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REVIEW ARTICLE
Year : 2022  |  Volume : 9  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 9

Role of TGF-β Signaling in Coronavirus Disease 2019


1 Department of Nephrology, The Third Affiliated hospital, Southern Medical University, Guangzhou; Departments of Medicine & Therapeutics, Li Ka Shing Institute of Health Sciences, and Lui Che Woo Institute of Innovative Medicine, The Chinese University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong, China
2 Departments of Medicine & Therapeutics, Li Ka Shing Institute of Health Sciences, and Lui Che Woo Institute of Innovative Medicine, The Chinese University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong, China
3 Medical Research Center, Guangdong Provincial People’s Hospital, Guangdong Academy of Medical Sciences, Guangzhou, China
4 Department of Nephrology, The Third Affiliated hospital, Southern Medical University, Guangzhou, China

Correspondence Address:
Hui- Yao Lan
Departments of Medicine & Therapeutics, Li Ka Shing Institute of Health Sciences, The Chinese University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong
China
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


DOI: 10.4103/2773-0387.348713

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Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) has a broad spectrum of clinical manifestations involving the respiratory, cardiovascular, renal, neuropsychiatric, gastrointestinal, and dermatological systems. Some patients with COVID-19 experience acute infection and post-COVID-19 syndrome. There is increasing evidence that TGF-β signaling plays an important role in the pathogenesis of both acute and chronic COVID-19 infection. The severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) nucleocapsid protein was reported to interact with Smad3, a key downstream mediator of TGF-β signaling, thereby promoting TGF-β1/Smad3 signaling and causing cell death during the acute phase of COVID-19 infection. Because activation of TGF-β/Smad3 signaling has an essential role in multiple organ fibrosis, it is possible that overreactive TGF-β/Smad3 signaling may cause tissue fibrosis in the lung, heart, and kidney after SARS-CoV-2 infection. Thus, not only administration of antiviral drugs and traditional Chinese medicines, but also targeting of TGF-β signaling components, particularly Smad3, with various therapeutic strategies involving OT-101, pirfenidone, and specific Smad3 inhibitors, such as SIS3, may provide novel and specific therapies for COVID-19 patients.


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