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Correspondence on ‘SARS-CoV-2 antibody response after COVID-19 in patients with rheumatic disease’
  1. Shanoj K C1,
  2. Sakir Ahmed2,
  3. Veena Shenoy3,
  4. Aparna R Menon1,
  5. Sanjo Saijan1,
  6. Sageer AS Babu1,
  7. Padmanabha Shenoy1
  1. 1 Centre of Arthritis and Rheumatology Excellence, Sree Sudheendra Medical Mission Hospital, Kochi, Kerala, India
  2. 2 Clinical Immunology & Rheumatology, Kalinga Institute of Medical Sciences, Bhubaneswar, Odisha, India
  3. 3 Department of Transfusion Medicine, Amrita Institute of Medical Sciences, Kochi, Kerala, India
  1. Correspondence to Dr Padmanabha Shenoy, Centre of Arthritis and Rheumatology excellence, Sree Sudheendra Medical Mission Hospital, Kochi, KL 682040, India; drdpshenoy{at}

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We read with great interest the article published by D’Silva et al.1 The authors reported three patients with inadequate antibody response to SARS-CoV-2 infection, two of whom received rituximab (RTX). Presence of antispike or antinucleocapsid IgG antibodies is strongly associated with reduced reinfection rates following the COVID-19.2 RTX is an anti-CD 20 monoclonal antibody that depletes B cells. Both T cell-dependent and T cell-independent immune responses against various infections agents are drastically reduced up to 6 months following RTX infusion.3 4 Here we report the antibody response to SARS-CoV-2 infection in five patients with autoimmune rheumatic disease on RTX therapy.

In our centre 224 patients with autoimmune rheumatic diseases had RT-PCR proven COVID-19 infection between March 2020 and December 2020. Of these, five patients had received RTX therapy within 18 …

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  • Contributors Study concept and design: PS and SKC. Acquisition of the clinical and laboratory data: ARM, SS and SASB. Acquisition and interpretation of laboratory data: VS. Drafting and editing paper: PS, SKC and SA. Critical revision of the manuscript: PS and SA. All authors critically reviewed and approved the final manuscript for publication.

  • Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Patient and public involvement Patients and/or the public were not involved in the design, or conduct, or reporting, or dissemination plans of this research.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; internally peer reviewed.

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