Special Issue "Viral Diseases and the Existing Comorbidities: An Overview of Disease Development, Progression, and Therapeutics"

A special issue of Vaccines (ISSN 2076-393X).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 December 2021) | Viewed by 9636

Special Issue Editors

Dr. Irfan A. Rather
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
1. Department of Biological Sciences, Faculty of Science, King Abdulaziz University (KAU), Jeddah 21589, Saudi Arabia
2. Department of Applied Microbiology and Biotechnology, Yeungnam University, Gyeongsan-si, Gyeongbuk-so, Korea
Interests: zoonotic diseases; probiotics
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals
Dr. Suriya Rehman
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Department of Epidemic Disease Research, Institute of Research and Medical Consultation (IRMC), Imam Abdulrahman Bin Faisal University (IAU), Dammam 34212, Saudi Arabia
Interests: immune responses; viral infections
Dr. Yan Yan HOR
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Department of Biotechnology, Yeungnam University, Gyeongsan, Gyeongsangbuk-do, Korea
Interests: autoimmune diseases; chronic infections
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals
Dr. Lew Lee Ching
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Probionic Research Institute, Gyeongsangbuk-do, Korea
Interests: metabolic diseases; probiotics

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

The current global outbreak of SARS-CoV-2 has indicated that the population with pre-existing comorbidities like age, chronic inflammation, hypertension, cardiovascular disease, diabetes, etc., are vulnerable to a much-increased risk of morbidity and mortality viral diseases. This is of major concern for people having such conditions and even a bigger challenge for healthcare systems and medical research areas. All the pre-existing comorbidities do not pose a similar risk; perhaps, several influences the mechanism of the immune system, thereby affecting the response to viral infection in general and COVID-19 in particular. Moreover, numerous medications prescribed for these pre-existing conditions can impact the progression of viral infection and restrict other treatment choices available. This Special issue will focus on to discuss the immune response to viral infections and the disease development among patients with pre-existing comorbidities. Moreover, there is a need to explore how the underlying disease etiologies aggravate the disease progression. Hence, it is of paramount importance to analyze the challenges and options associated with the new and repurposed therapies and the scope of prebiotics or probiotics and vaccine development to prevent viral infections in patients with pre-existing comorbidities. As the current pandemic continues to escalate, we hope this special issue offers healthcare providers and researchers a greater and extensive understanding of the effect of pre-existing comorbidities on developing and treating viral infections.

Dr. Irfan A. Rather
Dr. Suriya Rehman
Dr. Yan Yan HOR
Dr. Lew Lee Ching
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Vaccines is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2200 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • Immune response to viral infections
  • Viral mutation and vaccine development
  • Virus vector vaccine
  • Comorbidity
  • Viral infections and Probiotics
  • Virus antibody interaction
  • Viral infection and autoimmune diseases

Published Papers (8 papers)

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Research

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Article
Multi-Targeted Approaches and Drug Repurposing Reveal Possible SARS-CoV-2 Inhibitors
Vaccines 2022, 10(1), 24; https://doi.org/10.3390/vaccines10010024 - 26 Dec 2021
Viewed by 1028
Abstract
The COVID-19 pandemic caused by SARS-CoV-2 is unprecedented in recent memory owing to the non-stop escalation in number of infections and deaths in almost every country of the world. The lack of treatment options further worsens the scenario, thereby necessitating the exploration of [...] Read more.
The COVID-19 pandemic caused by SARS-CoV-2 is unprecedented in recent memory owing to the non-stop escalation in number of infections and deaths in almost every country of the world. The lack of treatment options further worsens the scenario, thereby necessitating the exploration of already existing US FDA-approved drugs for their effectiveness against COVID-19. In the present study, we have performed virtual screening of nutraceuticals available from DrugBank against 14 SARS-CoV-2 proteins. Molecular docking identified several inhibitors, two of which, rutin and NADH, displayed strong binding affinities and inhibitory potential against SARS-CoV-2 proteins. Further normal model-based simulations were performed to gain insights into the conformational transitions in proteins induced by the drugs. The computational analysis in the present study paves the way for experimental validation and development of multi-target guided inhibitors to fight COVID-19. Full article
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Article
Protection of Vaccine Preventable Diseases in a Population of HIV-Infected Children: A 3 Years Prospective Study
Vaccines 2021, 9(11), 1331; https://doi.org/10.3390/vaccines9111331 - 15 Nov 2021
Viewed by 593
Abstract
Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) infected children have a 30–70% chance of being incompletely immunized and may not respond serologically with the same magnitude or durability as uninfected children. The aim of the study was to describe the rate of protective antibodies titre and [...] Read more.
Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) infected children have a 30–70% chance of being incompletely immunized and may not respond serologically with the same magnitude or durability as uninfected children. The aim of the study was to describe the rate of protective antibodies titre and the persistence of the response against four recommended vaccinations in HIV infected children and adolescents. A two-phase observational study was performed in which protective IgG antibodies to measles, mumps, rubella and hepatitis B were determined and monitored for 12 and 24 months, in 26 perinatally HIV-infected children. The rate of protection for rubella and hepatitis B was significantly lower in the HIV group compared to the control group (92% vs. 65% for rubella and 78.4% vs. 45.4% for hepatitis B; p < 0.05). Children who received primary vaccination after initiating combination antiretroviral therapy (cART) had a higher rate of response. Seronegative patients who received a booster dose of vaccine had a good immunological response. HIV infection is associated with a lower response to vaccines against rubella and hepatitis. The beginning of cART before vaccination may be associated with a better response. The evaluation of the serological response is crucial in children with HIV infection in order to evaluate the protection of vaccine preventable diseases. Full article
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Article
Poor Vaccine Effectiveness against Influenza B-Related Severe Acute Respiratory Infection in a Temperate North Indian State (2019–2020): A Call for Further Data for Possible Vaccines with Closer Match
Vaccines 2021, 9(10), 1094; https://doi.org/10.3390/vaccines9101094 - 28 Sep 2021
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 648
Abstract
Background: Influenza vaccine uptake in India is poor, and scant data exist regarding the effectiveness of influenza vaccine against hospitalization. Methods: From October 2019 to March 2020, vaccination status of 1219 patients (males n = 571, aged 5–107 years; median, 50 years) hospitalized [...] Read more.
Background: Influenza vaccine uptake in India is poor, and scant data exist regarding the effectiveness of influenza vaccine against hospitalization. Methods: From October 2019 to March 2020, vaccination status of 1219 patients (males n = 571, aged 5–107 years; median, 50 years) hospitalized with severe acute respiratory illness (SARI) was assessed. The patients were tested for influenza viruses and their subtypes by RT PCR. Sequencing of the HA gene was performed. Vaccine effectiveness (VE) against influenza subtypes was estimated by the test negative design. Results: A total of 336 (27.5%) patients were influenza-positive, with influenza B/Victoria accounting for 49.7% (n = 167), followed by influenza A/H1N1 (47.6%; n = 155) and influenza A/H3N2 (4.4%; n = 15). About 6.8% and 8.6% of the influenza-positive and influenza-negative patients, respectively, had been vaccinated. Adjusted VE for any influenza strain was 13% (95% CI −42 to 47), which for influenza B was 0%. HA sequencing revealed that influenza B samples mainly belonged to subclade V1A.3/133R with deletion of residues 163–165, as against the 2-aa deletion in influenza B/Colorado/06/2017 strain, contained in the vaccine. VE for influenza A/H1N1 was 55%. Conclusions: Poor VE due to a genetic mismatch between the circulating strain and the vaccine strain calls for efforts to reduce the mismatch. Full article
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Article
Potential Adjuvant Therapeutic Effect of Lactobacillus plantarum Probio-88 Postbiotics against SARS-COV-2
Vaccines 2021, 9(10), 1067; https://doi.org/10.3390/vaccines9101067 - 24 Sep 2021
Cited by 7 | Viewed by 1887
Abstract
In response to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, the global effort to develop high efficacy countermeasures to control the infection are being conducted at full swing. While the efficacy of vaccines and coronavirus drugs are being tested, the microbiome approach represents an alternative pathophysiology-based [...] Read more.
In response to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, the global effort to develop high efficacy countermeasures to control the infection are being conducted at full swing. While the efficacy of vaccines and coronavirus drugs are being tested, the microbiome approach represents an alternative pathophysiology-based approach to prevent the severity of the infection. In the current study, we evaluated the action of a novel probiotic Lactobacillus plantarum Probio-88 against SARS-COV-2 replication and immune regulation using an in vitro and in silico study. The results showed that extract from this strain (P88-CFS) significantly inhibited the replication of SARS-COV-2 and the production of reactive oxygen species (ROS) levels. Furthermore, compared with infected cells, P88-CFS treated cells showed a significant reduction in inflammatory markers such as IFN-α, IFN-β, and IL-6. Using an in silico molecular docking approach, it was postulated that the antiviral activity of L. plantarum Probio-88 was derived from plantaricin E (PlnE) and F (PlnF). The high binding affinity and formation of hydrogen bonding indicated that the association of PlnE and PlnF on SARS-COV-2 helicase might serve as a blocker by preventing the binding of ss-RNA during the replication of the virus. In conclusion, our study substantiated that P88-CFS could be used as an integrative therapeutic approach along with vaccine to contain the spread of the highly infectious pathogen and possibly its variants. Full article
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Article
Cost-Effectiveness of Three Poliovirus Immunization Schedules in Shanghai, China
Vaccines 2021, 9(10), 1062; https://doi.org/10.3390/vaccines9101062 - 23 Sep 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 752
Abstract
In Shanghai, China, a polio immunization schedule of four inactivated polio vaccines (IPV) has been implemented since 2020, replacing the schedules of a combination of two IPVs and two bivalent live attenuated oral polio vaccines (bOPV), and four trivalent live attenuated oral polio [...] Read more.
In Shanghai, China, a polio immunization schedule of four inactivated polio vaccines (IPV) has been implemented since 2020, replacing the schedules of a combination of two IPVs and two bivalent live attenuated oral polio vaccines (bOPV), and four trivalent live attenuated oral polio vaccines (tOPV). This study aimed to assess the cost-effectiveness of these three schedules in infants born in 2016, in preventing vaccine-associated paralytic poliomyelitis (VAPP). We performed a decision tree model and estimated incremental cost-effectiveness ratio (ICER). Compared to the four-tOPV schedule, the two-IPV-two-bOPV schedule averted 1.2 VAPP cases and 16.83 disability-adjusted life years (DALY) annually; while the four-IPV schedule averted 1.35 VAPP cases and 18.96 DALY annually. Consequently, ICERVAPP and ICERDALY were substantially high for two-IPV-two-bOPV (CNY 12.96 million and 0.93 million), and four-IPV (CNY 21.24 million and 1.52 million). Moreover, net monetary benefit of the two-IPV-two-bOPV and four-IPV schedules was highest when the cost of IPV was hypothesized to be less than CNY 23.75 or CNY 9.11, respectively, and willingness-to-pay was hypothesized as CNY 0.6 million in averting one VAPP-induced DALY. IPV-containing schedules are currently cost-ineffective in Shanghai. They may be cost-effective by reducing the prices of IPV, which may accelerate polio eradication in Chinese settings. Full article
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Article
Cost–Benefit Analysis of a Mass Vaccination Strategy to Control Brucellosis in Sheep and Goats in Northern Iraq
Vaccines 2021, 9(8), 878; https://doi.org/10.3390/vaccines9080878 - 08 Aug 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1125
Abstract
Brucellosis is a major economic and production-limiting disease for livestock owners and the community in Iraq. A cost–benefit analysis was conducted to evaluate the impact of an expanded annual mass vaccination programme of sheep and goats that involves all female and male sheep [...] Read more.
Brucellosis is a major economic and production-limiting disease for livestock owners and the community in Iraq. A cost–benefit analysis was conducted to evaluate the impact of an expanded annual mass vaccination programme of sheep and goats that involves all female and male sheep and goats over the age of 3 months with Rev. 1 vaccine. The proposed expanded vaccination programme was compared to the current annual vaccination program, which involved only vaccinating female sheep and goats between the ages of 3 and 6 months of age with Rev. 1. The cost-benefit analysis model was developed utilizing data collected in Dohuk Governorate, northern Iraq. The seroprevalence in small ruminants (using Rose Bengal test and ELISA in series) was predicted to decrease from 9.22% to 0.73% after 20 years of implementing the proposed annual mass vaccination program. The net present value of the mass vaccination program was estimated to be US$ 10,564,828 (95% Confidence Interval (CI): −16,203,454 to 37,049,245), the benefit–cost ratio was estimated to be 4.25 (95% CI: −2.71 to 11.22), and the internal rate of return was 91.38% (95% CI:11.71 to 190.62%). The proposed vaccination strategy was predicted to decrease the overall financial loss caused by brucellosis from 1.75 to 0.55 US$ per adult female animal. The results of this economic analysis highlight the benefit of implementing an annual mass vaccination program of small ruminants with Rev. 1 vaccine to reduce the prevalence of brucellosis in northern Iraq. Full article
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Review

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Review
Gastric Cancer and Viruses: A Fine Line between Friend or Foe
Vaccines 2022, 10(4), 600; https://doi.org/10.3390/vaccines10040600 - 13 Apr 2022
Viewed by 597
Abstract
Gastric cancer (GC) is a significant health concern worldwide, with a GLOBOCAN estimate of 1.08 million novel cases in 2020. It is the leading cause of disability-adjusted life years lost to cancer, with the fourth most common cancer in males and the fifth [...] Read more.
Gastric cancer (GC) is a significant health concern worldwide, with a GLOBOCAN estimate of 1.08 million novel cases in 2020. It is the leading cause of disability-adjusted life years lost to cancer, with the fourth most common cancer in males and the fifth most common cancer in females. Strategies are pursued across the globe to prevent gastric cancer progression as a significant fraction of gastric cancers have been linked to various pathogenic (bacterial and viral) infections. Early diagnosis (in Asian countries), and non-invasive and surgical treatments have helped manage this disease with 5-year survival for stage IA and IB tumors ranging between 60% and 80%. However, the most prevalent aggressive stage III gastric tumors undergoing surgery have a lower 5-year survival rate between 18% and 50%. These figures point to a need for more efficient diagnostic and treatment strategies, for which the oncolytic viruses (OVs) appear to have some promise. OVs form a new therapeutic agent class that induces anti-tumor immune responses by selectively killing tumor cells and inducing systemic anti-tumor immunity. On the contrary, several oncogenic viruses have been shown to play significant roles in malignancy progression in the case of gastric cancer. Therefore, this review evaluates the current state of research and advances in understanding the dual role of viruses in gastric cancer. Full article
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Review
Thymus Gland: A Double Edge Sword for Coronaviruses
Vaccines 2021, 9(10), 1119; https://doi.org/10.3390/vaccines9101119 - 02 Oct 2021
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 2024
Abstract
The thymus is the main lymphoid organ that regulates the immune and endocrine systems by controlling thymic cell proliferation and differentiation. The gland is a primary lymphoid organ responsible for generating mature T cells into CD4+ or CD8+ single-positive (SP) T cells, contributing [...] Read more.
The thymus is the main lymphoid organ that regulates the immune and endocrine systems by controlling thymic cell proliferation and differentiation. The gland is a primary lymphoid organ responsible for generating mature T cells into CD4+ or CD8+ single-positive (SP) T cells, contributing to cellular immunity. Regarding humoral immunity, the thymic plasma cells almost exclusively secrete IgG1 and IgG3, the two main complement-fixing effector IgG subclasses. Deformity in the thymus can lead to inflammatory diseases. Hassall’s corpuscles’ epithelial lining produces thymic stromal lymphopoietin, which induces differentiation of CDs thymocytes into regulatory T cells within the thymus medulla. Thymic B lymphocytes produce immunoglobulins and immunoregulating hormones, including thymosin. Modulation in T cell and naive T cells decrement due to thymus deformity induce alteration in the secretion of various inflammatory factors, resulting in multiple diseases. Influenza virus activates thymic CD4+ CD8+ thymocytes and a large amount of IFNγ. IFNs limit virus spread, enhance macrophages’ phagocytosis, and promote the natural killer cell restriction activity against infected cells. Th2 lymphocytes-produced cytokine IL-4 can bind to antiviral INFγ, decreasing the cell susceptibility and downregulating viral receptors. COVID-19 epitopes (S, M, and N proteins) with ≥90% identity to the SARS-CoV sequence have been predicted. These epitopes trigger immunity for antibodies production. Boosting the immune system by improving thymus function can be a therapeutic strategy for preventing virus-related diseases. This review aims to summarize the endocrine-immunoregulatory functions of the thymus and the underlying mechanisms in the prevention of COVID-19. Full article
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