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NEW: Scientists find gene that doubles risk of serious Covid 

14 Jan, 2022 - 14:01 0 Views
NEW: Scientists find gene that doubles risk of serious Covid 

The Sunday Mail

Polish scientists have found a gene that they say more than doubles the risk of becoming severely ill with Covid-19, a discovery they hope could help doctors identify people who are most at risk from the disease. 

With vaccine hesitancy a major factor behind high coronavirus death rates in central and eastern Europe, researchers hope that identifying those at greatest risk will encourage them to get a shot and give them access to more intensive treatment options in case of an infection. 

“After more than a year and a half of work it was possible to identify a gene responsible for a predisposition to becoming seriously ill (with coronavirus),” said Health Minister Adam Niedzielski. 

“This means that in the future we will be able to… identify people with a predisposition to suffer seriously from Covid.” 

The researchers from the Medical University of Bialystok found that the gene was the fourth most important factor determining how seriously a person suffers from Covid-19, after age, weight and gender. 

The gene is present in around 14 percent of the Polish population, compared to 8-9 percent in Europe as a whole and 27 percent in India, said Marcin Moniuszko, the professor in charge of the project. 

Other studies have also shown the importance of genetic factors in how seriously Covid-19 develops. 

In November, British scientists said they had identified a version of a gene that may be associated with double the risk of lung failure from Covid-19. – Reuters 

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