Several COVID-19 convalescents suffer from the post-acute COVID-syndrome (PACS)/long COVID, with symptoms that include fatigue, dyspnea, pulmonary fibrosis, cognitive dysfunctions or even stroke. Given the scale of the worldwide infections, the long-term recovery and the integrative health-care in the nearest future, it is critical to understand the cellular and molecular mechanisms as well as possible predictors of the longitudinal post-COVID-19 responses in convalescent individuals. The immune system and T cell alterations are proposed as drivers of post-acute COVID syndrome. However, despite the number of studies on COVID-19, many of them addressed only the severe convalescents or the short-term responses. Here, we performed longitudinal studies of mild, moderate and severe COVID-19-convalescent patients, at two time points (3 and 6 months from the infection), to assess the dynamics of T cells immune landscape, integrated with patients-reported symptoms. We show that alterations among T cell subsets exhibit different, severity- and time-dependent dynamics, that in severe convalescents result in a polarization towards an exhausted/senescent state of CD4+ and CD8+ T cells and perturbances in CD4+ Tregs. In particular, CD8+ T cells exhibit a high proportion of CD57+ terminal effector cells, together with significant decrease of naïve cell population, augmented granzyme B and IFN-γ production and unresolved inflammation 6 months after infection. Mild convalescents showed increased naïve, and decreased central memory and effector memory CD4+ Treg subsets. Patients from all severity groups can be predisposed to the long COVID symptoms, and fatigue and cognitive dysfunctions are not necessarily related to exhausted/senescent state and T cell dysfunctions, as well as unresolved inflammation that was found only in severe convalescents. In conclusion, the post-COVID-19 functional remodeling of T cells could be seen as a two-step process, leading to distinct convalescent immune states at 6 months after infection. Our data imply that attenuation of the functional polarization together with blocking granzyme B and IFN-γ in CD8+ cells might influence post-COVID alterations in severe convalescents. However, either the search for long COVID predictors or any treatment to prevent PACS and further complications is mandatory in all patients with SARS-CoV-2 infection, and not only in those suffering from severe COVID-19.

Remodeling of T Cell Dynamics During Long COVID Is Dependent on Severity of SARS-CoV-2 Infection / Wiech, M.; Chroscicki, P.; Swatler, J.; Stepnik, D.; De Biasi, S.; Hampel, M.; Brewinska-Olchowik, M.; Maliszewska, A.; Sklinda, K.; Durlik, M.; Wierzba, W.; Cossarizza, A.; Piwocka, K.. - In: FRONTIERS IN IMMUNOLOGY. - ISSN 1664-3224. - 13:(2022), pp. 886431-N/A. [10.3389/fimmu.2022.886431]

Remodeling of T Cell Dynamics During Long COVID Is Dependent on Severity of SARS-CoV-2 Infection

De Biasi S.;Cossarizza A.;
2022

Abstract

Several COVID-19 convalescents suffer from the post-acute COVID-syndrome (PACS)/long COVID, with symptoms that include fatigue, dyspnea, pulmonary fibrosis, cognitive dysfunctions or even stroke. Given the scale of the worldwide infections, the long-term recovery and the integrative health-care in the nearest future, it is critical to understand the cellular and molecular mechanisms as well as possible predictors of the longitudinal post-COVID-19 responses in convalescent individuals. The immune system and T cell alterations are proposed as drivers of post-acute COVID syndrome. However, despite the number of studies on COVID-19, many of them addressed only the severe convalescents or the short-term responses. Here, we performed longitudinal studies of mild, moderate and severe COVID-19-convalescent patients, at two time points (3 and 6 months from the infection), to assess the dynamics of T cells immune landscape, integrated with patients-reported symptoms. We show that alterations among T cell subsets exhibit different, severity- and time-dependent dynamics, that in severe convalescents result in a polarization towards an exhausted/senescent state of CD4+ and CD8+ T cells and perturbances in CD4+ Tregs. In particular, CD8+ T cells exhibit a high proportion of CD57+ terminal effector cells, together with significant decrease of naïve cell population, augmented granzyme B and IFN-γ production and unresolved inflammation 6 months after infection. Mild convalescents showed increased naïve, and decreased central memory and effector memory CD4+ Treg subsets. Patients from all severity groups can be predisposed to the long COVID symptoms, and fatigue and cognitive dysfunctions are not necessarily related to exhausted/senescent state and T cell dysfunctions, as well as unresolved inflammation that was found only in severe convalescents. In conclusion, the post-COVID-19 functional remodeling of T cells could be seen as a two-step process, leading to distinct convalescent immune states at 6 months after infection. Our data imply that attenuation of the functional polarization together with blocking granzyme B and IFN-γ in CD8+ cells might influence post-COVID alterations in severe convalescents. However, either the search for long COVID predictors or any treatment to prevent PACS and further complications is mandatory in all patients with SARS-CoV-2 infection, and not only in those suffering from severe COVID-19.
13
886431
N/A
Remodeling of T Cell Dynamics During Long COVID Is Dependent on Severity of SARS-CoV-2 Infection / Wiech, M.; Chroscicki, P.; Swatler, J.; Stepnik, D.; De Biasi, S.; Hampel, M.; Brewinska-Olchowik, M.; Maliszewska, A.; Sklinda, K.; Durlik, M.; Wierzba, W.; Cossarizza, A.; Piwocka, K.. - In: FRONTIERS IN IMMUNOLOGY. - ISSN 1664-3224. - 13:(2022), pp. 886431-N/A. [10.3389/fimmu.2022.886431]
Wiech, M.; Chroscicki, P.; Swatler, J.; Stepnik, D.; De Biasi, S.; Hampel, M.; Brewinska-Olchowik, M.; Maliszewska, A.; Sklinda, K.; Durlik, M.; Wierzba, W.; Cossarizza, A.; Piwocka, K.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11380/1287651
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