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Scientists discover genes that explain serious course of Covid-19 – Wel.nl

Until now it was largely a mystery why one gets seriously ill from the corona virus, while the other remains virtually without complaints. A new study sheds a little more light on the matter: there are believed to be eight strands of DNA that influence the course of Covid-19.

The genetic sequences are more common in people who contract a life-threatening form of Covid, an international research team concludes led by the British University of Edinburgh in trade journal Nature. The discovery not only aids in the development of new drugs, but also points to existing agents that may contribute to the recovery of critically ill corona patients.

The scientists examined 2,244 IC patients with corona. Their DNA was subjected to a genome-wide study (GWAS), in which genetic variants of individuals are analyzed to determine whether they can be linked to a specific trait. The genes found are related to inflammatory processes and the physical response to attacking viruses.

“For example, the TYK2 gene is associated with the inflammatory responses that cause the well-known ‘cytokine storm’ that leads to the death of young patients with corona,” says researcher and lecturer David Strain of the University of Exeter, who was not involved in the study. . He is also interested in the link between severe Covid-19 and a genetic predisposition to obesity. That could mean that a change in lifestyle does not have that much impact on the course of corona.

Side note to the study: the control group was not infected with the virus. Still, the renowned research team believes that there are two biological mechanisms underlying a severe course of Covid-19: in the early stages of the disease, the natural bodily immune response to a viral infection plays a role, and in the later stages it affects the disease. inflammatory processes in the body the course.

Bron (nen): Science Alert Nature

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