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Puja Mehta

Bio: Puja Mehta is a academic researcher at University College London who has co-authored 39 publication(s) receiving 6758 citation(s). The author has an hindex of 13. Previous affiliations of Puja Mehta include University College Hospital & University College London Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust. The author has done significant research in the topic(s): Cytokine storm & Population.

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Papers
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Open accessJournal ArticleDOI: 10.1016/S0140-6736(20)30628-0
Puja Mehta1, Daniel F. McAuley2, Michael Brown3, Emilie Sanchez3  +3 moreInstitutions (5)
28 Mar 2020-The Lancet
Abstract: www.thelancet.com Published online March 13, 2020 https://doi.org/10.1016/S0140-6736(20)30628-0 1 Submissions should be made via our electronic submission system at http://ees.elsevier.com/ thelancet/ However, in hyperinflammation, immunosuppression is likely to be beneficial. Re-analysis of data from a phase 3 randomised controlled trial of IL-1 blockade (anakinra) in sepsis, showed significant survival benefit in patients with hyperinflammation, without increased adverse events. A multicentre, randomised con trolled trial of tocilizumab (IL-6 receptor blockade, licensed for cytokine release syndrome), has been approved in patients with COVID-19: consider cytokine storm syndromes and immunosuppression

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5,489 Citations


Open accessJournal ArticleDOI: 10.1093/BRAIN/AWAA240
Ross W. Paterson1, Ross W. Paterson2, Rachel Brown2, Laura A Benjamin3  +71 moreInstitutions (17)
01 Oct 2020-Brain
Abstract: Preliminary clinical data indicate that severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) infection is associated with neurological and neuropsychiatric illness. Responding to this, a weekly virtual coronavirus disease 19 (COVID-19) neurology multi-disciplinary meeting was established at the National Hospital, Queen Square, in early March 2020 in order to discuss and begin to understand neurological presentations in patients with suspected COVID-19-related neurological disorders. Detailed clinical and paraclinical data were collected from cases where the diagnosis of COVID-19 was confirmed through RNA PCR, or where the diagnosis was probable/possible according to World Health Organization criteria. Of 43 patients, 29 were SARS-CoV-2 PCR positive and definite, eight probable and six possible. Five major categories emerged: (i) encephalopathies (n = 10) with delirium/psychosis and no distinct MRI or CSF abnormalities, and with 9/10 making a full or partial recovery with supportive care only; (ii) inflammatory CNS syndromes (n = 12) including encephalitis (n = 2, para- or post-infectious), acute disseminated encephalomyelitis (n = 9), with haemorrhage in five, necrosis in one, and myelitis in two, and isolated myelitis (n = 1). Of these, 10 were treated with corticosteroids, and three of these patients also received intravenous immunoglobulin; one made a full recovery, 10 of 12 made a partial recovery, and one patient died; (iii) ischaemic strokes (n = 8) associated with a pro-thrombotic state (four with pulmonary thromboembolism), one of whom died; (iv) peripheral neurological disorders (n = 8), seven with Guillain-Barre syndrome, one with brachial plexopathy, six of eight making a partial and ongoing recovery; and (v) five patients with miscellaneous central disorders who did not fit these categories. SARS-CoV-2 infection is associated with a wide spectrum of neurological syndromes affecting the whole neuraxis, including the cerebral vasculature and, in some cases, responding to immunotherapies. The high incidence of acute disseminated encephalomyelitis, particularly with haemorrhagic change, is striking. This complication was not related to the severity of the respiratory COVID-19 disease. Early recognition, investigation and management of COVID-19-related neurological disease is challenging. Further clinical, neuroradiological, biomarker and neuropathological studies are essential to determine the underlying pathobiological mechanisms that will guide treatment. Longitudinal follow-up studies will be necessary to ascertain the long-term neurological and neuropsychological consequences of this pandemic.

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486 Citations


Open accessJournal ArticleDOI: 10.1073/PNAS.1503916112
Abstract: Many neuropsychiatric illnesses are associated with psychosis, i.e., hallucinations (perceptions in the absence of causative stimuli) and delusions (irrational, often bizarre beliefs). Current models of brain function view perception as a combination of two distinct sources of information: bottom-up sensory input and top-down influences from prior knowledge. This framework may explain hallucinations and delusions. Here, we characterized the balance between visual bottom-up and top-down processing in people with early psychosis (study 1) and in psychosis-prone, healthy individuals (study 2) to elucidate the mechanisms that might contribute to the emergence of psychotic experiences. Through a specialized mental-health service, we identified unmedicated individuals who experience early psychotic symptoms but fall below the threshold for a categorical diagnosis. We observed that, in early psychosis, there was a shift in information processing favoring prior knowledge over incoming sensory evidence. In the complementary study, we capitalized on subtle variations in perception and belief in the general population that exhibit graded similarity with psychotic experiences (schizotypy). We observed that the degree of psychosis proneness in healthy individuals, and, specifically, the presence of subtle perceptual alterations, is also associated with stronger reliance on prior knowledge. Although, in the current experimental studies, this shift conferred a performance benefit, under most natural viewing situations, it may provoke anomalous perceptual experiences. Overall, we show that early psychosis and psychosis proneness both entail a basic shift in visual information processing, favoring prior knowledge over incoming sensory evidence. The studies provide complementary insights to a mechanism by which psychotic symptoms may emerge.

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Topics: Schizotypy (58%), Psychosis (57%), Schizophrenia (53%) ...read more

142 Citations


Open accessJournal ArticleDOI: 10.1016/S2665-9913(20)30275-7
Jessica J Manson1, Colin J Crooks2, Meena Naja1, Amanda Ledlie1  +39 moreInstitutions (7)
21 Aug 2020-
Abstract: Summary Background A subset of patients with severe COVID-19 develop a hyperinflammatory syndrome, which might contribute to morbidity and mortality. This study explores a specific phenotype of COVID-19-associated hyperinflammation (COV-HI), and its associations with escalation of respiratory support and survival. Methods In this retrospective cohort study, we enrolled consecutive inpatients (aged ≥18 years) admitted to University College London Hospitals and Newcastle upon Tyne Hospitals in the UK with PCR-confirmed COVID-19 during the first wave of community-acquired infection. Demographic data, laboratory tests, and clinical status were recorded from the day of admission until death or discharge, with a minimum follow-up time of 28 days. We defined COV-HI as a C-reactive protein concentration greater than 150 mg/L or doubling within 24 h from greater than 50 mg/L, or a ferritin concentration greater than 1500 μg/L. Respiratory support was categorised as oxygen only, non-invasive ventilation, and intubation. Initial and repeated measures of hyperinflammation were evaluated in relation to the next-day risk of death or need for escalation of respiratory support (as a combined endpoint), using a multi-level logistic regression model. Findings We included 269 patients admitted to one of the study hospitals between March 1 and March 31, 2020, among whom 178 (66%) were eligible for escalation of respiratory support and 91 (34%) patients were not eligible. Of the whole cohort, 90 (33%) patients met the COV-HI criteria at admission. Despite having a younger median age and lower median Charlson Comorbidity Index scores, a higher proportion of patients with COV-HI on admission died during follow-up (36 [40%] of 90 patients) compared with the patients without COV-HI on admission (46 [26%] of 179). Among the 178 patients who were eligible for full respiratory support, 65 (37%) met the definition for COV-HI at admission, and 67 (74%) of the 90 patients whose respiratory care was escalated met the criteria by the day of escalation. Meeting the COV-HI criteria was significantly associated with the risk of next-day escalation of respiratory support or death (hazard ratio 2·24 [95% CI 1·62–2·87]) after adjustment for age, sex, and comorbidity. Interpretation Associations between elevated inflammatory markers, escalation of respiratory support, and survival in people with COVID-19 indicate the existence of a high-risk inflammatory phenotype. COV-HI might be useful to stratify patient groups in trial design. Funding None.

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Topics: Retrospective cohort study (55%), Cohort (52%), Hazard ratio (51%) ...read more

119 Citations


Open accessJournal ArticleDOI: 10.1016/S2665-9913(20)30096-5
Puja Mehta1, Puja Mehta2, Randy Q. Cron3, James Hartwell2  +2 moreInstitutions (4)
01 Jun 2020-
Abstract: The term cytokine storm syndromes describes conditions characterised by a life-threatening, fulminant hypercytokinaemia with high mortality. Cytokine storm syndromes can be genetic or a secondary complication of autoimmune or autoinflammatory disorders, infections, and haematological malignancies. These syndromes represent a key area of interface between rheumatology and general medicine. Rheumatologists often lead in management, in view of their experience using intensive immunosuppressive regimens and managing cytokine storm syndromes in the context of rheumatic disorders or infection (known as secondary haemophagocytic lymphohistiocytosis or macrophage activation syndrome [sHLH/MAS]). Interleukin (IL)-1 is pivotal in hyperinflammation. Anakinra, a recombinant humanised IL-1 receptor antagonist, is licenced at a dose of 100 mg once daily by subcutaneous injection for rheumatoid arthritis, systemic juvenile idiopathic arthritis, adult-onset Still's disease, and cryopyrin-associated periodic syndromes. In cytokine storm syndromes, the subcutaneous route is often problematic, as absorption can be unreliable in patients with critical illness, and multiple injections are needed to achieve the high doses required. As a result, intravenous anakinra is used in clinical practice for sHLH/MAS, despite this being an off-licence indication and route of administration. Among 46 patients admitted to our three international, tertiary centres for sHLH/MAS and treated with anakinra over 12 months, the intravenous route of delivery was used in 18 (39%) patients. In this Viewpoint, we describe current challenges in the management of cytokine storm syndromes and review the pharmacokinetic and safety profile of intravenous anakinra. There is accumulating evidence to support the rationale for, and safety of, intravenous anakinra as a first-line treatment in patients with sHLH/MAS. Intravenous anakinra has important clinical relevance when high doses of drug are required or if patients have subcutaneous oedema, severe thrombocytopenia, or neurological involvement. Cross-speciality management and collaboration, with the generation of international, multi-centre registries and biobanks, are needed to better understand the aetiopathogenesis and improve the poor prognosis of cytokine storm syndromes.

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Topics: Anakinra (63%), Macrophage activation syndrome (56%), Cytokine storm (55%) ...read more

110 Citations


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Open accessJournal ArticleDOI: 10.1001/JAMA.2020.6019
12 May 2020-JAMA
Abstract: Importance The pandemic of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) caused by the novel severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) presents an unprecedented challenge to identify effective drugs for prevention and treatment. Given the rapid pace of scientific discovery and clinical data generated by the large number of people rapidly infected by SARS-CoV-2, clinicians need accurate evidence regarding effective medical treatments for this infection. Observations No proven effective therapies for this virus currently exist. The rapidly expanding knowledge regarding SARS-CoV-2 virology provides a significant number of potential drug targets. The most promising therapy is remdesivir. Remdesivir has potent in vitro activity against SARS-CoV-2, but it is not US Food and Drug Administration approved and currently is being tested in ongoing randomized trials. Oseltamivir has not been shown to have efficacy, and corticosteroids are currently not recommended. Current clinical evidence does not support stopping angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors or angiotensin receptor blockers in patients with COVID-19. Conclusions and Relevance The COVID-19 pandemic represents the greatest global public health crisis of this generation and, potentially, since the pandemic influenza outbreak of 1918. The speed and volume of clinical trials launched to investigate potential therapies for COVID-19 highlight both the need and capability to produce high-quality evidence even in the middle of a pandemic. No therapies have been shown effective to date.

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Topics: Pandemic (50%)

1,727 Citations


Open accessJournal ArticleDOI: 10.1016/J.JACC.2020.04.031
Abstract: Coronavirus disease-2019 (COVID-19), a viral respiratory illness caused by the severe acute respiratory syndrome-coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2), may predispose patients to thrombotic disease, both in the venous and arterial circulations, because of excessive inflammation, platelet activation, endothelial dysfunction, and stasis. In addition, many patients receiving antithrombotic therapy for thrombotic disease may develop COVID-19, which can have implications for choice, dosing, and laboratory monitoring of antithrombotic therapy. Moreover, during a time with much focus on COVID-19, it is critical to consider how to optimize the available technology to care for patients without COVID-19 who have thrombotic disease. Herein, the authors review the current understanding of the pathogenesis, epidemiology, management, and outcomes of patients with COVID-19 who develop venous or arterial thrombosis, of those with pre-existing thrombotic disease who develop COVID-19, or those who need prevention or care for their thrombotic disease during the COVID-19 pandemic.

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Topics: Platelet activation (54%), Antithrombotic (54%)

1,581 Citations


Open accessJournal ArticleDOI: 10.1007/S00134-020-06022-5
Abstract: The novel severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) is the cause of a rapidly spreading illness, Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19), affecting thousands of people around the world. Urgent guidance for clinicians caring for the sickest of these patients is needed. We formed a panel of 36 experts from 12 countries. All panel members completed the World Health Organization conflict of interest disclosure form. The panel proposed 53 questions that are relevant to the management of COVID-19 in the ICU. We searched the literature for direct and indirect evidence on the management of COVID-19 in critically ill patients in the ICU. We identified relevant and recent systematic reviews on most questions relating to supportive care. We assessed the certainty in the evidence using the Grading of Recommendations, Assessment, Development and Evaluation (GRADE) approach, then generated recommendations based on the balance between benefit and harm, resource and cost implications, equity, and feasibility. Recommendations were either strong or weak, or in the form of best practice recommendations. The Surviving Sepsis Campaign COVID-19 panel issued 54 statements, of which 4 are best practice statements, 9 are strong recommendations, and 35 are weak recommendations. No recommendation was provided for 6 questions. The topics were: (1) infection control, (2) laboratory diagnosis and specimens, (3) hemodynamic support, (4) ventilatory support, and (5) COVID-19 therapy. The Surviving Sepsis Campaign COVID-19 panel issued several recommendations to help support healthcare workers caring for critically ill ICU patients with COVID-19. When available, we will provide new recommendations in further releases of these guidelines.

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1,281 Citations


Open accessJournal ArticleDOI: 10.1182/BLOOD.2020006000
Jean M. Connors1, Jerrold H. Levy2Institutions (2)
04 Jun 2020-Blood
Abstract: Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2, coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19)-induced infection can be associated with a coagulopathy, findings consistent with infection-induced inflammatory changes as observed in patients with disseminated intravascular coagulopathy (DIC). The lack of prior immunity to COVID-19 has resulted in large numbers of infected patients across the globe and uncertainty regarding management of the complications that arise in the course of this viral illness. The lungs are the target organ for COVID-19; patients develop acute lung injury that can progress to respiratory failure, although multiorgan failure can also occur. The initial coagulopathy of COVID-19 presents with prominent elevation of D-dimer and fibrin/fibrinogen-degradation products, whereas abnormalities in prothrombin time, partial thromboplastin time, and platelet counts are relatively uncommon in initial presentations. Coagulation test screening, including the measurement of D-dimer and fibrinogen levels, is suggested. COVID-19-associated coagulopathy should be managed as it would be for any critically ill patient, following the established practice of using thromboembolic prophylaxis for critically ill hospitalized patients, and standard supportive care measures for those with sepsis-induced coagulopathy or DIC. Although D-dimer, sepsis physiology, and consumptive coagulopathy are indicators of mortality, current data do not suggest the use of full-intensity anticoagulation doses unless otherwise clinically indicated. Even though there is an associated coagulopathy with COVID-19, bleeding manifestations, even in those with DIC, have not been reported. If bleeding does occur, standard guidelines for the management of DIC and bleeding should be followed.

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Topics: Consumptive Coagulopathy (66%), Coagulopathy (65%), Lung injury (53%) ...read more

1,280 Citations


Open accessJournal ArticleDOI: 10.1016/S0140-6736(20)31103-X
06 Jun 2020-The Lancet
Abstract: Background The Bergamo province, which is extensively affected by the severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) epidemic, is a natural observatory of virus manifestations in the general population. In the past month we recorded an outbreak of Kawasaki disease; we aimed to evaluate incidence and features of patients with Kawasaki-like disease diagnosed during the SARS-CoV-2 epidemic. Methods All patients diagnosed with a Kawasaki-like disease at our centre in the past 5 years were divided according to symptomatic presentation before (group 1) or after (group 2) the beginning of the SARS-CoV-2 epidemic. Kawasaki- like presentations were managed as Kawasaki disease according to the American Heart Association indications. Kawasaki disease shock syndrome (KDSS) was defined by presence of circulatory dysfunction, and macrophage activation syndrome (MAS) by the Paediatric Rheumatology International Trials Organisation criteria. Current or previous infection was sought by reverse-transcriptase quantitative PCR in nasopharyngeal and oropharyngeal swabs, and by serological qualitative test detecting SARS-CoV-2 IgM and IgG, respectively. Findings Group 1 comprised 19 patients (seven boys, 12 girls; aged 3·0 years [SD 2·5]) diagnosed between Jan 1, 2015, and Feb 17, 2020. Group 2 included ten patients (seven boys, three girls; aged 7·5 years [SD 3·5]) diagnosed between Feb 18 and April 20, 2020; eight of ten were positive for IgG or IgM, or both. The two groups differed in disease incidence (group 1 vs group 2, 0·3 vs ten per month), mean age (3·0 vs 7·5 years), cardiac involvement (two of 19 vs six of ten), KDSS (zero of 19 vs five of ten), MAS (zero of 19 vs five of ten), and need for adjunctive steroid treatment (three of 19 vs eight of ten; all p Interpretation In the past month we found a 30-fold increased incidence of Kawasaki-like disease. Children diagnosed after the SARS-CoV-2 epidemic began showed evidence of immune response to the virus, were older, had a higher rate of cardiac involvement, and features of MAS. The SARS-CoV-2 epidemic was associated with high incidence of a severe form of Kawasaki disease. A similar outbreak of Kawasaki-like disease is expected in countries involved in the SARS-CoV-2 epidemic. Funding None.

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Topics: Macrophage activation syndrome (53%), Kawasaki disease (52%), Population (51%) ...read more

1,270 Citations


Performance
Metrics

Author's H-index: 13

No. of papers from the Author in previous years
YearPapers
202120
202010
20193
20181
20151
20121

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Author's top 5 most impactful journals

Brain

3 papers, 489 citations

The Journal of Physiology

3 papers, 31 citations

BMJ Open Respiratory Research

2 papers, 1 citations

medRxiv

2 papers, 11 citations

Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis

2 papers, 33 citations

Network Information
Related Authors (1)
Arpan R. Mehta

21 papers, 548 citations

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