Chain smokers more susceptible to COVID-19 infection!

Bhubaneswar: Researchers have found that people with smoking habits are more likely to contract severe respiratory syndrome (SARS) coronavirus and influenza than non-smokers.

A recent study published in The Lancet postulated that this might be because of the upregulation of the chief receptors of the SARS-CoV-2 called Angiotensin Converting Enzyme 2 (ACE2) receptors in bodies of the infected. The ACE2 receptors allow the SARS-CoV-2 to enter into the host’s mucosa thus activating the infection.

Elaborating a survey, the article said that the gene expression of ACE2 was found to be more in current smokers than in the previous or non-smokers. It also exhibited an association with Forced Expiratory Volume (FEV1).

Though the effects of  ACE2 on the mortality of the infected patient is still unclear, scientists have articulated that the coronavirus infection risks are lower in patients on ACE inhibitors (ACEIs) and Angiotensin 2 receptor blockers (ARBs).

Contradicting to the study, a data shared by France earlier claimed that the smoking might help evade the contraction of coronavirus infection by interaction with acetylcholine receptor, an integral membrane protein.

However, researchers advised not to rely on such propositions as they lack enough evidence.

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