Proteins in COVID-19 patients’ blood could predict severity of illness, study finds

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Scientists have found 27 key proteins in the blood of people infected with COVID-19 which they say could act as predictive biomarkers for how ill a patient could become with the disease.

In research published in the journal Cell Systems on Tuesday, scientists at Britain’s Francis Crick Institute and Germany’s Charite Universitaetsmedizin Berlin found the proteins are present in different levels in COVID-19 patients, depending on the severity of their symptoms.

The markers could lead to the development of a test that would help doctors predict how ill a patient might get when infected with the new SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus, they said, and could also provide new targets for the development of potential treatments for the disease.

The COVID-19 pandemic has killed more than 374,000 people worldwide and infected more than 6.7 million.

Doctors and scientists say those infected with SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, respond differently – with some developing no symptoms at all, while others need to be hospitalized and others suffer fatal infection.

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