Scientists show that common colds have an impact on coronavirus mortality. Thus, the period of increased illnesses in the autumn may be beneficial for Poles. Such conclusions arise from reading the text that was published in the pages of Nature.
The Charité – Universitätsmedizin from Berlin is behind the research. Such conclusions were reached by Julian Braun, Lucie Loyal and Marco Frentsch from the BIH Center for Regenerative Therapies. They were looking for answers to the questions of what determines the course of the coronavirus, i.e. in other words why some cases end in death and others in full recovery. According to their findings, one third of people, although they had never dealt with SARS-CoV-2, had immune cells.
According to the researchers, they are the result of other types of colds. These common diseases thus offer protection against the coronavirus. The research was supported by the Institute for Molecular Genetics of the Max Planck Institute (MPIMG). According to information published by Nature, researchers were interested in a cell of the immune system known as T lymphocytes. It was detected in eighteen coronavirus patients and in sixty-eight healthy people.
Research indicates that the T-lymphocyte cell is a key element in the development of antibodies in humans. According to Braun’s hypotheses, they play an important role in the immune system’s response to the disease. However, these findings still need to be confirmed. At present, researchers have extracted immune proteins from the patients’ blood. They then combined a synthetic version of SARS-CoV-2 (the so-called “spike protein”) with them in Petri dishes to determine the effects.
For research purposes, scientists created two pools of protein or peptide fragments. With their help, they linked them to another section of the coronavirus protein “spike”. They tried to make this behavior mimic the naturally occurring process of infection and the responses to it. Preliminary findings show that human immune bodies have the ability to block disease. The peptide pool, referred to in the study as S-II, resembles the system known to pass and respond to the common cold through humans.
Using the technique of liquid cystometry, they determined what part of the cell T lymphocytes react to the virus fragments. It is based on the use of a laser beam. Increased radiation measures the physical and chemical properties of cells. The studies showed that patient cells responded to SI pools by sixty-seven percent and to S-II pools by eighty-five. According to Cluaiduu Giesecke-Thile’s statements, the obtained results are in line with the scientists’ predictions. The difference in the response, in her opinion, is due to the fact that in the first pool of tests were conducted outside the human body.
The results in both halves show unequivocally that thirty-five percent of people, despite not having previously passed Covid, have immunity from having previously contracted the disease. These results also show that natural immunity is associated with the trait of T cells. Lymphocytes are also activated when a similar factor is present. This is confirmed by the thesis of some scientists that the passage of other diseases also affects the acquisition of immunity. Until now, however, these were presumptions based on other viruses.
Co-author of the study, Leif Erik Sander, points out that behind this is also the asymptomatic nature of some people with the coronavirus. This aspect is important in the isolation of patients and also in their treatment. There is a risk that the body “may lead to inappropriate targeting of the immune system’s response and potentially negative effects in the clinical course of COVID-19,” noted the quoted researcher.
The Charité Corona Cross experiments to determine the compounds in the human body’s response to the coronavirus in relation to other coronaviruses are a further step. They plan, inter alia, research in the field of medical care for children, paediatricians, residents of nursing homes in the next few months. They will use blood from at least a thousand people who have fought the coronavirus and recovered.