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1.
Ann Rheum Dis ; 2022 Feb 23.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1704550

ABSTRACT

The first EULAR provisional recommendations on the management of rheumatic and musculoskeletal diseases (RMDs) in the context of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), largely based on expert opinion, were published in June 2020. Since then, an unprecedented number of clinical studies have accrued in the literature. Several SARS-CoV-2 vaccines have been approved for population-wide vaccination programmes in EULAR-affiliated countries. Studies regarding vaccination of patients with (inflammatory) RMDs have released their first results or are underway.EULAR found it opportune to carefully review to what extent the initially consensus expert recommendations stood the test of time, by challenging them with the recently accumulated body of scientific evidence, and by incorporating evidence-based advice on SARS-CoV-2 vaccination. EULAR started a formal (first) update in January 2021, performed a systematic literature review according to EULAR's standard operating procedures and completed a set of updated overarching principles and recommendations in July 2021. Two points to consider were added in November 2021, because of recent developments pertaining to additional vaccination doses.

2.
J Neurochem ; 2022 Feb 08.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1673193

ABSTRACT

SARS-CoV-2 infection can damage the nervous system with multiple neurological manifestations described. However, there is limited understanding of the mechanisms underlying COVID-19 neurological injury. This is a cross-sectional exploratory prospective biomarker cohort study of 21 patients with COVID-19 neurological syndromes (Guillain-Barre Syndrome [GBS], encephalitis, encephalopathy, acute disseminated encephalomyelitis [ADEM], intracranial hypertension, and central pain syndrome) and 23 healthy COVID-19 negative controls. We measured cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) and serum biomarkers of amyloid processing, neuronal injury (neurofilament light), astrocyte activation (GFAp), and neuroinflammation (tissue necrosis factor [TNF] ɑ, interleukin [IL]-6, IL-1ß, IL-8). Patients with COVID-19 neurological syndromes had significantly reduced CSF soluble amyloid precursor protein (sAPP)-ɑ (p = 0.004) and sAPPß (p = 0.03) as well as amyloid ß (Aß) 40 (p = 5.2 × 10-8 ), Aß42 (p = 3.5 × 10-7 ), and Aß42/Aß40 ratio (p = 0.005) compared to controls. Patients with COVID-19 neurological syndromes showed significantly increased neurofilament light (NfL, p = 0.001) and this negatively correlated with sAPPɑ and sAPPß. Conversely, GFAp was significantly reduced in COVID-19 neurological syndromes (p = 0.0001) and this positively correlated with sAPPɑ and sAPPß. COVID-19 neurological patients also displayed significantly increased CSF proinflammatory cytokines and these negatively correlated with sAPPɑ and sAPPß. A sensitivity analysis of COVID-19-associated GBS revealed a non-significant trend toward greater impairment of amyloid processing in COVID-19 central than peripheral neurological syndromes. This pilot study raises the possibility that patients with COVID-19-associated neurological syndromes exhibit impaired amyloid processing. Altered amyloid processing was linked to neuronal injury and neuroinflammation but reduced astrocyte activation.

3.
J Rheumatol ; 49(1): 120-121, 2022 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1625103
4.
Nature ; 602(7896): 321-327, 2022 02.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1585831

ABSTRACT

It is not fully understood why COVID-19 is typically milder in children1-3. Here, to examine the differences between children and adults in their response to SARS-CoV-2 infection, we analysed paediatric and adult patients with COVID-19 as well as healthy control individuals (total n = 93) using single-cell multi-omic profiling of matched nasal, tracheal, bronchial and blood samples. In the airways of healthy paediatric individuals, we observed cells that were already in an interferon-activated state, which after SARS-CoV-2 infection was further induced especially in airway immune cells. We postulate that higher paediatric innate interferon responses restrict viral replication and disease progression. The systemic response in children was characterized by increases in naive lymphocytes and a depletion of natural killer cells, whereas, in adults, cytotoxic T cells and interferon-stimulated subpopulations were significantly increased. We provide evidence that dendritic cells initiate interferon signalling in early infection, and identify epithelial cell states associated with COVID-19 and age. Our matching nasal and blood data show a strong interferon response in the airways with the induction of systemic interferon-stimulated populations, which were substantially reduced in paediatric patients. Together, we provide several mechanisms that explain the milder clinical syndrome observed in children.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/blood , COVID-19/immunology , Dendritic Cells/immunology , Interferons/immunology , Killer Cells, Natural/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , T-Lymphocytes, Cytotoxic/immunology , Adult , Bronchi/immunology , Bronchi/virology , COVID-19/pathology , Chicago , Cohort Studies , Disease Progression , Epithelial Cells/cytology , Epithelial Cells/immunology , Epithelial Cells/virology , Female , Humans , Immunity, Innate , London , Male , Nasal Mucosa/immunology , Nasal Mucosa/virology , SARS-CoV-2/growth & development , Single-Cell Analysis , Trachea/virology , Young Adult
5.
BMJ Open Respir Res ; 8(1)2021 11.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1515307

ABSTRACT

INTRODUCTION: Post-COVID-19 complications require simultaneous characterisation and management to plan policy and health system responses. We describe the 12-month experience of the first UK dedicated post-COVID-19 clinical service to include hospitalised and non-hospitalised patients. METHODS: In a single-centre, observational analysis, we report the demographics, symptoms, comorbidities, investigations, treatments, functional recovery, specialist referral and rehabilitation of 1325 individuals assessed at the University College London Hospitals post-COVID-19 service between April 2020 and April 2021, comparing by referral route: posthospitalised (PH), non-hospitalised (NH) and post emergency department (PED). Symptoms associated with poor recovery or inability to return to work full time were assessed using multivariable logistic regression. RESULTS: 1325 individuals were assessed (PH: 547, 41.3%; PED: 212, 16%; NH: 566, 42.7%). Compared with the PH and PED groups, the NH group were younger (median 44.6 (35.6-52.8) years vs 58.3 (47.0-67.7) years and 48.5 (39.4-55.7) years), more likely to be female (68.2%, 43.0% and 59.9%), less likely to be of ethnic minority (30.9%, 52.7% and 41.0%) or seen later after symptom onset (median (IQR): 194 (118-298) days, 69 (51-111) days and 76 (55-128) days; all p<0.0001). All groups had similar rates of onward specialist referral (NH 18.7%, PH 16.1% and PED 18.9%, p=0.452) and were more likely to require support for breathlessness (23.7%, 5.5% and 15.1%, p<0.001) and fatigue (17.8%, 4.8% and 8.0%, p<0.001). Hospitalised patients had higher rates of pulmonary emboli, persistent lung interstitial abnormalities and other organ impairment. 716 (54.0%) individuals reported <75% optimal health (median 70%, IQR 55%-85%). Less than half of employed individuals could return to work full time at first assessment. CONCLUSION: Post-COVID-19 symptoms were significant in PH and NH patients, with significant ongoing healthcare needs and utilisation. Trials of interventions and patient-centred pathways for diagnostic and treatment approaches are urgently required.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Delivery of Health Care , Female , Humans , Male , Minority Groups , Prospective Studies , SARS-CoV-2
6.
EuropePMC; 2021.
Preprint in English | EuropePMC | ID: ppcovidwho-292339

ABSTRACT

Here we report the results of a pilot young patient survey which targeted patients with juvenile systemic lupus erythematosus (JSLE) and juvenile dermatomyositis (JDM), which explored wellbeing, resilience and general concern about the COVID-19 pandemic. The survey was completed anonymously by patients who have been approached via the automatically generated hospital data base between June-December 2020. This pilot study found that generalised concerns regarding the COVID-19 pandemic were significantly higher in females, although their self-reported disease activity scores were comparable with male respondents. Our findings highlight a need to improve remote assessments to facilitate triaging for face-to-face visits in the situation of future pandemics associated with disruption of clinical services, as well as further research in this area of young patient-reported outcomes outside hospital visits.

7.
Lancet Rheumatol ; 3(12): e855-e864, 2021 Dec.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1500370

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Patients with primary systemic vasculitis or polymyalgia rheumatica might be at a high risk for poor COVID-19 outcomes due to the treatments used, the potential organ damage cause by primary systemic vasculitis, and the demographic factors associated with these conditions. We therefore aimed to investigate factors associated with COVID-19 outcomes in patients with primary systemic vasculitis or polymyalgia rheumatica. METHODS: In this retrospective cohort study, adult patients (aged ≥18 years) diagnosed with COVID-19 between March 12, 2020, and April 12, 2021, who had a history of primary systemic vasculitis (antineutrophil cytoplasmic antibody [ANCA]-associated vasculitis, giant cell arteritis, Behçet's syndrome, or other vasculitis) or polymyalgia rheumatica, and were reported to the COVID-19 Global Rheumatology Alliance registry were included. To assess COVID-19 outcomes in patients, we used an ordinal COVID-19 severity scale, defined as: (1) no hospitalisation; (2) hospitalisation without supplemental oxygen; (3) hospitalisation with any supplemental oxygen or ventilation; or (4) death. Multivariable ordinal logistic regression analyses were used to estimate odds ratios (ORs), adjusting for age, sex, time period, number of comorbidities, smoking status, obesity, glucocorticoid use, disease activity, region, and medication category. Analyses were also stratified by type of rheumatic disease. FINDINGS: Of 1202 eligible patients identified in the registry, 733 (61·0%) were women and 469 (39·0%) were men, and their mean age was 63·8 years (SD 17·1). A total of 374 (31·1%) patients had polymyalgia rheumatica, 353 (29·4%) had ANCA-associated vasculitis, 183 (15·2%) had giant cell arteritis, 112 (9·3%) had Behçet's syndrome, and 180 (15·0%) had other vasculitis. Of 1020 (84·9%) patients with outcome data, 512 (50·2%) were not hospitalised, 114 (11·2%) were hospitalised and did not receive supplemental oxygen, 239 (23·4%) were hospitalised and received ventilation or supplemental oxygen, and 155 (15·2%) died. A higher odds of poor COVID-19 outcomes were observed in patients who were older (per each additional decade of life OR 1·44 [95% CI 1·31-1·57]), were male compared with female (1·38 [1·05-1·80]), had more comorbidities (per each additional comorbidity 1·39 [1·23-1·58]), were taking 10 mg/day or more of prednisolone compared with none (2·14 [1·50-3·04]), or had moderate, or high or severe disease activity compared with those who had disease remission or low disease activity (2·12 [1·49-3·02]). Risk factors varied among different disease subtypes. INTERPRETATION: Among patients with primary systemic vasculitis and polymyalgia rheumatica, severe COVID-19 outcomes were associated with variable and largely unmodifiable risk factors, such as age, sex, and number of comorbidities, as well as treatments, including high-dose glucocorticoids. Our results could be used to inform mitigation strategies for patients with these diseases. FUNDING: American College of Rheumatology and the European Alliance of Associations for Rheumatology.

8.
J Clin Invest ; 131(24)2021 12 15.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1495792

ABSTRACT

Acute COVID-19, caused by SARS-CoV-2, is characterized by diverse clinical presentations, ranging from asymptomatic infection to fatal respiratory failure, and often associated with varied longer-term sequelae. Over the past 18 months, it has become apparent that inappropriate immune responses contribute to the pathogenesis of severe COVID-19. Researchers working at the intersection of COVID-19 and autoimmunity recently gathered at an American Autoimmune Related Diseases Association Noel R. Rose Colloquium to address the current state of knowledge regarding two important questions: Does established autoimmunity predispose to severe COVID-19? And, at the same time, can SARS-CoV-2 infection trigger de novo autoimmunity? Indeed, work to date has demonstrated that 10% to 15% of patients with critical COVID-19 pneumonia exhibit autoantibodies against type I interferons, suggesting that preexisting autoimmunity underlies severe disease in some patients. Other studies have identified functional autoantibodies following infection with SARS-CoV-2, such as those that promote thrombosis or antagonize cytokine signaling. These autoantibodies may arise from a predominantly extrafollicular B cell response that is more prone to generating autoantibody-secreting B cells. This Review highlights the current understanding, evolving concepts, and unanswered questions provided by this unique opportunity to determine mechanisms by which a viral infection can be exacerbated by, and even trigger, autoimmunity. The potential role of autoimmunity in post-acute sequelae of COVID-19 is also discussed.


Subject(s)
Autoantibodies/chemistry , Autoimmunity/immunology , COVID-19/immunology , COVID-19/physiopathology , Signal Transduction , Animals , Autoimmune Diseases , B-Lymphocytes/cytology , Cytokines/metabolism , Disease Progression , Female , Granulocyte-Macrophage Colony-Stimulating Factor/metabolism , Humans , Inflammation , Interleukin-1/metabolism , Interleukin-6/metabolism , Macrophage Activation , Male , Mice , Phospholipids/metabolism , SARS-CoV-2
9.
J Rheumatol ; 2021 Oct 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1448973

ABSTRACT

We thank Sauret et al1 for their interest in our systematic literature review that explored potential diagnostic confusion between giant cell arteritis (GCA) and the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). This was a particularly important consideration during the early months of the COVID-19 pandemic, when community testing for SARS-CoV-2 was limited and diagnostic tests for GCA were restricted or unavailable due to redeployment of staff.2.

10.
BMJ Open Respir Res ; 8(1)2021 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1438096

ABSTRACT

INTRODUCTION: The COVID-19 pandemic has led to over 100 million cases worldwide. The UK has had over 4 million cases, 400 000 hospital admissions and 100 000 deaths. Many patients with COVID-19 suffer long-term symptoms, predominantly breathlessness and fatigue whether hospitalised or not. Early data suggest potentially severe long-term consequence of COVID-19 is development of long COVID-19-related interstitial lung disease (LC-ILD). METHODS AND ANALYSIS: The UK Interstitial Lung Disease Consortium (UKILD) will undertake longitudinal observational studies of patients with suspected ILD following COVID-19. The primary objective is to determine ILD prevalence at 12 months following infection and whether clinically severe infection correlates with severity of ILD. Secondary objectives will determine the clinical, genetic, epigenetic and biochemical factors that determine the trajectory of recovery or progression of ILD. Data will be obtained through linkage to the Post-Hospitalisation COVID platform study and community studies. Additional substudies will conduct deep phenotyping. The Xenon MRI investigation of Alveolar dysfunction Substudy will conduct longitudinal xenon alveolar gas transfer and proton perfusion MRI. The POST COVID-19 interstitial lung DiseasE substudy will conduct clinically indicated bronchoalveolar lavage with matched whole blood sampling. Assessments include exploratory single cell RNA and lung microbiomics analysis, gene expression and epigenetic assessment. ETHICS AND DISSEMINATION: All contributing studies have been granted appropriate ethical approvals. Results from this study will be disseminated through peer-reviewed journals. CONCLUSION: This study will ensure the extent and consequences of LC-ILD are established and enable strategies to mitigate progression of LC-ILD.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/complications , Lung Diseases, Interstitial , Humans , Longitudinal Studies , Lung Diseases, Interstitial/epidemiology , Observational Studies as Topic , Pandemics , Prospective Studies , United Kingdom/epidemiology
11.
Brain Commun ; 3(3): fcab099, 2021.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1358433

ABSTRACT

Preliminary pathological and biomarker data suggest that SARS-CoV-2 infection can damage the nervous system. To understand what, where and how damage occurs, we collected serum and CSF from patients with COVID-19 and characterized neurological syndromes involving the PNS and CNS (n = 34). We measured biomarkers of neuronal damage and neuroinflammation, and compared these with non-neurological control groups, which included patients with (n = 94) and without (n = 24) COVID-19. We detected increased concentrations of neurofilament light, a dynamic biomarker of neuronal damage, in the CSF of those with CNS inflammation (encephalitis and acute disseminated encephalomyelitis) [14 800 pg/ml (400, 32 400)], compared to those with encephalopathy [1410 pg/ml (756, 1446)], peripheral syndromes (Guillain-Barré syndrome) [740 pg/ml (507, 881)] and controls [872 pg/ml (654, 1200)]. Serum neurofilament light levels were elevated across patients hospitalized with COVID-19, irrespective of neurological manifestations. There was not the usual close correlation between CSF and serum neurofilament light, suggesting serum neurofilament light elevation in the non-neurological patients may reflect peripheral nerve damage in response to severe illness. We did not find significantly elevated levels of serum neurofilament light in community cases of COVID-19 arguing against significant neurological damage. Glial fibrillary acidic protein, a marker of astrocytic activation, was not elevated in the CSF or serum of any group, suggesting astrocytic activation is not a major mediator of neuronal damage in COVID-19.

12.
EClinicalMedicine ; 39: 101070, 2021 Sep.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1351631

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: A high prevalence of antiphospholipid antibodies has been reported in case series of patients with neurological manifestations and COVID-19; however, the pathogenicity of antiphospholipid antibodies in COVID-19 neurology remains unclear. METHODS: This single-centre cross-sectional study included 106 adult patients: 30 hospitalised COVID-neurological cases, 47 non-neurological COVID-hospitalised controls, and 29 COVID-non-hospitalised controls, recruited between March and July 2020. We evaluated nine antiphospholipid antibodies: anticardiolipin antibodies [aCL] IgA, IgM, IgG; anti-beta-2 glycoprotein-1 [aß2GPI] IgA, IgM, IgG; anti-phosphatidylserine/prothrombin [aPS/PT] IgM, IgG; and anti-domain I ß2GPI (aD1ß2GPI) IgG. FINDINGS: There was a high prevalence of antiphospholipid antibodies in the COVID-neurological (73.3%) and non-neurological COVID-hospitalised controls (76.6%) in contrast to the COVID-non-hospitalised controls (48.2%). aPS/PT IgG titres were significantly higher in the COVID-neurological group compared to both control groups (p < 0.001). Moderate-high titre of aPS/PT IgG was found in 2 out of 3 (67%) patients with acute disseminated encephalomyelitis [ADEM]. aPS/PT IgG titres negatively correlated with oxygen requirement (FiO2 R=-0.15 p = 0.040) and was associated with venous thromboembolism (p = 0.043). In contrast, aCL IgA (p < 0.001) and IgG (p < 0.001) was associated with non-neurological COVID-hospitalised controls compared to the other groups and correlated positively with d-dimer and creatinine but negatively with FiO2. INTERPRETATION: Our findings show that aPS/PT IgG is associated with COVID-19-associated ADEM. In contrast, aCL IgA and IgG are seen much more frequently in non-neurological hospitalised patients with COVID-19. Characterisation of antiphospholipid antibody persistence and potential longitudinal clinical impact are required to guide appropriate management. FUNDING: This work is supported by UCL Queen Square Biomedical Research Centre (BRC) and Moorfields BRC grants (#560441 and #557595). LB is supported by a Wellcome Trust Fellowship (222102/Z/20/Z). RWP is supported by an Alzheimer's Association Clinician Scientist Fellowship (AACSF-20-685780) and the UK Dementia Research Institute. KB is supported by the Swedish Research Council (#2017-00915) and the Swedish state under the agreement between the Swedish government and the County Councils, the ALF-agreement (#ALFGBG-715986). HZ is a Wallenberg Scholar supported by grants from the Swedish Research Council (#2018-02532), the European Research Council (#681712), Swedish State Support for Clinical Research (#ALFGBG-720931), the Alzheimer Drug Discovery Foundation (ADDF), USA (#201809-2016862), and theUK Dementia Research Institute at UCL. BDM is supported by grants from the MRC/UKRI (MR/V007181/1), MRC (MR/T028750/1) and Wellcome (ISSF201902/3). MSZ, MH and RS are supported by the UCL/UCLH NIHR Biomedical Research Centre and MSZ is supported by Queen Square National Brain Appeal.

13.
Curr Opin Rheumatol ; 33(5): 419-430, 2021 09 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1310947

ABSTRACT

PURPOSE OF REVIEW: The COVID-19 pandemic is a global public health crisis with considerable mortality and morbidity. A role for cytokine storm and therapeutic immunomodulation in a subgroup of patients with severe COVID-19 was proposed early in the pandemic. The concept of cytokine storm in COVID-19 has been criticised, given the lack of clear definition and relatively modest cytokinaemia (which may be necessary for viral clearance) compared with acute respiratory distress syndrome and bacterial sepsis. Here we consider the arguments for and against the concept of cytokine storm in COVID-19. RECENT FINDINGS: Several criteria have been proposed to identify the subgroup of COVID-19 patients exhibiting a cytokine storm. The beneficial effects of corticosteroids and interleukin-6 inhibition suggest that inflammation is a modifiable pathogenic component of severe COVID-19. The presence of genetic polymorphisms and pathogenic auto-autoantibodies in severe COVID-19 also suggests a significant contribution of immune dysregulation to poor outcomes. SUMMARY: Hyperinflammation is a key component of severe COVID-19, residing underneath the cytokine storm umbrella term, associated with poor outcomes. Better understanding of the aetiopathogenesis, with identification of biomarkers to predict treatment responses and prognosis, will hopefully enable a stratified and ultimately precision medicine approach.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Cytokine Release Syndrome , Cytokines , Humans , Immunomodulation , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2
17.
Brain Behav Immun ; 95: 514-517, 2021 07.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1184841

ABSTRACT

Recent reports have highlighted rare, and sometimes fatal, cases of cerebral venous sinus thrombosis (CVST) and thrombocytopenia following the Vaxzevria vaccine. An underlying immunological mechanism similar to that of spontaneous heparin-induced thrombocytopenia (HIT) is suspected, with the identification of antibodies to platelet factor-4 (PF4), but without previous heparin exposure. This unusual mechanism has significant implications for the management approach used, which differs from usual treatment of CVST. We describe the cases of two young males, who developed severe thrombocytopenia and fatal CVST following the first dose of Vaxzevria. Both presented with a headache, with subsequent rapid neurological deterioration. One patient underwent PF4 antibody testing, which was positive. A rapid vaccination programme is essential in helping to control the COVID-19 pandemic. Hence, it is vital that such COVID-19 vaccine-associated events, which at this stage appear to be very rare, are viewed through this lens. However, some cases have proved fatal. It is critical that clinicians are alerted to the emergence of such events to facilitate appropriate management. Patients presenting with CVST features and thrombocytopenia post-vaccination should undergo PF4 antibody testing and be managed in a similar fashion to HIT, in particular avoiding heparin and platelet transfusions.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Sinus Thrombosis, Intracranial , Thrombocytopenia , Anticoagulants , COVID-19 Vaccines , Humans , Male , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2 , Thrombocytopenia/chemically induced , United Kingdom , Vaccination/adverse effects
18.
Lancet Rheumatol ; 3(6): e394-e395, 2021 Jun.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1146614
20.
Lancet Rheumatol ; 3(1): e71-e82, 2021 Jan.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1078253

ABSTRACT

Giant cell arteritis, a common primary systemic vasculitis affecting older people, presents acutely as a medical emergency and requires rapid specialist assessment and treatment to prevent irreversible vision loss. Disruption of the health-care system caused by the COVID-19 pandemic exposed weak points in clinical pathways for diagnosis and treatment of giant cell arteritis, but has also permitted innovative solutions. The essential roles played by all professionals, including general practitioners and surgeons, in treating these patients have become evident. Patients must also be involved in the reshaping of clinical services. As an international group of authors involved in the care of patients with giant cell arteritis, we reflect in this Viewpoint on rapid service adaptations during the first peak of COVID-19, evaluate challenges, and consider implications for the future.

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