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Identification of Lung and Blood Microbiota Implicated in COVID-19 Prognosis

Published: 10 June 2021
 by  MDPI AG
 in Cells
Cells , Volume 10; doi:10.3390/cells10061452

Abstract: The implications of the microbiome on Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) prognosis has not been thoroughly studied. In this study we aimed to characterize the lung and blood microbiome and their implication on COVID-19 prognosis through analysis of peripheral blood mononuclear cell (PBMC) samples, lung biopsy samples, and bronchoalveolar lavage fluid (BALF) samples. In all three tissue types, we found panels of microbes differentially abundant between COVID-19 and normal samples correlated to immune dysregulation and upregulation of inflammatory pathways, including key cytokine pathways such as interleukin (IL)-2, 3, 5-10 and 23 signaling pathways and downregulation of anti-inflammatory pathways including IL-4 signaling. In the PBMC samples, six microbes were correlated with worse COVID-19 severity, and one microbe was correlated with improved COVID-19 severity. Collectively, our findings contribute to the understanding of the human microbiome and suggest interplay between our identified microbes and key inflammatory pathways which may be leveraged in the development of immune therapies for treating COVID-19 patients.
Keywords: microbiome / lung microbiota / blood microbiota / SARS-CoV-2 / COVID-19 / coronavirus / inflammation

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