Short-Lived Lung Infections Lead To Long-Lasting Lung Damage

Most of the time, people get lung infections after recovering from a specific virus. It directly attacks the lungs and leads to viral respiratory illness. It happens when the virus is cleared out of the human body.

Short-Lived Lung Infections Lead To Long-Lasting Lung Damage

Some virus destructive processes are set in the motion while fighting the virus. These processes lead to damage to various organs which also cause chronic illness and sometimes people might die. If we take the example of COVID-19, after patients are recovered, they feel continuous coughing, trouble in breathing, and shortness while breathing. These are the initial causes of lung disease. 

Short-Lived Lung Infections Lead To Long-Lasting Lung Damage

However, the symptoms of such damage to the lungs are low in many patients but they may develop chronic conditions at any moment. Experts also have noted many cases where the initial damage to the lungs was not much but the same continued for a long term and hence led to severe damage to the respiratory system and lungs over a period.

At Washington University of Medicine, a team of researchers has found that lung damage can develop after an infection in the respiratory system. Researchers started researching with mice, where they found that, this infection mostly triggers a kind of protein named “IL-33” for the lungs to grow into air space, and it causes the increase of mucus production in the lungs as well inflammation. This study was published in a clinical investigation journal, revealing all the potential points related to viral as well as a chronic infection. 

“Antibodies, antivirals, vaccines, all these therapies can be helpful but these are not solutions for patients who have already continued the road to such lung-related diseases”, said Michael J. Holtzman, who is a senior author as well as MD of S. and H. Seldin Professor of Medicine. He also added that “we have a better option to take care of acute diseases which occur because of COVID-19. However, whatever happens, just after the injury phase is a major issue to get a better result. We have also researched about millions of people who already had a lung infection and they might suffer from long-term issues, especially with diseases related to respiratory system”.

It is been so long since we have recognized that infections related to the respiratory which can lead to chronic and acute lung diseases. Children who have suffered from Covid-19 are more likely to develop asthma and other lung diseases. Researchers studied this research for about 21 days on Mice with the help of the sendal virus, as human tissues are similar to mice. After getting infected with the virus, it was found that two tissues separately started to multiply and spread in the air sacs. It started producing mucus in the lungs where air space was less as compared to large air spaces. 

Other research also showed that such processes hinge on a protein named IL-33. Under usual conditions, this protein increased the stem cells in the lungs in response to injury or stress helps the respiratory system to repair the barriers which are damaged. 

While targeting the steps between basal cells and IL-33, activation can form the basic therapies to treat or prevent lung-related diseases which are caused by various kinds of viruses including COVID-19. Lung has a different and stereotyped response to injuries and viral injuries. Some particular types of viruses are play as the severity of initial diseases. All these issues influence the main outcomes but they can be figured out easily. We have a program related to drug discovery which helps to find some common strategy to deal with such infections” Holtzman said. 

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