SARS-CoV-2 Dissemination Through Peripheral Nerves Explains Multiple Organ Injury.
ABSTRACT: Coronavirus disease (CoVID-19), caused by recently identified severe acute respiratory distress syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), is characterized by inconsistent clinical presentations. While many infected individuals remain asymptomatic or show mild respiratory symptoms, others develop severe pneumonia or even respiratory distress syndrome. SARS-CoV-2 is reported to be able to infect the lungs, the intestines, blood vessels, the bile ducts, the conjunctiva, macrophages, T lymphocytes, the heart, liver, kidneys, and brain. More than a third of cases displayed neurological involvement, and many severely ill patients developed multiple organ infection and injury. However, less than 1% of patients had a detectable level of SARS-CoV-2 in the blood, raising a question of how the virus spreads throughout the body. We propose that nerve terminals in the orofacial mucosa, eyes, and olfactory neuroepithelium act as entry points for the brain invasion, allowing SARS-CoV-2 to infect the brainstem. By exploiting the subcellular membrane compartments of infected cells, a feature common to all coronaviruses, SARS-CoV-2 is capable to disseminate from the brain to periphery via vesicular axonal transport and passive diffusion through axonal endoplasmic reticula, causing multiple organ injury independently of an underlying respiratory infection. The proposed model clarifies a wide range of clinically observed phenomena in CoVID-19 patients, such as neurological symptoms unassociated with lung pathology, protracted presence of the virus in samples obtained from recovered patients, exaggerated immune response, and multiple organ failure in severe cases with variable course and dynamics of the disease. We believe that this model can provide novel insights into CoVID-19 and its long-term sequelae, and establish a framework for further research.
Project description:The causative organism, severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), exhibits a wide spectrum of clinical manifestations in disease-ridden patients. Differences in the severity of COVID-19 ranges from asymptomatic infections and mild cases to the severe form, leading to acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) and multiorgan failure with poor survival. MiRNAs can regulate various cellular processes, including proliferation, apoptosis, and differentiation, by binding to the 3′UTR of target mRNAs inducing their degradation, thus serving a fundamental role in post-transcriptional repression. Alterations of miRNA levels in the blood have been described in multiple inflammatory and infectious diseases, including SARS-related coronaviruses. We used microarrays to delineate the miRNAs and snoRNAs signature in the peripheral blood of severe COVID-19 cases (n=9), as compared to mild (n=10) and asymptomatic (n=10) patients, and identified differentially expressed transcripts in severe versus asymptomatic, and others in severe versus mild COVID-19 cases. A cohort of 29 male age-matched patients were selected. All patients were previously diagnosed with COVID-19 using TaqPath COVID-19 Combo Kit (Thermo Fisher Scientific, Waltham, Massachusetts), or Cobas SARS-CoV-2 Test (Roche Diagnostics, Rotkreuz, Switzerland), with a CT value < 30. Additional criterion for selection was age between 35 and 75 years. Participants were grouped into severe, mild and asymptomatic. Classifying severe cases was based on requirement of high-flow oxygen support and ICU admission (n=9). Whereas mild patients were identified based on symptoms and positive radiographic findings with pulmonary involvement (n=10). Patients with no clinical presentation were labelled as asymptomatic cases (n=10).
Project description:The widespread occurrence of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) has led to a pandemic of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). The S spike protein of SARS-CoV-2 binds with angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2) as a functional "receptor" and then enters into host cells to replicate and damage host cells and organs. ACE2 plays a pivotal role in the inflammation, and its downregulation may aggravate COVID-19 via the renin-angiotensin system, including by promoting pathological changes in lung injury and involving inflammatory responses. Severe patients of COVID-19 often develop acute respiratory distress syndrome and multiple organ dysfunction/failure with high mortality that may be closely related to the hyper-proinflammatory status called the "cytokine storm." Massive cytokines including interleukin-6, nuclear factor kappa B (NF?B), and tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF?) released from SARS-CoV-2-infected macrophages and monocytes lead inflammation-derived injurious cascades causing multi-organ injury/failure. This review summarizes the current evidence and understanding of the underlying mechanisms of SARS-CoV-2, ACE2 and inflammation co-mediated multi-organ injury or failure in COVID-19 patients.
Project description:The new disease produced by severe acute respiratory syndrome-coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) represents a major pandemic event nowadays. Since its origin in China in December 2019, there is compelling evidence that novel SARS-CoV-2 is a highly transmissible virus, and it is associated to a broad clinical spectrum going from subclinical presentation to severe respiratory distress and multiorgan failure. Like other coronaviruses, SARS-CoV-2 recognizes human angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 as a cellular receptor that allows it to infect different host cells and likely disrupts renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system homeostasis. Particularly, a considerable incidence of many renal abnormalities associated to COVID-19 has been reported, including proteinuria, hematuria, and acute kidney injury. Moreover, it has been recently demonstrated that SARS-CoV-2 can infect podocytes and tubular epithelial cells, which could contribute to the development of the aforementioned renal abnormalities. In this review, we discuss the biological aspects of SARS-CoV-2 infection, how understanding current knowledge about SARS-CoV-2 infection may partly explain the involvement of the kidneys in the pathophysiology of COVID-19, and what questions have arisen and remain to be explored.
Project description:Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) is a global pandemic infectious disease caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2), and currently affects more than 8 million people worldwide. SARS-CoV-2 mainly invades the cells by binding to the angiotensin converting enzyme 2 (ACE2) receptor, leading to the injury of respiratory system, cardiovascular system, digestive system, and urinary system, and even secondary to acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) and systemic inflammatory response, resulting in multiple organ failure. In this review, mainly focusing on biogenesis and pathogenic mechanisms, we describe the recent progress in our understanding of SARS-CoV-2 and then summarize and discuss its crucial clinical characteristics and potential mechanism in different systems. Additionally, we discuss the potential treatments for COVID-19, aiming at a better understanding of the pathogenesis of SARS-CoV-2 and providing new ideas for the personalized treatment of COVID-19.
Project description:The severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2) has been recently identified as the culprit of the highly infectious, outbreak named coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) in China. Now declared a public health emergency, this pandemic is present in more than 200 countries with over 14 million cases and 600,000 deaths as of July 18, 2020. Primarily transmitted through the respiratory tract, the most common clinical presentations of symptomatic individuals infected with SARS-CoV-2 include fever, dyspnea, cough, fatigue, and sore throat. In advanced cases, patients may rapidly develop respiratory failure with acute respiratory distress syndrome, and even progress to death. While it is known that COVID-19 manifests similarly to the 2003 Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) and the 2012 Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS), primarily affecting the pulmonary system, the impact of the disease extends far beyond the respiratory system and affects other organs of the body. The literature regarding the extrapulmonary manifestations (cardiovascular, renal, hepatic, gastrointestinal, ocular, dermatologic, and neurological) of COVID-19 is scant. Herein, we provide a comprehensive review of the organ-specific clinical manifestations of COVID-19, to increase awareness about the various organs affected by SARS-CoV-2 and to provide a brief insight into the similarities and differences in the clinical manifestations of COVID-19 and the earlier SARS and MERS.
Project description:Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome (ARDS) is a form of respiratory failure in human. The number of deaths caused by SARS-CoV-2 infection inducing this severe pneumonia (ARDS) is relatively high. In fact, COVID-19 might get worsen in ARDS and provoke respiratory failure. A better understood of ARDS key features and the pathophysiological injuries of the pulmonary parenchyma are linked to lessons learned from previous severe diseases associated previous coronaviruses outbreaks (especially SARS-CoV and MERS-CoV) and more the ongoing SARS-CoV-2. The ARDS mechanism includes a diffuse alveolar damage associated disruption of alveolar capillary membrane, pulmonary edema, damaged endothelium and increased permeability. A diffuse inflammation, with acute onset, on the lung tissue accompanied by release of biochemical signal and inflammatory mediators (TNF?, IL-1 and IL-6) leading to hypoxemia, low PaO2/FiO2 ratio and the chest radiological expression of bilateral infiltrates in ARDS. The ongoing outbreak could lead to a better understood of ARDS pathophysiology and prognostic. An overview is also highlighted about the seven coronaviruses proved to infect human especially those having ability to cause severe disease SARS-CoV, MERS-CoV and SARS-CoV-2. In this review, we focused on the major pathological mechanisms leading to the ARDS development as a result of viral infection, severe COVID-19 worsening. Communicated by Ramaswamy H. Sarma.
Project description:The new coronavirus, severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2), which emerged in December 2019 in Wuhan, China, has reached worldwide pandemic proportions, causing coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). The clinical manifestations of COVID-19 vary from an asymptomatic disease course to clinical symptoms of acute respiratory distress syndrome and severe pneumonia. The lungs are the primary organ affected by SARS-CoV-2, with a very slow turnover for renewal. SARS-CoV-2 enters the lungs via angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 receptors and induces an immune response with the accumulation of immunocompetent cells, causing a cytokine storm, which leads to target organ injury and subsequent dysfunction. To date, there is no effective antiviral therapy for COVID-19 patients, and therapeutic strategies are based on experience treating previously recognized coronaviruses. In search of new treatment modalities of COVID-19, cell-based therapy with mesenchymal stem cells (MSCs) and/or their secretome, such as soluble bioactive factors and extracellular vesicles, is considered supportive therapy for critically ill patients. Multipotent MSCs are able to differentiate into different types of cells of mesenchymal origin, including alveolar epithelial cells, lung epithelial cells, and vascular endothelial cells, which are severely damaged in the course of COVID-19 disease. Moreover, MSCs secrete a variety of bioactive factors that can be applied for respiratory tract regeneration in COVID-19 patients thanks to their trophic, anti-inflammatory, immunomodulatory, anti-apoptotic, pro-regenerative, and proangiogenic properties.
Project description:COVID-19 patients are generally asymptomatic during initial SARS-CoV-2 replication, but may suffer severe immunopathology after the virus has receded and blood monocytes have infiltrated the airways. In the bronchoalveolar lavage fluid from patients with severe COVID-19, lung-infiltrating monocytes expressed high mRNA levels encoding inflammatory mediators, including CXCL8and IL-1ß, and contained SARS-CoV-2transcripts. To study this process in more depth, we developed a novel organotypic model whereby primary human blood monocytes are transmigrated across a differentiated human lung epithelium infected by SARS-CoV-2. Infiltrating monocytes acquiredSARS-CoV-2 from the epithelium and upregulated expression and secretion of inflammatory mediators includingCXCL8 and IL-1ß, mirroring in vivo data. The JAK1/2inhibitor baricitinib gained emergency use authorization by the FDA for the treatment of COVID-19 originally in combination with the antiviral remdesivir, and recently as a stand-alone treatment. To explore the mechanisms by which baricitinib alone or in combination with remdesivir may result in more favorable disease outcomes, we leveraged this model to characterize viral burden, gene expression and inflammatory mediator secretion by lung epithelial cells and infiltrating monocytes. As expected, remdesivir decreased viral burden in both the epithelium and monocytes, while baricitinib enhanced antiviral signaling and decreased specific inflammatory mediators in monocytes. Combined use of baricitinib and remdesivir enhanced the rate of virus clearance from SARS-CoV-2-positivemonocytes. Taken together, baricitinib enhances the antiviral state of monocytes infiltrating the COVID-19 lung, while decreasing the expression of inflammatory mediators, thus limiting the likelihood of a cytokine storm and ensuing acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS). Overall design: To determine the relationship between airway epithelium, SARS-CoV-2 infection and airway monocytes we used an in vitro organotypic model to condition epithelial cells at air-liquid interface followed by infection with SARS-CoV-2 and transmgiration by primary blood monocytes.
Project description:Currently clinicians all around the world are experiencing a pandemic caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2). The clinical presentation of this pathology includes fever, dry cough, fatigue and acute respiratory distress syndrome that can lead to death infected patients. Current studies on coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) continue to highlight the urgent need for an effective therapy. Numerous therapeutic strategies have been used until now but, to date, there is no specific effective treatment for SARS-CoV-2 infection. Elevated inflammatory cytokines have been reported in patients with COVID-19. Evidence suggests that elevated cytokine levels, reflecting a hyperinflammatory response secondary to SARS-CoV-2 infection, are responsible for multi-organ damage in patients with COVID-19. For these reason, numerous randomized clinical trials are currently underway to explore the effectiveness of biopharmaceutical drugs, such as, interleukin-1 blockers, interleukin-6 inhibitors, Janus kinase inhibitors, in COVID-19. The aim of the present paper is to briefly summarize the pathogenetic rationale and the state of the art of therapeutic strategy blocking hyperinflammation.
Project description:The gateway for invasion by the novel severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) into human host cells is via the angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 (ACE2) transmembrane receptor expressed in multiple immune and nonimmune cell types. SARS-CoV-2, that causes coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19; CoV-19) has the unusual capacity to attack many different types of human host cells simultaneously via novel clathrin- and caveolae-independent endocytic pathways, becoming injurious to diverse cells, tissues and organ systems and exploiting any immune weakness in the host. The elicitation of this multipronged attack explains in part the severity and extensive variety of signs and symptoms observed in CoV-19 patients. To further our understanding of the mechanism and pathways of SARS-CoV-2 infection and susceptibility of specific cell- and tissue-types and organ systems to SARS-CoV-2 attack in this communication we analyzed ACE2 expression in 85 human tissues including 21 different brain regions, 7 fetal tissues and 8 controls. Besides strong ACE2 expression in respiratory, digestive, renal-excretory and reproductive cells, high ACE2 expression was also found in the amygdala, cerebral cortex and brainstem. The highest ACE2 expression level was found in the pons and medulla oblongata in the human brainstem, containing the medullary respiratory centers of the brain, and may in part explain the susceptibility of many CoV-19 patients to severe respiratory distress.