Publications by authors named "Francesco Marchesi"

103 Publications

Long-term adaptation following influenza A virus host shifts results in increased within-host viral fitness due to higher replication rates, broader dissemination within the respiratory epithelium and reduced tissue damage.

PLoS Pathog 2021 Dec 17;17(12):e1010174. Epub 2021 Dec 17.

MRC-University of Glasgow Centre for Virus Research, Institute of Infection, Immunity and Inflammation, College of Medical, Veterinary and Life Sciences, University of Glasgow, Glasgow, Scotland, United Kingdom.

The mechanisms and consequences of genome evolution on viral fitness following host shifts are poorly understood. In addition, viral fitness -the ability of an organism to reproduce and survive- is multifactorial and thus difficult to quantify. Influenza A viruses (IAVs) circulate broadly among wild birds and have jumped into and become endemic in multiple mammalian hosts, including humans, pigs, dogs, seals, and horses. H3N8 equine influenza virus (EIV) is an endemic virus of horses that originated in birds and has been circulating uninterruptedly in equine populations since the early 1960s. Here, we used EIV to quantify changes in infection phenotype associated to viral fitness due to genome-wide changes acquired during long-term adaptation. We performed experimental infections of two mammalian cell lines and equine tracheal explants using the earliest H3N8 EIV isolated (A/equine/Uruguay/63 [EIV/63]), and A/equine/Ohio/2003 (EIV/2003), a monophyletic descendant of EIV/63 isolated 40 years after the emergence of H3N8 EIV. We show that EIV/2003 exhibits increased resistance to interferon, enhanced viral replication, and a more efficient cell-to-cell spread in cells and tissues. Transcriptomics analyses revealed virus-specific responses to each virus, mainly affecting host immunity and inflammation. Image analyses of infected equine respiratory explants showed that despite replicating at higher levels and spreading over larger areas of the respiratory epithelium, EIV/2003 induced milder lesions compared to EIV/63, suggesting that adaptation led to reduced tissue pathogenicity. Our results reveal previously unknown links between virus genotype and the host response to infection, providing new insights on the relationship between virus evolution and fitness.
View Article and Find Full Text PDF

Download full-text PDF

Source
http://dx.doi.org/10.1371/journal.ppat.1010174DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8735595PMC
December 2021

Current attitude to deferral of cellular therapy or non-transplant chemotherapy due to SARS-CoV-2 asymptomatic infection: survey of Infectious Diseases Working Party EBMT.

Transpl Infect Dis 2021 Dec 17. Epub 2021 Dec 17.

Department of Hematology, Hospital de la Princesa, Madrid, Spain.

Background: The objective of the study was to assess the current clinical practice and the attitude towards deferral of HCT/chemotherapy in patients with hematological diseases in cases of asymptomatic patients with a positive assay for SARS-CoV-2.

Methods: In August 2021 we performed a survey among EBMT centers regarding their attitude towards deferral of HCT/chemotherapy in patients with a positive PCR result.

Results: Centers were willing to defer the planned cellular therapy for patients with asymptomatic SARS-CoV-2 infection without previous COVID-19 disease, and patients who became asymptomatic after a previous COVID19 disease but persistently shed the virus, respectively, in case of: high-risk allo-HCT (90.2%/76.9%), low risk allo-HCT for malignant diseases (88.2%/83.7%), allo-HCT for non-malignant diseases (91.0%/91.0%), auto-HCT (88.0%/79.8%) and CAR-T therapy (83.1%/81.4%). The respective rates towards deferral of non-cellular therapy patients was lower for both groups of patients, and varied with the primary diagnosis and anti-malignant treatment.

Conclusions: There is a relatively high rate of willingness to defer treatment in asymptomatic patients being positive for SARS-CoV-2, planned for cellular therapy, regardless of previous history of vaccination or COVID-19. The same approach is presented for most of patients before non-cellular therapy. Nevertheless, each patient should be considered individually weighting risks and benefits. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved.
View Article and Find Full Text PDF

Download full-text PDF

Source
http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/tid.13773DOI Listing
December 2021

Raman spectroscopic analysis of skin as a diagnostic tool for Human African Trypanosomiasis.

PLoS Pathog 2021 11 15;17(11):e1010060. Epub 2021 Nov 15.

Department of Pure and Applied Chemistry, University of Strathclyde, Glasgow, United Kingdom.

Human African Trypanosomiasis (HAT) has been responsible for several deadly epidemics throughout the 20th century, but a renewed commitment to disease control has significantly reduced new cases and motivated a target for the elimination of Trypanosoma brucei gambiense-HAT by 2030. However, the recent identification of latent human infections, and the detection of trypanosomes in extravascular tissues hidden from current diagnostic tools, such as the skin, has added new complexity to identifying infected individuals. New and improved diagnostic tests to detect Trypanosoma brucei infection by interrogating the skin are therefore needed. Recent advances have improved the cost, sensitivity and portability of Raman spectroscopy technology for non-invasive medical diagnostics, making it an attractive tool for gambiense-HAT detection. The aim of this work was to assess and develop a new non-invasive diagnostic method for T. brucei through Raman spectroscopy of the skin. Infections were performed in an established murine disease model using the animal-infective Trypanosoma brucei brucei subspecies. The skin of infected and matched control mice was scrutinized ex vivo using a confocal Raman microscope with 532 nm excitation and in situ at 785 nm excitation with a portable field-compatible instrument. Spectral evaluation and Principal Component Analysis confirmed discrimination of T. brucei-infected from uninfected tissue, and a characterisation of biochemical changes in lipids and proteins in parasite-infected skin indicated by prominent Raman peak intensities was performed. This study is the first to demonstrate the application of Raman spectroscopy for the detection of T. brucei by targeting the skin of the host. The technique has significant potential to discriminate between infected and non-infected tissue and could represent a unique, non-invasive diagnostic tool in the goal for elimination of gambiense-HAT as well as for Animal African Trypanosomiasis (AAT).
View Article and Find Full Text PDF

Download full-text PDF

Source
http://dx.doi.org/10.1371/journal.ppat.1010060DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8629383PMC
November 2021

COVID-19 and CAR-T cells: current challenges and future directions-a report from the EPICOVIDEHA survey by EHA-IDWP.

Blood Adv 2021 Nov 8. Epub 2021 Nov 8.

Italy.

Patients receiving chimeric antigen receptor T cells (CAR-T cells) therapy may be particularly susceptible to coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) because of several factors including the immunosuppression associated to the underlying disease and delayed cytopenias. Regrettably, data on outcomes of CAR-T recipients with COVID-19 are extremely scarce. The aim of this study was to investigate the characteristics and outcomes of COVID-19 in patients treated with CAR-T therapy. The European Hematology Association - Scientific Working Group Infection in Hematology endorsed a survey to collect and analyze data from patients developing COVID-19 after CAR-T therapy. Overall, 459 patients treated with CAR-T cells were reported from 18 European centers. The prevalence of COVID-19 cases was 4.8%. Median time from CAR-T therapy and COVID-19 diagnosis was 169 days. Severe infection occurred in 66.7% of patients and 43.3% of the subjects required admission to ICU. The COVID-19 mortality was 33%. In multivariable analysis, the disease status at the time of COVID-19 trended marginally towards adverse outcome (P=0.075). In conclusion, we documented a high fatality rate for CAR-T patients with COVID-19, supporting the need to design successful interventions to mitigate the risk of infection in this vulnerable group of patients.
View Article and Find Full Text PDF

Download full-text PDF

Source
http://dx.doi.org/10.1182/bloodadvances.2021005616DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8575532PMC
November 2021

Invasive aspergillosis in relapsed/refractory acute myeloid leukaemia patients: Results from SEIFEM 2016-B survey.

Mycoses 2022 Feb 3;65(2):171-177. Epub 2021 Dec 3.

Cell Therapy and Hematology, San Bortolo Hospital, Vicenza, Italy.

Background: In patients with relapsed/refractory acute myeloid leukaemia (R/R AML) who received salvage chemotherapy, limited and not updated studies explored the incidence of invasive aspergillosis (IA) and the role of antifungal prophylaxis (AP). The aims of this multicentre retrospective 'SEIFEM 2016-B' study were as follows: (1) to evaluate the current rate and the outcome of proven/probable IA and (2) to assess the efficacy of AP, in a large 'real life' series of patient with R/R AML submitted to salvage chemotherapy.

Results: Of 2250 R/R AML patients, a total of 74 cases of IA (5.1%) were recorded as follows: 10 (0.7%) proven and 64 (4.3%) probable. Information about AP were available in 73/74 (99%) patients. Fifty-eight (79%) breakthrough infections occurred, mainly during AP with posaconazole [25 (43%)]. The patients who received AP during salvage chemotherapy showed a benefit from antifungal therapy (AT) than patients who did not received AP [43 (86%) vs 7 (14%); p < .033]. In a multivariate analysis, AP and absence of severe mucositis had a significant favourable effect on overall response rate.

Conclusion: Our data demonstrated that the incidence of IA during the salvage chemotherapy is similar to the past. Nevertheless, the attributable mortality rate (AMR) appears to be lower than that previously reported in R/R AML. Further prospective studies should be performed to confirm our preliminary observation and understand and the why a decreased AMR is reported in this setting of high-risk patients.
View Article and Find Full Text PDF

Download full-text PDF

Source
http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/myc.13384DOI Listing
February 2022

Primary multifocal muscular T-cell lymphoma with cutaneous involvement in a dog: A case report and review of the literature.

Vet Clin Pathol 2021 Dec 24;50(4):584-588. Epub 2021 Oct 24.

School of Veterinary Medicine, Small Animal Hospital, College of Medical, Veterinary, and Life Sciences, University of Glasgow, Glasgow, UK.

Canine lymphoma represents a heterogeneous group of lymphoid neoplasms, with multicentric nodal lymphoma being the most common presentation. Musculoskeletal involvement is uncommon, and primary muscular lymphoma is a very rare presentation. Only a few cases have been described in dogs, which were of variable classification and immunophenotype. Here, we report the case of a 5-year-old female neutered Beagle that presented with an intramuscular mass on the right shoulder and associated lameness and lethargy. One month after initial presentation, multiple cutaneous nodules appeared on the head, and staging with advanced imaging revealed additional masses affecting other muscles. Cytology, histopathology, immunohistochemistry, and PCR for antigen receptor rearrangements of one of the muscle masses and skin lesions supported a diagnosis of peripheral T-cell lymphoma with large granular lymphocytes at both sites. The dog was euthanized after diagnosis due to the poor prognosis. This is the first report of primary muscular peripheral T-cell lymphoma with large granular lymphocytes and cutaneous involvement in the dog. Despite being a rare presentation, lymphoma must be considered a differential in dogs presenting with a discrete, intramuscular, soft tissue mass.
View Article and Find Full Text PDF

Download full-text PDF

Source
http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/vcp.13021DOI Listing
December 2021

COVID-19 infection in adult patients with hematological malignancies: a European Hematology Association Survey (EPICOVIDEHA).

J Hematol Oncol 2021 10 14;14(1):168. Epub 2021 Oct 14.

Communicable Disease Center, Hamad Medical Corporation, Doha, Qatar.

Background: Patients with hematological malignancies (HM) are at high risk of mortality from SARS-CoV-2 disease 2019 (COVID-19). A better understanding of risk factors for adverse outcomes may improve clinical management in these patients. We therefore studied baseline characteristics of HM patients developing COVID-19 and analyzed predictors of mortality.

Methods: The survey was supported by the Scientific Working Group Infection in Hematology of the European Hematology Association (EHA). Eligible for the analysis were adult patients with HM and laboratory-confirmed COVID-19 observed between March and December 2020.

Results: The study sample includes 3801 cases, represented by lymphoproliferative (mainly non-Hodgkin lymphoma n = 1084, myeloma n = 684 and chronic lymphoid leukemia n = 474) and myeloproliferative malignancies (mainly acute myeloid leukemia n = 497 and myelodysplastic syndromes n = 279). Severe/critical COVID-19 was observed in 63.8% of patients (n = 2425). Overall, 2778 (73.1%) of the patients were hospitalized, 689 (18.1%) of whom were admitted to intensive care units (ICUs). Overall, 1185 patients (31.2%) died. The primary cause of death was COVID-19 in 688 patients (58.1%), HM in 173 patients (14.6%), and a combination of both COVID-19 and progressing HM in 155 patients (13.1%). Highest mortality was observed in acute myeloid leukemia (199/497, 40%) and myelodysplastic syndromes (118/279, 42.3%). The mortality rate significantly decreased between the first COVID-19 wave (March-May 2020) and the second wave (October-December 2020) (581/1427, 40.7% vs. 439/1773, 24.8%, p value < 0.0001). In the multivariable analysis, age, active malignancy, chronic cardiac disease, liver disease, renal impairment, smoking history, and ICU stay correlated with mortality. Acute myeloid leukemia was a higher mortality risk than lymphoproliferative diseases.

Conclusions: This survey confirms that COVID-19 patients with HM are at high risk of lethal complications. However, improved COVID-19 prevention has reduced mortality despite an increase in the number of reported cases.
View Article and Find Full Text PDF

Download full-text PDF

Source
http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s13045-021-01177-0DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8515781PMC
October 2021

A prognostic model for patients with lymphoma and COVID-19: a multicentre cohort study.

Blood Adv 2022 01;6(1):327-338

Hematology, Ospedale San Bortolo, Vicenza, Italy.

Lymphoma represents a heterogeneous hematological malignancy (HM), which is characterized by severe immunosuppression. Patients diagnosed of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) during the course of HM have been described to have poor outcome, with only few reports specifically addressing lymphoma patients. Here, we investigated the clinical behavior and clinical parameters of a large multicenter cohort of adult patients with different lymphoma subtypes, with the aim of identifying predictors of death. The study included 856 patients, of whom 619 were enrolled prospectively in a 1-year frame and were followed-up for a median of 66 days (range 1-395). Patients were managed as outpatient (not-admitted cohort, n = 388) or required hospitalization (n = 468), and median age was 63 years (range 19-94). Overall, the 30- and 100-days mortality was 13% (95% confidence interval (CI), 11% to 15%) and 23% (95% CI, 20% to 27%), respectively. Antilymphoma treatment, including anti-CD20 containing regimens, did not impact survival. Patients with Hodgkin's lymphoma had the more favorable survival, but this was partly related to significantly younger age. The time interval between lymphoma diagnosis and COVID-19 was inversely related to mortality. Multivariable analysis recognized 4 easy-to-use factors (age, gender, lymphocyte, and platelet count) that were associated with risk of death, both in the admitted and in the not-admitted cohort (HR 3.79 and 8.85 for the intermediate- and high-risk group, respectively). Overall, our study shows that patients should not be deprived of the best available treatment of their underlying disease and indicates which patients are at higher risk of death. This study was registered with ClinicalTrials.gov, NCT04352556.
View Article and Find Full Text PDF

Download full-text PDF

Source
http://dx.doi.org/10.1182/bloodadvances.2021005691DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8516438PMC
January 2022

The Impact of Bacterial Biofilms on End-Organ Disease and Mortality in Patients with Hematologic Malignancies Developing a Bloodstream Infection.

Microbiol Spectr 2021 09 18;9(1):e0055021. Epub 2021 Aug 18.

Microbiology and Virology, San Gallicano Dermatological Institute, IRCCS, Rome, Italy.

Bacterial bloodstream infection (BSI) represents a significant complication in hematologic patients. However, factors leading to BSI and progression to end-organ disease and death are understood only partially. The study analyzes host and microbial risk factors and assesses their impact on BSI development and mortality. A total of 96 patients with hematological malignancies and BSI were included in the study. Host-associated risk factors and all causes of mortality were analyzed by multivariable logistic regression at 30 days after BSI onset of the first neutropenic episode. The multidrug-resistant profile and biofilm production of bacterial isolates from primary BSI were included in the analysis. Median age was 60 years. The underlying diagnoses were acute leukemia (55%), lymphoma (31%), and myeloma (14%). A total of 96 bacterial isolates were isolated from BSIs. Escherichia coli was the most common isolate (29.2%). Multidrug-resistant bacteria caused 10.4% of bacteremia episodes. Weak biofilm producers (WBPs) were significantly ( < 0.0001) more abundant (72.2%) than strong biofilm producers (SBPs) (27.8%). Specifically, SBPs were 7.1% for E. coli, 93.7% for P. aeruginosa, 50% for K. pneumoniae, and 3.8% for coagulase-negative staphylococci. Mortality at day 30 was 8.3%, and all deaths were attributable to Gram-negative bacteria. About 22% of all BSIs were catheter-related BSIs (CRBSIs) and mostly caused by Gram-positive bacteria (79.0%). However, CRBSIs were not correlated with biofilm production levels ( = 0.75) and did not significantly impact the mortality rate ( = 0.62). Conversely, SBP bacteria were an independent risk factor ( = 0.018) for developing an end-organ disease. In addition, multivariate analysis indicated that SBPs ( = 0.013) and multidrug-resistant bacteria ( = 0.006) were independent risk factors associated with 30-day mortality. SBP and multidrug-resistant (MDR) bacteria caused a limited fraction of BSI in these patients. However, when present, SBPs raise the risk of end-organ disease and, together with an MDR phenotype, can independently and significantly concur at increasing the risk of death. Bacterial bloodstream infection (BSI) is a significant complication in hematologic patients and is associated with high mortality rates. Despite improvements in BSI management, factors leading to sepsis are understood only partially. This study analyzes the contribution of bacterial biofilm on BSI development and mortality in patients with hematological malignancies (HMs). In this work, weak biofilm producers (WBPs) were significantly more abundant than strong biofilm producers (SBPs). However, when present, SBP bacteria raised the risk of end-organ disease in HM patients developing a BSI. Besides, SBPs, together with a multidrug-resistant (MDR) phenotype, independently and significantly concur at increasing the risk of death in HM patients. The characterization of microbial biofilms may provide key information for the diagnosis and therapeutic management of BSI and may help develop novel strategies to either eradicate or control harmful microbial biofilms.
View Article and Find Full Text PDF

Download full-text PDF

Source
http://dx.doi.org/10.1128/Spectrum.00550-21DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8552682PMC
September 2021

Lower response to BNT162b2 vaccine in patients with myelofibrosis compared to polycythemia vera and essential thrombocythemia.

J Hematol Oncol 2021 07 29;14(1):119. Epub 2021 Jul 29.

Hematology Unit, Department of Research and Clinical Oncology, IRCCS Regina Elena National Cancer Institute, Via Elio Chianesi 53, 00144, Rome, Italy.

In a population of 42 Philadelphia negative myeloproliferative neoplasm patients, all on systemic active treatment, the likelihood of responding to anti-SARS-CoV-2 BNT162b2 vaccine at 2 weeks after the second dose was significantly lower in the ten patients with myelofibrosis compared to the 32 with essential thrombocythemia (n = 17) and polycythemia vera (n = 15) grouped together, both in terms of neutralizing anti-SARS-CoV-2 IgG titers and seroprotection rates (32.47 AU/mL vs 217.97 AU/mL, p = 0.003 and 60% vs 93.8%, p = 0.021, respectively). Ruxolitinib, which was the ongoing treatment in five patients with myelofibrosis and three with polycythemia vera, may be implicated in reducing vaccine immunogenicity (p = 0.076), though large prospective study is needed to address this issue.
View Article and Find Full Text PDF

Download full-text PDF

Source
http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s13045-021-01130-1DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8319901PMC
July 2021

MiR-22, a serum predictor of poor outcome and therapy response in diffuse large B-cell lymphoma patients.

Br J Haematol 2021 11 28;195(3):399-404. Epub 2021 Jul 28.

Department of Research, Advanced Diagnostics and Technological Innovation, Oncogenomic and Epigenetic Unit, Translational Research Area, IRCCS Regina Elena National Cancer Institute, Rome, Italy.

Diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (DLBCL) is an aggressive, heterogeneous neoplasm where prognostication and therapeutic decision are challenging. The available prognostic tools are not able to identify all patients refractory to treatment. MicroRNAs, small RNAs frequently deregulated in cancer, stably circulate in biofluids, representing interesting candidates for non-invasive biomarkers. Here we validated serum miR-22, an evolutionarily conserved microRNA, as a prognostic/predictive biomarker in DLBCL. Moreover, we found that its expression and release from DLBCL cells are related to therapy response and adversely affect cell proliferation. These results suggest that miR-22 is a promising complementary or even independent non-invasive biomarker for DLBCL management.
View Article and Find Full Text PDF

Download full-text PDF

Source
http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/bjh.17734DOI Listing
November 2021

COVID-19 elicits an impaired antibody response against SARS-CoV-2 in patients with haematological malignancies.

Br J Haematol 2021 11 16;195(3):371-377. Epub 2021 Jul 16.

Università di Torino, Azienda Ospedaliera Città della Salute e della Scienza, Alessandria, Italy.

COVID-19 is associated with high mortality in patients with haematological malignancies (HM) and rate of seroconversion is unknown. The ITA-HEMA-COV project (NCT04352556) investigated patterns of seroconversion for SARS-CoV-2 IgG in patients with HMs. A total of 237 patients, SARS-CoV-2 PCR-positive with at least one SARS-CoV-2 IgG test performed during their care, entered the analysis. Among these, 62 (26·2%) had myeloid, 121 (51·1%) lymphoid and 54 (22·8%) plasma cell neoplasms. Overall, 69% of patients (164 of 237) had detectable IgG SARS-CoV-2 serum antibodies. Serologically negative patients (31%, 73 of 237) were evenly distributed across patients with myeloid, lymphoid and plasma cell neoplasms. In the multivariable logistic regression, chemoimmunotherapy [odds ratio (OR), 3·42; 95% confidence interval (CI), 1·04-11·21; P = 0·04] was associated with a lower rate of seroconversion. This effect did not decline after 180 days from treatment withdrawal (OR, 0·35; 95% CI: 0·11-1·13; P = 0·08). This study demonstrates a low rate of seroconversion in HM patients and indicates that treatment-mediated immune dysfunction is the main driver. As a consequence, we expect a low rate of seroconversion after vaccination and thus we suggest testing the efficacy of seroconversion in HM patients.
View Article and Find Full Text PDF

Download full-text PDF

Source
http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/bjh.17704DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8444788PMC
November 2021

Fifth-week immunogenicity and safety of anti-SARS-CoV-2 BNT162b2 vaccine in patients with multiple myeloma and myeloproliferative malignancies on active treatment: preliminary data from a single institution.

J Hematol Oncol 2021 05 17;14(1):81. Epub 2021 May 17.

Hematology Unit, Department of Research and Clinical Oncology, IRCCS Regina Elena National Cancer Institute, Via Elio Chianesi 53, 00144, Rome, Italy.

Background: Safety and immunogenicity of BNT162b2 mRNA vaccine are unknown in hematological patients; both were evaluated prospectively in 42 patients with multiple myeloma (MM) and 50 with myeloproliferative malignancies (MPM) (20 chronic myeloid leukemias and 30 myeloproliferative neoplasms), all of them on active anti-cancer treatment, in comparison with 36 elderly controls not suffering from cancer. Subjects serologically and/or molecularly (by nasal/throat swab) positives at basal for SARS-CoV-2 were excluded. Primary endpoint was to compare titers of neutralizing anti-SARS-CoV-2 IgG and seroprotection rates among the cohorts at 3 and 5 weeks from first dose.

Methods: Titration was done using LIAISON® SARS-CoV-2 S1/S2 IgG test, a quantitative chemiluminescent immunoassay approved by FDA on the basis of robust evidences of concordance (94.4%) between the test at cutoff of 15 AU/mL and the Plaque Reduction Neutralization Test 90% at 1:40 ratio. Cutoff of 15 AU/mL was assumed to discriminate responders to vaccination with a protective titer. Cohorts were compared using Fisher' exact test and the Mann-Whitney test as appropriated. Geometric mean concentrations (GMCs), geometric mean ratios and response rates after 1st and 2nd dose were compared in each cohort by Wilcoxon and McNemar tests, respectively.

Results: At 5 weeks, GMC of IgG in elderly controls was 353.3 AU/mL versus 106.7 in MM (p = 0.003) and 172.9 in MPM patients (p = 0.049). Seroprotection rate at cutoff of 15 AU/mL was 100% in controls compared to 78.6% in MM (p = 0.003) and 88% in MPM patients (p = 0.038). In terms of logarithm of IgG titer, in a generalized multivariate linear model, no gender effect was observed (p = 0.913), while there was a significant trend toward lower titers by increasing age (p < 0.001) and in disease cohorts with respect to controls (MM: p < 0.001 and MPM: p < 0.001). An ongoing treatment without daratumumab was associated with higher likelihood of response in MM patients (p = 0.003). No swabs resulted positive on each time point. No safety concerns were observed.

Conclusions: BNT162b2 has demonstrated to be immunogenic at different extent among the cohorts. Response was 88% and robust in MPM patients. MM patients responded significantly less, particularly those on anti-CD38-based treatment. These latter patients should be advised to maintain masks and social distancing regardless of vaccination status, and their cohabiting family members need to be vaccinated in order to reduce the risk of contagion from the family. Additional boosters and titer monitoring could be considered. Trial registration Study was formally approved by the IRCCS Central Ethical Committee of Regione Lazio in January 2021 (Prot. N-1463/21).
View Article and Find Full Text PDF

Download full-text PDF

Source
http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s13045-021-01090-6DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8128283PMC
May 2021

Pharyngeal Microbial Signatures Are Predictive of the Risk of Fungal Pneumonia in Hematologic Patients.

Infect Immun 2021 07 15;89(8):e0010521. Epub 2021 Jul 15.

Department of Medicine and Surgery, University of Perugia, Perugia, Italy.

The ability to predict invasive fungal infections (IFI) in patients with hematological malignancies is fundamental for successful therapy. Although gut dysbiosis is known to occur in hematological patients, whether airway dysbiosis also contributes to the risk of IFI has not been investigated. Nasal and oropharyngeal swabs were collected for functional microbiota characterization in 173 patients with hematological malignancies recruited in a multicenter, prospective, observational study and stratified according to the risk of developing IFI. A lower microbial richness and evenness were found in the pharyngeal microbiota of high-risk patients that were associated with a distinct taxonomic and metabolic profile. A murine model of IFI provided biologic plausibility for the finding that loss of protective anaerobes, such as and , along with an apparent restricted availability of tryptophan, is causally linked to the risk of IFI in hematologic patients and indicates avenues for antimicrobial stewardship and metabolic reequilibrium in IFI.
View Article and Find Full Text PDF

Download full-text PDF

Source
http://dx.doi.org/10.1128/IAI.00105-21DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8281212PMC
July 2021

Choosing Antifungals for the Midostaurin-Treated Patient: Does CYP3A4 Outweigh Recommendations? A Brief Insight from Real Life.

Chemotherapy 2021 5;66(1-2):47-52. Epub 2021 Mar 5.

Clinical Pharmacology Unit, Campus Bio-Medico University Hospital, Rome, Italy.

Introduction: Patients treated with midostaurin and chemotherapy are at risk of invasive fungal disease. Prophylactic posaconazole is recommended for these patients, but posaconazole strongly inhibits the CYP3A4 isozyme that metabolizes midostaurin. Posaconazole therefore introduces a risk of patient's overexposure to midostaurin.

Methods: Blood samples were obtained from 4 patients treated with midostaurin for newly diagnosed FLT3-mutAML. Patients had received a concomitant treatment with posaconazole, isavuconazole, or micafungin, respectively. All blood samples were drawn before daily dose administration of midostaurin.

Results: Posaconazole caused a ≥8-fold increase of midostaurin plasma levels at through, which was accompanied by a decreased plasma exposure to O-demethylated or hydroxylated midostaurin metabolites. We also show that hematologists react to risk perception by replacing posaco-nazole with antifungals like micafungin or isavuconazole, which lack a strong inhibition of CYP3A4 and fail to modify midostaurin pharmacokinetics but are not formally recommended in these settings.

Discussion: In real-life scenarios, concerns about CYP3A4 inhibition may outweigh compliance with recommendations. Large studies are needed to survey the risk:benefit of hematologist's decision to replace posaconazole with other antifungals.
View Article and Find Full Text PDF

Download full-text PDF

Source
http://dx.doi.org/10.1159/000513989DOI Listing
September 2021

Considerations on antimicrobial prophylaxis in patients with lymphoproliferative diseases: A SEIFEM group position paper.

Crit Rev Oncol Hematol 2021 Feb 31;158:103203. Epub 2020 Dec 31.

Fondazione Policlinico Universitario A. Gemelli - IRCCS - Istituto di Malattie Infettive -Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore, Livio, Italy. Electronic address:

The therapeutic armamentarium for the treatment of patients with lymphoproliferative diseases has grown considerably over the most recent years, including a large use of new immunotherapeutic agents. As a consequence, the epidemiology of infectious complications in this group of patients is poorly documented, and even more importantly, the potential benefit of antimicrobial prophylaxis remains a matter of debate when considering the harmful effect from the emergence of multidrug resistant pathogens. The present position paper is addressed to all hematologists treating patients affected by lymphoproliferative malignancies with the aim to provide clinicians with a useful tool for the prevention of bacterial, fungal and viral infections.
View Article and Find Full Text PDF

Download full-text PDF

Source
http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.critrevonc.2020.103203DOI Listing
February 2021

Biofilm Production by Carbapenem-Resistant Significantly Increases the Risk of Death in Oncological Patients.

Front Cell Infect Microbiol 2020 10;10:561741. Epub 2020 Dec 10.

Microbiology and Virology, San Gallicano Dermatological Institute IRCCS, Rome, Italy.

Carbapenem-resistant (CRKP) is a prominent cause of nosocomial infections associated with high rates of morbidity and mortality, particularly in oncological patients. The hypermucoviscous (HMV) phenotype and biofilm production are key factors for CRKP colonization and persistence in the host. This study aims at exploring the impact of CRKP virulence factors on morbidity and mortality in oncological patients. A total of 86 CRKP were collected between January 2015 and December 2019. Carbapenem resistance-associated genes, antibiotic susceptibility, the HMV phenotype, and biofilm production were evaluated. The median age of the patients was 71 years (range 40-96 years). Clinically infected patients were 53 (61.6%), while CRKP colonized individuals were 33 (38.4%). The most common infectious manifestations were sepsis (43.4%) and pneumonia (18.9%), while rectal surveillance swabs were the most common site of CRKP isolation (81.8%) in colonized patients. The leading mechanism of carbapenem resistance was sustained by the KPC gene (96.5%), followed by OXA-48 (2.3%) and VIM (1.2%). Phenotypic CRKP characterization indicated that 55.8% of the isolates were strong biofilm-producers equally distributed between infected (54.2%) and colonized (45.8%) patients. The HMV phenotype was found in 22.1% of the isolates, which showed a significant (P<0.0001) decrease in biofilm production as compared to non-HMV strains. The overall mortality rate calculated on the group of infected patients was 35.8%. In univariate analysis, pneumoniae significantly correlated with death (OR 5.09; CI 95% 1.08-24.02; P=0.04). The non-HMV phenotype (OR 4.67; CI 95% 1.13-19.24; P=0.03) and strong biofilm-producing strains (OR 5.04; CI95% 1.39-18.25; P=0.01) were also associated with increased CRKP infection-related mortality. Notably, the multivariate analysis showed that infection with strong biofilm-producing CRKP was an independent predictor of mortality (OR 6.30; CI 95% 1.392-18.248; P=0.004). CRKP infection presents a high risk of death among oncological patients, particularly when pneumoniae and sepsis are present. In infected patients, the presence of strong biofilm-producing CRKP significantly increases the risk of death. Thus, the assessment of biofilm production may provide a key element in supporting the clinical management of high-risk oncological patients with CRKP infection.
View Article and Find Full Text PDF

Download full-text PDF

Source
http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fcimb.2020.561741DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7759150PMC
June 2021

Diffuse large B-cell lymphoma: Time to focus on circulating blood nucleic acids?

Blood Rev 2021 05 10;47:100776. Epub 2020 Nov 10.

Department of Research, Advanced Diagnostics and Technological Innovation, Genomic and Epigenetic Unit, Translational Research Area, IRCCS Regina Elena National Cancer Institute, Via Chianesi 53, Rome, Italy. Electronic address:

Diffuse large B-cell lymphoma (DLBCL) is a heterogeneous neoplasm with diverse genetic abnormalities and outcomes. To date, DLBCL is invasively diagnosed by tissue biopsy and few biomarkers are available to predict patient outcome, treatment response and progression. The identification of patient-specific biomarkers would allow a "personalized medicine" approach for DLBCL patients. In this regard, "liquid biopsies" hold great promise, capturing the entire genetic landscape of the tumour and allowing a rapid and dynamic management of cancer. Liquid biopsy studies particularly focus on cell-free nucleic acids, such as cell-free DNA (cfDNA) and microRNAs, which are easy to collect and analyse. In accordance with the PRISMA criteria, we performed a systematic review on circulating nucleic acids as potential biomarkers for DLBCL management. The results suggest that combining information from the genetic (cfDNA) and epigenetic (microRNAs) landscape of the disease could lead to developing an integrated network of non-invasive biomarkers for the better management of DLBCL.
View Article and Find Full Text PDF

Download full-text PDF

Source
http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.blre.2020.100776DOI Listing
May 2021

Infections in patients with lymphoproliferative diseases treated with targeted agents: SEIFEM multicentric retrospective study.

Br J Haematol 2021 04 15;193(2):316-324. Epub 2020 Oct 15.

Institute of Hematology, Fondazione Policlinico A. Gemelli - IRCCS -Università Cattolica S. Cuore, Roma, Italy.

We describe the opportunistic infections occurring in 362 patients with lymphoproliferative disorders treated with ibrutinib and idelalisib in clinical practice. Overall, 108 of 362 patients (29·8%) developed infections, for a total of 152 events. Clinically defined infections (CDI) were 49·3% (75/152) and microbiologically defined infections (MDI) were 50·7% (77/152). Among 250 patients treated with ibrutinib, 28·8% (72/250) experienced one or more infections, for a total of 104 episodes. MDI were 49% (51/104). Bacterial infections were 66·7% (34/51), viral 19·6% (10/51) and invasive fungal diseases (IFD) 13·7% (7/51). Among the 112 patients treated with idelalisib, 32·1% (36/112) experienced one or more infections, for a total of 48 episodes. MDI were 54·2% (26/48). Bacterial infections were 34·6% (9/26), viral 61·5% (16/26) and IFD 3·8% (1/26). With ibrutinib, the rate of bacterial infections was significantly higher compared to idelalisib (66·7% vs. 34·6%; P = 0·007), while viral infections were most frequent in idelalisib (61·5% vs. 19·6%; P < 0·001). Although a higher rate of IFD was observed in patients treated with ibrutinib, the difference was not statistically significant (13·7% vs. 3·8% respectively; P = 0·18). Bacteria are the most frequent infections with ibrutinib, while viruses are most frequently involved with idelalisib.
View Article and Find Full Text PDF

Download full-text PDF

Source
http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/bjh.17145DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8246914PMC
April 2021

Characterization of FLT3-ITD acute myeloid leukemia: molecular profiling of leukemic precursor cells.

Blood Cancer J 2020 08 25;10(8):85. Epub 2020 Aug 25.

Department of Biomedicine and Prevention, University of Tor Vergata, Rome, Italy.

Acute myeloid leukemia (AML) with FLT3-ITD mutations (FLT3-ITD) remains a therapeutic challenge, with a still high relapse rate, despite targeted treatment with tyrosine kinase inhibitors. In this disease, the CD34/CD123/CD25/CD99+ leukemic precursor cells (LPCs) phenotype predicts for FLT3-ITD-positivity. The aim of this study was to characterize the distribution of FLT3-ITD mutation in different progenitor cell subsets to shed light on the subclonal architecture of FLT3-ITD AML. Using high-speed cell sorting, we sequentially purified LPCs and CD34+ progenitors in samples from patients with FLT3-ITD AML (n = 12). A higher FLT3-ITD load was observed within CD34/CD123/CD25/CD99+ LPCs, as compared to CD34+ progenitors (CD123+/-,CD25-,CD99low/-) (p = 0.0005) and mononuclear cells (MNCs) (p < 0.0001). This was associated with significantly increased CD99 mean fluorescence intensity in LPCs. Significantly higher FLT3-ITD burden was also observed in LPCs of AML patients with a small FLT3-ITD clones at diagnosis. On the contrary, the mutation burden of other myeloid genes was similar in MNCs, highly purified LPCs and/or CD34+ progenitors. Treatment with an anti-CD99 mAb was cytotoxic on LPCs in two patients, whereas there was no effect on CD34+ cells from healthy donors. Our study shows that FLT3-ITD mutations occur early in LPCs, which represent the leukemic reservoir. CD99 may represent a new therapeutic target in FLT3-ITD AML.
View Article and Find Full Text PDF

Download full-text PDF

Source
http://dx.doi.org/10.1038/s41408-020-00352-9DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7447750PMC
August 2020

Further Analytical, Pharmacokinetic, and Clinical Observations on Low-Dose Ponatinib in Patients with Philadelphia Chromosome-Positive Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia.

Chemotherapy 2020 21;65(1-2):35-41. Epub 2020 Aug 21.

Drug Sciences, Department of Medicine and Center for Integrated Research, University Campus Bio-Medico, Rome, Italy.

Introduction: Ponatinib (PNT) is a tyrosine kinase inhibitor approved for treating patients with Philadelphia chromosome-positive acute lymphoblastic leukemia (Ph + ALL), or chronic myeloid leukemia, resistant or intolerant to other tyrosine kinase inhibitor or showing T315I mutation of BCR-ABL. Unfortunately, the clinical use of PNT is limited by the possible occurrence of vascular occlusive events. The incidence of vascular events seems to correlate with PNT dose intensity and plasma exposure. Dose reductions from 45 mg to 30 or 15 mg/day are increasingly considered to improve PNT safety but a plasma threshold of ∼40 nM must be achieved to ensure that antileukemic activity is preserved. Therapeutic drug monitoring (TDM) would be appropriate for patients treated by PNT. We, therefore, developed and validated a liquid chromatography tandem mass spectrometry (HPLC-MS/MS) assay to measure PNT plasma levels.

Methods: PNT and its deuterated internal standard were extracted from human plasma by one-step protein precipitation. PNT was separated and quantified by HPLC-MS/MS operating in the multiple reaction monitoring acquisition mode.

Results: The method was linear from 9.4 to 940 nM PNT. Limits of detection and lower limits of quantification (LLOQ) were, respectively, 1 and 9.4 nM. Selectivity, sensitivity, matrix effect, short-, and long-term stability met criteria of international guidelines for bioanalytical method validation. Intra- and inter-day accuracy and precision were calculated on 4 different concentrations (QCLow, QCMedium, QCHigh, and LLOQ), with all values being <15%. The method was successfully probed in leukemia Ph + ALL patients to show that PNT doses <45 mg/day caused lower plasma exposure but still achieved PNT levels at or above the 40 nM threshold.

Conclusions: We developed a highly sensitive and selective HPLC-MS/MS method to quantify PNT in human plasma. This method might be used for TDM and to guide dose reductions if unnecessary high PNT levels are detected in a patient.
View Article and Find Full Text PDF

Download full-text PDF

Source
http://dx.doi.org/10.1159/000509639DOI Listing
May 2021

Clinical characteristics and risk factors associated with COVID-19 severity in patients with haematological malignancies in Italy: a retrospective, multicentre, cohort study.

Lancet Haematol 2020 Oct 13;7(10):e737-e745. Epub 2020 Aug 13.

Hematology, University Hospital Sant'Andrea, Sapienza, Rome, Italy; Department of Clinical and Molecular Medicine, Sapienza, University of Rome, Rome, Italy.

Background: Several small studies on patients with COVID-19 and haematological malignancies are available showing a high mortality in this population. The Italian Hematology Alliance on COVID-19 aimed to collect data from adult patients with haematological malignancies who required hospitalisation for COVID-19.

Methods: This multicentre, retrospective, cohort study included adult patients (aged ≥18 years) with diagnosis of a WHO-defined haematological malignancy admitted to 66 Italian hospitals between Feb 25 and May 18, 2020, with laboratory-confirmed and symptomatic COVID-19. Data cutoff for this analysis was June 22, 2020. The primary outcome was mortality and evaluation of potential predictive parameters of mortality. We calculated standardised mortality ratios between observed death in the study cohort and expected death by applying stratum-specific mortality rates of the Italian population with COVID-19 and an Italian cohort of 31 993 patients with haematological malignancies without COVID-19 (data up to March 1, 2019). Multivariable Cox proportional hazards model was used to identify factors associated with overall survival. This study is registered with ClinicalTrials.gov, NCT04352556, and the prospective part of the study is ongoing.

Findings: We enrolled 536 patients with a median follow-up of 20 days (IQR 10-34) at data cutoff, 85 (16%) of whom were managed as outpatients. 440 (98%) of 451 hospitalised patients completed their hospital course (were either discharged alive or died). 198 (37%) of 536 patients died. When compared with the general Italian population with COVID-19, the standardised mortality ratio was 2·04 (95% CI 1·77-2·34) in our whole study cohort and 3·72 (2·86-4·64) in individuals younger than 70 years. When compared with the non-COVID-19 cohort with haematological malignancies, the standardised mortality ratio was 41·3 (38·1-44·9). Older age (hazard ratio 1·03, 95% CI 1·01-1·05); progressive disease status (2·10, 1·41-3·12); diagnosis of acute myeloid leukaemia (3·49, 1·56-7·81), indolent non-Hodgin lymphoma (2·19, 1·07-4·48), aggressive non-Hodgkin lymphoma (2·56, 1·34-4·89), or plasma cell neoplasms (2·48, 1·31-4·69), and severe or critical COVID-19 (4·08, 2·73-6·09) were associated with worse overall survival.

Interpretation: This study adds to the evidence that patients with haematological malignancies have worse outcomes than both the general population with COVID-19 and patients with haematological malignancies without COVID-19. The high mortality among patients with haematological malignancies hospitalised with COVID-19 highlights the need for aggressive infection prevention strategies, at least until effective vaccination or treatment strategies are available.

Funding: Associazione italiana contro le leucemie, linfomi e mieloma-Varese Onlus.
View Article and Find Full Text PDF

Download full-text PDF

Source
http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/S2352-3026(20)30251-9DOI Listing
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7426107PMC
October 2020

Candidaemia in haematological malignancy patients from a SEIFEM study: Epidemiological patterns according to antifungal prophylaxis.

Mycoses 2020 Sep 3;63(9):900-910. Epub 2020 Jul 3.

Dipartimento di Diagnostica per Immagini, Radioterapia Oncologica ed Ematologia, Fondazione Policlinico Universitario A. Gemelli IRCCS, Roma, Italy.

Background: Candidaemia is an important infectious complication for haematological malignancy patients. Antifungal prophylaxis reduces the incidence of candidaemia but may be associated with breakthrough candidaemia.

Objective: To analyse the Candida species' distribution and relative antifungal susceptibility profiles of candidaemia episodes in relation to the use of antifungal prophylaxis among Italian SEIFEM haematology centres.

Methodology: This multicentre retrospective observational SEIFEM study included 133 single-species candidaemia episodes of haematological malignancy patients for whom antifungal susceptibility testing results of blood Candida isolates were available between 2011 and 2015. Each participating centre provided both clinical and microbiological data.

Results: Non-Candida albicans Candida (NCAC) species were the mostly isolated species (89, 66.9%), which accounted for C parapsilosis (35, 26.3%), C glabrata (16, 12.0%), C krusei (14, 10.5%), C tropicalis (13, 9.8%) and uncommon species (11, 8.3%). C albicans caused the remaining 44 (33.1%) episodes. Excluding 2 C albicans isolates, 23 of 25 fluconazole-resistant isolates were NCAC species (14 C krusei, 6 C glabrata, 2 C parapsilosis and 1 C tropicalis). Fifty-six (42.1%) of 133 patients developed breakthrough candidaemia. Systemic antifungal prophylaxis consisted of azoles, especially fluconazole and posaconazole, in 50 (89.3%) of 56 patients in whom a breakthrough candidaemia occurred. Interestingly, all these patients tended to develop a C krusei infection (10/56, P = .02) or a fluconazole-resistant isolate's infection (14/50, P = .04) compared to patients (4/77 and 10/77, respectively) who did not have a breakthrough candidaemia.

Conclusions: Optimisation of prophylactic strategies is necessary to limit the occurrence of breakthrough candidaemia and, importantly, the emergence of fluconazole-resistant NCAC isolates' infections in haematological malignancy patients.
View Article and Find Full Text PDF

Download full-text PDF

Source
http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/myc.13130DOI Listing
September 2020
-->