A collection of articles related to coronaviruses that have been authored by researchers at Temple University.

Recent Submissions

  • Coping with COVID-19: An explor VID-19: An exploratory mixed-methods inv ed-methods investigation of the estigation of the impact of John Henryism on urban college students’ engagement in schoolwork

    Institute on Disabilities (Temple University) (2022-07-05)
    The current study examined how COVID-19 impacted urban college students’ engagement in their schoolwork and whether John Henryism mediated the relationship among demographic variables and engagement. Results demonstrated that John Henryism is a significant predictor of all three engagement outcomes (absorption, dedication, and vigor) and mediated the relationship between historically underrepresented students (Black and Latinx) and their vigor for engaging in schoolwork. Three themes emerged from the qualitative analysis: intrapersonal, interpersonal, and contextual challenges. This study adds another dimension to the coping strategies urban college students are using to stay engaged in their schoolwork during the pandemic.
  • The SARS-CoV-2 spike protein binds and modulates estrogen receptors

    Sbarro Health Research Organization (SHRO) (2022-11-30)
    The severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) spike (S) protein binds angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 as its primary infection mechanism. Interactions between S and endogenous proteins occur after infection but are not well understood. We profiled binding of S against >9000 human proteins and found an interaction between S and human estrogen receptor α (ERα). Using bioinformatics, supercomputing, and experimental assays, we identified a highly conserved and functional nuclear receptor coregulator (NRC) LXD-like motif on the S2 subunit. In cultured cells, S DNA transfection increased ERα cytoplasmic accumulation, and S treatment induced ER-dependent biological effects. Non-invasive imaging in SARS-CoV-2–infected hamsters localized lung pathology with increased ERα lung levels. Postmortem lung experiments from infected hamsters and humans confirmed an increase in cytoplasmic ERα and its colocalization with S in alveolar macrophages. These findings describe the discovery of a S-ERα interaction, imply a role for S as an NRC, and advance knowledge of SARS-CoV-2 biology and coronavirus disease 2019 pathology.
  • How have Japanese primary care physicians carried out vaccinations against COVID-19? : Attempts at making the non-scalable ‘scalable’

    Kimura, Shuhei; Horiguchi, Sachiko; Goto, Ryohei; Iida, Junko; Ozone, Sachiko; Kaneko, Makoto; Teruyama, Junko; Hama, Yusuke; Haruta, Junji; Miyachi, Junichiro (2022-11-08)
    Vaccine rollouts have been underway to combat the COVID-19 pandemic globally. Based on ongoing interviews with ten primary care physicians ‘in the field’, this paper elucidates how in practice the vaccinations were carried out in Japan in 2021 from a cultural anthropological perspective. We examine what the primary care physicians did to prepare for the rollouts, what problems they faced, and how they responded to these problems. Large-scale vaccination projects are supposed to proceed smoothly and quickly, or to have what Anna Tsing calls ‘scalability’. In practice, however, they required a variety of tasks for coordination, information sharing, and promotion. Despite feeling stressed by the lack of information and exhausted by the work overload, the primary care physicians carried out the vaccinations as an important service to their patients and communities. The findings of this paper will provide valuable materials for improving future vaccine rollouts.
  • Antineutrophil Cytoplasmic Autoantibody-Associated Glomerulonephritis as a Possible Side Effect of COVID-19 Vaccination

    Temple University. Hospital (2022-10-21)
    Vaccination is the principal tool aimed at curbing the COVID-19 pandemic that has, so far, affected tens of millions of individuals in the United States. The two available mRNA vaccines developed by Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna possess high efficacy in preventing infection and illness severity. However, there are multiple side effects associated with these vaccines, some impacting different organs. Renal pathology is variable, with increasing cases of glomerulonephritis being observed. We report a rare acute kidney injury case due to antineutrophil cytoplasmic autoantibody (ANCA)-mediated glomerulonephritis after administering a second dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech mRNA SARS-CoV-2 vaccine. Aggravation and/or development of autoimmunity after mRNA vaccination may involve multiple immune mechanisms leading to de novo and recurrent glomerular diseases with an autoimmune basis.
  • A case of COVID-19 induced descending aortic thrombus and splenic infarctions

    Temple Health (Temple University) (2022-09-09)
    Thromboembolic manifestations like pulmonary embolism and deep venous thrombosis are often reported and contribute to a significant mortality from acute and chronic COVID-19 infections. These phenomena are a result of the activation of the coagulation cascade by the COVID-19 induced inflammatory state. Majority of the thrombotic incidences are reported as a venous thrombosis but extremely rarely, arterial thrombi can be a manifestation of acute COVID-19 infection. The patient in our case report was an unvaccinated 47-year-old female who presented with fever, nausea, abdominal pain and vomiting. The imaging confirmed the presence of a non-occlusive thrombus in the descending aorta, multiple splenic infarctions and paralytic ileus. She was treated with systemic anti-coagulation. A hyper-coagulable workup was performed on the patient and no other risk factors that could contribute to a thrombus was identified.
  • The In Vitro Virucidal Effects of Mouthwashes on SARS-CoV-2

    Ting, Miriam; Suzuki, Jon B. (2022-07-31)
    Oral antiseptic mouthwashes have been widely used for their antibacterial activity. As a result of the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic, the antiviral properties of these oral antiseptics have been aggressively studied. To demonstrate the direct antiviral activity of mouthwashes against SARS-CoV-2, this review will focus on the in vitro virucidal effects of these mouthwashes. Knowledge of the type, concentration, and exposure time of available mouthwashes can provide insights into effective protocols for their clinical use. With an understanding of the characteristics of each oral antiseptic mouthwash, proper mouthwash selection against SARS-CoV-2 may become a useful adjunct to personal protective equipment.
  • Unified in Our Diversity to Address Health Disparities Among Asian Americans, Native Hawaiians, and Pacific Islanders

    Center for Asian Health (Temple University); Fox Chase Cancer Center (Temple University) (2022-07-20)
    The COVID-19 pandemic disproportionately impacted Asian Americans, Native Hawaiians, and Pacific Islanders (AA/NHPIs) in the United States. AA/NHPIs have historically been subjected to discrimination, which was exacerbated by the pandemic. To bring attention to their unique concerns, an AA/NHPI Interest Group of the National Institutes of Health Community Engagement Alliance Against COVID-19 Disparities (CEAL) was formed. This article highlights major concerns raised by the Interest Group: The pervasive and arbitrary practice of data aggregation by public health agencies and health-related researchers, the lack of culturally responsive services in the context of cultural safety, and leadership underrepresentation.
  • Clinical Characteristics and Outcomes of COVID-19 Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome (ARDS) Survivors in Early Pandemic: A Single Healthcare System Retrospective Study

    Temple University. Hospital (2022-07-13)
    Introduction: Acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) management in the intensive care unit (ICU) has attracted strong interest since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. Our retrospective study aims to describe the outcomes and predictors of mortality of ARDS associated with COVID-19 within one university-based healthcare system. Methods: We identified 165 patients within our healthcare system during the months of April 2020 through July 2020, who were admitted to our medical ICUs and eligible for our study. Baseline patient characteristics, ICU and hospital course information, ICU interventions, ventilator settings, and hospital complications were collected and analyzed using descriptive statistical techniques. Results: Our cohort had an average age of 64. No significant difference in mortality was identified with male vs. female gender or BMI. Most of the patient cohort was identified as black (68.2%). The overall mortality of our cohort was 38.2%. Hyperlipidemia, coronary artery disease, and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease were all associated with higher mortality. There was a significant difference in mortality between those with higher observed ventilator plateau pressures at 24 hours and higher driving pressures at 24 hours. Conclusion: COVID-19-associated ARDS is associated with significant mortality. Physicians should be aware of pre-existing conditions potentially related to worse outcomes so that they receive an appropriate level of care in a timely manner. Ventilator management should focus on maintaining low intra-thoracic pressure changes. Prospective studies are needed to guide COVID-19-associated ARDS management.
  • COVID-19 Outcomes Stratified by Control Status of Hypertension and Diabetes: Preliminary Findings From PCORnet, U.S.

    Jackson, Sandra L.; Block, Jason P.; Rolka, Deborah B.; Pavkov, Meda E.; Chevinsky, Jennifer R.; Lekiachvili, Akaki; Carton, Thomas W.; Thacker, Deepika; Denson, Joshua L.; Paranjape, Anuradha; Kappelman, Michael D.; Boehmer, Tegan K.; Twentyman, Evelyn; Paranjape|0000-0003-3151-9932 (2022-08-09)
    Introduction: Hypertension and diabetes are associated with increased COVID-19 severity, yet less is known about COVID-19 outcomes across levels of disease control for these conditions. Methods: All adults aged ≥20 years with COVID-19 between March 1, 2020 and March 15, 2021 in 42 healthcare systems in National Patient-Centered Clinical Research Network were identified. Results: Among 656,049 adults with COVID-19, 41% had hypertension, and 13% had diabetes. Of patients with classifiable hypertension, 35% had blood pressure <130/80 mmHg, 40% had blood pressure of 130‒139/80‒89 mmHg, 21% had blood pressure of 140‒159/90‒99 mmHg, and 6% had blood pressure ≥160/100 mmHg. Severe COVID-19 outcomes were more prevalent among those with blood pressure of ≥160/100 than among those with blood pressure of 130–139/80–89, including hospitalization (23.7% [95% CI=23.0, 24.4] vs 11.7% [95% CI=11.5, 11.9]), receipt of critical care (5.5% [95% CI=5.0, 5.8] vs 2.4% [95% CI=2.3, 2.5]), receipt of mechanical ventilation (3.0% [95% CI=2.7, 3.3] vs 1.2% [95% CI=1.1, 1.3]), and 60-day mortality (4.6% [95% CI=4.2, 4.9] vs 1.8% [95% CI=1.7, 1.9]). Of patients with classifiable diabetes, 44% had HbA1c <7%, 35% had HbA1c 7% to <9%, and 21% had HbA1c ≥9%. Hospitalization prevalence was 31.3% (95% CI=30.7, 31.9) among those with HbA1c <7% vs 40.2% (95% CI=39.4, 41.1) among those with HbA1c ≥9%; other outcomes did not differ substantially by HbA1c. Conclusions: These findings highlight the importance of appropriate management of hypertension and diabetes, including during public health emergencies such as the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • Virtual Adaptation of an International Exchange Program in Medical Education

    Fung, Celia; Maxwell, Nicholas; Powell, Stephen; Benassai, Michelle; Chunga, Natalia; Corcoran, Jennifer; Barbosa, William; Lopez, Marisabel; Hanampa, Betsy; Llaiqui-Condori, Melissa; Delgado-Lazo, Victor; Mendoza, Karina; Astete, Yanet; Flor, Martin; Palacios, Sheyla; Valdovinos, Blanca; Risco, Jorge; Camargo, Isabel; Jozefowicz, Ralph; Lizárraga, Karlo J. (2022-07-08)
    Medical education has drastically transformed during the COVID-19 pandemic. Measures such as adopting telemedicine visits, minimizing the number of trainees on service, discontinuing external rotations, and converting in-person to online didactics have been broadly and swiftly implemented. While these innovations have promoted greater interconnectivity amongst institutions and made continuing medical education possible, international exchange programs in medical education are still largely disrupted. In response to the changing guidelines and restrictions necessitated by the COVID-19 pandemic, the authors used Kern’s six-step approach to design and implement a virtual curriculum to replace the in-person activities of the 2020–2021 Neurology Peru-Rochester exchange program (NeuroPro). Twenty-seven trainees participated in this virtual adaptation. The average daily attendance was ≥85% and the program was rated 9/10 on average in a feedback survey (63% response rate). The median percentage of correct answers during the pre-test was 64% and it increased to 79% during the post-test (P = 0.003). Virtual adaptation of international exchange programs in medical education is feasible to safely continue international collaborative efforts to promote symbiotic building of local expertise and cross-cultural exchange during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and beyond.
  • Gastrointestinal symptoms in patients hospitalized with COVID-19: Prevalence and outcomes

    Temple University. Hospital (2022-06-24)
    To characterize outcomes in patients hospitalized with coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) who present with gastrointestinal (GI) symptoms. Clinical outcomes in patients with COVID-19 associated with GI symptoms have been inconsistent in the literature. The study design is a retrospective analysis of patients, age 18 years or older, admitted to the hospital after testing positive for COVID-19. Clinical outcomes included intensive care unit requirements, rates of discharges to home, rates of discharges to outside facilities, and mortality. Seven hundred fifty patients met the inclusion criteria. Three hundred seventy three (49.7%) patients presented with at least one GI symptom and 377 (50.3%) patients presented with solely non-GI symptoms. Patients who presented with at least one GI symptom had significantly lower ICU requirements (17.4% vs 20.2%), higher rates of discharges home (77.2% vs 67.4%), lower rates of discharges to other facilities (16.4% vs 22.8%), and decreased mortality (6.4% vs 9.8%) compared with patients with non-GI symptoms. However, patients who presented with solely GI symptoms had significantly higher ICU requirements (23.8% vs 17.0%), lower rates of discharges home (52.4% vs 78.7%), higher rates of discharges to facilities (28.6% vs 15.6%), and higher mortality (19.0% vs 5.7%) compared with those with mixed GI and non-GI symptoms. Although patients with COVID-19 requiring hospitalization with GI symptoms did better than those without GI symptoms, those with isolated GI symptoms without extra-GI symptoms had worse clinical outcomes. COVID-19 should be considered in patients who present with new onset or worsening diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, and abdominal pain even without pulmonary symptoms.
  • Is the COVID-19 Pandemic Over? The Current Status of Boosters, Immunosenescence, Long Haul COVID, and Systemic Complications

    Ting, Miriam; Suzuki, Jon B. (2022-06-16)
    The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic, caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), appears to be diminishing in infectivity and hospitalizations in the United States and many parts of the world. This review will provide current information on the pathogenesis of SARS-CoV-2 and long haul COVID, emerging research on systemic complications, and antibody responses of vaccines and boosters.
  • Susceptibility of SARS-CoV-2 Omicron Variants to Therapeutic Monoclonal Antibodies: Systematic Review and Meta-analysis

    Institute for Genomics and Evolutionary Medicine (iGEM) (Temple University) (2022-06-14)
    SARS-CoV-2 Omicron variants contain many mutations in its spike receptor-binding domain, the target of all authorized monoclonal antibodies (MAbs). Determining the extent to which Omicron variants reduced MAb susceptibility is critical to preventing and treating COVID-19. We systematically reviewed PubMed and three preprint servers, last updated 11 April 2022, for the in vitro activity of authorized MAbs against the Omicron variants. Fifty-one studies were eligible, including 50 containing Omicron BA.1 susceptibility data and 17 containing Omicron BA.2 susceptibility data. The first two authorized MAb combinations, bamlanivimab/etesevimab and casirivimab/imdevimab, were largely inactive against the Omicron BA.1 and BA.2 variants. In 34 studies, sotrovimab displayed a median 4.0-fold (interquartile range [IQR]: 2.6 to 6.9) reduction in activity against Omicron BA.1, and in 12 studies, it displayed a median 17-fold (IQR: 13 to 30) reduction in activity against Omicron BA.2. In 15 studies, the combination cilgavimab/tixagevimab displayed a median 86-fold (IQR: 27 to 151) reduction in activity against Omicron BA.1, and in six studies, it displayed a median 5.4-fold (IQR: 3.7 to 6.9) reduction in activity against Omicron BA.2. In eight studies against Omicron BA.1 and six studies against Omicron BA.2, bebtelovimab displayed no reduction in activity. Disparate results between assays were common. For authorized MAbs, 51/268 (19.0%) results for wild-type control variants and 78/348 (22.4%) results for Omicron BA.1 and BA.2 variants were more than 4-fold below or 4-fold above the median result for that MAb. Highly disparate results between published assays indicate a need for improved MAb susceptibility test standardization or interassay calibration. IMPORTANCE: Monoclonal antibodies (MAbs) targeting the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein are among the most effective measures for preventing and treating COVID-19. However, SARS-CoV-2 Omicron variants contain many mutations in their spike receptor-binding domains, the target of all authorized MAbs. Therefore, determining the extent to which Omicron variants reduced MAb susceptibility is critical to preventing and treating COVID-19. We identified 51 studies that reported the in vitro susceptibility of the two main Omicron variants BA.1 and BA.2 to therapeutic MAbs in advanced clinical development, including eight authorized individual MAbs and three authorized MAb combinations. We estimated the degree to which different MAbs displayed reduced activity against Omicron variants. The marked loss of activity of many MAbs against Omicron variants underscores the importance of developing MAbs that target conserved regions of spike. Highly disparate results between assays indicate the need for improved MAb susceptibility test standardization.
  • A Perspective on Implementation Outcomes and Strategies to Promote the Uptake of COVID-19 Vaccines

    Pilar, Meagan; Elwy, A. Rani; Lushiniak, Larissa; Huang, Grace; McLoughlin, Gabriella; Hooley, Cole; Nadesan-Reddy, Nisha; Sandler, Brittney; Moshabela, Mosa; Alonge, Olakunle; Geng, Elvin; Proctor, Enola; McLoughlin|0000-0002-7731-2382 (2022-05-20)
    Recent articles have highlighted the importance of incorporating implementation science concepts into pandemic-related research. However, limited research has been documented to date regarding implementation outcomes that may be unique to COVID-19 vaccinations and how to utilize implementation strategies to address vaccine program-related implementation challenges. To address these gaps, we formed a global COVID-19 implementation workgroup of implementation scientists who met weekly for over a year to review the available literature and learn about ongoing research during the pandemic. We developed a hierarchy to prioritize the applicability of “lessons learned” from the vaccination-related implementation literature. We identified applications of existing implementation outcomes as well as identified additional implementation outcomes. We also mapped implementation strategies to those outcomes. Our efforts provide rationale for the utility of using implementation outcomes in pandemic-related research. Furthermore, we identified three additional implementation outcomes: availability, health equity, and scale-up. Results include a list of COVID-19 relevant implementation strategies mapped to the implementation outcomes.
  • Vitamin D: The Missing Nutrient Behind the Two Deadly Pandemics, COVID-19 and Cardiovascular Diseases

    Temple University. Hospital (2022-04-14)
    The coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic is claiming millions of lives and creating an additional burden on health care, which is already affected by the rise of non-communicable diseases (NCDs). The scientific community, on the other side, is enormously engaged with studies to best identify the characteristics of the virus and minimize its effect while supporting the fight to contain NCDs, mainly cardiovascular diseases (CVDs), which are contributing hugely to the global death toll. Hence, the roles of vitamin D in COVID-19 immunity and cardiovascular health are gaining traction recently. This literature review will mainly focus on summarizing pertinent studies and scientific publications which highlight the association of vitamin D levels with the various outcomes of COVID-19 and CVDs. It will also address how low vitamin D correlates with the epidemiology of CVDs and the inflammatory mechanisms attributed to COVID-19 severity. We believe that our review may open up hindsight perspectives and further discussions among the physicians in tapping the potential of vitamin D supplementation to tackle the morbidity, mortality, and health care cost of the two deadly diseases, COVID-19 and CVDs.
  • A Cohort Study on the Immunogenicity and Safety of the Inactivated SARS-CoV-2 Vaccine (BBIBP-CorV) in Patients With Breast Cancer; Does Trastuzumab Interfere With the Outcome?

    Center for Inflammation and Lung Research (Temple University) (2022-03-01)
    Aim: To determine the efficacy and safety of inactivated SARS-CoV-2 vaccine (BBIBP-CorV) in patients with breast cancer. Methods: In this multi- institutional cohort study, a total of 160 breast cancer patients (mean age of 50.01 ± 11.5 years old) were assessed for the SARS-CoV-2 Anti-Spike IgG and SARS-CoV2 Anti RBD IgG by ELISA after two doses of 0.5 mL inactivated, COVID-19 vaccine (BBIBP-CorV). All patients were followed up for three months for clinical COVID-19 infection based on either PCR results or imaging findings. Common Terminology Criteria for Adverse Events were used to assess the side effects. Results: The presence of SARS-CoV-2 anti-spike IgG, SARS-CoV2 anti-RBD IgG, or either of these antibodies was 85.7%, 87.4%, and 93.3%. The prevalence of COVID-19 infection after vaccination was 0.7%, 0% and 0% for the first, second and third months of the follow-up period. The most common local and systemic side-effects were injection site pain and fever which were presented in 22.3% and 24.3% of patients, respectively. Discussion: The inactivated SARS-CoV-2 vaccine (BBIBP-CorV) is a tolerable and effective method to prevent COVID-19.
  • Coronavirus Resistance Database (CoV-RDB): SARS-CoV-2 susceptibility to monoclonal antibodies, convalescent plasma, and plasma from vaccinated persons

    Institute for Genomics and Evolutionary Medicine (iGEM) (Temple University) (2022-03-09)
    As novel SARS-CoV-2 variants with different patterns of spike protein mutations have emerged, the susceptibility of these variants to neutralization by antibodies has been rapidly assessed. However, neutralization data are generated using different approaches and are scattered across different publications making it difficult for these data to be located and synthesized. The Stanford Coronavirus Resistance Database (CoV-RDB; https://covdb.stanford.edu) is designed to house comprehensively curated published data on the neutralizing susceptibility of SARS-CoV-2 variants and spike mutations to monoclonal antibodies (mAbs), convalescent plasma (CP), and vaccinee plasma (VP). As of December 31, 2021, CoV-RDB encompassed 257 publications including 91 (35%) containing 9,070 neutralizing mAb susceptibility results, 131 (51%) containing 16,773 neutralizing CP susceptibility results, and 178 (69%) containing 33,540 neutralizing VP results. The database also records which spike mutations are selected during in vitro passage of SARS-CoV-2 in the presence of mAbs and which emerge in persons receiving mAbs as treatment. The CoV-RDB interface interactively displays neutralizing susceptibility data at different levels of granularity by filtering and/or aggregating query results according to one or more experimental conditions. The CoV-RDB website provides a companion sequence analysis program that outputs information about mutations present in a submitted sequence and that also assists users in determining the appropriate mutation-detection thresholds for identifying non-consensus amino acids. The most recent data underlying the CoV-RDB can be downloaded in its entirety from a GitHub repository in a documented machine-readable format.
  • Waiting for the truth: is reluctance in accepting an early origin hypothesis for SARS-CoV-2 delaying our understanding of viral emergence?

    Institute for Genomics and Evolutionary Medicine (iGEM) (Temple University) (2022-03-16)
    Two years after the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, key questions about the emergence of its aetiological agent (SARS-CoV-2) remain a matter of considerable debate. Identifying when SARS-CoV-2 began spreading among people is one of those questions. Although the current canonically accepted timeline hypothesises viral emergence in Wuhan, China, in November or December 2019, a growing body of diverse studies provides evidence that the virus may have been spreading worldwide weeks, or even months, prior to that time. However, the hypothesis of earlier SARS-CoV-2 circulation is often dismissed with prejudicial scepticism and experimental studies pointing to early origins are frequently and speculatively attributed to false-positive tests. In this paper, we critically review current evidence that SARS-CoV-2 had been circulating prior to December of 2019, and emphasise how, despite some scientific limitations, this hypothesis should no longer be ignored and considered sufficient to warrant further larger-scale studies to determine its veracity.
  • Aorta in Pathologies May Function as an Immune Organ by Upregulating Secretomes for Immune and Vascular Cell Activation, Differentiation and Trans-Differentiation—Early Secretomes may Serve as Drivers for Trained Immunity

    Cardiovascular Research Center (Temple University); Center for Metabolic Disease Research (Temple University); Sol Sherry Thrombosis Research Center (Temple University) (2022-03-07)
    To determine whether aorta becomes immune organ in pathologies, we performed transcriptomic analyses of six types of secretomic genes (SGs) in aorta and vascular cells and made the following findings: 1) 53.7% out of 21,306 human protein genes are classified into six secretomes, namely, canonical, caspase 1, caspase 4, exosome, Weibel–Palade body, and autophagy; 2) Atherosclerosis (AS), chronic kidney disease (CKD) and abdominal aortic aneurysm (AAA) modulate six secretomes in aortas; and Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus (MERS-CoV, COVID-19 homologous) infected endothelial cells (ECs) and angiotensin-II (Ang-II) treated vascular smooth muscle cells (VSMCs) modulate six secretomes; 3) AS aortas upregulate T and B cell immune SGs; CKD aortas upregulate SGs for cardiac hypertrophy, and hepatic fibrosis; and AAA aorta upregulate SGs for neuromuscular signaling and protein catabolism; 4) Ang-II induced AAA, canonical, caspase 4, and exosome SGs have two expression peaks of high (day 7)-low (day 14)-high (day 28) patterns; 5) Elastase induced AAA aortas have more inflammatory/immune pathways than that of Ang-II induced AAA aortas; 6) Most disease-upregulated cytokines in aorta may be secreted via canonical and exosome secretomes; 7) Canonical and caspase 1 SGs play roles at early MERS-CoV infected ECs whereas caspase 4 and exosome SGs play roles in late/chronic phases; and the early upregulated canonical and caspase 1 SGs may function as drivers for trained immunity (innate immune memory); 8) Venous ECs from arteriovenous fistula (AVF) upregulate SGs in five secretomes; and 9) Increased some of 101 trained immunity genes and decreased trained tolerance regulator IRG1 participate in upregulations of SGs in atherosclerotic, Ang-II induced AAA and CKD aortas, and MERS-CoV infected ECs, but less in SGs upregulated in AVF ECs. IL-1 family cytokines, HIF1α, SET7 and mTOR, ROS regulators NRF2 and NOX2 partially regulate trained immunity genes; and NRF2 plays roles in downregulating SGs more than that of NOX2 in upregulating SGs. These results provide novel insights on the roles of aorta as immune organ in upregulating secretomes and driving immune and vascular cell differentiations in COVID-19, cardiovascular diseases, inflammations, transplantations, autoimmune diseases and cancers.
  • Staying active after rehab: Physical activity perspectives with a spinal cord injury beyond functional gains

    Baehr, Laura A.; Kaimal, Girija; Hiremath, Shivayogi; Trost, Zina; Finley, Margaret; Hiremath|0000-0002-9708-1411 (2022-03-23)
    Lifestyle physical activity following spinal cord injury (SCI) is critical for functional independence, mental wellness, and social participation, yet nearly 50% of individuals with SCI report no regular exercise. The objective of this study was to better understand factors leading to this participation gap by capturing the physical activity perspectives of individuals living with SCI. We completed small group interviews with nine individuals living with SCI across the United States. Iterative thematic analysis systematically revealed meaningful core concepts related to physical activity engagement with SCI. Emergent themes revealed challenges to lifestyle physical activity behavior including gaps in physical activity education, isolation during psychological adjustment, and knowledge limitations in community exercise settings. A secondary theme related to the COVID-19 pandemic emerged, highlighting additional environmental constraints affecting participation. Our findings suggest that most physical activity education is delivered during inpatient rehabilitation and is related to physical function. Lifetime physical activity strategies are achieved through self-education and peer networking. Personal motivators for physical activity include secondary condition prevention, while social and emotional barriers prevent regular adherence. These findings can inform the development and delivery of physical activity programs to maximize physical activity engagement in individuals living with chronic SCI.

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