Patients with a severe form of COVID-19 have genes that may exacerbate the course of the infection. This is the result of a study by scientists at the University of Edinburgh, published in the journal Nature.
After examining 2,200 COVID-19 patients from more than 200 UK intensive care units, the scientists found the same modifications of the OAS1, OAS2, OAS3 genes, as well as TYK2, DPP9 and IFNAR2. According to the text of the publication, variations in the five genes have been linked to the development of a severe course of COVID-19 – according to the study authors, they can lead to impaired immune system formation and the development of lung inflammation.
“If we choose the right [drug] intervention for the next clinical trials, we will find that it will work sooner and could save tens of thousands of lives,” Professor Kenneth Bailey, a consultant at the Royal Edinburgh Hospital, told The Guardian, commenting on the study about a new cause of the severe course of coronavirus.
Previously, British doctors have found that vitamin D deficiency may cause a more severe course of COVID-19. In addition, as Dr. Garrett Davis told The Guardian, the replicating coronavirus can deplete the ACE2 protein, causing a cytokine storm.