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Clinical improvement of Long-COVID is associated with reduction in autoantibodies, lipids, and inflammation following therapeutic apheresis (D 2023)


Senior Member


In the aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic, we are witnessing an unprecedented wave of post-infectious complications.

Most prominently, millions of patients with Long-Covid complain about chronic fatigue and severe post-exertional malaise.

Therapeutic apheresis has been suggested as an efficient treatment option for alleviating and mitigating symptoms in this desperate group of patients. However, little is known about the mechanisms and biomarkers correlating with treatment outcomes.

Here, we have analyzed in different cohorts of Long-Covid patients specific biomarkers before and after therapeutic apheresis.

In patients that reported a significant improvement following two cycles of therapeutic apheresis, there was a significant reduction in neurotransmitter autoantibodies, lipids, and inflammatory markers.

Furthermore, we observed a 70% reduction in fibrinogen, and following apheresis, erythrocyte rouleaux formation and fibrin fibers largely disappeared as demonstrated by dark field microscopy.

This is the first study demonstrating a pattern of specific biomarkers with clinical symptoms in this patient group. It may therefore form the basis for a more objective monitoring and a clinical score for the treatment of Long-Covid and other postinfectious syndromes.