A broad-spectrum virus- and host-targeting peptide against respiratory viruses including influenza virus and SARS-CoV-2
Authors: Zhao, Hanjun; To, Kelvin K. W.; Sze, Kong-Hung; Yung, Timothy Tin-Mong; Bian, Mingjie; Lam, Hoiyan; Yeung, Man Lung; Li, Cun; Chu, Hin; Yuen, Kwok-Yung
The 2019 novel respiratory virus (SARS-CoV-2) causes COVID-19 with rapid global socioeconomic disruptions and disease burden to healthcare. The COVID-19 and previous emerging virus outbreaks highlight the urgent need for broad-spectrum antivirals. Here, we show that a defensin-like peptide P9R exhibited potent antiviral activity against pH-dependent viruses that require endosomal acidification for virus infection, including the enveloped pandemic A(H1N1)pdm09 virus, avian influenza A(H7N9) virus, coronaviruses (SARS-CoV-2, MERS-CoV and SARS-CoV), and the non-enveloped rhinovirus. P9R can significantly protect mice from lethal challenge by A(H1N1)pdm09 virus and shows low possibility to cause drug-resistant virus. Mechanistic studies indicate that the antiviral activity of P9R depends on the direct binding to viruses and the inhibition of virus-host endosomal acidification, which provides a proof of concept that virus-binding alkaline peptides can broadly inhibit pH-dependent viruses. These results suggest that the dual-functional virus- and host-targeting P9R can be a promising candidate for combating pH-dependent respiratory viruses.
Caregiver willingness to vaccinate their children against COVID-19: Cross sectional survey
Authors: Goldman, Ran D.; Yan, Tyler D.; Seiler, Michelle; Cotanda, Cristina Parra; Brown, Julie C.; Klein, Eileen J.; Hoeffe, Julia; Gelernter, Renana; Hall, Jeanine E.; Davis, Adrienne L.; Griffiths, Mark A.; Mater, Ahmed; Manzano, Sergio; Gualco, Gianluca; Shimizu, Naoki; Hurt, Thomas L.; Ahmed, Sara; Hansen, Matt; Sheridan, David; Ali, Samina; Thompson, Graham C.; Gaucher, Nathalie; Staubli, Georg
Background: More than 100 COVID-19 vaccine candidates are in development since the SARS-CoV-2 genetic sequence was published in January 2020. The uptake of a COVID-19 vaccine among children will be instrumental in limiting the spread of the disease as herd immunity may require vaccine coverage of up to 80% of the population. Prior history of pandemic vaccine coverage was as low as 40% among children in the United States during the 2009 H1N1 influenza pandemic. Purpose: To investigate predictors associated with global caregivers' intent to vaccinate their children against COVID-19, when the vaccine becomes available. Method: An international cross sectional survey of 1541 caregivers arriving with their children to 16 pediatric Emergency Departments (ED) across six countries from March 26 to May 31, 2020. Results: 65% (n = 1005) of caregivers reported that they intend to vaccinate their child against COVID-19, once a vaccine is available. A univariate and subsequent multivariate analysis found that increased intended uptake was associated with children that were older, children with no chronic illness, when fathers completed the survey, children up-to-date on their vaccination schedule, recent history of vaccination against influenza, and caregivers concerned their child had COVID-19 at the time of survey completion in the ED. The most common reason reported by caregivers intending to vaccinate was to protect their child (62%), and the most common reason reported by caregivers refusing vaccination was the vaccine's novelty (52%). Conclusions: The majority of caregivers intend to vaccinate their children against COVID-19, though uptake will likely be associated with specific factors such as child and caregiver demographics and vaccination history. Public health strategies need to address barriers to uptake by providing evidence about an upcoming COVID-19 vaccine's safety and efficacy, highlighting the risks and consequences of infection in children, and educating caregivers on the role of vaccination. (C) 2020 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.