Severe COVID-19 Is Marked by a Dysregulated Myeloid Cell Compartment

In a dual-center, two-cohort study, researchers combined single-cell RNA-sequencing and single-cell proteomics of whole blood and peripheral blood mononuclear cells to determine changes in immune cell composition and activation in mild vs. severe COVID-19 over time.
[Cell]
Schulte-Schrepping, J., Reusch, N., Paclik, D., Baßler, K., Schlickeiser, S., Zhang, B., Krämer, B., Krammer, T., Brumhard, S., Bonaguro, L., Domenico, E. D., Wendisch, D., Grasshoff, M., Kapellos, T. S., Beckstette, M., Pecht, T., Saglam, A., Dietrich, O., Mei, H. E., … Sander, L. E. (2020). Severe COVID-19 is marked by a dysregulated myeloid cell compartment. Cell, 0(0). https://doi.org/10.1016/j.cell.2020.08.001 Cite
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BioAegis Therapeutics Initiates Phase II Clinical Trial of Its Inflammation Regulator, Gelsolin, for COVID-19 Treatment

BioAegis Therapeutics, Inc. announced that it enrolled its first patient in its Phase II study of hospitalized patients with severe COVID-19 pneumonia.
[BioAegis Therapeutics, Inc. (GlobeNewswire, Inc.)]
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IMV Receives Funding From Canadian Governmental Agencies for COVID-19 Vaccine Phase I Clinical Study

IMV, Inc. announced that Canadian government agencies will contribute up to CA$4.75 million to advance Phase I clinical development of its vaccine candidate, DPX-COVID-19, for the prevention of COVID-19 infection caused by the novel coronavirus SARS-COV-2.
[IMV, Inc.]
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Single-Cell Analysis of Two Severe COVID-19 Patients Reveals a Monocyte-Associated and Tocilizumab-Responding Cytokine Storm

By employing single-cell analysis of the immune cell composition of two severe-stage COVID-19 patients prior to and following tocilizumab-induced remission, investigators identified a monocyte subpopulation that contributes to the inflammatory cytokine storms.
[Nature Communications]
Guo, C., Li, B., Ma, H., Wang, X., Cai, P., Yu, Q., Zhu, L., Jin, L., Jiang, C., Fang, J., Liu, Q., Zong, D., Zhang, W., Lu, Y., Li, K., Gao, X., Fu, B., Liu, L., Ma, X., … Qu, K. (2020). Single-cell analysis of two severe COVID-19 patients reveals a monocyte-associated and tocilizumab-responding cytokine storm. Nature Communications, 11(1), 3924. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41467-020-17834-w Cite
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Calidi Biotherapeutics Announces FDA Approval for COVID-19 Treatment Manufactured by Partner: Personalized Stem Cells

Calidi Biotherapeutics, Inc., announced that the Investigational New Drug application submitted by its partner, Personalized Stem Cells, Inc. They have received FDA approval for the treatment of COVID-19 and pneumonia patients using stem cell therapy.
[Calidi Biotherapeutics, Inc.]
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Interplay between SARS-CoV-2 and the Type I Interferon Response

Scientists describe our current knowledge of the complex interplay between SARS-CoV-2 infection and the IFN system, highlighting some of the gaps that need to be filled for a better understanding of the underlying molecular mechanisms.
[PLoS Pathogens]
Ribero, M. S., Jouvenet, N., Dreux, M., & Nisole, S. (2020). Interplay between SARS-CoV-2 and the type I interferon response. PLOS Pathogens, 16(7), e1008737. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.ppat.1008737 Cite
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COVID-19 Vaccine Guidelines

With multiple COVID-19 vaccines in and approaching Phase III trials, the FDA has released development and licensure guidelines for these products. The 21-page guidelines detail agency recommendations on everything from manufacturing and preclinical data considerations to trial design, efficacy considerations and post-licensure safety.
[Nature Reviews Drug Discovery]
Mullard, A. (2020). COVID-19 vaccine guidelines. Nature Reviews Drug Discovery. https://doi.org/10.1038/d41573-020-00142-9 Cite
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Safety and COVID-19 Symptoms in Individuals Recently Vaccinated with BCG: A Retrospective Cohort Study

To investigate the safety of Bacille Calmette-Guérin (BCG) vaccination, scientists retrospectively assessed COVID-19 and related symptoms in three cohorts of healthy volunteers who either received BCG in the last five years or not.
[Cell Reports Medicine]
Moorlag, S. J. C. F. M., Deuren, R. C. van, Werkhoven, C. H. van, Jaeger, M., Debisarun, P., Taks, E., Mourits, V. P., Koeken, V. A. C. M., Bree, L. C. J. de, Doesschate, T. ten, Cleophas, M. C., Smeekens, S., Oosting, M., Veerdonk, F. L. van de, Joosten, L. A. B., Oever, J. ten, Meer, J. W. M. van der, Curtis, N., Aaby, P., … Netea, M. G. (2020). Safety and COVID-19 symptoms in individuals recently vaccinated with BCG: a retrospective cohort study. Cell Reports Medicine, 0(0). https://doi.org/10.1016/j.xcrm.2020.100073 Cite
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Systems-Level Immunomonitoring from Acute to Recovery Phase of Severe COVID-19

Scientists report on a systems-level blood immunomonitoring study of 37 adult patients diagnosed with COVID-19 and followed with up to 14 blood samples from acute to recovery phases of the disease.
[Cell Reports Medicine]
Rodriguez, L., Pekkarinen, P. T., Lakshmikanth, T., Tan, Z., Consiglio, C. R., Pou, C., Chen, Y., Mugabo, C. H., Nguyen, N. A., Nowlan, K., Strandin, T., Levanov, L., Mikes, J., Wang, J., Kantele, A., Hepojoki, J., Vapalahti, O., Heinonen, S., Kekäläinen, E., & Brodin, P. (2020). Systems-level immunomonitoring from acute to recovery phase of severe COVID-19. Cell Reports Medicine, 0(0). https://doi.org/10.1016/j.xcrm.2020.100078 Cite
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Selective and Cross-Reactive SARS-CoV-2 T Cell Epitopes in Unexposed Humans

Using human blood samples derived before the SARS-CoV-2 virus was discovered in 2019, the authors mapped 142 T cell epitopes across the SARS-CoV-2 genome to facilitate precise interrogation of the SARS-CoV-2-specific CD4+ T cell repertoire.
[Science]
Mateus, J., Grifoni, A., Tarke, A., Sidney, J., Ramirez, S. I., Dan, J. M., Burger, Z. C., Rawlings, S. A., Smith, D. M., Phillips, E., Mallal, S., Lammers, M., Rubiro, P., Quiambao, L., Sutherland, A., Yu, E. D., Antunes, R. da S., Greenbaum, J., Frazier, A., … Weiskopf, D. (2020). Selective and cross-reactive SARS-CoV-2 T cell epitopes in unexposed humans. Science. https://doi.org/10.1126/science.abd3871 Cite
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Pfizer and BioNTech Choose Lead mRNA Vaccine Candidate Against COVID-19 and Commence Pivotal Phase II/III Global Study

Pfizer, Inc. and BioNTech SE announced an agreement with the Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfarein Japan to supply 120 million doses of BNT162 mRNA-based vaccine candidate against SARS-CoV-2, subject to clinical success and regulatory approval, beginning in 2021.
[Pfizer, Inc. ]
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SARS-CoV-2 Can Infect the Placenta and Is Not Associated with Specific Placental Histopathology: A Series of 19 Placentas from COVID-19-Positive Mothers

Researchers examined 19 COVID-19 exposed placentas for histopathologic findings, and for expression of ACE2, and TMPRSS2 by immunohistochemistry.
[Modern Pathology]
Hecht, J. L., Quade, B., Deshpande, V., Mino-Kenudson, M., Ting, D. T., Desai, N., Dygulska, B., Heyman, T., Salafia, C., Shen, D., Bates, S. V., & Roberts, D. J. (2020). SARS-CoV-2 can infect the placenta and is not associated with specific placental histopathology: a series of 19 placentas from COVID-19-positive mothers. Modern Pathology, 1–12. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41379-020-0639-4 Cite
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