Predicting severe COVID-19: attack of the killer (T) cells

Written by Vivian Xie

A team of researchers has identified the first biomarker to reliably predict patients at risk of developing a severe case of COVID-19. In severe cases of COVID-19, the body’s immune system over-reacts to the virus by producing cytokines at a much higher rate, leading to a ‘cytokine storm’ and mass inflammation. Understanding this immune response triggered by COVID-19 is vital to understanding and predicting when a patient may suffer a severe case. The team, led by Burkhard Becher at the Institute of Experimental Immunology at the University of Zurich (Switzerland), discovered that the number of natural killer T cells in...

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