Votre navigateur ne supporte pas le javascript Wallonia & Brussels against COVID-19 - Complications and organ damage

Complications and organ damage

A. Marchant - S. Goriely - N. Dauby - S. De Wit - O. Vandenbergh - C. Montesino - V. Mascart - V. Del Marmol - A. Le Moine - F. Andris - C. Gueydan - A. Botteaux - A. Matagne

ULB, CHU Saint-Pierre, Hôpital Erasme, ULiège - FNRS

" The project investigates the immune responses to SARS-CoV-2 infection in humans. Cohorts of patients and contacts are recruited and followed-up during several months following infection. Using systems serology and systems biology approaches, the quality and dynamics of antibody and cellular responses are analysed to identify correlates of protection against severe disease and to determine the duration of natural immunity to the virus. The project should provide insight in the host response to SARS-CoV-2 and should help define deconfinement strategies and develop prophylactic and therapeutic interventions against COVID-19. "
Funding: COVID 19 - ULB
Contact: Arnaud Marchant: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. Stanislas Goriely: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Alain Vigneron, Founder & Scientific advisor - Benoît Autem, CEO - Nicolas Bodart, R&D Director - Bernard Noirhomme, Business development Manager

D-tek s.a
" "Multiplex Immuno-Dot technology for COVID-19 serological investigation The Multiplex serological technology, developed since 1995 in D-tek (www.d-tek.be), is dedicated to the profiling of the human antibody response to different immunogens, in a single test. It has various applications in laboratory diagnostics, as well as medical and pharmaceutical research (companion-diagnostics). The technology finds an obvious application for the COVID-19 serological investigation, as the antibody response to the SARS-CoV-2 infection is known to be complex, with multi-epitope targeting, and needs to be better understood. In a typical test (ongoing development), various recombinant SARS-CoV-2 antigens are coated on a membrane strip at different spot positions. The assay is designed to map, in one single test, any patient antibody recognizing any of these protein structures. The test procedure is a classical enzyme immunoassay that can be processed from 10µl of patient's serum or...

Antoine FROIDURE, Professor - Jean-Philippe DEFOUR, Professor - Anabelle DECOTTIGNIES, FNRS Senior Research Associate

UCLouvain, Cliniques universitaires Saint-Luc - FNRS
" "Telomeres are non-coding DNA sequences located at the end of chromosomes. In highly dividing cells, like embryonic stem cells and germ cells, telomeres are maintained by the telomerase complex. In the absence of telomerase activity in normal somatic cells, telomeres shorten after each cell division, ultimately leading to cell senescence or apoptosis. Telomeres are thus considered as ""molecular biological clocks"", closely related to ageing. Short telomeres syndromes (STS) have been identified, that are linked to genetic mutations affecting compounds of the telomerase complex, or proteins with crucial roles in telomere protection, and resulting in various conditions including lung fibrosis and aplastic anaemia (1). Bone marrow failure in STS results from the premature exhaustion of hematopoietic stem cells and, overall, tissues from STS patients suffer from premature senescence that likely drives the organ failures...

Caroline Huart, MD, PhD - Bernard Hanseeuw, MD, PhD - Valérie Hox, MD, PhD - Pascal Kienlen-Campard, PhD- Vincent Van Pesch, MD, PhD

UCLouvain and Cliniques universitaires Saint-Luc - FNRS
" Anosmia has been reported to be a major symptom of COVID-19. Since high viral loads are found in the nasal cavity of patients and since single-cell analyses found that olfactory sustentacular and stem cells highly express ACE2 and TMPRSS2, it is suspected that cells of the olfactory neuroepithelium are a preferred target of the virus. Some COVID-19 patients present with neurological symptoms. Interestingly, it has been reported that the former SARS-CoV, can ascend intracranially, possibly via the olfactory nerves. Since olfactory receptor neurons form a direct connection between the nasal cavity and the brain, we hypothesize that these cells act as a gateway towards the brain in some patients. The main aims of the projects are (1) to investigate the pathophysiology of COVID-related olfactory dysfunction and (2) to investigate whether olfactory receptor neurons could be the entry site of SARS-CoV2 to the brain. "

Charles Nicaise, Professor

" In vitro studies will investigate the abilities of SARS-Cov-2 to enter various types of human neurons (cell lines and iPS-derived) and possible axoplasmic transport. In the meantime, analysis of post-mortem CNS and PNS samples from COVID patients would strengthen the hypothesis of SARS-Cov-2 neuro-tropism. "
Funding: CUR-FNRS (pending)
Contact: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Charles Pilette, Professor

UCLouvain, St-Luc
" We aim to characterize the reprogramming of structural cells of the lungs that are direct targets of the SARS-CoV-2, namely type 2 alveolar epithelial cells and endothelial cells, as well as their potential role in the induction of the (hyper)inflammatory phase of the disease leading to acute lung injury. The skills of our laboratory in lung and mucosal immunology research that are relevant to this field are (1) access to precious human lung tissue (e.g. from SARS-CoV-2 patients), (2) multiplex immunofluorescence staining and isolation of structural cells (e.g. alveolar epithelial cells, endothelial cells) from the human lung, as well as (3) their characterization using cell culture-based readouts and (in collab. with the UCL-CTMA) genetic sequencing. "
Funding: FNRS CUR, application submitted on 01-05-20.
Publication References: 1. Gohy ST, Hupin C, Fregimilicka C, Detry BR, Bouzin C, Gaide Chevronay H, Lecocq M, Weynand B, Ladjemi MZ, Pierreux CE, Birembaut P...

Didier Allaer, CEO

Diagenode SA
" CE marked of Covid assay by RT-QPCR "
Contact: didier. This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Didier Serteyn, Professor - Justine Ceusters, CSO RevaTis - Charlotte Sandersen, Professor

ULiège and RevaTis SA (Spin Off)
" The project aims to assess the effects of muscle derived stem cells on a preclinical model of acute respiratory distress syndrome induced by a perfusion of endotoxins. We focused on the modulation of neutrophil excessive activation. RevaTis developped a GMP production of muscle derived Mesenchymal Stem Cells and is authorized to produce clinical batches. The IPCLab (Liege University) developed an ARDS model in pigs. We aim to demonstrate a reduction of the ARDS severity, a reduction of the cytokines storm and a modulation of the excessive activation of neutrophils observed in ARDS. "
Funding: Research grants from Ulg (POC) and FNRS (CURE) are pending. RevaTis supplies muscle derived Stem Cells for R&D projects
Publication References: Sci Rep. 2017 Apr 6;7(1):696. doi: 10.1038/s41598-017-00803-7. From skeletal muscle to stem cells: an innovative and minimally-invasive process for multiple species. Ceusters J, Lejeune JP, Sandersen C, Niesten A...

Florence SCHLEICH, MD, PhD

ULiege, CHU, GIGA I3
" Are obstructive diseases risk factors for developing pulmonary complications due to COVID19? We will include all patients followed up at CHU of Liege for COVID19 infection and classify them according to their underlying bronchopulmonary disease. The aim is to evaluate if asthma, severe asthma or chronic obstructive pulmonary diseases represent risk factors for developing pulmonary complications during COVID 19 infection. We want to find out biological or clinical predictors of complications. We also want to evaluate efficacy and safety of inhaled corticosteroids in asthma in case of COVID infection. Biomarkers will be measured at baseline and during follow-up. "
Funding: Fonds Leon Frederic
Contact: Schleich Florence, MD, PhD This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

François JOURET, Professeur - Pierre Delanaye, Professeur - Jean-Marie Krzesinski, Professeur Ordinaire

ULiège - FNRS
" L'atteinte rénale semble fréquente et précoce dans la COVID-19. Sa physiopathologie est inconnue. Le but de cette étude est de caractériser cette néphropathie nouvelle causée par le SRAS-Cov-2. Nous réalisons une biopsie rénale post mortem chez tout patient décédé dans le cadre d'une infection COVID-19 en salle d'hospitalisation ou aux soins intensifs (SI). L'étude se focalise sur la corrélation anatomo-clinique. L'étude histologique inclut (i) une description conventionnelle des compartiments glomérulaire, tubulaire et interstitiel ; (ii) une détection immuno-histochimique des antigènes viraux du SRAS-Cov-2 et leur distribution préférentielle dans chaque segment du néphron ; (iii) une caractérisation de l'infiltrat inflammatoire éventuel ; et (iv) une microscopie électronique. "
Funding: Fondation Léon Frédéricq ULiège (21.600 euros) FNRS (en attente) Société Francophone de Néphrologie (en attente)
Contact: Pr dr François JOURET Centre Hospitalier de l'Université de...

Francois Mullier, Prof - Alain Dive, Prof - Michael Hardy, Dr - Sarah Lessire, Prof - Isabelle Michaux, Prof - Jonathan Douxfils, Prof

UCLouvain, CHU UCLouvain/UNamur
" Evaluation of the thrombotic risk associated with SARS-CoV-2 infection and its management in the intensive care unit: a clinical and biological longitudinal study. Background Since the beginning of SARS-CoV-2 outbreak in December 2019, data accumulate regarding the high thrombotic risk associated with this infection, which could explain substantial part of the observed morbidity and mortality (1). Accordingly, a retrospective study suggested that prophylactic anticoagulation could reduce mortality in severe COVID-19 patients with sepsis-induced coagulopathy (2). Furthermore, a European cohort reported a 27% incidence of venous thrombo-embolisms (VTEs) despite systematic prophylactic anticoagulation, raising the question whether deeper anticoagulant regimen would be beneficial in severe COVID-19 (3). Some authors also suggested that fibrinolysis alterations could be a significant determinant of SARS-CoV-2 infection's prognosis, as it is in...

Gilles Parzibut, Doctor

ULiège, CHU
" La recherche de biomarqueurs fiables, sensibles et peu invasifs est un enjeu de premier ordre pour la médecine moderne. En effet, ces biomarqueurs ont le potentiel de transformer la prise en charge médicale en améliorant le dépistage et le diagnostic, mais aussi en permettant de mieux appréhender la physiopathologie d'une pathologie ou sa réponse à un traitement donné. Fort de nos travaux précédents, nous proposons de réaliser une étude prospective sur une population adulte souffrant d'un SDRA modéré à sévère post SARS-COV2 afin de caractériser une signature exosomique plasmatique propre à cette population. "
Funding: FLF FIRS CHU de Liège
Publication References: hankar-Hari, M., Fan, E. & Ferguson, N. D. Acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) phenotyping. Intensive Care Med. (2018). 45;(4): 516-519. Thompson BT, Chambers RC, Liu KD. Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome. N Engl J Med. 2017;377(6):562–72. Johnstone RM, Adam M, Hammond JR, Orr L, Turbide C. Vesicle...

Jean-marie Colet, Pr. - Anne-Emilie Declèves, Pr. - Frédéric Debelle, Dr

" We set up a pilot study including positive COVID-19 patients hospitalized in intensive care with acute renal disorders. The primary intention here is to assess the serum and urine metabonomic profiles of patients with renal disorders following SARS COV-2 infection at the time of their hospitalization in order to identify metabolic indicators of the acute renal injury. "
Funding: internal funding and CUR/FNRS project submitted
Publication References:
1. Lindon JC, Nicholson JK, Holmes E, Antti H, Bollard ME, Keun H, Beckonert O, Ebbels TM, Reily MD, Robertson D, Stevens GJ, Luke P, Breau AP, Cantor GH, Bible RH, Niederhauser U, Senn H, Schlotterbeck G, Sidelmann UG, Laursen SM, Tymiak A, Car BD, Lehman-McKeeman L, Colet JM, Loukaci A, Thomas C. Contemporary issues in toxicology the role of metabonomics in toxicology and its evaluation by the COMET project. Toxicol Appl Pharmacol. 187(3):137-46 (2003)
2. Colet Jean-Marie, ""Metabonomics in the Preclinical and...

Joëlle Nortier, Dr

ULB, Faculty of Medicine, and Erasme Hospital
Suivi longitudinal de biomarqueurs sériques et urinaires de l'atteinte rénale aiguë associée au COVID-19 : impacts diagnostique et pronostique. " L'objectif principal de cette étude est de caractériser l'atteinte rénale aiguë par le virus SARS-COV2 chez des patients hospitalisés présentant une maladie COVID-19 à l'aide de biomarqueurs sériques et urinaires précoces et spécifiques à certains segments du néphron. L'objectif secondaire est d'établir une corrélation entre l'évolution de ces marqueurs observée durant la phase aiguë de l'insuffisance rénale et le passage éventuel à un stade chronique. "
Funding: Crédit Urgent de Recherche (CUR) sollicité auprès du FNRS
Publication References: BUNEL V, SOUARD F, ANTOINE M-H, STEVIGNY C, NORTIER JL. Nephrotoxicity of Natural Products: Aristolochic Acid and Fungal Toxins. In McQueen C.A., Comprehensive Toxicology, Third Edition. Vol 14, Oxford Elsevier Ltd (2018), pp 340-379. BUNEL V, TOURNAY Y...

Mona Momeni, MD, PhD

UCLouvain/Cliniques universitaires Saint-Luc 
" COVID-19 pandemic has an important impact on the health care provided by the anesthesiologists. Different societies of anesthesiology have provided guidelines and recommendations on how to manage patients who have been tested positive for COVID-19 or suspected to be infected. It is therefore important to know whether these guidelines have been implemented or were possible to be implemented. Otherwise patients who are presenting COVID-19 often show pulmonary complications. The airway management and the ventilation management of these patients can be therefore challenging and can possibly influence their outcome. It is thus important to obtain a large database with information about the characteristics of these patients, how these patients have been managed and their in-hospital outcome. Information regarding the correct implementation of guidelines is as well necessary for future guidance of health care providers. "
Funding: None

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Brussels & Wallonia against COVID19