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Viruses, Volume 13, Issue 3 (March 2021) – 177 articles

Cover Story (view full-size image): Cell–cell fusion induced by SARS-CoV-2 infection: SARS-CoV-2 utilizes host type II transmembrane serine protease (TTSP) to cleave and activate the virus spike protein to facilitate cellular entry. Although TMPRSS2 is well characterized, the role of other TTSPs on the infection of SARS-CoV-2 remains to be elucidated. Here, we demonstrated that exogenous expression of TMPRSS11D and TMPRSS13 enhanced cellular entry and subsequent replication of SARS-CoV-2, which may have implications for cell and tissue tropism. View this paper
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Article
Blockers of the SARS-CoV-2 3a Channel Identified by Targeted Drug Repurposing
Viruses 2021, 13(3), 532; https://doi.org/10.3390/v13030532 - 23 Mar 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1299
Abstract
The etiological agent of the COVID-19 pandemic is SARS-CoV-2. As a member of the Coronaviridae, the enveloped pathogen has several membrane proteins, of which two, E and 3a, were suggested to function as ion channels. In an effort to increase our treatment options, [...] Read more.
The etiological agent of the COVID-19 pandemic is SARS-CoV-2. As a member of the Coronaviridae, the enveloped pathogen has several membrane proteins, of which two, E and 3a, were suggested to function as ion channels. In an effort to increase our treatment options, alongside providing new research tools, we have sought to inhibit the 3a channel by targeted drug repurposing. To that end, using three bacteria-based assays, we screened a library of 2839 approved-for-human-use drugs and identified the following potential channel-blockers: Capreomycin, Pentamidine, Spectinomycin, Kasugamycin, Plerixafor, Flumatinib, Litronesib, Darapladib, Floxuridine and Fludarabine. The stage is now set for examining the activity of these compounds in detailed electrophysiological studies and their impact on the whole virus with appropriate biosafety measures. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section SARS-CoV-2 and COVID-19)
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Communication
Nebulized CLODOS Technology Shows Clear Virucidal Properties against the Human Coronavirus HCoV-229E at Non-Cytotoxic Doses
Viruses 2021, 13(3), 531; https://doi.org/10.3390/v13030531 - 23 Mar 2021
Viewed by 1219
Abstract
The emergent human coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 and its high infectivity rate has highlighted the strong need for new disinfection systems. Evidence has proven that airborne transmission is an important route of spreading for this virus. Therefore, this short communication introduces CLODOS Technology®, [...] Read more.
The emergent human coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 and its high infectivity rate has highlighted the strong need for new disinfection systems. Evidence has proven that airborne transmission is an important route of spreading for this virus. Therefore, this short communication introduces CLODOS Technology®, a novel strategy to disinfect contaminated surfaces. It is a product based on stable and 99% pure chlorine dioxide, already certified as a bactericide, fungicide and virucide against different pathogens. In this study, CLODOS Technology®, by direct contact or thermonebulization, showed virucidal activity against the human coronavirus HCoV-229E at non-cytotoxic doses. Different conditions such as nebulization, exposure time and product concentration have been tested to standardize and optimize this new feasible method for disinfection. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section SARS-CoV-2 and COVID-19)
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Article
A Comparison of Porphyrin Photosensitizers in Photodynamic Inactivation of RNA and DNA Bacteriophages
Viruses 2021, 13(3), 530; https://doi.org/10.3390/v13030530 - 23 Mar 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 863
Abstract
Effective broad-spectrum antiviral treatments are in dire need as disinfectants and therapeutic alternatives. One such method of disinfection is photodynamic inactivation, which involves the production of reactive oxygen species from dissolved oxygen in response to light-stimulated photosensitizers. This study evaluated the efficacy of [...] Read more.
Effective broad-spectrum antiviral treatments are in dire need as disinfectants and therapeutic alternatives. One such method of disinfection is photodynamic inactivation, which involves the production of reactive oxygen species from dissolved oxygen in response to light-stimulated photosensitizers. This study evaluated the efficacy of functionalized porphyrin compounds for photodynamic inactivation of bacteriophages as human virus surrogates. A blue-light light emitting diode (LED) lamp was used to activate porphyrin compounds in aqueous solution (phosphate buffer). The DNA bacteriophages ΦX174 and P22 were more resistant to porphyrin TMPyP photodynamic inactivation than RNA bacteriophage fr, with increasing rates of inactivation in the order: ΦX174 << P22 << fr. Bacteriophage ΦX174 was therefore considered a resistant virus suitable for the evaluation of three additional porphyrins. These porphyrins were synthesized from TMPyP by inclusion of a central palladium ion (PdT4) and/or the addition of a hydrophobic C14 chain (PdC14 or C14). While the inactivation rate of bacteriophage ΦX174 via TMPyP was similar to previous reports of resistant viruses, ΦX174 inactivation increased by a factor of approximately 2.5 using the metalloporphyrins PdT4 and PdC14. The order of porphyrin effectiveness was TMPyP < C14 < PdT4 < PdC14, indicating that both Pd2+ ligation and C14 functionalization aided virus inactivation. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Viral Immunology, Vaccines, and Antivirals)
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Article
Light Sheet Microscopy-Assisted 3D Analysis of SARS-CoV-2 Infection in the Respiratory Tract of the Ferret Model
Viruses 2021, 13(3), 529; https://doi.org/10.3390/v13030529 - 23 Mar 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1136
Abstract
The visualization of viral pathogens in infected tissues is an invaluable tool to understand spatial virus distribution, localization, and cell tropism in vivo. Commonly, virus-infected tissues are analyzed using conventional immunohistochemistry in paraffin-embedded thin sections. Here, we demonstrate the utility of volumetric three-dimensional [...] Read more.
The visualization of viral pathogens in infected tissues is an invaluable tool to understand spatial virus distribution, localization, and cell tropism in vivo. Commonly, virus-infected tissues are analyzed using conventional immunohistochemistry in paraffin-embedded thin sections. Here, we demonstrate the utility of volumetric three-dimensional (3D) immunofluorescence imaging using tissue optical clearing and light sheet microscopy to investigate host–pathogen interactions of pandemic SARS-CoV-2 in ferrets at a mesoscopic scale. The superior spatial context of large, intact samples (>150 mm3) allowed detailed quantification of interrelated parameters like focus-to-focus distance or SARS-CoV-2-infected area, facilitating an in-depth description of SARS-CoV-2 infection foci. Accordingly, we could confirm a preferential infection of the ferret upper respiratory tract by SARS-CoV-2 and suggest clustering of infection foci in close proximity. Conclusively, we present a proof-of-concept study for investigating critically important respiratory pathogens in their spatial tissue morphology and demonstrate the first specific 3D visualization of SARS-CoV-2 infection. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Voyages through the Multiple Scales of Virus Biology)
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Review
Proteomic Approaches to Dissect Host SUMOylation during Innate Antiviral Immune Responses
Viruses 2021, 13(3), 528; https://doi.org/10.3390/v13030528 - 23 Mar 2021
Viewed by 858
Abstract
SUMOylation is a highly dynamic ubiquitin-like post-translational modification that is essential for cells to respond to and resolve various genotoxic and proteotoxic stresses. Virus infections also constitute a considerable stress scenario for cells, and recent research has started to uncover the diverse roles [...] Read more.
SUMOylation is a highly dynamic ubiquitin-like post-translational modification that is essential for cells to respond to and resolve various genotoxic and proteotoxic stresses. Virus infections also constitute a considerable stress scenario for cells, and recent research has started to uncover the diverse roles of SUMOylation in regulating virus replication, not least by impacting antiviral defenses. Here, we review some of the key findings of this virus-host interplay, and discuss the increasingly important contribution that large-scale, unbiased, proteomic methodologies are making to discoveries in this field. We highlight the latest proteomic technologies that have been specifically developed to understand SUMOylation dynamics in response to cellular stresses, and comment on how these techniques might be best applied to dissect the biology of SUMOylation during innate immunity. Furthermore, we showcase a selection of studies that have already used SUMO proteomics to reveal novel aspects of host innate defense against viruses, such as functional cross-talk between SUMO proteins and other ubiquitin-like modifiers, viral antagonism of SUMO-modified antiviral restriction factors, and an infection-triggered SUMO-switch that releases endogenous retroelement RNAs to stimulate antiviral interferon responses. Future research in this area has the potential to provide new and diverse mechanistic insights into host immune defenses. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Ubiquitin and Ubiquitin-Like Pathways in Viral Infection)
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Case Report
SARS-CoV-2 Infection and Antibody Response in a Symptomatic Cat from Italy with Intestinal B-Cell Lymphoma
Viruses 2021, 13(3), 527; https://doi.org/10.3390/v13030527 - 23 Mar 2021
Cited by 9 | Viewed by 1473
Abstract
Since the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic was first identified in early 2020, rare cases of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2) infection in pet cats have been reported worldwide. Some reports of cats with SARS-CoV-2 showed self-limiting respiratory or gastrointestinal disease after suspected [...] Read more.
Since the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic was first identified in early 2020, rare cases of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2) infection in pet cats have been reported worldwide. Some reports of cats with SARS-CoV-2 showed self-limiting respiratory or gastrointestinal disease after suspected human-to-feline transmission via close contact with humans with SARS-CoV-2. In the present study, we investigated a cat with SARS-CoV-2 that was presented to a private animal clinic in Northern Italy in May 2020 in a weak clinical condition due to an underlying intestinal B-cell lymphoma. The cat developed signs of respiratory tract disease, including a sneeze, a cough and ocular discharge, three days after an oropharyngeal swab tested positive for SARS-CoV-2 viral RNA using two real-time reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reaction (RT-qPCR) assays for the envelope (E) and RNA-dependent RNA polymerase (RdRp) gene. Thus, SARS-CoV-2 viral RNA was detectable prior to the onset of clinical signs. Five and six months after positive molecular results, the serological testing substantiated the presence of a SARS-CoV-2 infection in the cat with the detection of anti-SARS-CoV-2 receptor binding domain (RBD) immunoglobulin (IgG) antibodies and neutralizing activity in a surrogate virus neutralization assay (sVNT). To the best of our knowledge, this extends the known duration of seropositivity of SARS-CoV-2 in a cat. Our study provides further evidence that cats are susceptible to SARS-CoV-2 under natural conditions and strengthens the assumption that comorbidities may play a role in the development of clinical disease. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Viral Infections in Companion Animals)
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Article
Multiple Early Introductions of SARS-CoV-2 to Cape Town, South Africa
Viruses 2021, 13(3), 526; https://doi.org/10.3390/v13030526 - 22 Mar 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1907
Abstract
Cape Town was the first city in South Africa to experience the full impact of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic. We acquired samples from all suspected cases and their contacts during the first month of the pandemic from Tygerberg Hospital. Nanopore sequencing [...] Read more.
Cape Town was the first city in South Africa to experience the full impact of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic. We acquired samples from all suspected cases and their contacts during the first month of the pandemic from Tygerberg Hospital. Nanopore sequencing generated SARS-CoV-2 whole genomes. Phylogenetic inference with maximum likelihood and Bayesian methods were used to determine lineages that seeded the local epidemic. Three patients were known to have travelled internationally and an outbreak was detected in a nearby supermarket. Sequencing of 50 samples produced 46 high-quality genomes. The sequences were classified as lineages: B, B.1, B.1.1.1, B.1.1.161, B.1.1.29, B.1.8, B.39, and B.40. All the sequences from persons under investigation (PUIs) in the supermarket outbreak (lineage B.1.8) fall within a clade from the Netherlands with good support (p > 0.9). In addition, a new mutation, 5209A>G, emerged within the Cape Town cluster. The molecular clock analysis suggests that this occurred around 13 March 2020 (95% confidence interval: 9–17 March). The phylogenetic reconstruction suggests at least nine early introductions of SARS-CoV-2 into Cape Town and an early localized transmission in a shopping environment. Genomic surveillance was successfully used to investigate and track the spread of early introductions of SARS-CoV-2 in Cape Town. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Viral Infections in Developing Countries)
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Article
Conserved Structural Motifs of Two Distant IAV Subtypes in Genomic Segment 5 RNA
Viruses 2021, 13(3), 525; https://doi.org/10.3390/v13030525 - 22 Mar 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 711
Abstract
The functionality of RNA is fully dependent on its structure. For the influenza A virus (IAV), there are confirmed structural motifs mediating processes which are important for the viral replication cycle, including genome assembly and viral packaging. Although the RNA of strains originating [...] Read more.
The functionality of RNA is fully dependent on its structure. For the influenza A virus (IAV), there are confirmed structural motifs mediating processes which are important for the viral replication cycle, including genome assembly and viral packaging. Although the RNA of strains originating from distant IAV subtypes might fold differently, some structural motifs are conserved, and thus, are functionally important. Nowadays, NGS-based structure modeling is a source of new in vivo data helping to understand RNA biology. However, for accurate modeling of in vivo RNA structures, these high-throughput methods should be supported with other analyses facilitating data interpretation. In vitro RNA structural models complement such approaches and offer RNA structures based on experimental data obtained in a simplified environment, which are needed for proper optimization and analysis. Herein, we present the secondary structure of the influenza A virus segment 5 vRNA of A/California/04/2009 (H1N1) strain, based on experimental data from DMS chemical mapping and SHAPE using NMIA, supported by base-pairing probability calculations and bioinformatic analyses. A comparison of the available vRNA5 structures among distant IAV strains revealed that a number of motifs present in the A/California/04/2009 (H1N1) vRNA5 model are highly conserved despite sequence differences, located within previously identified packaging signals, and the formation of which in in virio conditions has been confirmed. These results support functional roles of the RNA secondary structure motifs, which may serve as candidates for universal RNA-targeting inhibitory methods. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Animal Viruses)
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Article
Liver-Derived Cell Transfection Model Efficacy for HBV Genotype B Replication/Transcription Is Determined by Complex Host Transcription Factor Network
Viruses 2021, 13(3), 524; https://doi.org/10.3390/v13030524 - 22 Mar 2021
Viewed by 600
Abstract
Background: Interaction between host transcription factors (TFs) and the viral genome is fundamental for hepatitis B virus (HBV) gene expression regulation. Additionally, the distinct interaction of the TFs’ network with the HBV genome determines the regulatory effect outcome. Hence, different HBV genotypes and [...] Read more.
Background: Interaction between host transcription factors (TFs) and the viral genome is fundamental for hepatitis B virus (HBV) gene expression regulation. Additionally, the distinct interaction of the TFs’ network with the HBV genome determines the regulatory effect outcome. Hence, different HBV genotypes and their variants may display different viral replication/transcription regulation. Due to the lack of an efficient infection model suitable for all HBV genotypes, the hepatoma cell transfection model is primarily used in studies involving non-D HBV genotypes and variants. Methods: We explored the transcriptome profile of host TFs with a regulatory effect on HBV in eight liver-derived cell lines in comparison with primary human hepatocytes (PHH). We further analyzed the suitability of these models in supporting HBV genotype B replication/transcription. Results: Among studied models, HC-04, as a result of the close similarity of TFs transcriptome profile to PHH and the interaction of specific TFs including HNF4α and PPARα, showed the highest efficiency in regard to viral replication and antigen production. The absence of TFs expression in L02 transfection model resulted in its inefficiency in HBV replication/transcription. Conclusion: These observations help to better design studies on regulatory mechanisms involving non-D HBV genotypes and variants’ gene expression and the development of more efficient therapeutical approaches. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Host Factors in Viral Infections)
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Article
Three-Year Clinical Follow-Up of Children Intrauterine Exposed to Zika Virus
Viruses 2021, 13(3), 523; https://doi.org/10.3390/v13030523 - 22 Mar 2021
Viewed by 948
Abstract
Congenital Zika virus (ZIKV) infection may present with a broad spectrum of clinical manifestations. Some sequelae, particularly neurodevelopmental problems, may have a later onset. We conducted a prospective cohort study of 799 high-risk pregnant women who were followed up until delivery. Eighty-three women [...] Read more.
Congenital Zika virus (ZIKV) infection may present with a broad spectrum of clinical manifestations. Some sequelae, particularly neurodevelopmental problems, may have a later onset. We conducted a prospective cohort study of 799 high-risk pregnant women who were followed up until delivery. Eighty-three women and/or newborns were considered ZIKV exposed and/or infected. Laboratory diagnosis was made by polymerase chain reaction in the pregnant mothers and their respective newborns, as well as Dengue virus, Chikungunya virus, and ZIKV serology. Serology for toxoplasmosis, rubella, cytomegalovirus, herpes simplex virus, and syphilis infections were also performed in microcephalic newborns. The newborns included in the study were followed up until their third birthday. Developmental delay was observed in nine patients (13.2%): mild cognitive delay in three patients, speech delay in three patients, autism spectrum disorder in two patients, and severe neurological abnormalities in one microcephalic patient; sensorineural hearing loss, three patients and dysphagia, six patients. Microcephaly due to ZIKV occurred in three patients (3.6%). Clinical manifestations can appear after the first year of life in children infected/exposed to ZIKV, emphasizing the need for long-term follow-up. Full article
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Review
Mammalian and Avian Host Cell Influenza A Restriction Factors
Viruses 2021, 13(3), 522; https://doi.org/10.3390/v13030522 - 22 Mar 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1230
Abstract
The threat of a new influenza pandemic is real. With past pandemics claiming millions of lives, finding new ways to combat this virus is essential. Host cells have developed a multi-modular system to detect incoming pathogens, a phenomenon called sensing. The signaling cascade [...] Read more.
The threat of a new influenza pandemic is real. With past pandemics claiming millions of lives, finding new ways to combat this virus is essential. Host cells have developed a multi-modular system to detect incoming pathogens, a phenomenon called sensing. The signaling cascade triggered by sensing subsequently induces protection for themselves and their surrounding neighbors, termed interferon (IFN) response. This response induces the upregulation of hundreds of interferon-stimulated genes (ISGs), including antiviral effectors, establishing an antiviral state. As well as the antiviral proteins induced through the IFN system, cells also possess a so-called intrinsic immunity, constituted of antiviral proteins that are constitutively expressed, creating a first barrier preceding the induction of the interferon system. All these combined antiviral effectors inhibit the virus at various stages of the viral lifecycle, using a wide array of mechanisms. Here, we provide a review of mammalian and avian influenza A restriction factors, detailing their mechanism of action and in vivo relevance, when known. Understanding their mode of action might help pave the way for the development of new influenza treatments, which are absolutely required if we want to be prepared to face a new pandemic. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Intrinsic Antiviral Factors)
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Article
Blood Counts, Biochemical Parameters, Inflammatory, and Immune Responses in Pigs Infected Experimentally with the African Swine Fever Virus Isolate Pol18_28298_O111
Viruses 2021, 13(3), 521; https://doi.org/10.3390/v13030521 - 22 Mar 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 805
Abstract
This study aimed to indicate the influence of infection caused by genotype II African swine fever virus (ASFV)–isolate Pol18_28298_O111, currently circulating in Poland, on blood counts, biochemical parameters, as well as inflammatory and immune responses. Blood and sera collected from 21 domestic pigs [...] Read more.
This study aimed to indicate the influence of infection caused by genotype II African swine fever virus (ASFV)–isolate Pol18_28298_O111, currently circulating in Poland, on blood counts, biochemical parameters, as well as inflammatory and immune responses. Blood and sera collected from 21 domestic pigs infected intranasally with different doses of virulent ASFV were analysed. The infection led to variable changes in blood counts depending on the stage of the disease with a tendency towards leukopenia and thrombocytopenia. The elevated C-reactive protein (CRP) concentrations and microscopic lesions in organs confirmed the development of the inflammation process, which also resulted in an increased level of biochemical markers such as: Aspartate transaminase (AST), creatine kinase (CK), creatinine, and urea. Antibodies could be detected from 9 to 18 days post infection (dpi). Two survivors presented the highest titer of antibodies (>5 log10/mL) with a simultaneous increase in the lymphocyte T (CD3+) percentage–revealed by flow cytometry. Results confirmed a progressive inflammatory process occurring during the ASFV infection, which may lead to multiple organs failure and death of the majority of affected animals. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Pathogenesis of Swine Fever Virus)
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Review
Hepatitis C Viral Replication Complex
Viruses 2021, 13(3), 520; https://doi.org/10.3390/v13030520 - 22 Mar 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 768
Abstract
The life cycle of the hepatitis C virus (HCV) can be divided into several stages, including viral entry, protein translation, RNA replication, viral assembly, and release. HCV genomic RNA replication occurs in the replication organelles (RO) and is tightly linked to ER membrane [...] Read more.
The life cycle of the hepatitis C virus (HCV) can be divided into several stages, including viral entry, protein translation, RNA replication, viral assembly, and release. HCV genomic RNA replication occurs in the replication organelles (RO) and is tightly linked to ER membrane alterations containing replication complexes (proteins NS3 to NS5B). The amplification of HCV genomic RNA could be regulated by the RO biogenesis, the viral RNA structure (i.e., cis-acting replication elements), and both viral and cellular proteins. Studies on HCV replication have led to the development of direct-acting antivirals (DAAs) targeting the replication complex. This review article summarizes the viral and cellular factors involved in regulating HCV genomic RNA replication and the DAAs that inhibit HCV replication. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Viral Replication Complexes)
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Review
Host Components That Modulate the Disease Caused by hMPV
Viruses 2021, 13(3), 519; https://doi.org/10.3390/v13030519 - 22 Mar 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 581
Abstract
Human metapneumovirus (hMPV) is one of the main pathogens responsible for acute respiratory infections in children up to 5 years of age, contributing substantially to health burden. The worldwide economic and social impact of this virus is significant and must be addressed. The [...] Read more.
Human metapneumovirus (hMPV) is one of the main pathogens responsible for acute respiratory infections in children up to 5 years of age, contributing substantially to health burden. The worldwide economic and social impact of this virus is significant and must be addressed. The structural components of hMPV (either proteins or genetic material) can be detected by several receptors expressed by host cells through the engagement of pattern recognition receptors. The recognition of the structural components of hMPV can promote the signaling of the immune response to clear the infection, leading to the activation of several pathways, such as those related to the interferon response. Even so, several intrinsic factors are capable of modulating the immune response or directly inhibiting the replication of hMPV. This article will discuss the current knowledge regarding the innate and adaptive immune response during hMPV infections. Accordingly, the host intrinsic components capable of modulating the immune response and the elements capable of restricting viral replication during hMPV infections will be examined. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Intrinsic Antiviral Factors)
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Article
Selective Interaction of Sugarcane eIF4E with VPgs from Sugarcane Mosaic Pathogens
Viruses 2021, 13(3), 518; https://doi.org/10.3390/v13030518 - 22 Mar 2021
Viewed by 662
Abstract
Eukaryotic translation initiation factor 4E (eIF4E) plays a key role in the infection of potyviruses in susceptible plants by interacting with viral genome-linked protein (VPg). Sugarcane (Saccharum spp.) production is threatened by mosaic disease caused by Sugarcane mosaic virus (SCMV), Sorghum mosaic [...] Read more.
Eukaryotic translation initiation factor 4E (eIF4E) plays a key role in the infection of potyviruses in susceptible plants by interacting with viral genome-linked protein (VPg). Sugarcane (Saccharum spp.) production is threatened by mosaic disease caused by Sugarcane mosaic virus (SCMV), Sorghum mosaic virus (SrMV), and Sugarcane streak mosaic virus (SCSMV). In this study, two eIF4Es and their isoform eIF(iso)4E and 4E-binding protein coding genes were cloned from sugarcane cultivar ROC22 and designated SceIF4Ea, SceIF4Eb, SceIF(iso)4E, and ScnCBP, respectively. Real-time quantitative PCR analysis showed different expression profiles of these four genes upon SCMV challenge. A subcellular localization assay showed that SceIF4Ea, SceIF4Eb, SceIF(iso)4E, and ScnCBP were distributed in the nucleus and cytoplasm. Yeast two-hybrid (Y2H) and bimolecular fluorescence complementation (BiFC) assays showed that SceIF4Ea/b and SceIF(iso)4E were selectively employed by different sugarcane mosaic pathogens, i.e., SCMV-VPg interacted with SceIF4Ea/b and SceIF(iso)4E, SrMV-VPg interacted with both SceIF4Eb and SceIF(iso)4E, and SCSMV-VPg interacted only with SceIF(iso)4E. Intriguingly, the BiFC assays, but not the Y2H assays, showed that ScnCBP interacted with the VPgs of SCMV, SrMV, and SCSMV. Competitive interaction assays showed that SCMV-VPg, SrMV-VPg, and SCMV-VPg did not compete with each other to interact with SceIF(iso)4E, and SceIF(iso)4E competed with SceIF4Eb to interact with SrMV-VPg but not SCMV-VPg. This study sheds light on the molecular mechanism of sugarcane mosaic pathogen infection of sugarcane plants and benefits sugarcane breeding against the sugarcane mosaic disease. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Viruses of Plants, Fungi and Protozoa)
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Article
Functional Analysis of the Fusion and Attachment Glycoproteins of Mojiang Henipavirus
Viruses 2021, 13(3), 517; https://doi.org/10.3390/v13030517 - 22 Mar 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1020
Abstract
Mojiang virus (MojV) is the first henipavirus identified in a rodent and known only by sequence data, whereas all other henipaviruses have been isolated from bats (Hendra virus, Nipah virus, Cedar virus) or discovered by sequence data from material of bat origin (Ghana [...] Read more.
Mojiang virus (MojV) is the first henipavirus identified in a rodent and known only by sequence data, whereas all other henipaviruses have been isolated from bats (Hendra virus, Nipah virus, Cedar virus) or discovered by sequence data from material of bat origin (Ghana virus). Ephrin-B2 and -B3 are entry receptors for Hendra and Nipah viruses, but Cedar virus can utilize human ephrin-B1, -B2, -A2 and -A5 and mouse ephrin-A1. However, the entry receptor for MojV remains unknown, and its species tropism is not well characterized. Here, we utilized recombinant full-length and soluble forms of the MojV fusion (F) and attachment (G) glycoproteins in membrane fusion and receptor tropism studies. MojV F and G were functionally competent and mediated cell–cell fusion in primate and rattine cells, albeit with low levels and slow fusion kinetics. Although a relative instability of the pre-fusion conformation of a soluble form of MojV F was observed, MojV F displayed significantly greater fusion activity when heterotypically paired with Ghana virus G. An exhaustive investigation of A- and B-class ephrins indicated that none serve as a primary receptor for MojV. The MojV cell fusion phenotype is therefore likely the result of receptor restriction rather than functional defects in recombinant MojV F and G glycoproteins. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Animal Viruses)
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Article
Endogenously Produced SARS-CoV-2 Specific IgG Antibodies May Have a Limited Impact on Clearing Nasal Shedding of Virus during Primary Infection in Humans
Viruses 2021, 13(3), 516; https://doi.org/10.3390/v13030516 - 20 Mar 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 943
Abstract
While SARS-CoV-2 specific neutralizing antibodies have been developed for therapeutic purposes, the specific viral triggers that drive the generation of SARS-CoV-2 specific IgG and IgM antibodies remain only partially characterized. Moreover, it is unknown whether endogenously derived antibodies drive viral clearance that might [...] Read more.
While SARS-CoV-2 specific neutralizing antibodies have been developed for therapeutic purposes, the specific viral triggers that drive the generation of SARS-CoV-2 specific IgG and IgM antibodies remain only partially characterized. Moreover, it is unknown whether endogenously derived antibodies drive viral clearance that might result in mitigation of clinical severity during natural infection. We developed a series of non-linear mathematical models to investigate whether SARS-CoV-2 viral and antibody kinetics are coupled or governed by separate processes. Patients with severe disease had a higher production rate of IgG but not IgM antibodies. Maximal levels of both isotypes were governed by their production rate rather than different saturation levels between people. Our results suggest that an exponential surge in IgG levels occurs approximately 5–10 days after symptom onset with no requirement for continual antigenic stimulation. SARS-CoV-2 specific IgG antibodies appear to have limited to no effect on viral dynamics but may enhance viral clearance late during primary infection resulting from the binding effect of antibody to virus, rather than neutralization. In conclusion, SARS-CoV-2 specific IgG antibodies may play only a limited role in clearing infection from the nasal passages despite providing long-term immunity against infection following vaccination or prior infection. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Mathematical Modeling of Viral Infection)
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Article
Towards Development of an Anti-Vampire Bat Vaccine for Rabies Management: Inoculation of Vampire Bat Saliva Induces Immune-Mediated Resistance
Viruses 2021, 13(3), 515; https://doi.org/10.3390/v13030515 - 20 Mar 2021
Viewed by 1195
Abstract
The common vampire bat (Desmodus rotundus) is a hematophagous species responsible for paralytic rabies and bite damage that affects livestock, humans and wildlife from Mexico to Argentina. Current measures to control vampires, based upon coumarin-derived poisons, are not used extensively due [...] Read more.
The common vampire bat (Desmodus rotundus) is a hematophagous species responsible for paralytic rabies and bite damage that affects livestock, humans and wildlife from Mexico to Argentina. Current measures to control vampires, based upon coumarin-derived poisons, are not used extensively due in part to the high cost of application, risks for bats that share roosts with vampires and residual environmental contamination. Observations that vampire bat bites may induce resistance in livestock against vampire bat salivary anticoagulants encourage research into novel vaccine-based alternatives particularly focused upon increasing livestock resistance to vampire salivary components. We evaluated the action of vampire bat saliva-Freund’s incomplete adjuvant administered to sheep with anticoagulant responses induced by repeated vampire bites in a control group and examined characteristics of vampire bat salivary secretion. We observed that injections induced a response against vampire bat salivary anticoagulants stronger than by repeated vampire bat bites. Based upon these preliminary findings, we hypothesize the utility of developing a control technique based on induction of an immunologically mediated resistance against vampire bat anticoagulants and rabies virus via dual delivery of appropriate host and pathogen antigens. Fundamental characteristics of host biology favor alternative strategies than simple culling by poisons for practical, economical, and ecologically relevant management of vampire populations within a One Health context. Full article
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Article
Profiles of Peripheral Immune Cells of Uncomplicated COVID-19 Cases with Distinct Viral RNA Shedding Periods
Viruses 2021, 13(3), 514; https://doi.org/10.3390/v13030514 - 19 Mar 2021
Viewed by 650
Abstract
The heterogeneity of immune response to COVID-19 has been reported to correlate with disease severity and prognosis. While so, how the immune response progress along the period of viral RNA-shedding (VRS), which determines the infectiousness of disease, is yet to be elucidated. We [...] Read more.
The heterogeneity of immune response to COVID-19 has been reported to correlate with disease severity and prognosis. While so, how the immune response progress along the period of viral RNA-shedding (VRS), which determines the infectiousness of disease, is yet to be elucidated. We aim to exhaustively evaluate the peripheral immune cells to expose the interplay of the immune system in uncomplicated COVID-19 cases with different VRS periods and dynamic changes of the immune cell profile in the prolonged cases. We prospectively recruited four uncomplicated COVID-19 patients and four healthy controls (HCs) and evaluated the immune cell profile throughout the disease course. Peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMCs) were collected and submitted to a multi-panel flowcytometric assay. CD19+-B cells were upregulated, while CD4, CD8, and NK cells were downregulated in prolonged VRS patients. Additionally, the pro-inflammatory-Th1 population showed downregulation, followed by improvement along the disease course, while the immunoregulatory cells showed upregulation with subsequent decline. COVID-19 patients with longer VRS expressed an immune profile comparable to those with severe disease, although they remained clinically stable. Further studies of immune signature in a larger cohort are warranted. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue SARS-CoV-2 Host Cell Interactions)
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Article
Early-Transmitted Variants and Their Evolution in a HIV-1 Positive Couple: NGS and Phylogenetic Analyses
Viruses 2021, 13(3), 513; https://doi.org/10.3390/v13030513 - 19 Mar 2021
Viewed by 578
Abstract
We had access to both components of a couple who became infected with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)-1 through sexual behavior during the early initial phase of infection and before initiation of therapy. We analyzed blood samples obtained at the time of diagnosis and [...] Read more.
We had access to both components of a couple who became infected with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV)-1 through sexual behavior during the early initial phase of infection and before initiation of therapy. We analyzed blood samples obtained at the time of diagnosis and after six months of combined antiretroviral therapy. Next-generation sequencing (NGS) and phylogenetic analyses were used to investigate the transmission and evolution of HIV-1 quasispecies. Phylogenetic analyses were conducted using Bayesian inference methods. Both partners were infected with an HIV-1 B subtype. No evidence of viral recombination was observed. The lowest intrapersonal genetic distances were observed at baseline, before initiation of therapy, and in particular in the V1V2 fragment (distances ranging from 0.102 to 0.148). One HIV-1 single variant was concluded to be dominant in all of the HIV-1 regions analyzed, although some minor variants could be observed. The same tree structure was observed both at baseline and after six months of therapy. These are the first extended phylogenetic analyses performed on both members of a therapy-naïve couple within a few weeks of infection, and in which the effect of antiretroviral therapy on viral evolution was analyzed. Understanding which HIV-1 variants are most likely to be transmitted would allow a better understanding of viral evolution, possibly playing a role in vaccine design and prevention strategies. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue HIV Molecular Epidemiology for Prevention 2020)
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Brief Report
Repeated SARS-CoV-2 Positivity: Analysis of 123 Cases
Viruses 2021, 13(3), 512; https://doi.org/10.3390/v13030512 - 19 Mar 2021
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1045
Abstract
Repeated positivity and reinfection with severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-COV-2) is a significant concern. Our study aimed to evaluate the clinical significance of repeatedly positive testing after coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) recovery. We performed a systematic literature search following the Preferred [...] Read more.
Repeated positivity and reinfection with severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-COV-2) is a significant concern. Our study aimed to evaluate the clinical significance of repeatedly positive testing after coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) recovery. We performed a systematic literature search following the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses (PRISMA) guideline. With available individual patient data reporting on repeatedly SARS-CoV-2 positive (RSP) patients, case reports, and case series were included in this analysis. We performed a descriptive analysis of baseline characteristics of repeatedly positive cases. We assessed the cases according to the length of their polymerase chain reaction (PCR) negative interval between the two episodes. Risk factors for the severity of second episodes were evaluated. Overall, we included 123 patients with repeated positivity from 56 publications, with a mean repeated positivity length of 47.8 ± 29.9 days. Younger patients were predominant in the delayed (>90 days) recurrent positive group. Furthermore, comparing patients with RSP intervals of below 60 and above 60 days, we found that a more severe disease course can be expected if the repeated positivity interval is shorter. Severe and critical disease courses might predict future repeatedly positive severe and critical COVID-19 episodes. In conclusion, our results show that the second episode of SARS-CoV-2 positivity is more severe if it happens within 60 days after the first positive PCR. On the other hand, the second episode’s severity correlates with the first. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section SARS-CoV-2 and COVID-19)
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Article
Comparative Analysis of Within-Host Mutation Patterns and Diversity of Hepatitis C Virus Subtypes 1a, 1b, and 3a
Viruses 2021, 13(3), 511; https://doi.org/10.3390/v13030511 - 19 Mar 2021
Viewed by 630
Abstract
Understanding within-host evolution is critical for predicting viral evolutionary outcomes, yet such studies are currently lacking due to difficulty involving human subjects. Hepatitis C virus (HCV) is an RNA virus with high mutation rates. Its complex evolutionary dynamics and extensive genetic diversity are [...] Read more.
Understanding within-host evolution is critical for predicting viral evolutionary outcomes, yet such studies are currently lacking due to difficulty involving human subjects. Hepatitis C virus (HCV) is an RNA virus with high mutation rates. Its complex evolutionary dynamics and extensive genetic diversity are demonstrated in over 67 known subtypes. In this study, we analyzed within-host mutation frequency patterns of three HCV subtypes, using a large number of samples obtained from treatment-naïve participants by next-generation sequencing. We report that overall mutation frequency patterns are similar among subtypes, yet subtype 3a consistently had lower mutation frequencies and nucleotide diversity, while subtype 1a had the highest. We found that about 50% of genomic sites are highly conserved across subtypes, which are likely under strong purifying selection. We also compared within-host and between-host selective pressures, which revealed that Hyper Variable Region 1 within hosts was under positive selection, but was under slightly negative selection between hosts, which indicates that many mutations created within hosts are removed during the transmission bottleneck. Examining the natural prevalence of known resistance-associated variants showed their consistent existence in the treatment-naïve participants. These results provide insights into the differences and similarities among HCV subtypes that may be used to develop and improve HCV therapies. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Diversity and Evolution of HIV and HCV)
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Article
Incorporation of CD55 into the Zika Viral Envelope Contributes to Its Stability against Human Complement
Viruses 2021, 13(3), 510; https://doi.org/10.3390/v13030510 - 19 Mar 2021
Viewed by 513
Abstract
The rapid spread of the virus in Latin America and the association of the infection with microcephaly in newborns or Guillain–Barré Syndrome in adults prompted the WHO to declare the Zika virus (ZIKV) epidemic to be an international public health emergency in 2016. [...] Read more.
The rapid spread of the virus in Latin America and the association of the infection with microcephaly in newborns or Guillain–Barré Syndrome in adults prompted the WHO to declare the Zika virus (ZIKV) epidemic to be an international public health emergency in 2016. As the virus was first discovered in monkeys and is spread not only by mosquitos but also from human to human, we investigated the stability to the human complement of ZIKV derived from mosquito (ZIKVInsect), monkey (ZIKVVero), or human cells (ZIKVA549 and ZIKVFibro), respectively. At a low serum concentration (10%), which refers to complement concentrations found on mucosal surfaces, the virus was relatively stable at 37 °C. At higher complement levels (up to 50% serum concentration), ZIKV titers differed significantly depending on the cell line used for the propagation of the virus. While the viral titer of ZIKVInsect decreased about two orders in magnitude, when incubated with human serum, the virus derived from human cells was more resistant to complement-mediated lysis (CML). By virus-capture assay and Western blots, the complement regulator protein CD55 was identified to be incorporated into the viral envelope. Blocking of CD55 by neutralizing Abs significantly increased the sensitivity to human complement. Taken together, these data indicate that the incorporation of CD55 from human cells contributes to the stability of ZIKV against complement-mediated virolysis. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Viruses and Complement)
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Article
Avian Influenza A Viruses Reassort and Diversify Differently in Mallards and Mammals
Viruses 2021, 13(3), 509; https://doi.org/10.3390/v13030509 - 19 Mar 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1037
Abstract
Reassortment among co-infecting influenza A viruses (IAVs) is an important source of viral diversity and can facilitate expansion into novel host species. Indeed, reassortment played a key role in the evolution of the last three pandemic IAVs. Observed patterns of reassortment within a [...] Read more.
Reassortment among co-infecting influenza A viruses (IAVs) is an important source of viral diversity and can facilitate expansion into novel host species. Indeed, reassortment played a key role in the evolution of the last three pandemic IAVs. Observed patterns of reassortment within a coinfected host are likely to be shaped by several factors, including viral load, the extent of viral mixing within the host and the stringency of selection. These factors in turn are expected to vary among the diverse host species that IAV infects. To investigate host differences in IAV reassortment, here we examined reassortment of two distinct avian IAVs within their natural host (mallards) and a mammalian model system (guinea pigs). Animals were co-inoculated with A/wildbird/California/187718-36/2008 (H3N8) and A/mallard/Colorado/P66F1-5/2008 (H4N6) viruses. Longitudinal samples were collected from the cloaca of mallards or the nasal tract of guinea pigs and viral genetic exchange was monitored by genotyping clonal isolates from these samples. Relative to those in guinea pigs, viral populations in mallards showed higher frequencies of reassortant genotypes and were characterized by higher genotype richness and diversity. In line with these observations, analysis of pairwise segment combinations revealed lower linkage disequilibrium in mallards as compared to guinea pigs. No clear longitudinal patterns in richness, diversity or linkage disequilibrium were present in either host. Our results reveal mallards to be a highly permissive host for IAV reassortment and suggest that reduced viral mixing limits avian IAV reassortment in a mammalian host. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Viral Cross-Species Transmission)
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Commentary
The Appropriateness of Invasive Ventilation in COVID-19 Positive Cancer Patients: Proposal of a New Prognostic Score
Viruses 2021, 13(3), 508; https://doi.org/10.3390/v13030508 - 19 Mar 2021
Viewed by 639
Abstract
Over the last months, as oncology specialists, we have frequently been contacted for estimating prognosis for cancer patients affected by COVID-19 infection. Until now, there have been no clear markers to guide decision making regarding the appropriateness of invasive ventilation in cancer patients [...] Read more.
Over the last months, as oncology specialists, we have frequently been contacted for estimating prognosis for cancer patients affected by COVID-19 infection. Until now, there have been no clear markers to guide decision making regarding the appropriateness of invasive ventilation in cancer patients affected by COVID-19 infection. We developed a practical tool encompassing a prognostic score, “The Milano Policlinico ONCOVID-ICU score.” The score is composed of three groups of variables: patient’s characteristics such as sex, age, BMI, and comorbidities; oncological variables (treatment intent, life expectancy, on or off-treatment status); and clinical parameters in association with laboratory values (the Sequential Organ Failure Assessment (SOFA) score and D-dimer). The SOFA score includes six different clinical parameters and during the first few days of ICU admissions has an important prognostic role. The oncological history should never represent, per se, a contraindication to intensive care and must be considered together with other variables, such as laboratory values, clinical parameters, and patient characteristics, in order to make the hardest but best possible choice. To our knowledge, “The Milano Policlinico ONCOVID-ICU score” is the first prognostic score proposed in this setting of patients and requires further validation. This tool may be useful to assess the prognosis of cancer patients in critical conditions. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue State-of-the-Art Emerging Respiratory Viruses in Europe)
Article
Dogs as Sentinels for Flavivirus Exposure in Urban, Peri-Urban and Rural Hanoi, Vietnam
Viruses 2021, 13(3), 507; https://doi.org/10.3390/v13030507 - 19 Mar 2021
Viewed by 691
Abstract
Diseases caused by flaviviruses, including dengue fever and Japanese encephalitis, are major health problems in Vietnam. This cross-sectional study explored the feasibility of domestic dogs as sentinels to better understand risks of mosquito-borne diseases in Hanoi city. A total of 475 dogs serum [...] Read more.
Diseases caused by flaviviruses, including dengue fever and Japanese encephalitis, are major health problems in Vietnam. This cross-sectional study explored the feasibility of domestic dogs as sentinels to better understand risks of mosquito-borne diseases in Hanoi city. A total of 475 dogs serum samples from 221 households in six districts of Hanoi were analyzed by a competitive enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (cELISA) for antibodies to the pr-E protein of West Nile virus and other flaviviruses due to cross-reactivity. The overall flavivirus seroprevalence in the dog population was 70.7% (95% CI = 66.4–74.8%). At the animal level, significant associations between seropositive dogs and district location, age, breed and keeping practice were determined. At the household level, the major risk factors were rural and peri-urban locations, presence of pigs, coil burning and households without mosquito-borne disease experience (p < 0.05). Mosquito control by using larvicides or electric traps could lower seropositivity, but other measures did not contribute to significant risk mitigation of flavivirus exposure in dogs. These results will support better control of mosquito-borne diseases in Hanoi, and they indicate that dogs can be used as sentinels for flavivirus exposure. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Proactive Study of Future Viral Infectious Diseases)
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Communication
A Roadmap for Genome-Based Phage Taxonomy
Viruses 2021, 13(3), 506; https://doi.org/10.3390/v13030506 - 18 Mar 2021
Cited by 17 | Viewed by 2775
Abstract
Bacteriophage (phage) taxonomy has been in flux since its inception over four decades ago. Genome sequencing has put pressure on the classification system and recent years have seen significant changes to phage taxonomy. Here, we reflect on the state of phage taxonomy and [...] Read more.
Bacteriophage (phage) taxonomy has been in flux since its inception over four decades ago. Genome sequencing has put pressure on the classification system and recent years have seen significant changes to phage taxonomy. Here, we reflect on the state of phage taxonomy and provide a roadmap for the future, including the abolition of the order Caudovirales and the families Myoviridae, Podoviridae, and Siphoviridae. Furthermore, we specify guidelines for the demarcation of species, genus, subfamily and family-level ranks of tailed phage taxonomy. Full article
(This article belongs to the Section Bacterial Viruses)
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Article
Environmental Surveillance for Polioviruses in Haïti (2017–2019): The Dynamic Process for the Establishment and Monitoring of Sampling Sites
Viruses 2021, 13(3), 505; https://doi.org/10.3390/v13030505 - 18 Mar 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 713
Abstract
Haïti is at risk for wild poliovirus (WPV) importation and circulation, as well as vaccine-derived poliovirus (VDPV) emergence. Environmental surveillance (ES) for polioviruses was established in Port au Prince and Gonaïves in 2016. During 2017–2019, initial ES sites were re-evaluated, and ES was [...] Read more.
Haïti is at risk for wild poliovirus (WPV) importation and circulation, as well as vaccine-derived poliovirus (VDPV) emergence. Environmental surveillance (ES) for polioviruses was established in Port au Prince and Gonaïves in 2016. During 2017–2019, initial ES sites were re-evaluated, and ES was expanded into Cap Haïtien and Saint Marc. Wastewater samples and data on weather, hour of collection, and sample temperature and pH were collected every 4 weeks during March 2017–December 2019 (272 sampling events) from 21 sites in Cap Haïtien, Gonaïves, Port au Prince, and Saint Marc. Samples were processed for the detection of polio and non-polio enteroviruses using the two-phase and “Concentration and Filter Elution” methodologies. Polioviruses were serotyped and underwent intra-typic characterization. No WPV or VDPVs were isolated. Sabin-like polioviruses (oral vaccine strain) of serotypes 1 and 3 were sporadically detected. Five of six (83%), one of six (17%), five of six (83%), and two of three (67%) sites evaluated in Cap Haïtien, Gonaïves, Port au Prince, and Saint Marc, respectively, had enterovirus isolation from >50% of sampling events; these results and considerations, such as watershed population size and overlap, influence of sea water, and excessive particulates in samples, were factors in site retention or termination. The evaluation of 21 ES sampling sites in four Haïtian cities led to the termination of 11 sites. Every-four-weekly sampling continues at the remaining 10 sites across the four cities as a core Global Polio Eradication Initiative activity. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Surveillance for Polio and Non-polio Enteroviruses)
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Review
Foamy Viruses, Bet, and APOBEC3 Restriction
Viruses 2021, 13(3), 504; https://doi.org/10.3390/v13030504 - 18 Mar 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 792
Abstract
Non-human primates (NHP) are an important source of viruses that can spillover to humans and, after adaptation, spread through the host population. Whereas HIV-1 and HTLV-1 emerged as retroviral pathogens in humans, a unique class of retroviruses called foamy viruses (FV) with zoonotic [...] Read more.
Non-human primates (NHP) are an important source of viruses that can spillover to humans and, after adaptation, spread through the host population. Whereas HIV-1 and HTLV-1 emerged as retroviral pathogens in humans, a unique class of retroviruses called foamy viruses (FV) with zoonotic potential are occasionally detected in bushmeat hunters or zookeepers. Various FVs are endemic in numerous mammalian natural hosts, such as primates, felines, bovines, and equines, and other animals, but not in humans. They are apathogenic, and significant differences exist between the viral life cycles of FV and other retroviruses. Importantly, FVs replicate in the presence of many well-defined retroviral restriction factors such as TRIM5α, BST2 (Tetherin), MX2, and APOBEC3 (A3). While the interaction of A3s with HIV-1 is well studied, the escape mechanisms of FVs from restriction by A3 is much less explored. Here we review the current knowledge of FV biology, host restriction factors, and FV–host interactions with an emphasis on the consequences of FV regulatory protein Bet binding to A3s and outline crucial open questions for future studies. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue APOBECs and Virus Restriction)
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Article
Treatment Protocol for COVID-19 Based on T2R Phenotype
Viruses 2021, 13(3), 503; https://doi.org/10.3390/v13030503 - 18 Mar 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 2147
Abstract
COVID-19 has become a global pandemic of the highest priority. Multiple treatment protocols have been proposed worldwide with no definitive answer for acure. A prior retrospective study showed association between bitter taste receptor 38 (T2R38) phenotypes and the severity of COVID-19. Based on [...] Read more.
COVID-19 has become a global pandemic of the highest priority. Multiple treatment protocols have been proposed worldwide with no definitive answer for acure. A prior retrospective study showed association between bitter taste receptor 38 (T2R38) phenotypes and the severity of COVID-19. Based on this, we proposed assessing the different T2R38 phenotypes response towards a targeted treatment protocol. Starting July 2020 till December 2020, we tested subjects for T2R38 phenotypic expression (supertasters, tasters, and nontasters). Subjects who were subsequently infected with severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) (diagnosed via PCR) were included. Based on their taster status, supertasters were given dexamethasone for 4 days; tasters were given azithromycin and dexamethasone +/− hydroxychloroquine for 7 days; and nontasters were given azithromycin and dexamethasone for 12 days. Subjects were followed prospectively and their outcomes were documented. Seven hundred forty-seven COVID-19 patients were included, with 184 (24.7%) supertasters, 371 (49.6%) tasters, and192 (25.7%) nontasters. The average duration of symptoms with the treatment protocol was 5 days for supertasters, 8.1 days for tasters, and 16.2 days for nontasters. Only three subjects (0.4%) required hospitalization (3/3 nontasters). Targeted treatment protocol showed significant correlation (p < 0.05) based on patients’ T2R38 phenotypic expression. Assessing treatment protocols for COVID-19 patients according to their T2R38 phenotype could provide insight into the inconsistent results obtained from the different studies worldwide. Further study is warranted on the categorization of patients based on their T2R38 phenotype. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Vaccines and Therapeutics against Coronaviruses)
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