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Here’s Why Our Immune System Reacts Differently to Coronavirus

Immune response to Covid-19 infection between people who do not have symptoms and patients with severe infection.

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Kamal Saini
Kamal S. has been Journalist and Writer for Business, Hardware and Gadgets at Revyuh.com since 2018. He deals with B2b, Funding, Blockchain, Law, IT security, privacy, surveillance, digital self-defense and network policy. As part of his studies of political science, sociology and law, he researched the impact of technology on human coexistence. Email: kamal (at) revyuh (dot) com

Research helps understand why some individual’s immune system reacts differently to Covid-19 infection

A recent research paper carried out with the help of the Wellcome Sanger Institute, the University of Newcastle, the University College London, the University of Cambridge, the European Institute of Bioinformatics in the UK has discovered differences in the immune response to Covid-19 between people who do not have symptoms and those with a more severe form of the disease.

The study has also identified elevated levels of specific immune cells in asymptomatic people, while people with more severe symptoms had lost these types of protective cells, but had gained inflammatory cells.

These differences in immune response, published in “Nature Medicine,” could help explain severe lung inflammation and symptoms of blood clots. Furthermore, they could be used to identify potential targets for the development of therapies.

Although previous studies have highlighted a complex immune response in the blood, the complete coordinated immune response and how it differs between symptomatic and asymptomatic patients had not been investigated in detail until now.

On this occasion, to understand how different immune cells responded to the infection, the researchers analyzed the blood of 130 people with Covid-19 from three different UK centers (Newcastle, Cambridge and London), ranging from asymptomatic to critically ill.

The team performed single cell sequencing of approximately 800,000 individual immune cells, along with detailed analysis of cell surface proteins and antigen receptors found on immune cells in the blood.

In this way, they revealed differences in multiple types of immune cells that are involved in the body’s response to Covid-19.

Thus, in people without symptoms, they found elevated levels of B cells that produce antibodies that are found in mucous ducts, such as the nose. These antibodies can be one of the first lines of defense against SARS-CoV-2. However, people with severe symptoms lacked these protective B cells, indicating the importance of an effective immune response associated with antibodies in the nose and other mucous ducts.

The team also found that while patients with mild to moderate symptoms had elevated levels of helper B cells and T cells, which help fight infection, those with severe symptoms had lost many of these immune cells, suggesting that this part of the immune system had failed in people with severe disease.

In contrast, those who required hospitalization had an uncontrolled increase in monocytes and killer T cells, the high levels of which can cause lung inflammation. They also had elevated levels of platelet-producing cells, which help the blood to clot.

This is one of the only studies of its kind that looks at samples collected from asymptomatic people, which helps us start to understand why some people react differently to COVID-19 infection. It could also explain symptoms such as lung inflammation and blood clots. The immune system is made up of lots of different groups of cells, similar to the way an orchestra is made up of different groups of instruments, and in order to understand the coordinated immune response, you have to look at these immune cells together.

says Muzlifah Haniffa, lead author from the University of Newcastle.

Although it is not yet understood how infection stimulates these immune responses, the study provides a molecular explanation for how Covid-19 might cause an increased risk of thrombosis and inflammation in the lungs.

In addition, it discovers potential new therapeutic targets to help protect patients against inflammation and severe disease. For example, treatments could be developed that decrease platelet production or reduce the number of killer T cells produced.

In the future, research may identify those who are most likely to experience moderate to severe illness by looking at the levels of these immune cells in the blood. ‘The information can be used to better understand why different people react in different ways to coronavirus. The data, freely accessible in the Human Cell Atlas, can provide a basis for developing potential new therapies, reducing the spread of the virus, or protecting those beginning to develop severe disease,” says Sarah Teichmann of the Wellcome Sanger Institute.

Another interesting piece of information from the work is that it has seen that some antibody responses were similar between individuals in one geographical area compared to those in another area of ​​the United Kingdom, which suggests that this part of the immune response can be adapted to different variants of the virus.

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