Researchers now know exactly what the gel contains.
The findings made by Umeå University, Sweden also led researchers to a new therapy for effective Covid-19 treatment.
“There are already therapies that slow down the production of gel formation or break down gel via enzymes. Our findings may also explain why cortisone appears to have an effect on Covid-19,” said Urban Hellman, a researcher from Umeå University.
Reported Eurekalert, Tuesday (6/10/2020), when Covid patients-19 with a critical condition scanned, it appears that there are white patches around the lungs.
In addition, autopsies from some of the Covid-19 patients who died showed the lungs were filled with a clear gel fluid, very similar to the condition of a drowned person’s lungs.
Previously, scientists did not know why there was clear gel fluid in the lungs of Covid-19 patients who were in critical condition or who had died.
Eventually, however, a group of researchers at the Translational Research Center at Umeå University found out that the gel consists of hyaluronic substances, which are polysaccharides in the glycosaminoglycan group.
The presence of hyaluronic acid in the human body is normal.
Hyaluronic acid has various functions in each different tissue. But generally, this substance acts as an important characteristic in connective tissue.
In addition, hyaluronic acid plays a role in the early stages of wound healing.
Hyaluronic acid is also produced synthetically in the beauty industry for lip augmentation and anti-wrinkle treatment.
Lip augmentation is a type of procedure that aims to increase lip fullness through enlargement using fillers such as hyaluronic acid.
Since hyaluronic acid can bind large amounts of water in long molecular networks, it can form a gel-like substance.
It is this process that triggers damage to the lung alveoli of Covid-19 patients and results in patients requiring ventilator care and in the worst case they die from respiratory failure.
Currently, a drug called Hymecromone is used to slow the production of hyaluronic acid in other diseases such as gallbladder attacks.
There are also enzymes that can effectively break down hyaluronic acid.
For example, this enzyme can be used if beauty treatments that are not working have to be stopped suddenly.
Even cortisone reduces hyaluronic acid production. In a UK study, preliminary data showed a positive effect on treatment with the cortisone drug Dexamethasone in patients COVID-19 the seriously ill.
“It was previously assumed that promising early results would be related to the anti-inflammatory properties of cortisone in general, but apart from this belief, cortisone can also reduce hyaluronic acid production, which can reduce the amount of jelly in the lungs,” said Urban Hellman.