Wednesday, 28 October, 2020

Coronavirus risk lowered for this blood type, studies suggest

1,195 New COVID-19 Cases, 14 More Virus-Related Deaths Reported, State Health Officials Say Coronavirus risk lowered for this blood type, studies suggest
Gustavo Carr | 18 October, 2020, 15:45

Two new studies have weighed in with fresh evidence of the link between blood type and Covid-19, suggesting that people with blood type O appear to have a lower risk of falling severely ill with the infection while people with blood groups A or AB tend to exhibit greater disease severity. Around 42 percent of the Danish population has blood type O and another 42 percent have blood type A. Despite equal representation, fewer people with blood type O caught Covid-19; just 38 percent of the people who tested positive were blood type O, while 44 percent were blood type A. Similarly, people with blood type B and AB also received more positive Covid-19 results than expected.

The studies bolster past research on how a person's blood type may affect their risk of contracting the virus.

Anyone with blood type O negative are universal donors as in they can donate their blood to all groups. No associations were found between non-O blood groups and comorbidities that might explain infection rate differences. A study at the University of Southern Denmark says that it is very important to consider the proper control group because blood type prevalence may vary considerably in different ethnic groups and different countries.

"We have the advantage of a strong control group - Denmark is a small, ethnically homogenous country with a public health system and a central registry for lab data - so our control is population-based, giving our findings a strong foundation", Torben added.

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They wrote that patients with blood groups A or AB were more likely to require mechanical ventilation (34, or 84%) versus those with blood group O or B (35, or 61%), which means that their risk of lung injury from Covid-19 was greater.

"The Dublin-Boston score is easily calculated and can be applied to all hospitalised Covid-19 patients", said study author Gerry McElvaney from the RCSI University in Ireland. The findings also reveal patients across different ethnic groups continue to show fewer infections if they have O blood. Meanwhile, people with blood group O or B, experienced a visit in the ICU with a median of about nine days.

Also this summer, the genealogy website 23andMe.com released data they collected from 750,000 participants who identified they have tested positive for COVID-19.

People with type A blood, however, accounted for 44.4% of the infected patients, the study found, despite making up 42.4% of the untested group.