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Identification of SARS-CoV-2-specific immune alterations in acutely ill patients.

Abstract

Dysregulated immune profiles have been described in symptomatic SARS-CoV-2-infected patients. Whether the reported immune alterations are specific to SARS-CoV-2 infection or also triggered by other acute illnesses remains unclear. We performed flow cytometry analysis on fresh peripheral blood from a consecutive cohort of i) patients hospitalized with acute SARS-CoV-2 infection; ii) patients of comparable age/sex hospitalized for other acute disease (SARS-CoV-2 negative); and iii) healthy controls. Using both data-driven and hypothesis-driven analyses, we found several dysregulations in immune cell subsets (e.g., decreased proportion of T cells) that are similarly associated with acute SARS-CoV-2 infection and non-COVID-19 related acute illnesses. In contrast, we identified specific differences in myeloid and lymphocyte subsets that are associated with SARS-CoV-2 status (e.g., elevated proportion of ICAM-1+ mature/activated neutrophils, ALCAM+ monocytes, and CD38+CD8+ T cells). A subset of SARS-CoV-2-specific immune alterations correlated with disease severity, disease outcome at 30 days and mortality. Our data provide an understanding of the immune dysregulation that are specifically associated with SARS-CoV-2 infection among acute care hospitalized patients. Our study lays the foundation for the development of specific biomarkers to stratify SARS-CoV-2+ patients at risk of unfavorable outcome and uncover candidate molecules to investigate from a therapeutic perspective.

Authors: Rébillard RM, Charabati M, Grasmuck C, Filali-Mouhim A, Tastet O, Brassard N, Daigneault A, Bourbonnière L, Anand SP, Balthazard R, Beaudoin-Bussières G, Gasser R, Benlarbi M, Carmena Moratalla A, Carpentier Solorio Y, Boutin M, Farzam-Kia N, Descôteaux-D
Journal: J Clin Invest; 2021 Apr 15;131(8):145853 doi:10.1172/JCI145853
Year: 2021
PubMed: PMID: 33635833 (Go to PubMed)