Your Genes May Influence Your COVID-19 Risk, According to a New Study

Here’s another thing that may be the “fault” of your ancestors. Combing through the genome, researchers have tied COVID-19 severity and susceptibility to some genes associated with the immune system’s response, as well as a protein that allows the disease-causing SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus into our cells. They have also turned up links between risk and a person’s blood type—A, B, AB or O.

The findings are not cut-and-dried, however. Scientists caution that even valid effects may be small, although knowledge about genes involved in serious disease outcomes may help to identify therapeutic drugs. Complicating the work are the effects of social and economic inequalities that also increase risk and tend to be concentrated in populations with specific ethnic backgrounds and ancestries.

Please keep in mind that this is presently a theory, not a proven fact. However, the evidence so far is strong enough that the possibility is attracting the attention of medical and genetic researchers.

You can read more in an article by Emily Willingham in the prestigious Scientific American web site at https://bit.ly/30D75fn.

4 Comments

I wonder if it is the same genes that kept people from getting the Plague. And then it worked the same for people exposed to Aids.

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I’ve never heard of Plague/AIDS immunity having anything to do with blood type.
CCR5
The genetic mutation that prevents the Plague and AIDS is Delta 32.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/CCR5
Secrets of the Dead | Season 3, Episode 2 [Premiered October 30, 2002]
Mystery of the Black Death [Info and excerpts on the PBS web site.]
http://www.pbs.org/wnet/secrets/mystery-black-death-background/
Genealogy for descendants of people who died in Eyam, England of the Black Death is discussed, as well as DNA investigation into whether or not the living descendants inherited the CCR5 Delta 32 mutation, whether two, one, or zero copies.
As was explained in the TV show:
If one inherits two copies of CCR5 Delta 32, they do not get the Plague or AIDS. If one gets one copy of CCR5 Delta 32, they might get the plague or AIDS, but survive (assuming no other health risks are present). Zero copies of CCR5 Delta 32 is a death sentence.
The full show Secrets of the Dead: Mystery of the Black Death used to be on YouTube; now the show is in four segments. It’s not until later in the show that the genetic immunity to the Black Plague and AIDS is linked and explained.
Secrets Of The Dead – Mystery Of The Black Death 1 of 4
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hpXJNpymNts
Secrets Of The Dead – Mystery Of The Black Death 2 of 4
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iRM01D0d2Ic
Secrets Of The Dead – Mystery Of The Black Death 3 of 4
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jvgFTRXqOXQ
Secrets Of The Dead – Mystery Of The Black Death 4 of 4
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nfCbJExNKEE
PBS used to put out some really great documentaries, and this one was one of the most informative. I did write to 23andMe after my DNA was tested and suggested they test for the CCR5 Delta 32 mutation and why. Someone wrote back that they would take the suggestion under consideration and I’ve not heard or seen anything about it since. Besides information about the gene for late-onset Alzheimer’s (which I do *not* carry), the CCR5 Delta 32 mutation would be interesting in light of the fact that I had so many ancestors from England some 400 years ago.

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    FYI, they already test for CCR5-delta 32 – I did the 23andme test quite a while ago (close to a decade now, I’d say), and in my health report they notified me that I had two copies of the mutation.

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Recently, 23andMe sent out a survey about the COVID-19 virus. They’re studying whether there’s any common denominators or exceptions in our DNA. I completed the survey and they have early findings. They said that if we know of anyone who became infected with it, they are offering free DNA testing. I think that the more we know, the better we can overcome this virus. For further details, please see their link below:
Your DNA could contribute to COVID-19 research. https://you.23andme.com/covid19-study/?utm_source=23andme&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=notify_notification&utm_content=n_1447754369&route_key=external_link&route_resource_id=https%3A%2F%2Fyou.23andme.com%2Fcovid19-study%2F&target_profile_id=a4f6ae37e7c6eeca&notify_source_id=1447754369&notify_source_channel=email

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