London: Researchers have demonstrated how the induction of brain inflammation accounts for neurological damage that can lead to the onset of Alzheimer’s or Parkinson’s disease in Covid-19 patients.
The study, published in the journal Molecular Neurobiology, describes how the spike protein used by the coronavirus to enter human cells can have a similar effect on the brain’s immune cells as it does with the rest of the body
A team at University of Huddersfield in the UK tested the potential impact of the Spike Glycoprotein S1 using immune cell lines obtained from mice. They have now applied for funding to develop the research further using brain cells from humans.
“Following our hypothesis, we are now questioning when the coronavirus has affected the brain, could this pose a risk for neurodegenerative disorders further down the line, like Alzheimer’s or Parkinson’s?” said Dr Mayo Olajide, from University of Huddersfield in the UK.
According to Olajide, whilst other research demonstrated the mechanism of why the virus was able to gain access into the brain through the nose, theirs was among the first to demonstrate how the coronavirus activated the brain’s own immune response.
“It may not be multiplying in the brain, but when it gets into the brain, it can actually induce immune responses and this explains some of the trends people have reported when they have been infected such as continued brain fog and memory loss,” he said.
Olajide’s previous research discovered how the onset of Alzheimer’s disease can be slowed and some of its symptoms curbed by a natural compound that is found in pomegranate.