Covid-19: Here’s why some patients get seriously ill

Some of the most seriously ill patients lack a natural antiviral. Franco-American researchers have just discovered the mechanisms involved.

Researchers are beginning to better understand the origin of severe forms of covid-19. In recent months, several teams had already shown that some of the patients requiring intensive care produced little or no type 1 interferon, a molecule that acts as an antiviral by blocking the replication of the virus in cells. At present, scientists from the “human genetics of infectious diseases” laboratory (Imagine Institute, Rockefeller center) are adding an additional stone to this edifice. Their work, published in the prestigious journal Science, has in fact made it possible to discover mechanisms that could explain the origin of this lack of interferon.

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