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  • SARS-CoV-2 spike S1 subunit induces neuroinflammatory, microglial and behavioral sickness responses: Evidence of PAMP-like properties #MMPMID34915155
  • Frank MG; Nguyen KH; Ball JB; Hopkins S; Kelley T; Baratta MV; Fleshner M; Maier SF
  • Brain Behav Immun 2022[Feb]; 100 (ä): 267-277 PMID34915155show ga
  • SARS-CoV-2 infection produces neuroinflammation as well as neurological, cognitive (i.e., brain fog), and neuropsychiatric symptoms (e.g., depression, anxiety), which can persist for an extended period (6 months) after resolution of the infection. The neuroimmune mechanism(s) that produces SARS-CoV-2-induced neuroinflammation has not been characterized. Proposed mechanisms include peripheral cytokine signaling to the brain and/or direct viral infection of the CNS. Here, we explore the novel hypothesis that a structural protein (S1) derived from SARS-CoV-2 functions as a pathogen-associated molecular pattern (PAMP) to induce neuroinflammatory processes independent of viral infection. Prior evidence suggests that the S1 subunit of the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein is inflammatory in vitro and signals through the pattern recognition receptor TLR4. Therefore, we examined whether the S1 subunit is sufficient to drive 1) a behavioral sickness response, 2) a neuroinflammatory response, 3) direct activation of microglia in vitro, and 4) activation of transgenic human TLR2 and TLR4 HEK293 cells. Adult male Sprague-Dawley rats were injected intra-cisterna magna (ICM) with vehicle or S1. In-cage behavioral monitoring (8 h post-ICM) demonstrated that S1 reduced several behaviors, including total activity, self-grooming, and wall-rearing. S1 also increased social avoidance in the juvenile social exploration test (24 h post-ICM). S1 increased and/or modulated neuroimmune gene expression (Iba1, Cd11b, MhcIIalpha, Cd200r1, Gfap, Tlr2, Tlr4, Nlrp3, Il1b, Hmgb1) and protein levels (IFNgamma, IL-1beta, TNF, CXCL1, IL-2, IL-10), which varied across brain regions (hypothalamus, hippocampus, and frontal cortex) and time (24 h and 7d) post-S1 treatment. Direct exposure of microglia to S1 resulted in increased gene expression (Il1b, Il6, Tnf, Nlrp3) and protein levels (IL-1beta, IL-6, TNF, CXCL1, IL-10). S1 also activated TLR2 and TLR4 receptor signaling in HEK293 transgenic cells. Taken together, these findings suggest that structural proteins derived from SARS-CoV-2 might function independently as PAMPs to induce neuroinflammatory processes via pattern recognition receptor engagement.
  • |*COVID-19[MESH]
  • |*Microglia[MESH]
  • |Animals[MESH]
  • |HEK293 Cells[MESH]
  • |Humans[MESH]
  • |Male[MESH]
  • |Neuroinflammatory Diseases[MESH]
  • |Pathogen-Associated Molecular Pattern Molecules[MESH]
  • |Rats[MESH]
  • |Rats, Sprague-Dawley[MESH]
  • |SARS-CoV-2[MESH]
  • |Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus[MESH]

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  • suck abstract from ncbi

    267 ä.100 2022