Fatal human coronavirus 229E (HCoV 229E) and RSV–Related pneumonia in an AIDS patient from Colombia(2020/02/06)

We have read the article of Yavarian et al. [1], showing the prevalence of influenza and not of Middle East Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus (MERS-CoV). We would like to discuss the relevance of other respiratory viruses, including other CoV different to MERS-CoV, the Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome CoV (SARS-CoV) and the 2019 novel CoV (2019nCoV) [2] a propos of a case of coinfection between HCoV-229E, respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) and HIV we had in Colombia.

The three highly pathogenic viruses, SARS-CoV, MERS-CoV, 2019n-CoV, cause severe respiratory syndrome in humans, and the other four human coronaviruses (HCoV-NL63, HCoV-229E, HCoV-OC43 and HKU1) induce only mild upper respiratory diseases in immunocompetent hosts, although some of them can cause severe infections in infants, young children and elderly individuals [3].

Two years ago, a 32-year-old man admitted to the intensive care unit (ICU) for acute respiratory failure 5 days after hospitalization due to continuous productive cough (yellow secretion), nasal flaring, respiratory distress, intercostal retractions, sweating, chills and mucocutaneous paleness. During this admission, the patient tested HIV positive by ELISA and Western-blot. His initial CD4 cell count and viral load were 20 cells/μl and 759,780 copies/ml (PCR), respectively. Patient was started on combination antiretroviral treatment (ART) with a regimen of abacavir, lamivudine and efavirenz.

Author:Wilmer E.Villamil-Gómez, Álvaro Sánchez, Libardo Gelis