Excessive Viral Load in Lungs Drives Deadly COVID-19

By Robert Preidt

HealthDay Reporter

TUESDAY, Aug. 31, 2021 (HealthDay Information) — A excessive quantity of coronavirus in the lungs is a significant contributor to loss of life in COVID-19 sufferers, new analysis reveals.

The findings problem earlier theories that simultaneous infections reminiscent of pneumonia or an overreaction of the physique's immune system are vital components in COVID-19 deaths, the researchers famous.

To return to that conclusion, the investigators analyzed bacterial and fungal samples from the lungs of 589 hospitalized COVID-19 sufferers who have been severely ailing and required mechanical air flow.

On common, sufferers who died had 10 occasions the quantity of virus of their decrease airways than those that survived their sickness.

"Our findings recommend that the physique's failure to deal with the big numbers of virus infecting the lungs is essentially chargeable for COVID-19 deaths within the pandemic," mentioned lead examine creator Dr. Imran Sulaiman, an adjunct professor in NYU Langone Well being's division of medication.

There was no proof of secondary bacterial infection as the reason for the deaths, however this can be as a result of the sufferers acquired massive quantities of antibiotics, mentioned the authors of the examine revealed on-line Aug. 31 within the journal Nature Microbiology.

Tips from the U.S. Facilities for Illness Management and Prevention don’t encourage giving antivirals reminiscent of remdesivir to severely ailing COVID-19 sufferers on mechanical air flow, however these findings recommend these medicines may very well profit these sufferers, Sulaiman mentioned in an NYU Langone information launch.

In accordance with examine senior creator Dr. Leopoldo Segal, an affiliate professor in NYU Langone's division of medication, "These outcomes recommend that an issue with the adaptive immune system is stopping it from successfully combating the coronavirus. If we are able to determine the supply of this difficulty, we could possibly discover an efficient therapy that works by bolstering the physique's personal defenses."

Segal famous that the examine solely included sufferers who survived their first two weeks of hospitalization, so it's potential that bacterial infections or autoimmune reactions might play a higher position in COVID-19 deaths that happen earlier.

The analysis crew's subsequent step is to research how the microbe group and immune response within the lungs of COVID-19 sufferers change over time, Segal mentioned.

The loss of life charge for U.S. COVID-19 sufferers who should be placed on mechanical respirators is about 70%.

Extra info

The U.S. Facilities for Illness Management and Prevention has extra on treatment of COVID-19.

SOURCE: NYU Langone Well being, information launch, Aug. 31, 2021

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