Tag: Immune System

Genes May Leave Some People More Vulnerable to Severe Covid-19

Why do some people infected with the coronavirus suffer only mild symptoms, while others become deathly ill? Geneticists have been scouring our DNA for clues. Now, a study by European scientists is the first to document a strong statistical link between genetic variations and Covid-19, the illness caused by the coronavirus. Variations at two spots […]

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Monster or Machine? A Profile of the Coronavirus at 6 Months

Listen to This Audio Audio Recording by Audm To hear more audio stories from publishers like The New York Times, download Audm for iPhone or Android. A virus, at heart, is information, a packet of data that benefits from being shared. The information at stake is genetic: instructions to make more virus. Unlike a truly […]

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After 6 Months, Important Mysteries About Coronavirus Endure

In the time since the world’s scientists and public health officials first became widely aware of the new coronavirus in January, they’ve had six months to learn about it. They’ve reached many conclusions about the virus and the illness it causes, from the importance of wearing masks to contain it, to the unusual range of […]

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A Virus-Hunter Falls Prey to a Virus He Underestimated

“This is the revenge of the viruses,” said Dr. Peter Piot, the director of the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine. “I’ve made their lives difficult. Now they’re trying to get me.” Dr. Piot, 71 years old, is a legend in the battles against Ebola and AIDS. But Covid-19 almost killed him. “A week […]

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Coronavirus Vaccine Shows Promising Early Results in China

A vaccine developed in China appears to be safe and may protect people from the new coronavirus, researchers reported on Friday. The early-stage trial, published in the Lancet, was conducted by researchers at several laboratories and included 108 participants aged 18 to 60. Those who received a single dose of the vaccine produced certain immune […]

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As Sports Begin Reopening, Athletes Weigh the Health Risks

Kathleen Baker, 23, a gold medal-winning Olympic swimmer, began wearing masks on airplanes long before the coronavirus outbreak began to avoid contracting illnesses that are especially hard for her to shake off because she has Crohn’s disease, which causes inflammation in the digestive system. Jordan Morris, 25, a soccer player for the Seattle Sounders and […]

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Treating Mild Coronavirus Cases Could Help Save Everyone

The president’s decision is puzzling. And yet it does highlight the urgent need to devote more attention and resources to drugs that can prevent Covid-19 or stop mild cases from getting worse. To date, about a dozen studies on therapies for Covid-19 have been published; all were conducted on hospitalized patients, typically with severe symptoms. […]

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A New Entry in the Race for a Coronavirus Vaccine: Hope

In a medical research project nearly unrivaled in its ambition and scope, volunteers worldwide are rolling up their sleeves to receive experimental vaccines against the coronavirus — only months after the virus was identified. Companies like Inovio and Pfizer have begun early tests of candidates in people to determine whether their vaccines are safe. Researchers […]

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Prototype Vaccines Protect Monkeys From Coronavirus

A prototype vaccine has protected monkeys from the coronavirus, researchers reported on Wednesday, a finding that offers new hope for effective human vaccines. Scientists are already testing coronavirus vaccines in people, but the initial trials are designed to determine safety, not how well a vaccine works. The research published Wednesday offers insight into what a […]

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Immunai raises $20 million for AI that predicts immune response

Immunai, a startup developing a proprietary corpus of immune-centric human tissue analyses, today emerged from stealth with $20 million. It’ll use the capital to further the development of its tech and business functions while hiring new scientists, engineers, and machine learning experts, a spokesperson told VentureBeat. Emerging treatments like gene cell therapies and cancer immunotherapies […]

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A Young Doctor Fights to Survive the Coronavirus

Video by Alexander Stockton Dr. Andres Maldonado normally bounded into the Emergency Department, fit and vigorous, but this time he had to be escorted in, pale and fighting for breath, with a patient bracelet on his right wrist. A nurse, seeing her colleague struggle, burst into tears. Maldonado was 27, a third-year resident physician with […]

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Could ‘Innate Immunology’ Save Us From the Coronavirus?

As the world waits for a coronavirus vaccine, tens of thousands of people could die. But some scientists believe a vaccine might already exist. Surprising new research in a niche area of immunology suggests that certain live vaccines that have been around for decades could, possibly, protect against the coronavirus. The theory is that these […]

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What if We Already Have a Coronavirus Vaccine?

As the world waits for a coronavirus vaccine, tens of thousands of people could die. But some scientists believe a vaccine might already exist. Surprising new research in a niche area of immunology suggests that certain live vaccines that have been around for decades could, possibly, protect against the coronavirus. The theory is that these […]

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Let the Sunshine In

Deciding whether to head outdoors or to stay at home has never before felt so fraught, as many of us continue the weigh the benefits of getting some fresh air versus the risks of getting sick. For many, however, the enticements of a spring day are too powerful to resist. “Yesterday it was raining and […]

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Nearly All Patients Hospitalized With Covid-19 Had Chronic Health Issues, Study Finds

A new study of thousands of hospitalized coronavirus patients in the New York City area, the epicenter of the outbreak in the United States, has found that nearly all of them had at least one major chronic health condition, and most — 88 percent — had at least two. Though earlier research has shown chronic […]

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How Poor Diet Contributes to Coronavirus Risk

That day I was researching food insecurity and soaring rates of metabolic disease as an often overlooked reason for the high risk of Covid-related illness and death among African-Americans, Hispanics and people in poor communities. The article told of staggering food waste — tens of millions of pounds of fresh food, including 3.7 million gallons […]

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Who Is Immune to the Coronavirus?

Among the many uncertainties that remain about Covid-19 is how the human immune system responds to infection and what that means for the spread of the disease. Immunity after any infection can range from lifelong and complete to nearly nonexistent. So far, however, only the first glimmers of data are available about immunity to SARS-CoV-2, […]

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Will a Coronavirus Antibody Test Allow Us to Go Back to School or Work?

When will life return to normal, or at least a new normal? A major answer to the question of when — and how — Americans can return to public places like work and school could depend on something called an antibody test, a blood test that determines whether someone has ever been infected with the […]

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More Coronavirus Vaccines and Treatments Move Toward Human Trials

As the coronavirus pandemic spreads at unprecedented rates, invading the lungs of people of all ages, ethnicities and medical histories, companies are ratcheting up their efforts to fight the disease with accelerated schedules for creating new vaccines, and beginning clinical trials for potential treatments. On Wednesday, Novavax, a Maryland-based biotech company, said it would begin […]

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Can an Old Vaccine Stop the New Coronavirus?

A vaccine that was developed a hundred years ago to fight the tuberculosis scourge in Europe is now being tested against the coronavirus by scientists eager to find a quick way to protect health care workers, among others. The Bacillus Calmette-Guerin vaccine is still widely used in the developing world, where scientists have found that […]

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Why Are So Many More Men Dying from Coronavirus?

As coronavirus continues its spread across borders, oceans and continents, there is a perplexing piece of data that has so far evaded a proper explanation: It’s still early, but in almost every country that we have numbers for, more men than women are dying from the virus. Most attempts to explain this discrepancy have focused […]

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The Coronavirus Patients Betrayed by Their Own Immune Systems

The 42-year-old man arrived at a hospital in Paris on March 17 with a fever, cough and the “ground glass opacities” in both lungs that are a trademark of infection with the new coronavirus. Two days later, his condition suddenly worsened and his oxygen levels dropped. His body, doctors suspected, was in the grip of […]

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Malaria Drug Helps Virus Patients Improve, in Small Study

The malaria drug hydroxychloroquine helped to speed the recovery of a small number of patients who were mildly ill from the coronavirus, doctors in China reported this week. Cough, fever and pneumonia went away faster, and the disease seemed less likely to turn severe in people who received hydroxychloroquine than in a comparison group not […]

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