Victoria Fernandez

Hospital Clínico Universitario de Valladolid, Valladolid, Castille and León, Spain

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Publications (5)15.59 Total impact

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    ABSTRACT: Little is known on the participation of immunoglobulin isotypes and subclasses in the pathogenesis of the severe disease caused by the pandemic influenza virus (influenza A(H1N1)pdm09). (1) To evaluate the association between plasma levels of IgG1, IgG2, IgG3, IgG4, IgA, IgM, IgE and outcome in patients with severe pandemic influenza. (2) To evaluate the association between immunoglobulin and cytokine levels in these patients. 40 critically ill patients with community acquired pneumonia and influenza A(H1N1)pdm09 infection were recruited from November 2010 to February 2011. Plasma samples were collected during the first 24h following admission to the ICU. Immunoglobulins and 17 major cytokines were profiled in plasma. 15 patients died (37.5%). When the association between clinical variables and prognosis was assessed, prior immunosuppression, APACHE II score, levels of IgG2 and levels of IgM were associated with outcome in a univariate Cox regression analysis. Kaplan Meier analysis showed that patients with levels of IgG2 and IgM<59 and<58mg/dl respectively died earlier. Multivariate Cox regression analysis showed that APACHE II score and levels of IgM were the best predictors of outcome, being levels of IgM a protective factor against mortality. IgM was the immunoglobulin showing the largest number of negative correlations with cytokine levels. Our results support a central role of IgM in preventing uncontrolled inflammatory response and mortality in severe pandemic influenza. Early assessment of IgM could contribute to guide clinical decisions in these patients.
    Journal of clinical virology: the official publication of the Pan American Society for Clinical Virology 09/2013; · 3.12 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Gene expression profiling (GEP) in cells obtained from peripheral blood has shown that this is a very useful approach for biomarker discovery and for studying molecular pathogenesis of prevalent diseases. While there is limited literature available on gene expression markers associated with Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD), the transcriptomic picture associated with critical respiratory illness in this disease is not known at the present moment. By using Agilent microarray chips, we have profiled gene expression signatures in the whole blood of 28 COPD patients hospitalized with different degrees of respiratory compromise.12 of them needed of admission to the ICU, whilst 16 were admitted to the Respiratory Medicine Service. GeneSpring GX 11.0 software was used for performing statistical comparisons of transcript levels between ICU and non-ICU patients. Ingenuity pathway analysis 8.5 (IPA) and the Kyoto Encyclopedia of Genes and Genomes (KEGG) were used to select, annotate and visualize genes by function and pathway (gene ontology). T-test showed evidence of 1501 genes differentially expressed between ICU and non-ICU patients. IPA and KEGG analysis of the most representative biological functions revealed that ICU patients had increased levels of neutrophil gene transcripts, being [cathepsin G (CTSG)], [elastase, neutrophil expressed (ELANE)], [proteinase 3 (PRTN3)], [myeloperoxidase (MPO)], [cathepsin D (CTSD)], [defensin, alpha 3, neutrophil-specific (DEFA3)], azurocidin 1 (AZU1)], and [bactericidal/permeability-increasing protein (BPI)] the most representative ones. Proteins codified by these genes form part of the azurophilic granules of neutrophils and are involved in both antimicrobial defence and tissue damage. This "neutrophil signature" was paralleled by the necessity of advanced respiratory and vital support, and the presence of bacterial infection. Study of transcriptomic signatures in blood suggests an essential role of neutrophil proteases in COPD patients with critical respiratory illness. Measurement and modulation of the expression of these genes could present an option for clinical monitoring and treatment of severe COPD exacerbations.
    BMC Research Notes 08/2012; 5:401.
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    ABSTRACT: Severe disease caused by 2009 pandemic influenza A/H1N1virus is characterized by the presence of hypercytokinemia. The origin of the exacerbated cytokine response is unclear. As observed previously, uncontrolled influenza virus replication could strongly influence cytokine production. The objective of the present study was to evaluate the relationship between host cytokine responses and viral levels in pandemic influenza critically ill patients. Twenty three patients admitted to the ICU with primary viral pneumonia were included in this study. A quantitative PCR based method targeting the M1 influenza gene was developed to quantify pharyngeal viral load. In addition, by using a multiplex based assay, we systematically evaluated host cytokine responses to the viral infection at admission to the ICU. Correlation studies between cytokine levels and viral load were done by calculating the Spearman correlation coefficient. Fifteen patients needed of intubation and ventilation, while eight did not need of mechanical ventilation during ICU hospitalization. Viral load in pharyngeal swabs was 300 fold higher in the group of patients with the worst respiratory condition at admission to the ICU. Pharyngeal viral load directly correlated with plasma levels of the pro-inflammatory cytokines IL-6, IL-12p70, IFN-γ, the chemotactic factors MIP-1β, GM-CSF, the angiogenic mediator VEGF and also of the immuno-modulatory cytokine IL-1ra (p < 0.05). Correlation studies demonstrated also the existence of a significant positive association between the levels of these mediators, evidencing that they are simultaneously regulated in response to the virus. Severe respiratory disease caused by the 2009 pandemic influenza virus is characterized by the existence of a direct association between viral replication and host cytokine response, revealing a potential pathogenic link with the severe disease caused by other influenza subtypes such as H5N1.
    BMC Infectious Diseases 08/2011; 11:232. · 3.03 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Pandemic A/H1N1/2009 influenza causes severe lower respiratory complications in rare cases. The association between host immune responses and clinical outcome in severe cases is unknown. We utilized gene expression, cytokine profiles and generation of antibody responses following hospitalization in 19 critically ill patients with primary pandemic A/H1N1/2009 influenza pneumonia for identifying host immune responses associated with clinical outcome. Ingenuity pathway analysis 8.5 (IPA) (Ingenuity Systems, Redwood City, CA) was used to select, annotate and visualize genes by function and pathway (gene ontology). IPA analysis identified those canonical pathways differentially expressed (P < 0.05) between comparison groups. Hierarchical clustering of those genes differentially expressed between groups by IPA analysis was performed using BRB-Array Tools v.3.8.1. The majority of patients were characterized by the presence of comorbidities and the absence of immunosuppressive conditions. pH1N1 specific antibody production was observed around day 9 from disease onset and defined an early period of innate immune response and a late period of adaptive immune response to the virus. The most severe patients (n = 12) showed persistence of viral secretion. Seven of the most severe patients died. During the late phase, the most severe patient group had impaired expression of a number of genes participating in adaptive immune responses when compared to less severe patients. These genes were involved in antigen presentation, B-cell development, T-helper cell differentiation, CD28, granzyme B signaling, apoptosis and protein ubiquitination. Patients with the poorest outcomes were characterized by proinflammatory hypercytokinemia, along with elevated levels of immunosuppressory cytokines (interleukin (IL)-10 and IL-1ra) in serum. Our findings suggest an impaired development of adaptive immunity in the most severe cases of pandemic influenza, leading to an unremitting cycle of viral replication and innate cytokine-chemokine release. Interruption of this deleterious cycle may improve disease outcome.
    Critical care (London, England) 01/2010; 14(5):R167. · 4.72 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Human host immune response following infection with the new variant of A/H1N1 pandemic influenza virus (nvH1N1) is poorly understood. We utilize here systemic cytokine and antibody levels in evaluating differences in early immune response in both mild and severe patients infected with nvH1N1. We profiled 29 cytokines and chemokines and evaluated the haemagglutination inhibition activity as quantitative and qualitative measurements of host immune responses in serum obtained during the first five days after symptoms onset, in two cohorts of nvH1N1 infected patients. Severe patients required hospitalization (n = 20), due to respiratory insufficiency (10 of them were admitted to the intensive care unit), while mild patients had exclusively flu-like symptoms (n = 15). A group of healthy donors was included as control (n = 15). Differences in levels of mediators between groups were assessed by using the non parametric U-Mann Whitney test. Association between variables was determined by calculating the Spearman correlation coefficient. Viral load was performed in serum by using real-time PCR targeting the neuraminidase gene. Increased levels of innate-immunity mediators (IP-10, MCP-1, MIP-1beta), and the absence of anti-nvH1N1 antibodies, characterized the early response to nvH1N1 infection in both hospitalized and mild patients. High systemic levels of type-II interferon (IFN-gamma) and also of a group of mediators involved in the development of T-helper 17 (IL-8, IL-9, IL-17, IL-6) and T-helper 1 (TNF-alpha, IL-15, IL-12p70) responses were exclusively found in hospitalized patients. IL-15, IL-12p70, IL-6 constituted a hallmark of critical illness in our study. A significant inverse association was found between IL-6, IL-8 and PaO2 in critical patients. While infection with the nvH1N1 induces a typical innate response in both mild and severe patients, severe disease with respiratory involvement is characterized by early secretion of Th17 and Th1 cytokines usually associated with cell mediated immunity but also commonly linked to the pathogenesis of autoimmune/inflammatory diseases. The exact role of Th1 and Th17 mediators in the evolution of nvH1N1 mild and severe disease merits further investigation as to the detrimental or beneficial role these cytokines play in severe illness.
    Critical care (London, England) 12/2009; 13(6):R201. · 4.72 Impact Factor