Vipin M. Vashishtha Profile picture
Pediatrician, ‘rational’ vaccine thinker, Editor Covid Vaccines, TB on Vaccines & many others, Past-Convener IAP COI, Member-WHO-VSN (https://t.co/eOvazlWULO)
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Apr 19 19 tweets 6 min read
Researchers find the regulatory mechanism of a specific protein that plays a key role in balancing immune response triggered by viral infections in cells. These findings could help drive development of antiviral therapies & nucleic acid medicines to treat genetic disorders. 1/ Image For cells to protect themselves from viral infections, a series of immune responses typically occur, including programmed cell death called apoptosis and interferon signaling. 2/ Image
Apr 18 11 tweets 3 min read
What is the long-term trajectory of #LongCovid (LC) symptoms and the degree of recovery over time?
Furthermore, little is currently known about how immuno-pathological measures correlate with improvements in quality of life 1/ Image A new study provides comprehensive evidence that the majority of measures of immunological dysfunction in people with LongCovid LC have resolved by 2-years in the majority (62%) of people with LC. 2/ Image
Apr 17 8 tweets 3 min read
New study shows that lungs of older people are less susceptible to SARS-CoV-2 & Flu virus replication compared to lungs of younger people.
In contrast to SARS-CoV-2, flu viruses replicated more efficiently in human alveolar cells leading to stronger innate immune responses 1/ Image These findings indicate that the elderly are not more susceptible to respiratory virus infection than young people as a rational of elevated risk for severe disease by local viral replication only, but points towards other mechanism such as immune-mediated pathogenesis. 2/ Image
Apr 15 8 tweets 3 min read
A new research reveals how the type of cells we have in our nose changes with age, and how this affects our ability to combat SARS-CoV-2 infection.

This could be crucial in developing effective anti-viral treatments tailored to different age groups. 1/
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Differences in how young and elderly people’s nasal cells respond to the SARS-CoV-2 virus may explain why children typically experience milder COVID-19 symptoms. 2/
Apr 13 9 tweets 3 min read
A new study on non-human primates (NHPs) finds that SARS-CoV-2 infection can lead to various levels of pancreatic impairment and dysfunctions of glucose metabolism, especially in elder NHP models. SARS-CoV-2 directly infects the pancreatic islets of NHPs 1/ Image There are associations between COVID-19 infections or vaccines and dysfunction of glucose metabolism including an even higher risk of the occurrence of diabetes.
The relationship between COVID-19 and diabetes is complicated and bidirectional. 2/ Image
Apr 12 18 tweets 4 min read
A new research finds a direct correlation between HDL Cholesterol (HDL-C) & ferritin levels and the severity of #LongCOVID. The decline in HDL-C levels & the rise in ferritin levels in patients could potentially play a role in persistence & progression of longCOVID symptoms 1/ Image The research findings suggest that HDL-C and ferritin levels could serve as crucial markers and therapeutic targets, opening new avenues for treatment strategies aimed at mitigating the long-term effects of the disease. 2/
Apr 11 11 tweets 3 min read
A new study provides the first evidence of SARS-CoV-2 ocular tropism via cells lining the blood-retinal barrier and that the virus can infect the retina via systemic permeation and induce retinal inflammation. 1/ Image The presence of viral RNA in corneal/conjunctival tissue and tears, along with the evidence of viral entry receptors on the ocular surface, has led to speculation that the eye may serve as a potential route of SARS-CoV-2 transmission. 2/ Image
Apr 10 26 tweets 7 min read
A new study finds that a previously overlooked type of immune cell, interstitial macrophage is the most susceptible cell to infection by SARS-CoV-2 that’s responsible for the critical transition from a merely bothersome COVID-19 case to a potentially deadly one! 1/ Image What’s more, the virus enters this susceptible cell via an unexpected route. SARS-CoV-2 was not using ACE2 to get into interstitial macrophages. It enters via another receptor called CD209.

The medical consequences may be significant. 2/ Image
Apr 10 16 tweets 4 min read
A new study finds that people with #LongCOVID have distinct patterns of inflammation detectable in the blood, which could potentially be targeted with immune therapies. The findings confirm that LongCOVID leads to ongoing inflammation which can be detected in the blood. 1/ Image In an analysis of >650 people who had been hospitalised with severe COVID, patients with prolonged symptoms showed evidence of immune system activation.
The exact pattern of this activation varied depending on the sort of symptoms they predominantly had 2/ Image
Apr 8 8 tweets 2 min read
Can a cup of tea keep COVID away?

A recent study demonstrates that certain teas inactivate SARS-CoV-2 in saliva.
Researchers demonstrate how certain teas inactivate SARS-CoV-2 in saliva—in some cases by up to 99.9%. 1/ Image This is important because the virus infects & replicates inside the oral cavity, passing through oropharynx before reaching lungs. Inactivating SARS-2 in the mouth & throat matters because that potentially reduces the introduction of the virus to the lower respiratory tract 2/ Image
Apr 6 5 tweets 2 min read
A new study confirms a strong association between #LongCOVID and cognitive impairment

The study found that the prevalence of longCOVID was 7.4% and cognitive impairment was 13.4% with both rates higher among women, aged 18-64 years. 1/ Image Researchers also find vaccine effectiveness of 3 or more doses of mRNA Covid vaccine vs <3 was 38% for longCOVID and 35% for cognitive impairment (CI). For CI, apparent vaccine effectiveness was similar for respondents with or without longCOVID 2/ Image
Apr 5 9 tweets 3 min read
How SARS-CoV-2 replicates once it enters the cells, has made surprising discoveries that could be the foundation for future antiviral therapies. It also has important implications as replication of the SARS-CoV-2 has, so far, received less attention from researchers. 1/ Image The viral life cycle can be broken down into 2 main stages: the 1st where the virus enters the cell, & 2nd is replication where the virus uses the molecular machinery of the cell to replicate itself by building its parts, assembling them into new viruses that can then exit 2/ Image
Apr 3 10 tweets 3 min read
Right- or left-handed?

Protein in embryo cells might help decide!
A new study finds that gene that codes for structural protein could determine the dominant side of the human brain. 1/ Image During the embryonic stage of human development, the left & right brain hemispheres get wired differently, which determines innate behaviours, such as where we lean when we hug someone, on which side of our mouth we tend to chew our food & which hand is our dominant one. 2/ Image
Apr 3 8 tweets 3 min read
A new study identified differential pathogenesis of SARS-CoV-2 infection in children versus adults. This is reflected by finding a significant number of genes that were differentially expressed in lung cells derived from children as compared to adults. 1/ Image The ability of SARS-CoV-2 to evade antiviral immune signaling in the airway contributes to the severity of COVID-19 disease.

Additionally, COVID-19 is influenced by age and has more severe presentations in older individuals. 2/ Image
Apr 2 10 tweets 3 min read
Mutations in the spike protein of SARS-CoV-2 can lead to successful escape from protective antibodies, and hence antigenic drift. 1/ Image Most of these spike mutations are known to occur in the RBD & N-terminal domain. In contrast, while human antibodies also target the conserved S2 domain, whether S2 mutations also contribute to SARS-CoV-2 antigenic drift remains largely elusive. 2/ Image
Apr 2 10 tweets 3 min read
There is a coevolutionary race between the human immune system & SARS-CoV-2, mirroring the ‘Red Queen hypothesis’ of evolutionary biology. The immune system generates neutralizing antibodies targeting the SARS2 spike’s RBD while virus evolves to evade antibody recognition. 1/ Image A new study establishes a synthetic coevolution system combining high-throughput screening of antibody and RBD variant libraries with protein mutagenesis, surface display, and deep sequencing. 2/ Image
Mar 29 14 tweets 3 min read
Why SARS-CoV-2 elicits mild symptoms at first but then, for a subset of patients, turn potentially fatal a week or so after infection? A recent study showed that distinct stages of illness correspond with the coronavirus acting differently in 2 different populations of cells 1/ Image The study’s findings may provide a roadmap for addressing cytokine storms and other excessive immune reactions that drive serious COVID-19. 2/ Image
Mar 27 8 tweets 3 min read
Studies have indicated that Spike of SARS-CoV-2 is involved in severe COVID-19, longCOVID or, recently, in adverse reactions to lipid nanoparticle-mRNA vaccines or other anti-COVID19 products. 1/
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Numerous mutations, notably within the Spike 1 (S1), prevent neutralization by antibodies, but more generally, the virus has developed numerous strategies to avoid immune system surveillance, especially type-I interferons (IFN-I). 2/ Image
Mar 22 43 tweets 13 min read
"Waning of immunity” became a buzzword not only in academia & industry but also among the lay public when it became clear that the protection conferred by COVID-19 vaccines is not as durable as offered by other vaccines like measles. 1/ Image While the measles vaccine can provide lifelong protection & antibodies can last >3000 yrs, the flu vaccine's protection comes to baseline within a few months! 2/
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Mar 21 9 tweets 3 min read
Advancing age is a major risk factor for respiratory viral infections including COVID-19. The infections are often prolonged and difficult to resolve resulting hospitalizations and mortality. 1/ Image The recent COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted this as elderly subjects have emerged as vulnerable populations that display increased susceptibility & severity to SARS-CoV-2. 2/ Image
Mar 14 7 tweets 2 min read
A new study used a wide range of surface samples to characterize SARS-CoV-2 RNA contamination in patients’ residences. They collected 2,233 surface samples from 21 categories of objects of COVID-19 patients in Shanghai when attacked by the omicron variant in spring 2022. 1/ Image Approximately 8.7% of the surface samples were tested positive for SARS-CoV-2 RNA. The basin, water tap, and sewer inlet had the highest positive rates, all exceeding 20%. 2/ Image