Dengue Fever, COVID-19 (SARS-CoV-2), and Antibody-Dependent Enhancement (ADE): A Perspective

Henning Ulrich, Micheli M Pillat, Attila Tárnok
Cytometry. Part A: the Journal of the International Society for Analytical Cytology 2020, 97 (7): 662-667
SARS-CoV-2 pandemic and recurrent dengue epidemics in tropical countries have turned into a global health threat. While both virus-caused infections may only reveal light symptoms, they can also cause severe diseases. Here, we review the possible antibody-dependent enhancement (ADE) occurrence, known for dengue infections, when there is a second infection with a different virus strain. Consequently, preexisting antibodies do not neutralize infection, but enhance it, possibly by triggering Fcγ receptor-mediated virus uptake. No clinical data exist indicating such mechanism for SARS-CoV-2, but previous coronavirus infections or infection of SARS-CoV-2 convalescent with different SARS-CoV-2 strains could promote ADE, as experimentally shown for antibodies against the MERS-CoV or SARS-CoV spike S protein. © 2020 International Society for Advancement of Cytometry.

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