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1.
Mult Scler ; 28(7): 1041-1050, 2022 06.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1846718

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Optimal management of anti-CD20-treated patients with multiple sclerosis (pwMS) is an important clinical task during the current severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2) pandemic. OBJECTIVES: To characterize humoral and cellular immune responses to SARS-CoV-2 vaccinations/infections in a longitudinal cohort of anti-CD20 treated (n = 175) and anti-CD20 therapy-naïve (n = 41) pwMS. METHODS: Anti-SARS-CoV-2 spike protein immunoglobulin G (IgG) and IgA, virus neutralizing capacity, IgG avidity and SARS-CoV-2-specific T cells were determined. RESULTS: Following two SARS-CoV-2 vaccinations, not only SARS-CoV-2 spike protein IgG and IgA, but also neutralizing capacity and avidity of SARS-CoV-2 IgG were lower in anti-CD20-treated (n = 51) than in anti-CD20 therapy-naïve pwMS (n = 14) and in healthy controls (HC, n = 19). However, in all anti-CD20-treated pwMS vaccinated twice (n = 26) or infected with SARS-CoV-2 (n = 2), in whom SARS-CoV-2-specific T cells were measured, SARS-CoV-2-specific T cells were detectable, at levels similar to those of twice-vaccinated anti-CD20 therapy-naïve pwMS (n = 7) and HC (n = 19). SARS-CoV-2-S1 IgG levels (r = 0.42, p = 0.002), antibody avidity (r = 0.7, p < 0.001), and neutralizing capacity (r = 0.44, p = 0.03) increased with time between anti-CD20 infusion and second vaccination. Based on detection of SARS-CoV-2 antibodies, SARS-CoV-2 infections occurred in 4 out of 175 (2.3%) anti-CD20-treated pwMS, all of whom recovered fully. CONCLUSIONS: These findings should inform treatment decisions and SARS-CoV-2 vaccination management in pwMS.


Subject(s)
COVID-19 , Multiple Sclerosis , Antibodies, Viral , COVID-19 Vaccines , Humans , Immunoglobulin A , Immunoglobulin G/therapeutic use , Multiple Sclerosis/drug therapy , SARS-CoV-2 , Spike Glycoprotein, Coronavirus , T-Lymphocytes , Vaccination
2.
EuropePMC; 2022.
Preprint in English | EuropePMC | ID: ppcovidwho-333041

ABSTRACT

Abstract: Patients with COVID-19 can have a variety of neurological symptoms, but the pathomechanism of CNS involvement in COVD-19 remains unclear. While routine cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) analyses in patients with neurological manifestations of COVID-19 generally show no or only mild inflammation, more detailed data on inflammatory mediators in the CSF of patients with COVID-19 are scarce. Here, we used mass spectrometry to study the proteome, Enzym-linkend immunoassays, semiquantitative cytokine arrays, autoantibody screening, and RNA profiling to study the neuroinflammation. We study the inflammatory response in paired CSF and serum samples of patients with COVID-19 (n=38). Patients with herpes simplex virus encephalitis (HSVE, n=10) and patients with non-inflammatory, non-neurodegenerative neurological diseases (n=28) served as controls. Proteomics on single protein level and subsequent pathway analysis showed similar yet strongly attenuated inflammatory changes in the CSF of COVID-19 patients compared to HSVE patients. CSF/serum indices of interleukin-6, interleukin-16 and CXCL10 together point at an origin from these inflammatory proteins from outside the central nervous system. When stratifying COVID-19 patients into those with and without bacterial superinfection as indicated by elevated procalcitonin levels, inflammatory markers were significantly higher in those with concomitant bacterial superinfection. RNA sequencing in the CSF revealed 101 linear RNAs comprising messenger RNAs, micro RNAs and t-RNA fragments being significantly differentially expressed in COVID-19 than in HSVE or controls. Our findings may explain the absence of signs of intrathecal inflammation upon routine CSF testing despite the presence of SARS-CoV2 infection-associated neurological symptoms. The relevance of blood-derived mediators of inflammation in the CSF for neurological post-COVID-19 symptoms deserves further investigation.

3.
J Neuroinflammation ; 19(1): 19, 2022 Jan 20.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1643162

ABSTRACT

BACKGROUND: Comprehensive data on the cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) profile in patients with COVID-19 and neurological involvement from large-scale multicenter studies are missing so far. OBJECTIVE: To analyze systematically the CSF profile in COVID-19. METHODS: Retrospective analysis of 150 lumbar punctures in 127 patients with PCR-proven COVID-19 and neurological symptoms seen at 17 European university centers RESULTS: The most frequent pathological finding was blood-CSF barrier (BCB) dysfunction (median QAlb 11.4 [6.72-50.8]), which was present in 58/116 (50%) samples from patients without pre-/coexisting CNS diseases (group I). QAlb remained elevated > 14d (47.6%) and even > 30d (55.6%) after neurological onset. CSF total protein was elevated in 54/118 (45.8%) samples (median 65.35 mg/dl [45.3-240.4]) and strongly correlated with QAlb. The CSF white cell count (WCC) was increased in 14/128 (11%) samples (mostly lympho-monocytic; median 10 cells/µl, > 100 in only 4). An albuminocytological dissociation (ACD) was found in 43/115 (37.4%) samples. CSF L-lactate was increased in 26/109 (24%; median 3.04 mmol/l [2.2-4]). CSF-IgG was elevated in 50/100 (50%), but was of peripheral origin, since QIgG was normal in almost all cases, as were QIgA and QIgM. In 58/103 samples (56%) pattern 4 oligoclonal bands (OCB) compatible with systemic inflammation were present, while CSF-restricted OCB were found in only 2/103 (1.9%). SARS-CoV-2-CSF-PCR was negative in 76/76 samples. Routine CSF findings were normal in 35%. Cytokine levels were frequently elevated in the CSF (often associated with BCB dysfunction) and serum, partly remaining positive at high levels for weeks/months (939 tests). Of note, a positive SARS-CoV-2-IgG-antibody index (AI) was found in 2/19 (10.5%) patients which was associated with unusually high WCC in both of them and a strongly increased interleukin-6 (IL-6) index in one (not tested in the other). Anti-neuronal/anti-glial autoantibodies were mostly absent in the CSF and serum (1509 tests). In samples from patients with pre-/coexisting CNS disorders (group II [N = 19]; including multiple sclerosis, JC-virus-associated immune reconstitution inflammatory syndrome, HSV/VZV encephalitis/meningitis, CNS lymphoma, anti-Yo syndrome, subarachnoid hemorrhage), CSF findings were mostly representative of the respective disease. CONCLUSIONS: The CSF profile in COVID-19 with neurological symptoms is mainly characterized by BCB disruption in the absence of intrathecal inflammation, compatible with cerebrospinal endotheliopathy. Persistent BCB dysfunction and elevated cytokine levels may contribute to both acute symptoms and 'long COVID'. Direct infection of the CNS with SARS-CoV-2, if occurring at all, seems to be rare. Broad differential diagnostic considerations are recommended to avoid misinterpretation of treatable coexisting neurological disorders as complications of COVID-19.


Subject(s)
COVID-19/cerebrospinal fluid , Adult , Blood-Brain Barrier , COVID-19/complications , Cerebrospinal Fluid Proteins/cerebrospinal fluid , Cytokines/cerebrospinal fluid , Europe , Female , Humans , Immunity, Cellular , Immunoglobulin G/cerebrospinal fluid , Lactic Acid/cerebrospinal fluid , Leukocyte Count , Male , Middle Aged , Nervous System Diseases/cerebrospinal fluid , Nervous System Diseases/etiology , Oligoclonal Bands/cerebrospinal fluid , Retrospective Studies , Spinal Puncture
4.
EuropePMC; 2021.
Preprint in English | EuropePMC | ID: ppcovidwho-295951

ABSTRACT

Objective To analyze humoral and cellular immune responses to SARS-CoV-2 vaccinations and infections in anti-CD20 treated patients with multiple sclerosis (pwMS). Methods 181 pwMS on anti-CD20 therapy and 41 pwMS who began anti-CD20 therapy were included in a prospective, observational, single-center cohort study between March 2020 and August 2021. 51 pwMS under anti-CD20 treatment, 14 anti-CD20 therapy-naïve pwMS and 19 healthy controls (HC) were vaccinated twice against SARS-CoV-2. We measured SARS-CoV-2 spike protein (full-length, S1 domain and receptor binding domain) immunoglobulin (Ig)G and S1 IgA and virus neutralizing capacity and avidity of SARS-CoV-2 antibodies. SARS-CoV-2 specific T cells were determined by interferon-γ release assays. Results Following two SARS-CoV-2 vaccinations, levels of IgG and IgA antibodies to SARS-CoV-2 spike protein as well as neutralizing capacity and avidity of SARS-CoV-2 IgG were lower in anti-CD20 treated pwMS than in anti-CD20 therapy-naïve pwMS and in HC ( p <0.003 for all pairwise comparisons). However, in all anti-CD20 treated pwMS vaccinated twice (n=26) or infected with SARS-CoV-2 (n=2), in whom SARS-CoV-2 specific T cells could be measured, SARS-CoV-2 specific T cells were detectable, at levels similar to those of twice-vaccinated anti-CD20 therapy-naïve pwMS (n=7) and HC (n=19). SARS-CoV-2 S1 IgG levels ( r =0.42, p =0.002), antibody avidity ( r =0.7, p <0.001) and neutralizing capacity ( r =0.44, p =0.03) increased with time between anti-CD20 infusion and second vaccination. Based on detection of SARS-CoV-2 antibodies, SARS-CoV-2 infections occurred in 4/175 (2.3%) anti-CD20 treated pwMS, all of whom recovered fully. Interpretation These findings should inform treatment decisions and SARS-CoV-2 vaccination management in pwMS.

5.
Transbound Emerg Dis ; 69(2): 221-226, 2022 Mar.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1546411

ABSTRACT

West Nile Virus (WNV) infections are increasingly detected in birds and horses in central Europe, with the first mosquito-borne autochthonous human infection detected in Germany in 2019. Human infections are typically asymptomatic, with occasional severe neurological disease. Because of a low number of cases in central Europe, awareness regarding potential cases is low and WNV diagnostic testing is not routine. We tested cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) samples from unsolved encephalitis and meningitis cases from Berlin from 2019 to 2020, and describe a WNV-encephalitis case in a 33-year-old kidney transplant recipient. The infectious course was resolved by serology, RT-PCR and sequencing of stored samples. Phylogenetic sequence analysis revealed a close relationship of the patient's WNV strain to German sequences from 2019 and 2020. A lack of travel history and patient self-isolation during the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic suggest the infection was acquired in the patient's home or garden. Serological tests of four people sharing the living space were negative. Retrospective RT-PCR and WNV-IgM testing of 671 CSF samples from unsolved encephalitis and meningitis cases from Berlin detected no additional infections. The recent increase of WNV cases illustrates the importance of considering WNV in cases of meningoencephalitis, especially in immunocompromised patients, as described here. Proper education and communication and a revised diagnostic strategy will help to raise awareness and to detect future WNV infections.


Subject(s)
Kidney Transplantation , West Nile Fever , West Nile virus , Adult , Humans , West Nile Fever/diagnosis
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