Protein analysis of a COVID patient can predict its evolution
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- Mireia Córcoles
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- The scientific discovery of the Parc Taulí Research and Innovation Institute (I3PT) is part of the pioneering study published by the journal Scientific Reports, which shows that with a blood test at the time of admission of a patient with bilateral pneumonia, its evolution can be anticipated
- Thanks to La Marató de TV3, the study will now continue with the expansion of the group of patients analyzed, which will allow us to know, with the same technique, the evolution of asymptomatic patients and patients with mild symptoms of COVID-19. The data obtained will allow to define profiles of patients with COVID-19 according to their clinical evolution.
- The study highlights others with the same characteristics for its methodology, as it has focused on evaluating candidates for biomarkers in the early stages of the disease in a consistent manner.
The identification of proteins in a patient entering by COVID-19with bilateral pneumonia would allow predict its clinical evolution i anticipate treatmentwhich you may need, with only one blood test at the time of admission.
This is one of the findings of the research group Inflammatory joint disease, bone metabolism and systemic autoimmune diseasesof Parc Taulí Research and Innovation Institute(I3PT), whose coordinator is Dr. Jordi Gratacós, head of the Rheumatology Service, that now publishes the scientific journal Scientific Reports from the publishing house Nature.
The study, led by the rheumatologist Joan Calvet, has identified a panel of proteins that are expressed differently depending on COVID-19 patients hospitalized with bilateral pneumonia. "We have seen that there are certain proteins that are expressed in a certain way in patients with coronavirus who have a favorable evolution and do not need specific medication, while these same proteins behave differently in patients with a more serious evolution and who have required immunomodulatory treatment with corticosteroids and tocilizumab, ”explains Calvet.
"This is important because at this time there is still no specific treatment for COVID-19 and in hospitals weit would help to discriminate what type of patient is being admitted.If you can do it right from the starttake to a conventional hospitalization wardbecause it will no longer require support, or if it is necessary to start preparing a bed of ICU, RICU or semi-critical” Says the rheumatologist at Parc Taulí. "Additionally, by the time COVID-19 drugs are available and are currently being approved by the regulatory agencies, these biomarkers would help us make a more accurate selection of candidates to receive them."
The clinical study also stands out for the methodology used, as blood was drawn from 20 patients — 10 of each type depending on whether or not they had a favorable hospital outcome — over four consecutive days from the time of admission. "This gives consistency to the study because not only is a high protein found on the first day, but it has been seen that these proteins are expressed differently in the two groups of patients in the four moments that the blood is drawn' explains Calvet, who adds: for that reason that the biomarkers we have observed are more likely to be real in gravity or non-gravity of COVID-19".
La Marató de TV3 project will allow the study to be extended to new groups of patients
Thanks to La Marató de TV3 scholarship dedicated to COVID-19, the I3PT research group will now be able to expand its study and begin a new phase of validation of these proteins with new groups of individuals.
As Calvet explains, you now need to look at these proteinsin patients with asymptomatic COVID-19—Detected in a PCR screening— and in patients who have very mild symptoms- that they will have been detected because they went to the Emergency Department but did not require hospitalization. In addition, patients with bilateral pneumonia will be retaken, as in the first phase of the study, in order to validate these proteins with all these groups of people. "This means that we will validate the results we have obtained with more people to see that these proteins really have the ability to discriminate," adds Calvet.
The goal is, according to the rheumatologist, obtain a protein panel that has the ability to identify, at the time the patient arrives in the emergency room and through a rapid blood test, if you can go back home or need to anticipate the hospital admission, concludes Calvet.
Head of CommunicationAll stories by: Mireia Córcoles
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