A new study suggests that the coronavirus that causes COVID-19 may be hidden in the brains of infected people and cause relapses in patients who appear to be recovering.
In a study published Tuesday in the journal virusResearchers at Georgia State University found that even if the virus left the lungs, mice infected with the virus through the nasal passages also developed serious diseases due to brain infections. Lead researcher and study co-author Mukesh Kumar suggested that these findings could explain why human patients who seem to be dying of the disease sometimes relapse and die quickly.
Kumar said in the press release: “The brain is one of the areas that viruses like to hide.” “That̵
Studies have found that the virus is located in the brains of mice, and its level is 1,000 times that of any other area of the human body. Three days after infection, the level of the virus in the lungs begins to decrease, and on the fifth and sixth days of the disease, the level of the virus in the brain is still high.
Kumar said: “We think this is more of a respiratory disease, not necessarily correct.” “Once you infect the brain, it will affect everything, because the brain controls your lungs, heart and everything. The brain is a very sensitive organ. It is the central processing unit of everything.”
In addition to COVID-19, Kumar believes that the coronavirus entering the brain may make patients vulnerable to other serious health problems in the future, including neurological diseases such as Parkinson’s disease and multiple sclerosis, as well as general cognitive decline and self Immune disease.
He said: “It’s scary.” “A lot of people think they got COVID, they recovered, and now they are out of trouble. Now I think that will never be true. You may never get out of trouble.”
It is known that neurological symptoms are relatively common in patients with COVID-19. However, although many studies have shown that the brains of mice are susceptible to infection by the virus, studies have not yet produced conclusive evidence to support the idea that the virus is infected and concentrated in the human brain. Neurological symptoms may be caused by an immune response rather than a direct brain infection.
A blog post published last week by Dr. Francis Collins, director of the National Institutes of Health, detailed a recent study by the National Institute of Neurological Diseases and Stroke that found tissue samples from 19 people who died of COVID-19 There is brain damage in, but there is no evidence that the virus has infected the brain tissue itself.
Collins wrote: “This finding is particularly fascinating, because based on studies in mice, someone suggested that SARS-CoV-2 might cross the blood-brain barrier and invade the brain.” Journal of Experimental MedicineEvidence of the virus was found in the brains of three people who died from complications of COVID-19.
“Obviously, more research is needed,” Collins added. “As we learn more about the devastating damage caused by COVID-19 to the human body, understanding the symptoms of the nervous system is essential to help people. “