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Why some people experience severe Covid infection than others?

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New research has discovered why some people develop milder COVID-19 symptoms whereas others experience more severe conditions.

Most COVID-19 cases are considered mild, involving mostly cold-like symptoms to mild pneumonia, according to data.

Scientists used blood samples to find out the main cause as to why some experience more severe Covid infection than others in the hopes they can better find which people are more likely to suffer the most severe condition from the virus.

In a new research paper, researchers have revealed the main culprit for this relating to T cells which help the body to “remember” previous encounters with seasonal coronaviruses.

For this, cells are more equipped to mobilize quickly to help prevent the body from a COVID-19 infection.

The research uncovered that the killer T cells which were recovered from the COVID-19 patients who showed worse symptoms, in fact, exhibited fewer signs of having had previous run-ins with common cold-causing COVID-19.

The study could help explain why some people, particularly children, are more resilient than others when it comes to COVID-19 infection.

It may also help to better predict which people are more likely to develop the most severe symptoms from the novel virus.

The immune system has myriad of ways to fend off viral invaders and keep them from returning.

T cells work as a protector of the body seeking out and destroying infected cells, to disrupt the virus’s ability to replicate. These immune cells can also endure for years.

Antibodies are easily fooled, said senior author Dr Mark Davis, a professor of microbiology and immunology at Stanford University and a Howard Hughes Medical Institute investigator.

He added:

Pathogens evolve quickly and ‘learn’ to hide their critical features from our antibodies.

But T cells recognize pathogens in a different way, and they’re tough to fool.

The researchers analyzed blood samples taken from healthy donors before the COVID-19 pandemic began.

Blood samples were of those who had not had the COVID-19 infection but were exposed to common-cold-causing Covid strains.

It was noted that unexposed individuals’ killer T cells targeting SARS-CoV-2peptides which were shared with other coronaviruses were more likely to have a proliferated than killer T cells targeting peptides found only on SARS-CoV-2.

Antibody responses tended to be highest in people with the most severe infection.

Those with mild infections were found to produce small amounts of neutralising antibody.

This pattern is often seen with viruses: the longer, more severe infections are more likely to produce strong, durable responses, added Shane Crotty, a virologist at the La Jolla Institute for Immunology in California.

This is one reason that common-cold coronaviruses sometimes don’t yield long-lasting immunity.

Photo by Ben Hasty/MediaNews Group/Reading Eagle via Getty Images

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