRNA and protein levels, while the amount of D1DRs was not significantly affected. While halting SARS-CoV-2 replication, DA, similar to the D2DR agonist quinpirole, upregulates the expression of ISGs and Type-I IFNs, which goes along with the downregulation of various pro-inflammatory mediators. In turn, administration of Type-I IFNs, while dramatically reducing SARS-CoV-2 replication, converges in downregulating D2DRs expression. Besides configuring the CaLu-3 cell line as a suitable model to study SARS-CoV-2-induced alterations at the level of the DA system in the periphery, our findings disclose a previously unappreciated correlation between DA pathways and Type-I IFN response, which may be disrupted by SARS-CoV-2 for host cell invasion and replication.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Interferon Type I , COVID-19/drug therapy , Dopamine , Down-Regulation , Humans , Interferon Type I/genetics , Receptors, Dopamine D2 , SARS-CoV-2 , Up-Regulation
11.
Arch Virol ; 166(8): 2285-2289, 2021 Aug.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1826502

ABSTRACT

Mesenchymal stromal cells (MSCs) are considered multipotent progenitors with the capacity to differentiate into mesoderm-like cells in many species. The immunosuppressive properties of MSCs are important for downregulating inflammatory responses. Turkey coronavirus (TCoV) is the etiological agent of a poult mortality syndrome that affects intestinal epithelial cells. In this study, poult MSCs were isolated, characterized, and infected with TCoV after in vitro culture. The poult-derived MSCs showed fibroblast-like morphology and the ability to undergo differentiation into mesodermal-derived cells and to support virus replication. Infection with TCoV resulted in cytopathic effects and the loss of cell viability. TCoV antigens and new viral progeny were detected at high levels, as were transcripts of the pro-inflammatory factors INFγ, IL-6, and IL-8. These findings suggest that the cytokine storm phenomenon is not restricted to one genus of the family Coronaviridae and that MSCs cannot always balance the process.


Subject(s)
Coronavirus, Turkey/physiology , Cytokines/metabolism , Virus Replication , Animals , Cell Differentiation , Cell Survival , Cytopathogenic Effect, Viral , Interferon-gamma/metabolism , Interleukin-6/metabolism , Interleukin-8/metabolism , Mesenchymal Stem Cells/cytology , Mesenchymal Stem Cells/metabolism , Mesenchymal Stem Cells/virology , Turkeys , Up-Regulation
12.
Int J Mol Sci ; 23(9)2022 May 04.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1820297

ABSTRACT

Blockers of the renin-angiotensin system (RAS) have been reported to increase the angiotensin converting enzyme (ACE)2, the cellular receptor of SARS-CoV-2, and thus the risk and course of COVID-19. Therefore, we investigated if angiotensin (Ang) II and RAS blockers affected ACE2 expression and SARS-CoV-2 infectivity in human epithelial bronchial Calu-3 cells. By infectivity and spike-mediated cell-cell fusion assays, we showed that Ang II acting on the angiotensin type 1 receptor markedly increased ACE2 at mRNA and protein levels, resulting in enhanced SARS-CoV-2 cell entry. These effects were abolished by irbesartan and not affected by the blockade of ACE-1-mediated Ang II formation with ramipril, and of ACE2- mediated Ang II conversion into Ang 1-7 with MLN-4760. Thus, enhanced Ang II production in patients with an activated RAS might expose to a greater spread of COVID-19 infection in lung cells. The protective action of Angiotensin type 1 receptor antagonists (ARBs) documented in these studies provides a mechanistic explanation for the lack of worse outcomes in high-risk COVID-19 patients on RAS blockers.


Subject(s)
Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2 , COVID-19 , Angiotensin II/metabolism , Angiotensin II/pharmacology , Angiotensin Receptor Antagonists/pharmacology , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2/genetics , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme Inhibitors/pharmacology , Humans , Receptor, Angiotensin, Type 1/genetics , Receptor, Angiotensin, Type 1/metabolism , Renin-Angiotensin System , SARS-CoV-2 , Up-Regulation
13.
Tohoku J Exp Med ; 256(4): 309-319, 2022 Apr 29.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1817583

ABSTRACT

This research investigated the histopathological changes in the tissue of the lung, heart and liver, hepatocyte cell death, autophagy, and the apoptosis inductions in the postmortem cases. Since December 2019, coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) has become a significant global health concern. In order to clarify the changes in tissues of the lung, heart and liver by COVID-19, samples were taken from five patients who died of COVID-19 and five control cases, and the pathological changes in the lung, liver, and heart tissue were studied by X-ray, computed tomography, histological studies, and stereological analysis. The formation of hyaline membranes, alveolar wall edema, and fibrin exudate was seen on histological analysis of the lungs in the COVID-19 group. Stereological analysis illustrated the number of hepatocytes, volume of the sinusoid, and volume of the liver have been decreased, however the pathological changes in the heart tissue were not observed. Serum levels of alanine aminotransferase, aspartate aminotransferase, blood urea nitrogen, and angiotensin-converting enzyme significantly increased. Real-time PCR results showed that the Bcl2, Caspase3, ATG5, and LC3 decreased while the Bax increased. COVID-19 causes fibrotic changes in the lung tissue and hepatocyte mortality in the liver tissue. Besides, it elevates the level of apoptosis and autophagy markers.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Caspase 3/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2 , Apoptosis/genetics , Autophagosomes , Hepatocytes , Humans , Up-Regulation
14.
Cells ; 11(8)2022 04 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1785540

ABSTRACT

The risk of complications following surgical procedures is significantly increased in patients with SARS-CoV-2 infection. However, the mechanisms underlying these correlations are not fully known. Spinal cord injury (SCI) patients who underwent reconstructive surgery for pressure ulcers (PUs) before and during the COVID-19 pandemic were included in this study. The patient's postoperative progression was registered, and the subcutaneous white adipose tissue (s-WAT) surrounding the ulcers was analyzed by proteomic and immunohistochemical assays to identify the molecular/cellular signatures of impaired recovery. Patients with SCI and a COVID-19-positive diagnosis showed worse recovery and severe postoperative complications, requiring reintervention. Several proteins were upregulated in the adipose tissue of these patients. Among them, CKMT2 and CKM stood out, and CKM increased for up to 60 days after the COVID-19 diagnosis. Moreover, CKMT2 and CKM were largely found in MGCs within the s-WAT of COVID patients. Some of these proteins presented post-translational modifications and were targeted by autoantibodies in the serum of COVID patients. Overall, our results indicate that CKMT2, CKM, and the presence of MGCs in the adipose tissue surrounding PUs in post-COVID patients could be predictive biomarkers of postsurgical complications. These results suggest that the inflammatory response in adipose tissue may underlie the defective repair seen after surgery.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Pressure Ulcer , Spinal Cord Injuries , Adipose Tissue/metabolism , COVID-19/complications , COVID-19 Testing , Creatine Kinase/metabolism , Creatine Kinase, Mitochondrial Form/metabolism , Humans , Pandemics , Pressure Ulcer/epidemiology , Pressure Ulcer/etiology , Pressure Ulcer/surgery , Proteomics , SARS-CoV-2 , Spinal Cord Injuries/complications , Spinal Cord Injuries/surgery , Suppuration/complications , Up-Regulation
15.
PLoS Pathog ; 18(4): e1009990, 2022 04.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1785209

ABSTRACT

Syrian golden hamsters exhibit features of severe disease after SARS-CoV-2 WA1/2020 challenge and are therefore useful models of COVID-19 pathogenesis and prevention with vaccines. Recent studies have shown that SARS-CoV-2 infection stimulates type I interferon, myeloid, and inflammatory signatures similar to human disease and that weight loss can be prevented with vaccines. However, the impact of vaccination on transcriptional programs associated with COVID-19 pathogenesis and protective adaptive immune responses is unknown. Here we show that SARS-CoV-2 WA1/2020 challenge in hamsters stimulates myeloid and inflammatory programs as well as signatures of complement and thrombosis associated with human COVID-19. Notably, immunization with Ad26.COV2.S, an adenovirus serotype 26 vector (Ad26)-based vaccine expressing a stabilized SARS-CoV-2 spike protein, prevents the upregulation of these pathways, such that the mRNA expression profiles of vaccinated hamsters are comparable to uninfected animals. Using proteomics profiling, we validated these findings in rhesus macaques challenged with SARS-CoV-2 WA1/2020 or SARS-CoV-2 B.1.351. Finally, we show that Ad26.COV2.S vaccination induces T and B cell signatures that correlate with binding and neutralizing antibody responses weeks following vaccination. These data provide insights into the molecular mechanisms of Ad26.COV2.S protection against severe COVID-19 in animal models.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Thrombosis , Ad26COVS1 , Animals , Antibodies, Neutralizing , COVID-19 Vaccines , Cricetinae , Humans , Inflammation , Macaca mulatta , SARS-CoV-2 , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus , Up-Regulation
16.
Am J Physiol Regul Integr Comp Physiol ; 322(3): R161-R169, 2022 03 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1770007

ABSTRACT

Arginine vasopressin (AVP) is produced in the paraventricular (PVN) and supraoptic nuclei (SON). Peripheral AVP, which is secreted from the posterior pituitary, is produced in the magnocellular division of the PVN (mPVN) and SON. In addition, AVP is produced in the parvocellular division of the PVN (pPVN), where corticotrophin-releasing factor (CRF) is synthesized. These peptides synergistically modulate the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis. Previous studies have revealed that the HPA axis was activated by hypovolemia. However, the detailed dynamics of AVP in the pPVN under hypovolemic state has not been elucidated. Here, we evaluated the effects of hypovolemia and hyperosmolality on the hypothalamus, using AVP-enhanced green fluorescent protein (eGFP) transgenic rats. Polyethylene glycol (PEG) or 3% hypertonic saline (HTN) was intraperitoneally administered to develop hypovolemia or hyperosmolality. AVP-eGFP intensity was robustly upregulated at 3 and 6 h after intraperitoneal administration of PEG or HTN in the mPVN. While in the pPVN, eGFP intensity was significantly increased at 6 h after intraperitoneal administration of PEG with significant induction of Fos-immunoreactive (-ir) neurons. Consistently, eGFP mRNA, AVP hnRNA, and CRF mRNA in the pPVN and plasma AVP and corticosterone were significantly increased at 6 h after intraperitoneal administration of PEG. The results suggest that AVP and CRF syntheses in the pPVN were activated by hypovolemia, resulting in the activation of the HPA axis.


Subject(s)
Arginine Vasopressin/genetics , Green Fluorescent Proteins/genetics , Hypothalamo-Hypophyseal System/metabolism , Hypovolemia/metabolism , Paraventricular Hypothalamic Nucleus/metabolism , Animals , Corticosterone/blood , Corticotropin-Releasing Hormone/genetics , Corticotropin-Releasing Hormone/metabolism , Disease Models, Animal , Genes, Reporter , Green Fluorescent Proteins/biosynthesis , Hypothalamo-Hypophyseal System/physiopathology , Hypovolemia/genetics , Hypovolemia/physiopathology , Injections, Intraperitoneal , Male , Paraventricular Hypothalamic Nucleus/physiopathology , Polyethylene Glycols/administration & dosage , Proto-Oncogene Proteins c-fos/metabolism , Rats, Transgenic , Rats, Wistar , Saline Solution, Hypertonic/administration & dosage , Supraoptic Nucleus/metabolism , Supraoptic Nucleus/physiopathology , Time Factors , Up-Regulation
17.
Int J Mol Sci ; 23(5)2022 Feb 26.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1736945

ABSTRACT

Disruption of the alveolar-endothelial barrier caused by inflammation leads to the progression of septic acute lung injury (ALI). In the present study, we investigated the beneficial effects of simvastatin on the endotoxin lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-induced ALI and its related mechanisms. A model of ALI was induced within experimental sepsis developed by intraperitoneal injection of a single non-lethal LPS dose after short-term simvastatin pretreatment (10-40 mg/kg orally). The severity of the lung tissue inflammatory injury was expressed as pulmonary damage scores (PDS). Alveolar epithelial cell apoptosis was confirmed by TUNEL assay (DNA fragmentation) and expressed as an apoptotic index (AI), and immunohistochemically for cleaved caspase-3, cytochrome C, and anti-apoptotic Bcl-xL, an inhibitor of apoptosis, survivin, and transcriptional factor, NF-kB/p65. Severe inflammatory injury of pulmonary parenchyma (PDS 3.33 ± 0.48) was developed after the LPS challenge, whereas simvastatin significantly and dose-dependently protected lung histology after LPS (p < 0.01). Simvastatin in a dose of 40 mg/kg showed the most significant effects in amelioration alveolar epithelial cells apoptosis, demonstrating this as a marked decrease of AI (p < 0.01 vs. LPS), cytochrome C, and cleaved caspase-3 expression. Furthermore, simvastatin significantly enhanced the expression of Bcl-xL and survivin. Finally, the expression of survivin and its regulator NF-kB/p65 in the alveolar epithelium was in strong positive correlation across the groups. Simvastatin could play a protective role against LPS-induced ALI and apoptosis of the alveolar-endothelial barrier. Taken together, these effects were seemingly mediated by inhibition of caspase 3 and cytochrome C, a finding that might be associated with the up-regulation of cell-survival survivin/NF-kB/p65 pathway and Bcl-xL.


Subject(s)
Acute Lung Injury , NF-kappa B , Acute Lung Injury/chemically induced , Acute Lung Injury/drug therapy , Acute Lung Injury/metabolism , Alveolar Epithelial Cells/metabolism , Apoptosis , Caspase 3/genetics , Caspase 3/metabolism , Cytochromes c/metabolism , Endotoxins/adverse effects , Humans , Lipopolysaccharides/toxicity , Lung/pathology , NF-kappa B/metabolism , Simvastatin/adverse effects , Survivin/genetics , Up-Regulation
18.
J Virol ; 96(5): e0208621, 2022 03 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1736026

ABSTRACT

Coronavirus infections induce the expression of multiple proinflammatory cytokines and chemokines. We have previously shown that in cells infected with gammacoronavirus infectious bronchitis virus (IBV), interleukin 6 (IL-6), and IL-8 were drastically upregulated, and the MAP kinase p38 and the integrated stress response pathways were implicated in this process. In this study, we report that coronavirus infection activates a negative regulatory loop that restricts the upregulation of a number of proinflammatory genes. As revealed by the initial transcriptomic and subsequent validation analyses, the anti-inflammatory adenine-uridine (AU)-rich element (ARE)-binding protein, zinc finger protein 36 (ZFP36), and its related family members were upregulated in cells infected with IBV and three other coronaviruses, alphacoronaviruses porcine epidemic diarrhea virus (PEDV), human coronavirus 229E (HCoV-229E), and betacoronavirus HCoV-OC43, respectively. Characterization of the functional roles of ZFP36 during IBV infection demonstrated that ZFP36 promoted the degradation of transcripts coding for IL-6, IL-8, dual-specificity phosphatase 1 (DUSP1), prostaglandin-endoperoxide synthase 2 (PTGS2) and TNF-α-induced protein 3 (TNFAIP3), through binding to AREs in these transcripts. Consistently, knockdown and inhibition of JNK and p38 kinase activities reduced the expression of ZFP36, as well as the expression of IL-6 and IL-8. On the contrary, overexpression of mitogen-activated protein kinase kinase 3 (MKK3) and MAPKAP kinase-2 (MK2), the upstream and downstream kinases of p38, respectively, increased the expression of ZFP36 and decreased the expression of IL-8. Taken together, this study reveals an important regulatory role of the MKK3-p38-MK2-ZFP36 axis in coronavirus infection-induced proinflammatory response. IMPORTANCE Excessive and uncontrolled induction and release of proinflammatory cytokines and chemokines, the so-called cytokine release syndrome (CRS), would cause life-threatening complications and multiple organ failure in severe coronavirus infections, including severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS), Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS) and COVID-19. This study reveals that coronavirus infection also induces the expression of ZFP36, an anti-inflammatory ARE-binding protein, promoting the degradation of ARE-containing transcripts coding for IL-6 and IL-8 as well as a number of other proteins related to inflammatory response. Furthermore, the p38 MAP kinase, its upstream kinase MKK3 and downstream kinase MK2 were shown to play a regulatory role in upregulation of ZFP36 during coronavirus infection cycles. This MKK3-p38-MK2-ZFP36 axis would constitute a potential therapeutic target for severe coronavirus infections.


Subject(s)
Coronavirus Infections/metabolism , Interleukin-6/metabolism , Interleukin-8/metabolism , Tristetraprolin/metabolism , p38 Mitogen-Activated Protein Kinases/metabolism , Adenine/metabolism , Animals , Cell Line , Chlorocebus aethiops , Coronavirus Infections/genetics , Gene Expression Regulation , Humans , Infectious bronchitis virus/metabolism , Infectious bronchitis virus/pathogenicity , Interleukin-6/genetics , Interleukin-8/genetics , Intracellular Signaling Peptides and Proteins/metabolism , Phosphorylation , Protein Serine-Threonine Kinases/metabolism , Transcriptional Activation , Up-Regulation , Uridine/metabolism , Vero Cells
19.
EBioMedicine ; 76: 103861, 2022 Feb.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1734342

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Since late 2019, SARS-CoV-2 infection has resulted in COVID-19 accompanied by diverse clinical manifestations. However, the underlying mechanism of how SARS-CoV-2 interacts with host and develops multiple symptoms is largely unexplored. METHODS: Bioinformatics analysis determined the sequence similarity between SARS-CoV-2 and human genomes. Diverse fragments of SARS-CoV-2 genome containing Human Identical Sequences (HIS) were cloned into the lentiviral vector. HEK293T, MRC5 and HUVEC were infected with laboratory-packaged lentivirus or transfected with plasmids or antagomirs for HIS. Quantitative RT-PCR and chromatin immunoprecipitation assay detected gene expression and H3K27ac enrichment, respectively. UV-Vis spectroscopy assessed the interaction between HIS and their target locus. Enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay evaluated the hyaluronan (HA) levels of culture supernatant and plasma of COVID-19 patients. FINDINGS: Five short sequences (24-27 nt length) sharing identity between SARS-CoV-2 and human genome were identified. These RNA elements were highly conserved in primates. The genomic fragments containing HIS were predicted to form hairpin structures in silico similar to miRNA precursors. HIS may function through direct genomic interaction leading to activation of host enhancers, and upregulation of adjacent and distant genes, including cytokine genes and hyaluronan synthase 2 (HAS2). HIS antagomirs and Cas13d-mediated HIS degradation reduced HAS2 expression. Severe COVID-19 patients displayed decreased lymphocytes and elevated D-dimer, and C-reactive proteins, as well as increased plasma hyaluronan. Hymecromone inhibited hyaluronan production in vitro, and thus could be further investigated as a therapeutic option for preventing severe outcome in COVID-19 patients. INTERPRETATION: HIS of SARS-CoV-2 could promote COVID-19 progression by upregulating hyaluronan, providing novel targets for treatment. FUNDING: The National Key R&D Program of China (2018YFC1005004), Major Special Projects of Basic Research of Shanghai Science and Technology Commission (18JC1411101), and the National Natural Science Foundation of China (31872814, 32000505).


Subject(s)
Gene Regulatory Networks/genetics , Genome, Human , Hyaluronic Acid/metabolism , RNA, Viral/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/genetics , Antagomirs/metabolism , Argonaute Proteins/genetics , Base Sequence , COVID-19/pathology , COVID-19/virology , Cell Line , Disease Progression , Enhancer Elements, Genetic/genetics , Humans , Hyaluronan Synthases/genetics , Hyaluronan Synthases/metabolism , Hyaluronic Acid/blood , MicroRNAs/genetics , RNA, Viral/chemistry , SARS-CoV-2/isolation & purification , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity , Up-Regulation
20.
J Pharm Pharm Sci ; 23(1): 75-85, 2020.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1727068

ABSTRACT

The presented work summarizes the results of studies underlining the crucial role of estrogen receptor (ER) signaling in both innate and adaptive immune responses as well as in tissue repairing processes during respiratory virus infection. Experimental studies justify that among respiratory virus infected mice, a weaker ER signaling leads to increased morbidity and mortality in both males and females. In animal experiments, estrogen treatment silences the inflammatory reactions and decreases virus titers leading to improved survival rate; it seems to be an ideal prevention and therapy against COVID-19. We should overcome the widespread reluctance to estrogen therapy as we have a unique estrogen formula; conjugated estrogens, or conjugated equine estrogens available under the brand name of Premarin deriving from natural sources. Premarin can exert similar ER upregulative and gene repairing power like endogenous estrogen without any risk for adverse reactions. Premarin is capable of stopping the COVID-19 pandemic.


Subject(s)
Coronavirus Infections/drug therapy , Estrogens/therapeutic use , Pneumonia, Viral/drug therapy , Receptors, Estrogen/physiology , Adaptive Immunity , Age Factors , Animals , Betacoronavirus , COVID-19 , Comorbidity , Coronavirus Infections/mortality , Estrogens, Conjugated (USP)/therapeutic use , Female , Humans , Immunity, Innate , Inflammation/drug therapy , Male , Mice , Pandemics , Pneumonia, Viral/mortality , SARS-CoV-2 , Sex Factors , Signal Transduction , Up-Regulation/drug effects
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