Evidence of COVID-induced autoimmunity in the CNS of patients with neurological symptoms

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Divergent and self-reactive immune responses in the CNS of COVID-19 patients with neurological symptoms. Young et al., 2021


https://www.cell.com/cell-reports-medicine/fulltext/S2666-3791(21)00116-6



Highlights
  • Immune cell scRNA-seq showed divergent T cell activation in the CNS during COVID-19
  • COVID-19 patients had a compartmentalized cytokine response in the CNS
  • All COVID-19 patients had anti-SARS-CoV-2 antibodies in their CSF
  • Five out of seven COVID-19 patients had anti-neural autoantibodies in their CSF

Summary

COVID-19 patients frequently develop neurological symptoms, but the biological underpinnings of these phenomena are unknown. Through single cell RNA-seq and cytokine analyses of CSF and blood from COVID-19 patients with neurological symptoms, we find compartmentalized, CNS specific T cell activation and B cell responses. All COVID-19 cases had CSF anti-SARS-CoV-2 antibodies whose target epitopes diverged from serum antibodies. In an animal model, we find that intrathecal SARS-CoV-2 antibodies are found only during brain infection, and are not elicited by pulmonary infection. We produced CSF-derived monoclonal antibodies from a COVID-19 patient, and find that these mAbs target both anti-viral and anti-neural antigens—including one mAb that reacted to both spike protein and neural tissue. Overall, CSF IgG from 5/7 patients contains anti-neural reactivity. This immune survey reveals evidence of a compartmentalized immune response in the CNS of COVID-19 patients and suggests a role for autoimmunity in neurologic sequelae of COVID-19.

CNS of COVID-19 patients with neurological symptoms

Divergent and self-reactive immune responses in the CNS of COVID-19 patients with neurological symptoms
 
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Unfortunately, I’m not too good at understanding the detailed underpinnings of the scientific research that goes into both CFS/ME or Covid-19. However, I do understand what autoimmunity means, and that it has long been considered part of ME/CFS.

I haven’t read the full paper (I couldn’t gain access, but didn’t try much to see how I could) but it’s interesting that the findings were present in 5 out of 7 patients with neurological symptoms.

I’m trying to stay relatively updated with Long Covid research, because at this point I believe it’s the same as ME/CFS. Plus the research has both the medical disciplines involved that ME needs and at the pace required to dismantle biopsychological/MUS approaches.
 
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nerd

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I’m trying to stay relatively updated with Long Covid research, because at this point I believe it’s the same as ME/CFS.
I'm not sure yet if it's the same disease with varying progression time, as known from CFS/ME, or if it's a subsequent phase to Post-COVID, which only occurs in a subgroup of Post-COVID patients. By Post-COVID, I mean the patients with long hauling symptoms, but who don't meet the CFS/ME criteria (yet).

I haven’t read the full paper (I couldn’t gain access, but didn’t try much to see how I could)
The paper is open-access. When you press on Download PDF, you should get to the paper.
 
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I'm not sure yet if it's the same disease with varying progression time, as known from CFS/ME, or if it's a subsequent phase to Post-COVID, which only occurs in a subgroup of Post-COVID patients. By Post-COVID, I mean the patients with long hauling symptoms, but who don't meet the CFS/ME criteria (yet).
I am not 100% certain of course, but the subset of patients with PEM and the same symptoms as ME found in many Long haulers makes me believe it is. I also saw Dr Weir this week who said there is a very strong possibility that it's the same and he is currently undertaking Long Covid research.

The paper is open-access. When you press on Download PDF, you should get to the paper.
Thanks
 
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