The emergence of COVID-19 had doctors racing to define and treat the new disease, but they soon discovered it was not the only novel illness caused by SARS-CoV-2.
The emergence of COVID-19 had doctors racing to define and treat the new disease, but they soon discovered it was not the only novel illness caused by SARS-CoV-2. A subset of children infected by the virus also experienced abdominal pain, headaches, rashes and vomiting. This new set of symptoms was labeled multisystem inflammatory syndrome in children (MIS-C) and had many of its pediatric patients requiring intensive care.
As MIS-C rates rose, physicians began to note its similarities to a pre-pandemic illness, Kawasaki disease (KD), which has puzzled pediatricians for more than 50 years. MIS-C and KD share many symptoms, including fever, rash and bloodshot eyes, though KD can also lead to coronary artery aneurysms and heart attack. Unlike MIS-C, which is associated with a specific virus, KD may be triggered by a variety of infectious and environmental stimuli.
To better understand how these inflammatory syndromes compare and contrast, researchers at University of California San Diego School of Medicine collected blood and tissue samples from MIS-C and KD patients. Using artificial intelligence tools, they analyzed patterns of gene expression in both conditions and compared them to gene expression markers of COVID-19.
Read more at University of California - San Diego
Image: This study was led by UC San Diego School of Medicine researchers Pradipta Ghosh, MD, (left), Jane C. Burns, MD, (center) and Debashis Sahoo, PhD (right). (Credit: UC San Diego Health Sciences)