Polish scientists have found a gene that they say more than doubles the risk of becoming severely ill with COVID-19, a discovery they hope could help doctors identify people who are most at risk from the disease.
“After more than a year and a half of work it was possible to identify a gene responsible for a predisposition to becoming seriously ill (with coronavirus),” said Health Minister Adam Niedzielski.
“This means that in the future we will be able to… identify people with a predisposition to suffer seriously from COVID.”
The researchers from the Medical University of Bialystok found that the gene was the fourth most important factor determining how seriously a person suffers from COVID-19, after age, weight and gender.
The gene is present in around 14% of the Polish population, compared to 8-9% in Europe as a whole and 27% in India, said Marcin Moniuszko, the professor in charge of the project.
TVN24.pl report (in Polish)