CMAAO Coronavirus Facts and Myth Buster: Bone Marrow and COVID-19

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With input from Dr Monica Vasudev

1092: COVID-19 May Damage Blood Marrow Immune Cells

(Medscape Excerpts)

The coronavirus may damage blood marrow cells in patients with severe COVID-19, suggests a new study.
The study is published in the journal Science Immunology.
Previous studies have shown that COVID-19 creates an exaggerated response from the immune system, and for some patients, this could occur in immune cells found in bone marrow.
Investigators analyzed the immune profiles of 43 hospitalized patients during the peak of the pandemic in the UK. Several shifts were identified in immune signatures, particularly monocytes, which are new immune cells released into the bloodstream from bone marrow.
For most patients with mild COVID-19, abnormal levels came back to normal during hospital stay. However, in patients with more severe disease, the monocytes didnt function properly.
The researchers werent sure whether the monocytes were altered before they were released from the bone marrow or whether they were changed after they entered the blood.
Treatments that prevent the monocytes from being released could play a role in reducing the exaggerated immune response related to severe COVID-19.
The immune irregularities were there before the patients were admitted to intensive care, thus suggesting that hospitals should begin immune therapies soon after admission.

Dr KK Aggarwal

President CMAAO, HCFI and Past National President IMA