Lingering COVID-19 signs in “long haulers” could also be attributable to an overload of inflammatory cells “trapped” inside insoluble microscopic blood clots, in line with researchers at Stellenbosch University in South Africa.  

Professor Resia Pretorius, a member of the college’s Physiological Sciences Department, made the discovering together with her analysis group whereas learning micro clots in blood samples of people with “long COVID.” 

“We found high levels of various inflammatory molecules trapped in micro clots present in the blood of individuals with long COVID,” Pretorius acknowledged in a information launch. “Some of the trapped molecules contain clotting proteins such as fibrinogen, as well as alpha (2)-antiplasmin”. 

A study found "long COVID" symptoms may be caused by trapped inflammatory cells in micro blood clots.

A examine discovered “long COVID” signs could also be attributable to trapped inflammatory cells in micro blood clots.
(iStock, File)


Fibrinogen is a protein concerned with clot formation, whereas the molecule, Alpha (2)-antiplasmin, prevents the breakdown of blood clots, the authors defined within the launch.  

Typically, the physique is ready to preserve a stability between the method of blood clotting (thickening of the blood to forestall blood loss after an damage) and fibrinolysis (the breakdown of fibrin in blood to forestall blood clot formation), in line with well being consultants. 

However, when excessive ranges of alpha (2)-antiplasmin are current within the blood of sufferers contaminated with COVID-19 and people coping with “long COVID,” the physique’s skill to interrupt down the clots is considerably hampered, the researchers defined within the examine. 

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The researchers additionally famous a big discovery, that the samples of blood plasma collected from acute COVID-19 and “long COVID” sufferers continued to deposit insoluble pellets on the backside of the tubes of samples.

The analysis group was the primary to report discovering these micro clots in blood samples of COVID sufferers, serving to remedy one other puzzling element of the illness, in line with the examine.  

“Of particular interest is the simultaneous presence of persistent anomalous micro clots and a pathological fibrinolytic system,” the authors acknowledged of their report.  

The analysis groups mentioned these findings present additional proof that COVID-19 and “long COVID” had important cardiovascular and clotting pathologies. They really useful additional analysis into therapy therapies to help the clotting and fibrinolytic system in sufferers with “long COVID” signs.  


Mount Sinai South Nassau Chief of Infectious Disease Dr. Aaron Glatt, a spokesman for the Infectious Diseases Society of America, was not concerned within the examine, however advised Fox News: “This is an interesting but very preliminary finding that must be investigated further before any clinical actions can be taken based upon this data.” 

The hospital epidemiologist added, “We currently do not have a complete understanding of ‘long COVID’ by any means, but hopefully this will be another piece in the puzzle that will allow us to better understand and treat this important and common complication of COVID-19 illness.” 

The examine was peer-reviewed and printed within the journal Cardiovascular Diabetology  in August 2021.