Study in Austria found Viral remnants and proteins in the gut of Long Covid patients

Boba

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-Edit: link to study in English https://www.gastrojournal.org/article/S0016-5085(22)00450-4/pdf-

https://tirol.orf.at/stories/3154338/

The article is in german. Most important fact is the patients with viral debris in the gut had long covid symptoms, all without reservoirs didn’t have any LC symptoms. Here’s a translation:

CORONAVIRUS

"Long Covid" probably due to virus remnants

"Long Covid" symptoms appear to be related to the presence of virus components in the body. This was the conclusion of a clinical study on patients with chronic intestinal diseases at the Innsbruck University Hospital.

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The study was conducted with 46 patients with chronic inflammatory bowel diseases under the leadership of Herbert Tilg, Director of Internal Medicine I at the Innsbruck University Hospital. Patients were also examined for the coronavirus in the course of gastrointestinal mirroring. In these rather younger patients - most are between 20 and 30 years old - such a reflection is regularly made.

Long Covid is not a result of a severe course

65 percent of patients with detected viral residues in the intestine would have shown "long Covid" symptoms such as fatigue and fatigue. "And where no virus residues were found, there were no 'Long Covid' symptoms," says Tilg about the main results of the study. Incidentally, the "Long Covid" symptoms would have existed regardless of the underlying disease.

Austrian Radio

Herbert Tilg conducted the study at MedUni Innsbruck

In addition, 90 percent of those examined would have undergone mild coronavirus disease. This shows once again that it is by no means the case that "Long Covid" is the result, especially for people with a severe course of the disease.

Viruses still detected many months after infection

Tilg also came up with further remarkable findings about the study, which has just been published in the renowned journal "Gastroenterology": In 32 patients, i.e. around 70 percent, virus components or virus residues were found in the small or colon mucosa on average 7.3 months after the coronavirus infection, and the virus protein in over 50 percent.

In addition, blood tests were also carried out to measure the antibody response against the virus. "The patients in whom the most viruses have been found in the tissue have fewer antibodies," the internist illustrated.

Reasons for doctors still unclear

"All this is not yet proof, but a strong indication that the body apparently has a problem finally eliminating these virus components," emphasized the doctor. The medicine has not yet had an answer to what exactly this is and how the components can be completely erased. By the way, there are also other viral diseases where similar things are suspected, but these are much rarer, says Tilg.

Overall, it was obvious to use such a "patient group" for the study. Chronic inflammatory bowel diseases or the instrument of gastrointestinal mirroring are virtually predestined for this, as such an examination is repeatedly necessary in these patients.

Virus residues probably also in other organs

In any case, it is not possible to "enter" into every other organ area so easily - and with a proportionate, justifiable effort. There is no evidence of this, but it is also obvious that such virus residues can also be present in other organs such as lungs, kidneys or liver, emphasized Tilg.
 
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Boba

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Tilg also came up with further remarkable findings about the study, which has just been published in the renowned journal "Gastroenterology": In 32 patients, i.e. around 70 percent, virus components or virus residues were found in the small or colon mucosa on average 7.3 months after the coronavirus infection, and the virus protein in over 50 percent.
Isn’t this remarkable?
 

Pyrrhus

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Post-acute COVID-19 is characterized by gut viral antigen persistence in inflammatory bowel diseases (Zollner et al., 2022) (Pre-print)
https://doi.org/10.1053/j.gastro.2022.04.037

Abstract:
Background and aims:
The coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic affects populations, societies and lives for more than two years. Long-term sequelae of COVID-19, collectively termed the post-acute COVID-19 syndrome, are rapidly emerging across the globe. Here, we investigated whether severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV2) antigen persistence underlies the post-acute COVID-19 syndrome.

Methods:
We performed an endoscopy study with 46 inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) patients 219 days (range: 94-257) after a confirmed COVID-19 infection. SARS-CoV-2 antigen persistence was assessed in the small and large intestine by qPCR of four viral transcripts, immunofluorescence of viral nucleocapsid and virus cultivation from biopsy tissue. Post-acute COVID-19 was assessed by a standardized questionnaire, and a systemic SARS-CoV-2 immune response was evaluated by flow-cytometry and ELISA at endoscopy. IBD activity was evaluated by clinical, biochemical and endoscopic means.

Results:
We report expression of SARS-CoV-2 RNA in the gut mucosa ~7 months after mild acute COVID-19 in 32 of 46 patients with IBD. Viral nucleocapsid protein persisted in 24 of 46 patients in gut epithelium and CD8+ T cells. Expression of SARS-CoV-2 antigens was not detectable in stool and viral antigen persistence was unrelated to severity of acute COVID-19, immunosuppressive therapy and gut inflammation. We were unable to culture SARS-CoV-2 from gut tissue of patients with viral antigen persistence. Post-acute sequelae of COVID-19 were reported from the majority of patients with viral antigen persistence, but not from patients without viral antigen persistence.

Conclusion:
Our results indicate that SARS-CoV-2 antigen persistence in infected tissues serves as a basis for post-acute COVID-19. The concept that viral antigen persistence instigates immune perturbation and post-acute COVID-19 requires validation in controlled clinical trials.