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Research Center

Daniel Desmecht, Professor - Mutien Garigliany, Professor

FARAH - ULiège 
" We are describing the evolution of the respiratory function after infection using whole-body plethysmography in a hamster model of SARS-CoV-2 pneumonia. Although the tropism of the virus for the upper respiratory tract is well documented, little is known about the pathophysiological mechanisms involved in the impairment of the respiratory function and the development of acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) in some patients. There is a critical need for the development of noninvasive evaluation tools of the respiratory function over the disease course in order to develop therapeutic strategies aiming at specifically improving this function. Plethysmography is a noninvasive method allowing the quantitative evaluation of the lung volume and function. The selected plethysmographic parameters will allow a noninvasive monitoring of the lung function and lesions in the hamster model, permitting the screening of therapeutic molecules aiming at alleviating the...

Daniel Desmecht, Professor - Mutien Garigliany, Professor

FARAH - ULiège 
" We recently showed that domestic cats can be spontaneously infected by SARS-CoV-2 and develop transient, yet severe, pneumonia. Similar reports in other countries confirmed the susceptibility of cats, ferrets, lions and tigers to the infection. Dogs can get infected but, apparenlty, subclinically. Beside the importance of these findings for veterinarians and animal health, a series of domestic or wild animal species might constitute a reservoir of SARS-CoV-2 and dramatically complicate the "uncontainment" process. Domestic cats, minks, ferrets, hamsters, dogs, tigers and lions were all shown to be naturally or (for some species) experimentally susceptible to SARS-CoV-2 infection. In addition, cats, minks, ferrets and hamsters were shown to be able to efficiently transmit the virus to in-contact animals. Little is known about the actual host range of the virus. It is critically needed to determine which domestic, peri-domestic (especially rodents) and wild animals can...

François Fuks, Full Professor

Laboratory of Cancer Epigenetics, ULB, Faculty of Medicine - Royal Academy of Medicine of Belgium
" In recent years epigenetics has become an essential component of biological research, playing key roles in many physiopathological conditions. Recent work in viral epigenetics highlighted these modifications as an essential mechanism in modulating many viruses life cycles. To date, whether this holds true also for SARS-CoV-2 remains unknown, let alone the potential use of epigenetics inhibitors as novel antiviral therapy against SARS-CoV-2. • To address these unanswered questions and to respond to the current international urge of new therapeutic approaches against COVID-19, our study, which would uncover a link between epigenetics and SARS-CoV-2, aim to provide innovative advances for SARS-CoV-2 biology and therapy: • Overall, we will generate a comprehensive dataset aiming at expanding further our understanding of the biological functions of epigenetic modifications in the SARS-CoV-2...

Jérôme Schruyers, Researcher - Alexandre Léonard, Research logistician - Carlos Mendoza, Postdoc - Cédric Wolfs, PhD student- Vaios Stergiopoulos, Postdoc - Stéphanie Lambert, FNRS Senior Research Associate, Deputy Associate Professor - Fabien Deschamps,

Chemical Engineering ULiège & CRM Group - FNRS
" The Chemical Engineering Department of the Faculty of Applied Sciences of the University of Liège has been producing protective visors by 3D printing since April 4 and provides various hospital services (CHU, Citadelle, Bois de l'Abbaye), rest homes, associations and health care practices. A team of members of the Department has been set up to ensure 24-hour production, which means that up to 90 visors can now be produced per day depending on demand. As the days go by, production optimization continues to lighten components, produce faster and reduce the amount of raw material needed. The Department also receives visor supports produced by 3D printing by people from the Metallurgical Research Centre (CRM), a privileged partner of the Faculty, in order to equip them with plastic sheets to produce visors. This equipment is then distributed with the rest of the production from Chemical Engineering. The milestone of 1000 visors...

Michel FREDERICH, Professor - Allison LEDOUX, Doctor - Mutien GARIGLIANY, Professor

" Several natural products (i.e. lycorine, glycyrrhizine, extracts of Pelargonium, Echinacea, Sambucus,...) have shown activity against coronaviruses. Several plants have been used in Chinese Medicine to treat patients with COVID-19. The objective of this project is to evaluate several natural products against SARS-COV2 in vitro and confirm their potential for further development. "
Funding: Own funding.
Contact: Prof Michel FREDERICH https://www.cirm.uliege.be This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Mutien Garigliany, Professor - Daniel Desmecht, Professor

" There is a critical need for therapeutic solutions against SARS-CoV-2. Before implementing innovative treatments in human medicine, a first screening of the antiviral or immunomodulatory activity should be performed by in vitro and in vivo methods. To this aim, we developed in vitro (cell culture) and in vivo (hamsters and mice) models of SARS-CoV-2 infection. We developed an in vitro (cell culture) and in vivo (hamsters and mice) to screen antiviral or immunomodulatory molecules, in partnership with colleagues from the ULiège hospital and the GIGA research center. We also validate the inactivation protocols to facilitate the diagnostic workflow, in partnership with the Federal task force. "
Funding: Currently no funding. We applied to the "Crédits urgents de recherche" call.
Contact: Mutien Garigliany, DVM, PhD, Dipl. ECVP Professor Department of Pathology Faculty of Veterinary Medicine Centre for Fundamental and Applied Research for Animals & Health (FARAH) Liège...

Mutien Garigliany, Professor - Daniel Desmecht, Professor

FARAH - ULiège 
" As of today, one of the most promising therapeutic solutions against COVID-19 is the use of convalescent plasma. A subset of the antibodies present in this plasma are able to bind the surface proteins of the virus, chiefly the Spike (attachment) protein, and to neutralize the ability of viral particles to infect permissive cells. Upon request of the Red Cross and ULiège CHU hospital, we developed seroneutralization assays to determine the titers in neutralizing antibodies of convalescent plasma. In collaboration with KU Leuven (Rega) and ITM Antwerp, we just completed an interlaboratory ring test. We screen convalescent plasmas on a routine basis for the Croix Rouge and Rode Kruis. Only plasmas with a titer in neutralizing antibodies above the cut-off value will be used therapeutically. The scarcity of the scientific literature on the subject (only a few studies on the therapeutic use of convalescent plasmas are currently available) make it difficult to fix a cut-off...

Pierre CLOSE, FNRS Research Associate - Francesca RAPINO, Doctor

GIGA-Institute, ULiège - FNRS
" In this project, we study the epitranscriptomic regulation of the SARS-CoV-2. Based on analyses of the viral genome, we investigate the cellular machineries required for the viral replicative cycle. Our goal is to identify possible viral vulnerabilities that can be exploited for the development of innovative anti-viral therapeutic strategies. We investigate possible new therapeutic opportunities based on the analyses of the viral genomic organization and evolution. We speculate that specific cellular machineries are needed to support the viral replicative cycle. Our goal is uncover new antiviral therapeutic strategies based on the viral epitranscriptomic regulation, mRNA translation and protein expression. "
Publication References: Rapino F, Delaunay S, Rambow F, Zhou Z, Tharun L, De Tullio P, Sin O, Shostak, Schmitz S, Piepers J, Ghesquière B, Karim L, Charloteaux B, Jamart D, Florin A, Lambert C, Rorive A, Jerusalem G...

Ruddy Wattiez, Pr. - Lionel Tafforeau, Pr. - Rob Onderwater, Dr. - Stéphanie Roosa, Dr.

UMONS, Materia Nova - Royal Academy of Sciences, Letters and Fine Arts of Belgium
" Development of a test for the antiviral activity of a coating, material or textile. "
Contact: Contact: Pr. Ruddy Wattiez, Vice-rector of research and innovation of the university of Mons This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Serge Goldman, Scientific Director

" The Center of Microscopy and Molecular Imaging (CMMI) is currently involved in establishing an accurate SARS-CoV-2 virus distribution topography in the organs and various cells of patients who died in COVID-19 units by providing immunohistochemistry and electron microscopy services (study director Pr. Isabelle Salmon). We have also developed and are currently offering preclinical multimodal quantitative imaging - of lung inflammation - of bacterial population (pathogen or no pathogen) - and of viral infection by isotopic imaging. All these models enable the understanding of pulmonary pathological features caused by SARS-viruses such as CoVID-19. From molecular to humanized animal models, the CMMI provides customized imaging solutions to research projects on Coronavirus The CMMI is also a proud partner of the ULB diagnostic platform set-up in Gosselies to face the epidemic of SARS-CoV2. "
Contact: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Comment: The CMMI was co-founded by ULB et UMons and is supported...

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Brussels & Wallonia against COVID19