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Low Interferon Levels Drive Weak Response To The Virus

Discussion in 'Hospital' started by The Good Doctor, May 5, 2021.

  1. The Good Doctor

    The Good Doctor Golden Member

    Aug 12, 2020
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    People who become critically ill with COVID-19 appear to have lower-than-average levels of interferons, and a new study helps explain why low interferon levels would matter.

    Researchers identified 65 genes that are triggered into action by interferons - including some that inhibit the ability of the virus to enter cells and others that suppress manufacture of the virus' genetic material or inhibit its ability to assemble itself - part of the virus replication process.


    Eight of the interferon-stimulated genes act not only against the SARS-CoV-2 virus that causes COVID-19 but also against the SARS-CoV-1 virus that caused the 2003 SARS outbreak, the researchers reported in Molecular Cell.

    "The interferon response to SARS-CoV-2 infection relies on a limited subset of ... genes that govern a diverse set of cellular functions," the researchers said.

    "We wanted to gain a better understanding of the cellular response to SARS-CoV-2, including what drives a strong or weak response to infection," coauthor Sumit Chanda of Sanford Burnham Prebys in La Jolla, California said in a statement. "We've gained new insights into how the virus exploits the human cells it invades, but we are still searching for its Achilles heel."

    —Reuters Staff


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