Bioactives in food and natural health products in immunity and inflammation: COVID-19 and other viral infections

The COVID-19 pandemic has become a very serious threat to humanity and has created a number of problems that have affected not only the life of people but also the psychosocial aspect of their normal way of living. Despite the fact that vaccines were created in a short time, and the basic principles of treatment of infection in combating viral respiratory diseases such as influenza, parainfluenza, respiratory syncytial, and infections shows the complexity of this problem due to the highly contagious nature of these viruses, their ability to quickly form new strains, as well as the ability to avoid the host's immune defenses. The vaccination may not provide full confidence in its success and immunization of older age groups, as well as patients with diseases that are predictors of severe forms of Covid-19: diabetes, hypertension, cardiovascular diseases, COPD, chronic renal failure, oncology, raises many questions. In this regard, the search for personal antiviral protection, in addition to vaccination, is relevant. Recently, despite the great success achieved by the so-called targeted therapy aimed at certain specific targets, it has become clear that multifactorial systemic diseases such as cancer, sepsis, neurodegenerative, metabolic, and chronic inflammatory disorders affecting the body as a whole and leading to disruption of homeostasis, require more comprehensive therapeutic approaches. In this regard, the role of immune-enhancing dietary approaches and the use of supplements has been sown to play a positive role in the severity of the infection and its better chance of success upon treatment. This issue will cover the effect of food bioactives and phytonutrients for the development of prophylactic or therapeutic means for the treatment of COVID-19 and infectious diseases. Fundamental and applied research, as well as reviews and commentaries, will be considered for publication in this special issue. We invite experts in the field to submit their state-of-the-art contributions regarding COVID-19 and other viral infections. The preferred deadline for submission is September 23, 2021.

We thank Professor Chin-Kun Wang and Professor (Chung Shan Medical
University, Taichung); Professor Yong Sang Song (Seoul National
University, Seoul) for serving as Guest Editors for this issue.