Complications from COVID-19 may depend on von Willebrand factor in the blood. By St Petersburg State University. Maybe this is the clue to covid?
Anna Aksenova, a senior research associate at the Laboratory of Amyloid Biology at St Petersburg University, has advanced a hypothesis that the severe course of COVID-19 may be associated with the von Willebrand factor, one of the main components of the blood coagulation system. ….
The replication of the virus stimulates the development of microdamage on vessel walls. In its response to this, the body releases von Willebrand factor into the blood, trying to ‘patch’ possible holes. As a result, the risk of thromboses increases [thereby blocking blood vessels]. It is with this clotting that a significant part of the deaths from COVID-19 are associated.
Those more likely to get severe symptoms or die are those with higher VWF:
The level and activity of VWF in the blood … differs markedly among healthy people. For example, it is higher among:
- African Americans than among Europeans
- in men than in women
- in adults than in children
- in the elderly than in middle-aged people …
- people with [blood group A than with] blood group O. …
Academic papers currently continue to come out in favor of this hypothesis. For example, there have recently been reports that VWF is significantly increased in patients with severe COVID-19 who receive mechanical ventilation or who have thromboembolic complications.
Lungs, of course, have huge numbers of fine blood vessels for their operation, so are more vulnerable to disruption from any blockages.