Background Understanding how SARS-CoV-2 affects respiratory centres in the brainstem may help to preclude assisted ventilation for patients in intensive care setting. Viral invasion appears unlikely, although autoimmunity has been implicated, the responsible antigens remain unknown. We previously predicted the involvement of three epitopes within distinct brainstem proteins: disabled homolog 1 (DAB1), apoptosis-inducing-factor-1 (AIFM1), and surfeit-locus-protein-1 (SURF1). Methods Here, we used microarrays to screen serum from COVID-19 patients admitted to intensive care and com-pared those with controls who experienced mild course of the disease. Findings The results confirm the occurrence of IgG and IgM antibodies against the hypothesised epitopes in COVID-19 patients. Importantly, while IgM levels were similar in both groups, IgG levels were significantly elevated in severely ill patients compared to controls, suggesting a pathogenic role of IgG. Interpretation The newly discovered anti-neuronal antibodies might be promising markers of severe disease and the targeted peptide epitopes might be used for targeted immunomodulation. Further work is needed to determine whether these antibodies may play a role in long-COVID. Copyright (C) 2022 The Authors. Published by Elsevier B.V.

Anti-neuronal antibodies against brainstem antigens are associated with COVID-19

Stufano A.;
2022-01-01

Abstract

Background Understanding how SARS-CoV-2 affects respiratory centres in the brainstem may help to preclude assisted ventilation for patients in intensive care setting. Viral invasion appears unlikely, although autoimmunity has been implicated, the responsible antigens remain unknown. We previously predicted the involvement of three epitopes within distinct brainstem proteins: disabled homolog 1 (DAB1), apoptosis-inducing-factor-1 (AIFM1), and surfeit-locus-protein-1 (SURF1). Methods Here, we used microarrays to screen serum from COVID-19 patients admitted to intensive care and com-pared those with controls who experienced mild course of the disease. Findings The results confirm the occurrence of IgG and IgM antibodies against the hypothesised epitopes in COVID-19 patients. Importantly, while IgM levels were similar in both groups, IgG levels were significantly elevated in severely ill patients compared to controls, suggesting a pathogenic role of IgG. Interpretation The newly discovered anti-neuronal antibodies might be promising markers of severe disease and the targeted peptide epitopes might be used for targeted immunomodulation. Further work is needed to determine whether these antibodies may play a role in long-COVID. Copyright (C) 2022 The Authors. Published by Elsevier B.V.
File in questo prodotto:
Non ci sono file associati a questo prodotto.

I documenti in IRIS sono protetti da copyright e tutti i diritti sono riservati, salvo diversa indicazione.

Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11586/417438
 Attenzione

Attenzione! I dati visualizzati non sono stati sottoposti a validazione da parte dell'ateneo

Citazioni
  • ???jsp.display-item.citation.pmc??? 2
  • Scopus 6
  • ???jsp.display-item.citation.isi??? 6
social impact