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J Autoimmun ; 123: 102710, 2021 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1330939


The development of autoimmune diseases has been reported after SARS-CoV-2 infection. Vaccination against SARS-CoV-2 could also trigger auto-immunity, as it has been described with other vaccines. An aberrant immune response induced by molecular mimicry and bystander activation, especially in predisposed individuals, is a potential mechanism. We report the case of a 76-year-old woman with Hashimoto thyroiditis and prior COVID-19 infection who developed severe autoimmune hepatitis (with typical features including strongly positive anti-smooth muscle antibody and markedly elevated immunoglobulins G, as well as typical histological findings) following SARS-CoV-2 vaccination (mRNA-1273 SARS-CoV-2 vaccine, Moderna®). The link between SARS-CoV-2 vaccination and the development of autoimmune diseases needs to be further investigated. Although a causality relationship cannot be proven, caution may be warranted when vaccinating individuals with known autoimmune diseases.

Autoantibodies/immunology , COVID-19 Vaccines/adverse effects , COVID-19/prevention & control , Hepatitis, Autoimmune/etiology , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Vaccination/adverse effects , Aged , Azathioprine/therapeutic use , Carcinoma, Transitional Cell/complications , Causality , Disease Susceptibility , Female , Hashimoto Disease/complications , Hepatitis, Autoimmune/drug therapy , Hepatitis, Autoimmune/immunology , Hepatitis, Autoimmune/pathology , Hepatitis, Chronic/complications , Hepatitis, Chronic/pathology , Humans , Immunocompromised Host , Immunosuppressive Agents/therapeutic use , Prednisolone/therapeutic use , Urinary Bladder Neoplasms/complications
J Autoimmun ; 123: 102706, 2021 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1309270


Autoimmune phenomena and clinically apparent autoimmune diseases, including autoimmune hepatitis, are increasingly been reported not only after natural infection with the SARS-CoV-2 virus, but also after vaccination against it. We report the case of a 63-year old man without a history of autoimmunity or SARS-CoV-2 natural infection who experienced acute severe autoimmune-like hepatitis seven days after the first dose of the mRNA-1273 SARS-CoV-2 vaccine. Liver histology showed inflammatory portal infiltrate with interface hepatitis, lobular and centrilobular inflammation with centrilobular necrosis, in absence of fibrosis and steatosis. Serum immunoglobulin G was slightly elevated. Autoimmune liver serology showed an indirect immunofluorescence pattern on triple rodent tissue compatible with anti-mitochondrial antibody (AMA), but, unexpectedly, this pattern was not mirrored by positivity for primary biliary cholangitis (PBC)-specific molecular tests, indicating that this antibody is different from classical AMA. Anti-nuclear antibody (ANA) was also positive with a rim-like indirect immunofluorescence pattern on liver and HEp2 cell substrates, similar to PBC-specific ANA; however, anti-gp210 and a large panel of molecular-based assays for nuclear antigens were negative, suggesting a unique ANA in our patient. He carries the HLA DRB1*11:01 allele, which is protective against PBC. Response to prednisone treatment was satisfactory. The clinical significance of these novel specificities needs to be further evaluated in this emerging condition.

Autoantibodies/immunology , COVID-19 Vaccines/adverse effects , COVID-19/prevention & control , HLA-DRB1 Chains/immunology , Hepatitis, Autoimmune/etiology , Mitochondria/immunology , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Vaccination/adverse effects , Animals , Antibodies, Antinuclear/immunology , Antibody Specificity , Autoantigens/immunology , Cell Line , Fluorescent Antibody Technique, Indirect , Hepatitis, Autoimmune/drug therapy , Hepatitis, Autoimmune/immunology , Hepatitis, Autoimmune/pathology , Humans , Immunosuppressive Agents/therapeutic use , Liver/immunology , Liver/pathology , Male , Middle Aged , Prednisone/therapeutic use , Rosuvastatin Calcium/adverse effects , Rosuvastatin Calcium/therapeutic use
J Autoimmun ; 123: 102688, 2021 09.
Article in English | MEDLINE | ID: covidwho-1293901


Unprecedented loss of life due to the COVID pandemic has necessitated the development of several vaccines in record time. Most of these vaccines have received approval without being extensively whetted for their adverse effect and efficacy profiles. Most adverse effects have been mild, nonetheless, more serious thromboembolic events have also been reported. Autoimmune hepatitis (AIH) can occur in predisposed individuals where an immune mediated reaction against hepatocytes is triggered by environmental factors. Vaccines are a very rare cause of AIH. We report two such cases of AIH triggered by COVID (Covishield) vaccination. While one patient made an uneventful recovery, another succumbed to the liver disease. Ours is the first report of Covishield vaccination related AIH and second ever after any form of COVID vaccination. We hope that our report does not deter COVID vaccination drives. However, we also hope to raise awareness of its potential side effects and the increased role of pharmacovigilance in guiding treatment.

COVID-19 Vaccines/adverse effects , COVID-19/prevention & control , Hepatitis, Autoimmune/etiology , Pandemics , SARS-CoV-2/immunology , Vaccination/adverse effects , Adult , Fatal Outcome , Female , Hepatitis B, Chronic/complications , Hepatitis, Autoimmune/immunology , Hepatitis, Autoimmune/pathology , Humans , Hypothyroidism/complications , Jaundice/etiology , Male , Middle Aged , Models, Immunological , Pharmacovigilance