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Curr Opin Neurol ; 35(5): 622-628, 2022 10 01.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1992449


PURPOSE OF REVIEW: The global spread of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 resulted in many cases of acute and postacute muscular symptoms. In this review, we try to decipher the potential underlying pathomechanisms and summarize the potential links between viral infection and muscle affection. RECENT FINDINGS: Disregarding single case studies that do not allow safe conclusions due to the high number of infections, histopathological evidence of myositis has only been reported in deceased individuals with severe COVID-19. Postacute myalgia and weakness seem to occur in a subset of patients up to one year after initial infection, reminiscent of postinfectious syndromes (PIS) described in prior epidemics and pandemics of the past. SUMMARY: COVID-19 associated myopathy likely comprises different entities with heterogeneous pathomechanisms. Individual factors such as disease severity and duration, age, sex, constitutional susceptibilities, and preexisting conditions are important to consider when formulating a diagnosis. Persisting symptoms show overlapping features with PIS or postintensive care syndrome. In lack of strong evidence for a direct infection of myocytes, inflammatory myopathies associated with COVID-19 are presumably immune-mediated. Differential diagnosis of rheumatological and nonmuscular neurological origin coinciding with the infection need to be considered, due to the extremely high numbers of newly occurring infections the last 2 years.

COVID-19 , Muscular Diseases , Virus Diseases , COVID-19/complications , Humans , Muscular Diseases/epidemiology , Muscular Diseases/etiology , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2
Nat Neurosci ; 24(2): 168-175, 2021 02.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-952133


The newly identified severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) causes COVID-19, a pandemic respiratory disease. Moreover, thromboembolic events throughout the body, including in the CNS, have been described. Given the neurological symptoms observed in a large majority of individuals with COVID-19, SARS-CoV-2 penetrance of the CNS is likely. By various means, we demonstrate the presence of SARS-CoV-2 RNA and protein in anatomically distinct regions of the nasopharynx and brain. Furthermore, we describe the morphological changes associated with infection such as thromboembolic ischemic infarction of the CNS and present evidence of SARS-CoV-2 neurotropism. SARS-CoV-2 can enter the nervous system by crossing the neural-mucosal interface in olfactory mucosa, exploiting the close vicinity of olfactory mucosal, endothelial and nervous tissue, including delicate olfactory and sensory nerve endings. Subsequently, SARS-CoV-2 appears to follow neuroanatomical structures, penetrating defined neuroanatomical areas including the primary respiratory and cardiovascular control center in the medulla oblongata.

Brain/virology , COVID-19/virology , Olfactory Mucosa/virology , SARS-CoV-2/pathogenicity , Central Nervous System , Humans , RNA, Viral/genetics , Smell/physiology , Virus Internalization