Research Highlights: Understanding the Rare Multisystem Inflammatory Syndrome in Children with COVID-19 Infection

Original Article:

  • COVID-19 viral infection is typically very mild and often does not show symptoms in children.
  • If complication develops in children associated with COVID-19, it may be the rare multisystem inflammatory syndrome.
  • Multisystem inflammatory syndrome is a condition where different body parts can become inflamed, including the heart, lungs, kidneys, brain, skin, eyes, or gastrointestinal organs.
  • The multisystem inflammatory syndrome may occur 4 to 6 weeks after infection.
  • Multisystem inflammatory syndrome symptoms include high fever, organ dysfunction, and strongly elevated markers of inflammation.
  • The mechanism of the disease development is unclear but has similar features with Kawasaki disease and a likely cause of autoimmune disease.
  • Kawasaki disease causes inflammation in the walls of medium-sized arteries throughout the body, usually the coronary arteries, which supply blood to the heart muscle.
  • The study applies analyses of blood immune cells, cytokines, and autoantibodies in healthy children, children with Kawasaki disease enrolled prior to COVID-19, children infected with COVID-19 virus, and children presenting with multisystem inflammatory syndrome.
  • Researchers found that the inflammatory response in multisystem inflammatory syndrome differs from the cytokine storm of severe acute COVID-19.
  • Multisystem inflammatory syndrome shares several features with Kawasaki disease, but differs from this condition with respect to T cell subsets, interleukin (IL)-17A, and biomarkers associated with arterial damage.
  • Finally, autoantibody profiling suggests multiple autoantibodies that could be involved in the development of multisystem inflammatory syndrome.


Keywords: complications of COVID-19 in children, COVID-19 complications, what are the complications of COVID-19 in children, what is MIS-C, COVID-19 in children

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