Rosell A, Havervall S, von Meijenfeldt F, Hisada Y, Aguilera K, Grover SP, Lisman T, Mackman N, Thålin C
Arterioscler Thromb Vasc Biol 41 (2) ATVBAHA120315547 [2020-12-03; online 2020-12-03]
Patients with coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) have a high rate of thrombosis. We hypothesized that severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 leads to induction of TF (tissue factor) expression and increased levels of circulating TF-positive extracellular vesicles (EV) that may drive thrombosis. Approach and Results: We measured levels of plasma EV TF activity in 100 patients with COVID-19 with moderate and severe disease and 28 healthy controls. Levels of EV TF activity were significantly higher in patients with COVID-19 compared with controls. In addition, levels of EV TF activity were associated with disease severity and mortality. Finally, levels of EV TF activity correlated with several plasma markers, including D-dimer, which has been shown to be associated with thrombosis in patients with COVID-19. Our results indicate that severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 infection induces the release of TF-positive EVs into the circulation that are likely to contribute to thrombosis in patients with COVID-19. EV TF activity was also associated with severity and mortality.