One of the most important unanswered questions of the pandemic was tried to be answered by an international team of scientists, which announced that it has identified some genetic factors that seem to explain, at least in part, because some, otherwise healthy, young people become seriously ill or die from coronavirus.
Scientists around the world are studying why some patients - even some with a favorable "health profile" - become seriously ill when infected with the coronavirus resulting in intubation in the ICU, while others show only mild symptoms or are completely asymptomatic. Although the severe cases of the disease mainly concern the elderly and patients with comorbidities, such as diabetes and cancer, Severe cases of Covid-19 sometimes occur in young adults without underlying diseases. It is not yet clear exactly what causes such severe disease in these latter patients, but it is estimated that to some extent genetic factors are also involved.
Coronavirus: The "guilty" ADAM9 gene
Investigators, headed by Dr. Rafael Karapito of the Medical School of the University of Strasbourg, who made the relevant publication in the medical journal "Science Translational Medicine", studied - combining genetic and artificial intelligence methods - 72 French patients under 50 years, who had been treated for Covid-19 and who had no underlying or chronic disease. From them, the 47 had become seriously ill and needed intubation and 25 had become less seriously ill and did not need ICU admission. Alongside, studied for comparison purposes 22 healthy people (the control group).
After a complete analysis of the patients' genome, as well as other hematological analyzes, cytological etc., found to be seriously ill worse inflammation, more blood clotting and, In addition, had five more active genes. The most important genetic "signature", associated with a heavy and potentially deadly Covid-19, appeared to be the most intense expression of the gene ADAM9. This was confirmed by the analysis of a second group by 81 serious cases Covid-19, compare to 73 patients who had recovered.
Researchers have found that "silence" (suppression of activity) of the ADAM9 gene in human lung epithelial cells, who had previously been infected with the coronavirus, slowed down the multiplication of the virus. That is why the scientists said that this gene should be further studied as a possible priority target for a new therapeutic approach of Covid-19..
Here you will see the relevant scientific publication.