A gene that doubles the risk of respiratory failure caused by COVID-19 has been identified by scientists at the University of Oxford.
They found that a relatively unexamined gene called LZTFL1 appears to prevent cells in the airways and lungs from responding properly to the virus, which could lead to respiratory failure and death.
Sixty percent of people of South Asian descent carry the “high-risk genetic signal,” which partly explains the excess deaths seen in some British communities, the researchers said.
It is found in about 15% of people of European descent, while for people of Afro-Caribbean descent it is 2%.
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