The Anonymous Widower

Covid: Genes Hold Clues To Why Some People Get Severely Ill

The title of this post, is the same as that of this article on the BBC.

This is the opening paragraph.

Why some people with coronavirus have no symptoms and others get extremely ill is one of the pandemic’s biggest puzzles.

It is now less of a puzzle, thanks to research led by the University of Edinburgh.

These paragraphs explain the methodology.

Scientists looked at the DNA of patients in more than 200 intensive care units in UK hospitals.

They scanned each person’s genes, which contain the instructions for every biological process – including how to fight a virus.

Their genomes were then compared with the DNA of healthy people to pinpoint any genetic differences, and a number were found – the first in a gene called TYK2.

One of the other genes mentioned is IFNAR2, where this was said.

Variations in a gene called IFNAR2 were also identified in the intensive care patients.

IFNAR2 is linked to a potent anti-viral molecule called interferon, which helps to kick-start the immune system as soon as an infection is detected.

It’s thought that producing too little interferon can give the virus an early advantage, allowing it to quickly replicate, leading to more severe disease.

I know a bit about interferon and I must admit I’ve made a bit of profit on shares in Synairgen, which are linking interferon with an inhaler.

I then typed “coeliac disease and interferon” into Google and found this article on The Lancet, which is entitled Onset Of Coeliac Disease and Interferon Treatment.

My medical knowledge is very limited, but it does appear that if you are coeliac on a gluten-free diet, you don’t get any problems, with interferon.

The plot thickens!

Not for nothing, do some doctors coeliac disease, the Many-Headed Hydra.

December 12, 2020 Posted by | Health | , , , , , , | Leave a comment