Increased protease-activated receptor 1 autoantibodies are associated with severe COVID-19


Florian Tran, Danielle MM Harris, Alena Scharmacher, Hanna Graßhoff, Kristina Sterner, Susanne Schinke, Nadja Käding, Jens Y Humrich, Otávio Cabral-Marques, Joana p Bernardes, Neha Mishra, Thomas Bahmer, Jeanette Franzenburg, Bimba F Hoyer, Andreas Glück, Martina Guggeis, Alexander Ossysek, Andre Küller, Derk Frank, Christoph Lange, Jan Rupp, Jan Heyckendorf, Karoline I Gaede, Howard Amital, Philip Rosenstiel, Yehuda Shoenfeld, Gilad Halpert, Avi Z Rosenberg, Kai Schulze-Forster, Harald Heidecke, Gabriela Riemekasten, Stefan Schreiber

Year of publication



ERJ Open Res







Impact factor



Immune perturbation is a hallmark of Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) with ambiguous roles of various immune cell compartments. Plasma cells, responsible for antibody production, have a two-pronged response while mounting an immune defence with 1) physiological immune response producing neutralizing antibodies against protein structures of SARS-CoV-2 and 2) potentially deleterious autoantibody generation. Growing evidence hints towards broad activation of plasma cells and the presence of pathologic autoantibodies (abs) that mediate immune perturbation in acute COVID-19 [1]. Recently, a systematic screening for abs confirmed induction of diverse functional abs in SARS-CoV-2 infection, targeting several immunomodulatory proteins, including cytokines/chemokines and their respective G-protein coupled receptors (GPCR) [1]. Abs against GPCR act as agonistic and allosteric receptor modulators and are linked to chronic inflammatory diseases [2] and, as we recently demonstrated, disease severity in acute COVID-19 [3].