The recent coronavirus scare is a reminder that even infectious diseases, and particularly deadly ones, may still pose serious threats. The virus, which is associated with severe respiratory problems and fever, has already spread to Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, and Qatar. Now health officials have announced that the virus is also circulating in Europe, causing at least thirty cases.
While this virus causes no symptoms, it does serve as a precursor to other respiratory system problems like pneumonia and influenza. These illnesses can cause more serious medical conditions and death.
So far health officials have only identified the virus as causing respiratory problems. But new research shows that the virus may cause the malfunction of one of the vital organs responsible for dealing with common viruses: the body’s natural defense system. While the study was small, it is a strong indication that the virus is even more dangerous than the current knowledge allows.
It isn’t yet clear exactly how the virus works, but it isn’t yet clear how the virus works. There are two basic explanations. One is that the virus triggers an immune response that initiates a protective reaction against other types of viruses.
The second explanation is that secondary infections from the virus occur. The virus may cause the overproduction of cells that the body’s immune system would normally destroy.
No one has yet come up with an exact reason why the coronavirus reacts this way. This makes the possibility of a natural, or dormant, vaccine ineffectual. In fact, doctors are very worried.
The body’s natural defense system protects us from many forms of danger, including common viruses. That makes us vulnerable to any unknown invader. They could enter our bodies without ever triggering a response that could harm them.
The problem is that even secondary infections are extremely dangerous. We only have so much time to treat them. That is why we must take every precaution possible to reduce the threat posed by secondary infections.
The new research shows that there are immune response cells, called dendritic cells, that act as a coordinator between the body’s defense system and the immune system. By attacking the disease-causing virus, these cells help protect us from secondary infections.
In mice, scientists treated their human dendritic cells to show that the dendritic cells actively attack the virus without having to recognize it. There are plenty of patients who should be tested for the virus, because dendritic cells can turn into other types of cells in the body, and they can prevent the body from healing the original damage caused by the virus.
The study is only one step along the road to understanding the mechanism of how the virus triggers an immune response that encourages dendritic cells to attack the virus. Hopefully, scientists will eventually be able to see how dendritic cells work, and how we can use this information to develop vaccines. Until then, everyone should be careful about hand washing, especially children.
If the human dendritic cells to attack the virus, it could be the start of the development of a human vaccine against the coronavirus. That is why everyone should practice good hygiene and regularly wash their hands.