Routine blood test predicts increased mortality risk in patients with COVID-19

Sunday, 27 Sep, 2020

One of the big challenges healthcare workers are facing in this global pandemic is identifying those COVID-19 patients most at risk of severe illness and death. The spike is helpful for the virus in infecting the host cells.

The COVID-19 virus has behaved in an unpredictable manner since it first emerged in China. They have been trying to find out why some people who get COVID-19 go on to develop severe complications whereas some others who are infected don't even exhibit any symptoms.

He added: "Because vitamin D deficiency and insufficiency is so widespread in children and adults in the United States and worldwide, especially in the winter months, it is prudent for everyone to take a vitamin D supplement to reduce risk of being infected and having complications from Covid-19". "And at least in theory, such interferon problems could be treated with existing medications and interventions".

Virologist David Morens of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases says that it is possible that the virus has now learned to avoid some of our security mechanisms after mutations. If mutations affect this, the challenge will be to manufacture the vaccine.

Being male, aged, and having underlying medical circumstances can all elevate sufferers' danger of life-threatening Covid-19.

Academics at Houston Methodist Hospital - who carried out the first-of-its-kind study - said patients infected with the variant strain had significantly higher amounts of the virus when they were first diagnosed. More than 3.5 per cent completely lacked a functioning gene. "Twin landmark studies published Thursday in the journal Science showed that insufficient interferon may lurk at a unsafe turning point in SARS-CoV-2 infections". Both groups are unable to mount effective immune responses that rely on what's called type I interferon. It's the D614G form that most of the world, especially the US, has been battling all this time, so these studies aren't identifying a mutation that threatens to make the virus any worse than the status quo.

The men's mutations are rare-occurring in 1 in 10,000 people-and an unlikely explanation for the vast majority of severe COVID-19 cases. So next, the team checked for the possibility of a similar scenario.

"These findings provide a first explanation for the excess of men among patients with life-threatening COVID-19 and the increase in risk with age", the researchers led by Jean-Laurent Casanova, head of Rockefeller University's St. Giles Laboratory of Human Genetics of Infectious Diseases in NY said. "The high levels of IL-17A that we found in pediatric patients may be important in protecting them against progression of their COVID-19", said Dr. K. Herold.

These auto-antibodies seem to be rare in the general population.