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1.
Front Immunol ; 13: 1017863, 2022.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2314541

ABSTRACT

Vaccination against SARS-CoV-2 using mRNA-based vaccines has been highly recommended for fragile subjects, including myelofibrosis patients (MF). Available data on the immune responsiveness of MF patients to mRNA SARS-CoV-2 vaccination, and the impact of the therapy with the JAK inhibitor ruxolitinib, are still fragmented. Here, we profile the spike-specific IgG and memory B-cell response in MF patients, treated or not with ruxolitinib, after the second and the third dose of SARS-CoV-2 BNT162b2 (BioNTech) and mRNA-1273 (Moderna) vaccines. Plasma and peripheral blood mononuclear cells samples were collected before vaccination, post the second and the third doses and tested for spike-specific antibodies, ACE2/RBD antibody inhibition binding activity and spike-specific B cells. The third vaccine dose significantly increased the spike-specific IgG titers in both ruxolitinib-treated and untreated patients, and strongly enhanced the percentage of subjects with antibodies capable of in vitro blocking ACE2/RBD interaction, from 50% up to 80%. While a very low frequency of spike-specific B cells was measured in blood 7 days after the second vaccination dose, a strong and significant increase was elicited by the third dose administration, generating a B cell response similar to the one detected in healthy controls. Despite the overall positive impact of the third dose in MF patients, two patients that were under active concomitant immunosuppressive treatment at the time of vaccination, and a patient that received lymphodepleting therapies in the past, remained low responders. The third mRNA vaccine dose strongly increases the SARS-CoV-2 specific humoral and B cell responses in MF patients, promoting a reactivation of the immune response similar to the one observed in healthy controls.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Janus Kinase Inhibitors , Primary Myelofibrosis , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus/immunology , Viral Vaccines , Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme 2 , Antibodies, Viral , BNT162 Vaccine , COVID-19/prevention & control , COVID-19 Vaccines , Humans , Immunoglobulin G , Leukocytes, Mononuclear , Memory B Cells , Nitriles , Pyrazoles , Pyrimidines , RNA, Messenger , SARS-CoV-2 , Vaccines, Synthetic , mRNA Vaccines
3.
Hematol Oncol ; 2022 Oct 20.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-2233241

ABSTRACT

COVID-19, the disease caused by SARS-CoV-2, is still afflicting thousands of people across the globe. Few studies on COVID-19 in chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) are available. Here, we analyzed data from the CLL cohort of the Italian Hematology Alliance on COVID-19 (NCT04352556), which included 256 CLL patients enrolled between 25 February 2020 and 1 February 2021. Median age was 70 years (range 38-94) with male preponderance (60.1%). Approximately half of patients (n = 127) had received at least one line of therapy for CLL, including 108 (83.7%) who were on active treatment at the time of COVID-19 or received their last therapy within 12 months. Most patients (230/256, 89.9%) were symptomatic at COVID-19 diagnosis and the majority required hospitalization (n = 176). Overall, after a median follow-up of 42 days (IQR 24-96), case fatality rate was 30.1%, and it was 37.5% and 24.4% in the first (25 February 2020-22 June 2020) and second wave (23 June 2020-1 February 2021), respectively (p = 0.03). At multivariate analysis, male sex (HR 1.82, 95% CI 1.03-3.24, p = 0.04), age over than 70 years (HR 2.23, 95% CI 1.23-4.05, p = 0.01), any treatment for CLL given in the last 12 months (HR 1.72, 95% CI 1.04-2.84, p = 0.04) and COVID-19 severity (severe: HR 5.66, 95% CI 2.62-12.33, p < 0.0001; critical: HR 15.99, 95% CI 6.93-36.90, p < 0.0001) were independently associated with poor survival. In summary, we report a dismal COVID-related outcome in a significant fraction of CLL patients, that can be nicely predicted by clinical parameters.

4.
Frontiers in immunology ; 13, 2022.
Article in English | EuropePMC | ID: covidwho-2073049

ABSTRACT

Vaccination against SARS-CoV-2 using mRNA-based vaccines has been highly recommended for fragile subjects, including myelofibrosis patients (MF). Available data on the immune responsiveness of MF patients to mRNA SARS-CoV-2 vaccination, and the impact of the therapy with the JAK inhibitor ruxolitinib, are still fragmented. Here, we profile the spike-specific IgG and memory B-cell response in MF patients, treated or not with ruxolitinib, after the second and the third dose of SARS-CoV-2 BNT162b2 (BioNTech) and mRNA-1273 (Moderna) vaccines. Plasma and peripheral blood mononuclear cells samples were collected before vaccination, post the second and the third doses and tested for spike-specific antibodies, ACE2/RBD antibody inhibition binding activity and spike-specific B cells. The third vaccine dose significantly increased the spike-specific IgG titers in both ruxolitinib-treated and untreated patients, and strongly enhanced the percentage of subjects with antibodies capable of in vitro blocking ACE2/RBD interaction, from 50% up to 80%. While a very low frequency of spike-specific B cells was measured in blood 7 days after the second vaccination dose, a strong and significant increase was elicited by the third dose administration, generating a B cell response similar to the one detected in healthy controls. Despite the overall positive impact of the third dose in MF patients, two patients that were under active concomitant immunosuppressive treatment at the time of vaccination, and a patient that received lymphodepleting therapies in the past, remained low responders. The third mRNA vaccine dose strongly increases the SARS-CoV-2 specific humoral and B cell responses in MF patients, promoting a reactivation of the immune response similar to the one observed in healthy controls.

5.
Br J Haematol ; 199(1): 54-60, 2022 10.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1968070

ABSTRACT

COVID-19 continues to be a relevant issue among patients with haematological malignancies (HM). Vaccines are frequently not effective in subjects on active treatment. In this multicentre retrospective study of Gruppo Italiano Malattie EMatologiche dell'Adulto (GIMEMA), we collected data from 91 paucisymptomatic HM patients treated with anti-spike neutralizing monoclonal antibodies (nMoAbs) to determine time to viral clearance, referencing it to the expected value of 28 days from an historical group of untreated paucisymptomatic patients. Secondary endpoints included rate of hospitalization, intensive care unit (ICU) admission, COVID-19 related death and safety. SARS-CoV-2 molecular swab negativity was obtained in 86 patients (95%), with a median time of 18 days (IQR 13-26; p < 0.0001). We did not find significant variations according to age, diagnosis, treatment type, vaccination status or nMoAbs type. Rate of hospitalization due to COVID-19 progression was 12% (11/91), with 2 patients (2.2%) requiring ICU admission. With a median follow-up of 2.33 months, the overall mortality was 5.5% (5/91), with 3 deaths due to COVID-19. Side effects were rare and self-limiting. Our data suggest that nMoAbs can limit the detrimental effect of immunosuppressive treatments on COVID-19 clinical progression and time to viral clearance. The original trial was registered at www.clinicaltrials.gov as #NCT04932967.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Hematologic Neoplasms , Antibodies, Monoclonal/therapeutic use , Antibodies, Neutralizing , Hematologic Neoplasms/therapy , Humans , Retrospective Studies , SARS-CoV-2
6.
Hematol Oncol ; 2022 Jul 19.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1935680

ABSTRACT

The impact of secondary infections (SI) on COVID-19 outcome in patients with hematological malignancies (HM) is scarcely documented. To evaluate incidence, clinical characteristics, and outcome of SI, we analyzed the microbiologically documented SI in a large multicenter cohort of adult HM patients with COVID-19. Among 1741 HM patients with COVID-19, 134 (7.7%) had 185 SI, with a 1-month cumulative incidence of 5%. Median time between COVID-19 diagnosis and SI was 16 days (IQR: 5-36). Acute myeloid leukemia (AML) and lymphoma/plasma cell neoplasms (PCN) were more frequent diagnoses in SI patients compared to patients without SI (AML: 14.9% vs. 7.1%; lymphoma/PCN 71.7% vs. 65.3%). Patients with SI were older (median age 70 vs. 66 years, p = 0.002), with more comorbidities (median Charlson Comorbidity Index 5 vs. 4, p < 0.001), higher frequency of critical COVID-19 (19.5% vs. 11.5%, p = 0.046), and more frequently not in complete remission (75% vs. 64.7% p = 0.024). Blood and bronchoalveolar lavage were the main sites of isolation for SI. Etiology of infections was bacterial in 80% (n = 148) of cases, mycotic in 9.7% (n = 18) and viral in 10.3% (n = 19); polymicrobial infections were observed in 24 patients (18%). Escherichia coli represented most of Gram-negative isolates (18.9%), while coagulase-negative Staphylococci were the most frequent among Gram-positive (14.2%). The 30-day mortality of patients with SI was higher when compared to patients without SI (69% vs. 15%, p < 0.001). The occurrence of SI worsened COVID-19 outcome in HM patients. Timely diagnosis and adequate management should be considered to improve their prognosis.

7.
Viruses ; 14(6)2022 05 29.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1869825

ABSTRACT

Thrombosis of small and large vessels is reported as a key player in COVID-19 severity. However, host genetic determinants of this susceptibility are still unclear. Congenital Thrombotic Thrombocytopenic Purpura is a severe autosomal recessive disorder characterized by uncleaved ultra-large vWF and thrombotic microangiopathy, frequently triggered by infections. Carriers are reported to be asymptomatic. Exome analysis of about 3000 SARS-CoV-2 infected subjects of different severities, belonging to the GEN-COVID cohort, revealed the specific role of vWF cleaving enzyme ADAMTS13 (A disintegrin-like and metalloprotease with thrombospondin type 1 motif, 13). We report here that ultra-rare variants in a heterozygous state lead to a rare form of COVID-19 characterized by hyper-inflammation signs, which segregates in families as an autosomal dominant disorder conditioned by SARS-CoV-2 infection, sex, and age. This has clinical relevance due to the availability of drugs such as Caplacizumab, which inhibits vWF-platelet interaction, and Crizanlizumab, which, by inhibiting P-selectin binding to its ligands, prevents leukocyte recruitment and platelet aggregation at the site of vascular damage.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Purpura, Thrombotic Thrombocytopenic , ADAM Proteins/genetics , ADAM Proteins/metabolism , ADAMTS13 Protein/genetics , COVID-19/genetics , Humans , Purpura, Thrombotic Thrombocytopenic/diagnosis , Purpura, Thrombotic Thrombocytopenic/genetics , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity , von Willebrand Factor/chemistry , von Willebrand Factor/genetics , von Willebrand Factor/metabolism
8.
Vaccines (Basel) ; 10(2)2022 Jan 22.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1650108

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: We have designed a prospective study aiming to monitor the immune response in 178 health care workers six months after BNT162b2 mRNA vaccination. METHODS: The humoral immune response of all subjects was evaluated by chemiluminescence (CMIA); in 60 serum samples, a live virus-based neutralization assay was also tested. Moreover, 6 months after vaccination, B- and T-cell subsets from 20 subjects were observed by FACS analysis after restimulation with the trimeric SARS-CoV-2 Spike protein as an antigen, thus mimicking reinfection in vitro. RESULTS: A significant decrease of circulating IgG levels and neutralizing antibodies over time were observed. Moreover, six months after vaccination, a variable T-cell immune response after in vitro antigen stimulation of PBMC was observed. On the contrary, the analysis of B-cell response showed a shift from unswitched to switched memory B-cells and an increase of Th17 cells. CONCLUSIONS: Although the variability of the CD4+ and CD8+ immune response and an antibody decline was observed among vaccinated subjects, the increase of switched memory B-cells and Th17 cells, correlating with the presence of neutralizing antibodies, opened the debate on the correct timing of vaccination.

9.
Blood Adv ; 6(1): 327-338, 2022 01 11.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1622201

ABSTRACT

Lymphoma represents a heterogeneous hematological malignancy (HM), which is characterized by severe immunosuppression. Patients diagnosed of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) during the course of HM have been described to have poor outcome, with only few reports specifically addressing lymphoma patients. Here, we investigated the clinical behavior and clinical parameters of a large multicenter cohort of adult patients with different lymphoma subtypes, with the aim of identifying predictors of death. The study included 856 patients, of whom 619 were enrolled prospectively in a 1-year frame and were followed-up for a median of 66 days (range 1-395). Patients were managed as outpatient (not-admitted cohort, n = 388) or required hospitalization (n = 468), and median age was 63 years (range 19-94). Overall, the 30- and 100-days mortality was 13% (95% confidence interval (CI), 11% to 15%) and 23% (95% CI, 20% to 27%), respectively. Antilymphoma treatment, including anti-CD20 containing regimens, did not impact survival. Patients with Hodgkin's lymphoma had the more favorable survival, but this was partly related to significantly younger age. The time interval between lymphoma diagnosis and COVID-19 was inversely related to mortality. Multivariable analysis recognized 4 easy-to-use factors (age, gender, lymphocyte, and platelet count) that were associated with risk of death, both in the admitted and in the not-admitted cohort (HR 3.79 and 8.85 for the intermediate- and high-risk group, respectively). Overall, our study shows that patients should not be deprived of the best available treatment of their underlying disease and indicates which patients are at higher risk of death. This study was registered with ClinicalTrials.gov, NCT04352556.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Lymphoma , Adult , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , Cohort Studies , Humans , Lymphoma/diagnosis , Lymphoma/therapy , Middle Aged , Prognosis , SARS-CoV-2 , Young Adult
10.
Biomedicines ; 9(10)2021 Oct 15.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1470793

ABSTRACT

Immunization with mRNA SARS-CoV-2 vaccines has been highly recommended and prioritized in fragile subjects, including patients with myelofibrosis (MF). Available data on the vaccine immune response developed by MF patients and the impact of ruxolitinib treatment are still too fragmented to support an informed decision on a third dose for this category of subjects. Here, we show that 76% of MF patients develop spike-specific IgG after the second mRNA SARS-CoV-2 vaccine dose, but the response has a slower kinetics compared to healthy subjects, suggesting a reduced capability of their immune system to promptly react to vaccination. A reduced ACE2/RBD binding inhibition activity of spike-specific antibodies was also observed, especially in ruxolitinib-treated patients. Our results, showing slow kinetics of antibody responses in MF patients following vaccination with mRNA SARS-CoV-2 vaccines, support the need for a third vaccine dose.

11.
Br J Haematol ; 196(3): 559-565, 2022 02.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1462747

ABSTRACT

Limited information is available on the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the management of chronic myeloid leukaemia (CML). The Campus CML network collected retrospective information on 8 665 CML patients followed at 46 centres throughout Italy during the pandemic between February 2020 and January 2021. Within this cohort, we recorded 217 SARS-CoV-2-positive patients (2·5%). Most patients (57%) were diagnosed as having SARS-CoV-2 infection during the second peak of the pandemic (September 2020 to January 2021). The majority (35%) was aged between 50 and 65 years with a male prevalence (73%). Fifty-six percent of patients presented concomitant comorbidities. The median time from CML diagnosis to SARS-CoV-2 infection was six years (three months to 18 years). Twenty-one patients (9·6%) required hospitalization without the need of respiratory assistance, 18 (8·2%) were hospitalized for respiratory assistance, 8 (3·6%) were admitted to an intensive care unit, while 170 (78%) were only quarantined. Twenty-three percent of patients discontinued tyrosine kinase inhibitor (TKI) therapy during the infection. Twelve patients died due to COVID-19 with a mortality rate of 5·5% in the positive cohort and of 0·13% in the whole cohort. We could also document sequelae caused by the SARS-CoV-2 infection and an impact of the pandemic on the overall management of CML patients.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Leukemia, Myelogenous, Chronic, BCR-ABL Positive , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2 , Aged , COVID-19/diagnosis , COVID-19/mortality , COVID-19/therapy , Disease-Free Survival , Female , Humans , Italy/epidemiology , Leukemia, Myelogenous, Chronic, BCR-ABL Positive/mortality , Leukemia, Myelogenous, Chronic, BCR-ABL Positive/therapy , Male , Middle Aged , Retrospective Studies , Survival Rate
12.
J Clin Med ; 10(16)2021 Aug 23.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1367859

ABSTRACT

Jak inhibitors are potent anti-inflammatory drugs that have the potential to dampen the hyperactive inflammatory response associated with severe COVID-19. We reviewed the clinical outcomes of 218 patients with COVID-19 hospitalized for severe pneumonia and treated with ruxolitinib through a compassionate use program. Data on the duration of treatment; outcomes at 4, 7, 14, and 28 days; oxygen support requirements; clinical status; and laboratory parameters were retrospectively collected. Overall, according to the physician evaluation, 66.5% of patients showed improvement at follow-up; of these, 83.5% showed improvement by day 7. Oxygen support status also showed improvement, and by day 7, 21.6% of patients were on ambient air, compared with 1.4% at baseline, which increased to 48.2% by day 28. Significant decreases in C-reactive protein and increases in the lymphocyte total count were already observed by day 4, which seemed to correlate with a positive outcome. At the end of the observation period, 87.2% of patients were alive. No unexpected safety findings were observed, and grade 3/4 adverse events were reported in 6.9% of patients.

13.
Br J Haematol ; 195(3): 371-377, 2021 11.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1314037

ABSTRACT

COVID-19 is associated with high mortality in patients with haematological malignancies (HM) and rate of seroconversion is unknown. The ITA-HEMA-COV project (NCT04352556) investigated patterns of seroconversion for SARS-CoV-2 IgG in patients with HMs. A total of 237 patients, SARS-CoV-2 PCR-positive with at least one SARS-CoV-2 IgG test performed during their care, entered the analysis. Among these, 62 (26·2%) had myeloid, 121 (51·1%) lymphoid and 54 (22·8%) plasma cell neoplasms. Overall, 69% of patients (164 of 237) had detectable IgG SARS-CoV-2 serum antibodies. Serologically negative patients (31%, 73 of 237) were evenly distributed across patients with myeloid, lymphoid and plasma cell neoplasms. In the multivariable logistic regression, chemoimmunotherapy [odds ratio (OR), 3·42; 95% confidence interval (CI), 1·04-11·21; P = 0·04] was associated with a lower rate of seroconversion. This effect did not decline after 180 days from treatment withdrawal (OR, 0·35; 95% CI: 0·11-1·13; P = 0·08). This study demonstrates a low rate of seroconversion in HM patients and indicates that treatment-mediated immune dysfunction is the main driver. As a consequence, we expect a low rate of seroconversion after vaccination and thus we suggest testing the efficacy of seroconversion in HM patients.


Subject(s)
Antibody Formation , COVID-19/complications , Hematologic Neoplasms/complications , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Adult , Aged , Aged, 80 and over , Antibodies, Viral/immunology , COVID-19/immunology , Female , Hematologic Neoplasms/immunology , Humans , Immunoglobulin G/immunology , Male , Middle Aged , Seroconversion , Young Adult
16.
Expert Rev Hematol ; 13(10): 1093-1105, 2020 10.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-740141

ABSTRACT

INTRODUCTION: Early-stage follicular lymphoma (FL) is characterized by good prognosis and can be cured with involved-field radiotherapy (IF-RT) in most cases. PET scan is a milestone of diagnostic work-up, with the aim of identifying a truly localized disease; however, staging in most of the studies was without PET. AREAS COVERED: We have searched in MEDLINE (inclusive dates 1994-2020) data about localized FL management. While high-quality evidence is lacking, current guidelines recommend IFRT or involved-site RT as first-line treatment in limited stages FL. Since a significant proportion of disease relapse occurred in non-irradiated areas, it has been hypothesized that occult disease could be present at diagnosis and could persist after RT, contributing to relapse. Available treatment options include watch-and-wait, chemotherapy, RT plus chemo- or chemo-immunotherapy, and RT combined with rituximab (R). EXPERT OPINION: RT combined with chemotherapy could increase PFS, but a clear OS benefit is lacking and toxic effects could be unacceptable. A promising strategy is represented by R combined with IF-RT, with low relapse rate outside the radiation fields and without the toxicity reported with chemotherapy. The study of prognostic factors in PET-staged patients, the reduction of RT fields and doses, and a response-adapted strategy represent new perspectives to investigate.


Subject(s)
Lymphoma, Follicular/diagnosis , Lymphoma, Follicular/therapy , Age Factors , Clinical Decision-Making , Combined Modality Therapy , Disease Management , Female , Humans , Lymphoma, Follicular/etiology , Male , Neoplasm Grading , Neoplasm Staging , Prognosis , Recurrence , Treatment Outcome
17.
Front Med (Lausanne) ; 7: 466, 2020.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-732891

ABSTRACT

Background: The Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic is causing millions of infections and hundreds of thousands of deaths worldwide. Cumulative clinical and laboratory evidence suggest that a subset of patients with severe COVID-19 may develop a cytokine storm syndrome during the course of the disease, with severe respiratory impairment requiring ventilatory support. One field of research nowadays is to identify and treat viral-induced hyperinflammation with drugs used in other clinical conditions characterized by an hyperinflammation status. These drugs might help to reduce COVID19 mortality. Methods: Ruxolitinib, a JAK1 and JAK2 inhibitor, has been successfully used to treat severe immune-mediated diseases, such as graft vs. host disease and Hemophagocytic lymphohistiocytosis. We used ruxolitinib in 18 patients with clinically progressive COVID-19 related acute respiratory distress syndrome, with a primary endpoint to rapidly reduce the degree of respiratory impairment and as a secondary endpoint to rapidly restore the PaO2/FiO2 ratio, as an evaluation of clinical status, and monitoring of drug related Adverse Events. Parameters of inflammation responses and organ functions were assessed and monitored. The treatment plan was ruxolitinib 20 mg bid for the first 48 h and subsequent two-step de-escalation at 10 mg bid and 5 mg bid for a maximum of 14 days of treatment. Results: Our data collection shows a rapid clinical response with no evolution from non-invasive ventilation to mechanical ventilation in 16/18 patients and no response in two patients (overall response rate-ORR 89%). Already after 48 h of ruxolitinib treatment 16/18 patients showed evident clinical improvement, and after 7 days of treatment 11/18 patients showed fully recovered respiratory function (pO2 > 98% in spontaneous breathing), 4/18 patients had minimal oxygen requirement (2-4 L/m), 1/18 patient showed stable disease, and 2/18 patient showed progressive disease. After 14 days, 16/18 patients showed complete recovery of respiratory function (ORR 89%). Compliance to ruxolitinib planned treatment was 100% and no serious adverse event was recorded. In our case series of 18 critically ill patients with COVID-19 and ARDS, administration of ruxolitinib resulted in a clinical improvement that concurred to modify the standard course of disease. Ruxolitinib can be a therapeutic option for patients with respiratory insufficiency in COVID-19 related ARDS. RESPIRE Study (Ruxolitinib for the treatment of acute rESPIratory distREss syndrome, ClinicalTrials.gov Identifier: NCT04361903).

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