Research published by MedRxiv shows COVID-19 could cause the body to make weapons to attack its tissues, but it is yet to be evaluated by experts.
The scientists developed three different protein arrays to measure hallmark IgG autoantibodies associated with Connective Tissue Diseases (CTDs), Anti-Cytokine Antibodies (ACA) anti-viral antibody responses in 147 hospitalized COVID-19 patients in three different centers. Researchers used blood tests to analyze their immune responses as their infections progressed. They looked for autoantibodies weapons of the immune system that launch an attack against the body's tissues.
They compared those autoantibodies to those found in people who were not infected with the virus. Autoantibodies were identified in approximately 50% of patients than less than 15% of those who were healthy. The autoantibodies mainly targeted autoantigens linked with disorders such as myositis and systemic sclerosis. Anti-nuclear antibodies (ANA) were observed in 25% of patients. But in others, about 20% of the people who had them, the autoantibodies were more common as the infection progressed, implying they were directly linked to the viral infection rather than being a pre-existing condition. However, the research is yet to be evaluated and peer-reviewed as of February 2021. The information regarding this is subjected to change.
The COVID-19 pandemic has given rise to a lot of potentially dangerous misinformation. For reliable advice on COVID-19 including symptoms, prevention and available treatment, please refer to the World Health Organisation or your national healthcare authority.