A. Goc, W. Sumera, M. Rath, A. Niedzwiecki
European Journal of Microbiology and Immunology, June 2023
SARS-CoV-2 infection still poses health threats especially to older and immunocompromised individuals. New emerging variants of SARS-CoV-2, including Omicron and Arcturus, have been challenging the effectiveness of humoral immunity resulting from repeated vaccination and infection. With recent study implying a wave of new mutants in vaccinated people making them more susceptible to the newest variants and fueling a rapid viral evolution, there is a need for alternative or adjunct approaches against coronavirus infections other than vaccines. Our earlier work indicated that a specific combination of micronutrients and phytochemicals can inhibit key infection mechanisms shared by SARS-CoV-2 and its variants in vitro. Here we demonstrate in vivo that an intake of this micronutrient combination before and during infection of mice with engineered SARS-CoV-2 virions and HCoV-229E virus results in a significant decrease in viral load and level of spike protein in the lungs. This was accompanied by decreased inflammatory response, including TNFα, IL1β, ILα, and IL17. These and our earlier results confirm that by targeting multiple mechanisms simultaneously by a combination treatment we can effectively and safely challenge SARS-CoV-2 and HCoV-229E virus. If clinically confirmed, such an approach could complement already in-use preventive and therapeutic strategies against coronavirus infections.