TUESDAY, Jan. 12, 2021 (HealthDay Information) — Not like common pneumonia, COVID-19 pneumonia spreads like many “wildfires” all through the lungs, researchers say.
This will clarify why COVID-19 pneumonia lasts longer and causes extra hurt than typical pneumonia, in accordance with the researchers at Northwestern Medication in Chicago.
The analysis workforce mentioned that their intention is to make COVID-19 extra like a foul chilly.
For the research, the workforce analyzed immune cells from the lungs of COVID-19 pneumonia sufferers and in contrast them to cells from sufferers with pneumonia attributable to different viruses or micro organism.
Whereas different forms of pneumonia quickly infect massive areas of the lungs, COVID-19 begins in quite a few small areas of the lungs. It then makes use of the lungs’ personal immune cells to unfold throughout the lungs over many days and even weeks. That is just like how a number of wildfires unfold via a forest, the research authors defined.
As COVID-19 pneumonia slowly strikes via the lungs, it leaves broken lung tissue in its wake and contributes to the fever, low blood strain and organ injury frequent in COVID-19 sufferers, the workforce mentioned.
The lengthy length of COVID-19 pneumonia, quite than larger severity, could also be why it causes extra critical issues than different forms of pneumonia, in accordance with the research authors. The report was printed on-line Jan. 11 within the journal Nature.
The researchers additionally recognized immune cells — macrophages and T cells — that may very well be necessary targets when treating extreme COVID-19 pneumonia. Macrophages sometimes shield the lungs, however could be contaminated by the brand new coronavirus and assist unfold the an infection via the lungs, the workforce famous in a Northwestern information launch.
In a medical trial early this 12 months, the investigators plan to check an experimental drug that targets these immune cells in COVID-19 pneumonia sufferers. The drug reduces the inflammatory response of those immune cells.
“Our aim is to make COVID-19 gentle as a substitute of extreme, making it similar to a foul chilly,” research co-author Dr. Scott Budinger mentioned within the information launch. He’s chief of pulmonary and demanding care medication at Northwestern College Feinberg College of Medication.
Research co-author Dr. Richard Wunderink, professor of pulmonary and demanding care medication at Feinberg and medical director of Northwestern Medication’s ICU, added that “this effort really represents a ‘moonshot’ in COVID-19 analysis.”
The U.S. Facilities for Illness Management and Prevention has extra on COVID-19.
SOURCE: Northwestern Medication, information launch, Jan. 11, 2021