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Revista de la Facultad de Medicina (México)

On-line version ISSN 2448-4865Print version ISSN 0026-1742


SUAREZ REYES, Anamary  and  VILLEGAS VALVERDE, Carlos Agustín. Characteristics and Specialization of the Immune Response in COVID-19. Rev. Fac. Med. (Méx.) [online]. 2020, vol.63, n.4, pp.7-18.  Epub Mar 05, 2021. ISSN 2448-4865.

The outbreak of coronavirus pneumonia in Wuhan, China, became a pandemic on March 11, 2020. It has caused almost 4 million confirmed cases worldwide, with more than 270,000 deaths. Coronavirus is an enveloped RNA virus of the β-coronavirus genus distributed in birds, humans, and other mammals. The World Health Organization has named the new disease COVID-19. The scientific community is looking for evidence that can lead to a better understanding of the infection and the immune response (IR), prognostic and therapeutic predictors, effective treatments and vaccines. The objective of this review was to compile updated scientific evidence of the IR to COVID-19, in order to guide professionals with solutions that have a clinical impact. The most important elements involve innate immunity with failures in the interferon system in the early stages of the infection and a sustained increase in proinflammatory interleukins. This can end in a potentially fatal cytokine storm. The infiltration of neutrophils and macrophages at the alveolar level, accompanied by neutrophilia, is very characteristic. Lymphopenia is evident at the adaptive immunity level, that, depending on the degree, can indicate the severity of the disease. Understanding the temporal sequence of the IR is crucial for choosing the appropriate and effective therapies, especially when selecting which type of anti-inflammatory drugs can be used and the frequency of the dosage. Due to the fact that it is difficult to determine when they will be clearly beneficial, not harmful to the IR and not too late, due to the irreversibility of the process.

Keywords : COVID-19; coronavirus; immune response.

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