Coronavirus Update – Sept. 2, 2020

Your coronavirus update for Sept. 2; stay up to date with Elite.

More than 25 million cases of coronavirus (COVID-19) have been diagnosed worldwide as of Monday evening, including at least 848,000 deaths. Healthcare officials in the United States have reported more than 6.1 million positive COVID-19 cases and at least 186,000 deaths. Source: Johns Hopkins University & Medicine

Research Finds Vitamin B Useful Vs. COVID

A deficiency in Vitamin B can cause heightened complications in patients diagnosed with COVID-19, according to recent research.1 Due to its role in cell functioning, energy metabolism, and proper immune function, the vitamin should be considered a non-pharmaceutical adjunct to current treatments, say researchers from the University of Oxford, United Arab Emirates University, and the University of Melbourne. Healthcare providers are urged to assess Vitamin B status in COVID-19 patients. Among the known benefits of the vitamin are proper activation of both innate and adaptive immune responses, reduction of pro-inflammatory cytokine levels, improved respiratory function, maintaining of endothelial integrity, prevention of hypercoagulability, and impaired cell and immune system function. Among the noted vitamins in the study are B1 (Thiamine), B2 (Riboflavin), B3 (Nicotinamide, Niacin), B5 (Pantothenic acid), B6 (Pyridoxal 5-phosphate, Pyridoxine), B9 (Folic acid, Folate), and B12 (Cobalamin). Some of the benefits of each include:1

  • Thiamine: Improves cardiovascular function and aids in proper immune response during SARS-CoV-2 infection. Thiamine also functions as a carbonic anhydrase isoenzyme inhibitor and high doses given early after COVID-19 diagnosis could limit hypoxia and decrease hospitalization.
  • Riboflavin: could alleviate some of the risk of transfusion transmission of COVID-19 and reduce other pathogens in blood products for critically ill patients.
  • Nicotinamide, Niacin: Acts as a building block of nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide, a cofactor central to metabolism, and nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide phosphate, a biological carrier that can accept and deliver electrons. Niacin is said to reduce neutrophil infiltration and exhibit an anti-inflammatory effect in patients with ventilator-induced lung injury, and nicotinamide is said to reduce viral replication and strengthen the body’s defense mechanisms. 
  • Pantothenic acid: Credited with many benefits, including cholesterol- and triglyceride-lowering properties, improved wound healing, decreased inflammation and improved mental health. 
  • Pyridoxal 5-phosphate, Pyridoxine: An essential cofactor in various inflammatory pathways with deficiency leading to immune dysregulation. Low levels have been noted in patients with Type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and in the elderly – high-risk groups for poor COVID-19 outcomes.
  • Folic acid, folate: Able to inhibit furin, preventing binding by the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein, and preventing cell entry and virus turnover. Folic acid could be beneficial for the management of COVID-associated respiratory disease in the early stages and may be used as a therapeutic approach for the management of COVID-19.
  • Cobalamin: Essential for red blood cell synthesis, nervous system health, myelin synthesis, cellular growth, and the rapid synthesis of DNA. Acts as a modulator of gut microbiota and low levels can elevate methylmalonic acid and homocysteine, resulting in increased inflammation, reactive oxygen species and oxidative stress. 

Vitamin C and Vitamin D have also gained recognition due to their anti-inflammatory and immune-supporting properties.1

Virus Goes Undiagnosed Among Hospital Staff, Report Claims

According to a recent report by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, many COVID-19 infections that occur among healthcare personnel go undetected.2 Nearly 70 percent of those among more than 3,000 frontline workers in 12 states who had antibody evidence of a previous COVID-19 infection were never been diagnosed, the report states. Among those with antibodies to the novel coronavirus, about one-third did not recall having symptoms in the preceding months, nearly half did not suspect that they had been infected, and approximately two-thirds had never had a positive COVID-19 test.2 COVID-19 antibodies were said to be less common among those who reported using a face covering for all patient encounters and more common among those who reported a shortage of personal protective equipment.

European Union Joins WHO’s Vaccine Alliance

Officials with the European Union (EU) have announced the organization is joining the World Health Organization’s (WHO’s) coronavirus vaccine alliance (COVAX).3

COVAX is an initiative that aims to accelerate the development and manufacture of COVID-19 vaccines and to guarantee fair and equitable access for every country in the world. The detailed terms and conditions for the EU’s participation and contribution are expected to be negotiated in the coming days and weeks, and the EU’s participation in COVAX will be complementary to the ongoing EU negotiations with vaccine companies that aim at scaling up manufacturing capacity of vaccine producers, contributing to global efforts, officials said.

In a prepared statement, Ursula von der Leyen, president of the European Commission, said, “Global collaboration is the only way to overcome a global pandemic. Under the Coronavirus Global Response and the Global Goal Unite campaign, we have seen the world come together as one. I’m confident this will bring us closer to our goal: beating this virus, together.”

References

  1. Shakoor H, Feehan J, Mikkelsen K, et al. Be well: a potential role for vitamin B in COVID-19. MATURITAS. 2020. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.maturitas.2020.08.007
  2. Self WH, Tenforde MW, Stubblefield WB, et al. Seroprevalence of SARS-CoV-2 among frontline health care personnel in a multistate hospital network — 13 academic medical centers, April–June 2020. CDC. 2020. Accessed online: www.cdc.gov/mmwr/volumes/69/wr/mm6935e2.htm
  3. Coronavirus global response: commission joins the COVID-19 vaccine global access facility (COVAX). EU. 2020. Accessed online: www.who.int/initiatives/act-accelerator/covax

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