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1.
HemaSphere ; 6:2679-2681, 2022.
Article in English | EMBASE | ID: covidwho-2032097

ABSTRACT

Background: Autoimmune haemolytic anaemia (AIHA) during pregnancy is a rare finding, and few is known about maternal and foetal outcomes. AIHA may either develop or relapse during gestation and postpartum or be an issue in a patient on active therapy who becomes pregnant. AIHA management during pregnancy and lactation is not standardized and drug use is often limited by safety concerns. Aims: We studied AIHA impact on pregnancy focusing on disease severity, treatment need and maternal/foetal outcome. Methods: Through a multicentric retrospective cohort study, we identified 38 pregnancies occurred in 28 women from 1997 to 2021 in 10 European centres in Italy, Denmark, France, the Netherlands, USA, and Spain. All included patients had a previous AIHA history or developed/exacerbated AIHA during gestation or postpartum. AIHA was classified according to the direct antiglobulin test. Results: We registered 18 warm AIHA (10 IgG;8 IgG+C3d), 2 cold agglutinin disease, 3 mixed and 5 atypical forms (Table 1). Evans syndrome (i.e., association of AIHA and immune thrombocytopenia or neutropenia) was present in 4. Mean age at AIHA diagnosis was 27 (3-39) and at pregnancy 32 (21-41) years. AIHA diagnosis predated pregnancy in 15 women and had required at least 1 therapy line in all of them, and >2 lines in 12 (rituximab, N=7;cytotoxic immunosuppressants, N=6;splenectomy, N=5). Among these 15 patients, 6 had a relapse during pregnancy, 3 during postpartum and 9 were on active treatment at the time of pregnancy (steroids, N=8;cyclosporine, N=1;azathioprine, N=1;the latter stopped after positive pregnancy test). A patient with a previous AIHA, relapsed as immune thrombocytopenic purpura during pregnancy. Further 8 patients had an AIHA onset during gestation and 2 postpartum. A patient had AIHA onset during the postpartum of the 1st pregnancy and relapsed during the 2nd one. In the 20 women experiencing AIHA during pregnancy/postpartum, median Hb and LDH levels were 6,4 g/dL (3,1 - 8,7) and 588 UI/L (269-1631), respectively. Management consisted in blood transfusions (N=10) and prompt establishment of steroid therapy+/-IVIG (N=20), all with response (complete N=13, partial N=7). After delivery, rituximab was necessary in 4 patients and cyclosporine was added in one. Anti-thrombotic prophylaxis was given in 7 patients. Overall, we registered 10 obstetric complications (10/38, 26%), including 4 early miscarriages, a premature rupture of membranes, a placental detachment, 2 preeclampsia, a postpartum infection and a biliary colic. Apart from the case of biliary colic and one of the two cases of preeclampsia, 8/10 complications occurred during active haemolysis and treatment for AIHA. Nine foetal adverse events (9/38, 24%) were reported: a transitory respiratory distress of the new-born in a mother with active AIHA, 3 cases of foetal growth restriction, a preterm birth, an infant reporting neurologic sequelae, a case of AIHA of the new-born requiring intravenous immunoglobulins, blood transfusions and plasma exchange, and 2 perinatal deaths. The latter both occurred in women on active AIHA therapy and were secondary to a massive placental detachment and a symptomatic SARS-CoV-2 infection. (Figure Presented ) Summary/Conclusion: AIHA developing/reactivating during pregnancy or postpartum is rare (about 5%) but mainly severe requiring steroid therapy and transfusions. Importantly, severe maternal and foetal complications may occur in up to 26% of cases mostly associated with active disease, pinpointing the importance of maintaining a high level of awareness. Passive maternal autoantibodies transfer to the foetus seems a rare event.

2.
Expert Rev Clin Immunol ; 18(7): 731-745, 2022 07.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1890482

ABSTRACT

INTRODUCTION: Autoimmune hemolytic anemia (AIHA) is classified according to the direct antiglobulin test (DAT) and thermal characteristics of the autoantibody into warm and cold forms, and in primary versus secondary depending on the presence of associated conditions. AREAS COVERED: AIHA displays a multifactorial pathogenesis, including genetic (association with congenital conditions and certain mutations), environmental (drugs, infections, including SARS-CoV-2, pollution, etc.), and miscellaneous factors (solid/hematologic neoplasms, systemic autoimmune diseases, etc.) contributing to tolerance breakdown. Several mechanisms, such as autoantibody production, complement activation, monocyte/macrophage phagocytosis, and bone marrow compensation are implicated in extra-/intravascular hemolysis. Treatment should be differentiated and sequenced according to AIHA type (i.e. steroids followed by rituximab for warm, rituximab alone or in association with bendamustine or fludarabine for cold forms). Several new drugs targeting B-cells/plasma cells, complement, and phagocytosis are in clinical trials. Finally, thrombosis and infections may complicate disease course burdening quality of life and increasing mortality. EXPERT OPINION: Beyond warm and cold AIHA, a gray-zone still exists including mixed and DAT negative forms representing an unmet need. AIHA management is rapidly changing through an increasing knowledge of the pathogenic mechanisms, the refinement of diagnostic tools, and the development of novel targeted and combination therapies.


Subject(s)
Anemia, Hemolytic, Autoimmune , COVID-19 , Anemia, Hemolytic, Autoimmune/drug therapy , Anemia, Hemolytic, Autoimmune/therapy , Humans , Quality of Life , Rituximab/therapeutic use , SARS-CoV-2
4.
Blood ; 138:1997, 2021.
Article in English | EMBASE | ID: covidwho-1736296

ABSTRACT

[Formula presented] SARS-CoV-2 infection and vaccination have raised concern in immune mediated diseases, including autoimmune cytopenias (AIC, i.e. autoimmune hemolytic anemia, AIHA;autoimmune thrombocytopenia, ITP;autoimmune neutropenia, AIN;aplastic anemia, AA;and their combination, termed Evans syndrome, ES). The latter are highly heterogeneous conditions with variable severity and a clinical course marked by several relapses often triggered by immune-activating events (infections, traumas, surgery, etc.) including vaccines. Some reports of ITP and AIHA post-SARS-CoV-2 vaccines have been described but no population studies have been conducted in AIC patients. Here we systematically studied a large series of 100 patients with AIC (44 AIHA, 38 ITP, 7 AIN, 6 ES, and 5 AA) prospectively followed at a reference center in Milan, Italy, who underwent SARS-CoV-2 vaccination from 24 th of March until the end of June 2021. Patients (median age 62 years, range 25-89, female/male ratio 1.7) were monitored with whole blood counts and LDH testing the week before and the week after each vaccination dose. Importantly, ongoing AIC therapy (38% of cases, including steroids, cyclosporine, eltrombopag, and complement inhibitor sutimlimab) were kept stable within the 2 weeks before vaccination. Patients mainly received Pfizer-BioNtech vaccine (N=88), followed by Moderna (N=10), and Astra-Zeneca (N=2). Table 1 summarizes hematologic trends and side effects observed after each dose in patients with ITP and AIHA. Regarding the former, a delta percentage reduction of 10% or higher was observed in up to 13% of cases after the first and the second dose, requiring therapy adjustment in 2 patients. They were two elderly male subjects on low dose eltrombopag treatment and experienced a severe/moderate relapse (platelets 28 and 21x10

5.
Blood ; 138:2180, 2021.
Article in English | EMBASE | ID: covidwho-1582290

ABSTRACT

SARS-CoV-2 infection and vaccination have raised concerns in paroxysmal nocturnal hemoglobinuria (PNH). In fact, PNH patients carry an increased infectious risk secondary to complement inhibition treatment or associated bone marrow failure (BMF), and may therefore benefit from preventive strategies such as vaccinations. On the contrary, vaccines can be numbered among inflammatory complement amplifiers (e.g., infections, traumas, surgery), potentially triggering a disease exacerbation. In PNH patients on complement inhibitors, this phenomenon has been defined pharmacodynamic breakthrough hemolysis (BTH). Based on isolated reports of BTH following SARS-CoV-2 vaccines, we conducted a survey among 5 Italian reference centers to evaluate complications and BTH occurrence in PNH patients who completed the SARS-CoV-2 vaccination schedule from January, 2 2021 until the time of writing. Adverse events, hematologic and hemolytic parameters were recorded within 7-10 days before and after each dose of vaccine. A total of 67 patients (females/males 43/24, median age 47.6 years, range 21-90.5) were eligible for the analysis. According to the International PNH Interest Group classification, 45 patients suffered from hemolytic PNH, 20 from PNH in the context of BMF syndromes (aplastic anemia or myelodysplastic syndrome), and 2 from subclinical PNH. Fifty-five subjects (82%) were on regular complement inhibition therapy, i.e., eculizumab (N=35), ravulizumab (N=13), subcutaneous anti-C5 (N=3), anti-factor B (N=2) and ravulizumab + anti-factor D combination (N=2). Vaccines (Comirnaty/Pfizer-BioNTech N=53, mRNA-1273/Moderna N=12, and ChAdOx1 nCov-19/AstraZeneca N=2) were complessively well-tolerated, with 3 non-hematologic adverse events after the first dose (2 fever and 1 exercise-induced tachycardia, grade 1 according to CTCAE v5.0) and 2 after the second one (fever, accompanied by vomit in one patient, grade 1). During the observation period, 3 BTH and 1 hemolytic exacerbation were recorded (5.9% of patients), as detailed in Table 1. The most severe episode occurred in a young woman (Patient 3) on subcutaneous ravulizumab who experienced a hemoglobin (Hb) drop >2 g/dL, marked clinical signs of intravascular hemolysis and lactate dehydrogenase (LDH) increase >1.5 x upper limit of normal (ULN) from baseline, which is considered a clinical BTH according to the criteria proposed by the Severe Aplastic Anemia Working Party of the European group for Bone Marrow Transplantation. The patient required hospitalization for additional treatment with recombinant erythropoietin and anti-thombotic/bacterial prophylaxis. The second more severe BTH was registered in a male patient (Patient 1) on oral anti-factor B who experienced a Hb drop >2 g/dL without an overt hemolytic flare, and required hospitalization for intravenous antibiotic therapy (concomitant urinary tract infection). The remaining two patients experienced a subclinical BTH (Patient 2) and a hemolytic flare (Patient 4, not on complement inhibition). On the whole, a median delta variation from usual values of Hb and LDH of -25% (range -26+3%) and +80% (+18+105%) were observed, respectively. Of note, 3 episodes occurred after the second dose of vaccine, generally within 24-48 hours. Anti-complement drugs were not modified/discontinued in any of the 3 patients on regular treatment. Patients not experiencing BTH (94.1%) showed stable hematologic parameters after the first dose (Hb/LDH median delta variations from baseline -1%/+1%, range -14+12%/-32+40%) and the second dose of vaccine (Hb/LDH median delta variations from baseline +1%/0%, range -18+47%/-76+41%). Of note, 4 patients with a previous SARS-CoV-2 infection completed the vaccination without any complication/PNH exacerbation. In conclusion, this survey shows that BTH/hemolytic flares following SARS-CoV-2 vaccines are observed in about 6% of PNH patients, may be clinically relevant but manageable, and should not discourage vaccination. BTH has been registered mostly few days after the second dose of vaccine, suggesting a “booster⠝ effect favoring a higher inflammatory response. Watchful clinical and laboratory monitoring is advised, in order to promptly recognize severe hemolytic flares in both treated and naïve patients. [Formula presented] Disclosures: Fattizzo: Novartis: Speakers Bureau;Kira: Speakers Bureau;Alexion: Speakers Bureau;Annexon: Consultancy;Momenta: Honoraria, Speakers Bureau;Apellis: Speakers Bureau;Amgen: Honoraria, Speakers Bureau. Bianchi: Agios pharmaceutics: Consultancy, Membership on an entity's Board of Directors or advisory committees. Sica: Jazz Pharma: Consultancy;Alexion: Consultancy. Barcellini: Novartis: Other: Invited speaker, Research Funding;Agios: Membership on an entity's Board of Directors or advisory committees;Alexion Pharmaceuticals, Inc: Membership on an entity's Board of Directors or advisory committees, Other: Invited speaker, Research Funding;Bioverativ: Membership on an entity's Board of Directors or advisory committees;Incyte: Membership on an entity's Board of Directors or advisory committees.

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