“It is not a respiratory disease” … a fact that you do not know about Corona

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More than a year ago, the world was standing in front of an epidemic that had never crossed anyone’s mind. The emerging virus baffled scientists who have intensified their efforts and put all their capabilities to decipher its mysteries.

For a while, scientists have known that the important protein “Spike” in Corona, helps the virus to cause infection by facilitating its attachment to healthy cells. And now a new American study, in which researchers from the Salk Institute for Biological Studies in California collaborated with scientists at the University of California, San Diego, shows that it also plays a major role in the disease itself, according to “Asharq Al-Awsat”.

Vascular disease

The research paper, which was published on April 30 in the journal “Circulation Research”, also shows conclusively that the “Covid-19” disease caused by the virus is a vascular disease, and that the “spike” protein plays a role in attacking the vascular system on the Cellular level, which could open the door to new research into more effective treatments.

In this context, Assistant Research Professor Uri Manor, a senior co-author of the study, explained in a report published on the Salk Institute for Biological Studies website: “Many people think that it is a respiratory disease, but it is in fact a vascular disease, and that could explain why some are infected. People suffer from strokes, and why do some people suffer from problems in other parts of the body. The common denominator between them is that they all have the basics of blood vessels. ”

The paper provides a clear confirmation and a detailed explanation of the mechanism by which the protein destroys blood vessel cells for the first time. And there was a growing consensus that corona affects the vascular system, but it was not understood exactly how it affects. Likewise, scientists studying other coronaviruses have long suspected that the spike protein contributed to damaging vascular endothelial cells, but this is the first time the process has been documented.

‘False virus’

In the new study, the researchers also created a “pseudovirus” surrounded by coronary protrusions of the spike protein, and exposure to this pseudovirus damaged the lungs and arteries in an animal model, which proves that the spike protein alone was sufficient to cause the disease, and the tissue samples showed the presence of inflammation in the endothelial cells. For the walls of the pulmonary artery.

Then the team repeated this process in the laboratory, exposing the healthy endothelial cells that line the arteries to the spike protein, and the researchers showed that the protein damages the cells by binding to receptors for angiotensin converting enzyme 2 (ACE2), and this link disrupts the mitochondria, the organelles that generate energy. Of cells, what causes damage and fragmentation of mitochondria.

It is noteworthy that previous studies showed a similar effect when cells were exposed to the emerging virus, but this is the first study that shows that damage occurs when cells are exposed to the spike protein on their own. Manor said: “If you remove the reproductive capabilities of the virus, it still has a significant harmful effect on blood vessel cells, simply thanks to its ability to bind to ACE2 receptors.”

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