Inhibition of PIKfyve Kinase Prevents Infection by Zaire Ebolavirus and SARS-CoV-2

Scientists describe potent inhibitory effects on content release and infection by chimeric vesicular stomatitis virus containing the envelope proteins of Zaire ebolavirus or SARS-CoV-2 elicited by Apilimod and Vacuolin-1, small-molecule inhibitors of the main endosomal phosphatidylinositol-3-phosphate/phosphatidylinositol 5-kinase, PIKfyve.
[Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America]
Kang, Y.-L., Chou, Y., Rothlauf, P. W., Liu, Z., Soh, T. K., Cureton, D., Case, J. B., Chen, R. E., Diamond, M. S., Whelan, S. P. J., & Kirchhausen, T. (2020). Inhibition of PIKfyve kinase prevents infection by Zaire ebolavirus and SARS-CoV-2. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. https://doi.org/10.1073/pnas.2007837117 Cite
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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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Morphogenesis and Cytopathic Effect of SARS-CoV-2 Infection in Human Airway Epithelial Cells

Investigators characterized the replication dynamics, cell tropism and morphogenesis of SARS-CoV-2 in organotypic human airway epithelial cultures (HAE). SARS-CoV-2 replicated efficiently and infected both ciliated and secretory cells in HAE cultures.
[Nature Communications]
Zhu, N., Wang, W., Liu, Z., Liang, C., Wang, W., Ye, F., Huang, B., Zhao, L., Wang, H., Zhou, W., Deng, Y., Mao, L., Su, C., Qiang, G., Jiang, T., Zhao, J., Wu, G., Song, J., & Tan, W. (2020). Morphogenesis and cytopathic effect of SARS-CoV-2 infection in human airway epithelial cells. Nature Communications, 11(1), 3910. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41467-020-17796-z Cite
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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.]
Press Release

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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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Morphogenesis and Cytopathic Effect of SARS-CoV-2 Infection in Human Airway Epithelial Cells

Investigators characterize the replication dynamics, cell tropism and morphogenesis of SARS-CoV-2 in organotypic human airway epithelial cultures.
[Nature Communications]
Zhu, N., Wang, W., Liu, Z., Liang, C., Wang, W., Ye, F., Huang, B., Zhao, L., Wang, H., Zhou, W., Deng, Y., Mao, L., Su, C., Qiang, G., Jiang, T., Zhao, J., Wu, G., Song, J., & Tan, W. (2020). Morphogenesis and cytopathic effect of SARS-CoV-2 infection in human airway epithelial cells. Nature Communications, 11(1), 3910. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41467-020-17796-z Cite
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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
Abstract

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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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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. ]
Press Release

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Structural and Functional Properties of SARS-CoV-2 Spike Protein: Potential Antivirus Drug Development for COVID-19

The authors highlight recent research advance in the structure, function and development of antivirus drugs targeting the spike protein.
[Acta Pharmacologica Sinica]
Huang, Y., Yang, C., Xu, X., Xu, W., & Liu, S. (2020). Structural and functional properties of SARS-CoV-2 spike protein: potential antivirus drug development for COVID-19. Acta Pharmacologica Sinica, 1–9. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41401-020-0485-4 Cite
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