Link to Pubmed [PMID] – 35150193
Link to DOI – 10.1111/ajt.17000
Am J Transplant 2022 Feb; ():
Immunocompromised patients may experience prolonged viral shedding after their initial SARS-CoV-2 infection, however, symptomatic relapses after remission currently remain rare. We herein describe a severe COVID-19 relapse case of a kidney transplant recipient (KTR) following rituximab therapy, 3 months after a moderate COVID-19 infection, despite viral clearance after recovery of the first episode. During the clinical relapse, the diagnosis was established on a broncho-alveolar lavage specimen (BAL) by RT-PCR. The infectivity of the BAL sample was confirmed on a cell culture assay. Whole genome sequencing confirmed the presence of an identical stain (Clade 20A). However, it had an acquired G142D mutation and a larger deletion of 3-amino-acids at position 143-145. These mutations located within the N-terminal domain are suggested to play a role in viral entry. The diagnosis of a COVID-19 relapse should be considered in the setting of unexplained persistent fever and/or respiratory symptoms in KTRs (especially for those after rituximab therapy), even in patients with previous negative naso-pharyngeal SARS-CoV-2 PCR.