Updated: September 27, 2020 07:47:46
Statins are a widely used cholesterol-lowering drug. Recent research from the US San Diego (University of California at San Diego) School of Medicine has associated statins with a reduced risk of developing severe Covid-1
Now another research group, also from UC San Diego School of Medicine, has explained why this happens. The first study is published in The EMBO Journal and the new one in the American Journal of Cardiology. In short, statins remove cholesterol from cell membranes, which in turn prevents the coronavirus from entering.
We know that SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes Covid-19, enters the human cell using a protein known as ACE2 on the cell surface. ACE2 can be affected by prescription statins.
The researchers retrospectively analyzed the electronic health records of 170 Covid-19 patients and 5,281 Covid-negative control patients admitted to UC San Diego Health between February and June 2020. Of the Covid-19 patients, 27% were taking statins on admission.
Statin use was associated with an over 50% lower risk of developing severe Covid-19. Patients taking statins also recovered faster than those not taking statins.
Source: UC San Diego Heath
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