The Way That Covid-19 Tricks The Immune System Could Result In More Severe Illness

The virus that causes Covid-19, SARS-CoV-2 (SARS-2), has a nasty trick up its sleeve.

Upon infection, most viruses trigger a vigorous immune response from both arms of the immune system: a lymphoid response and a myeloid response.

Interferons released from infected cells trigger the lymphoid response, resulting in antivirus antibodies which bind to and eliminate the virus from the body. T cells are also activated that can recognize and eliminate infected cells.

The myeloid pathway works differently. Myeloid cells attack the virus and the infected cells directly. Some myeloid cells engulf and destroy virus particles, others kill the infected cells directly, and others still induce a protective inflammatory response by release of compounds called cytokines.

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Originally posted on Forbes (May 27, 2020)

© William A. Haseltine, PhD. All Rights Reserved.