People With Blood Groups A, B and Rh+ ‘More Susceptible’ to COVID-19 Infection, Study Finds

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Virus 2021 - Sputnik International, 1920, 30.11.2021
The research is a step towards understanding how the SARS-CoV-2 virus has spread in India, the second-worst hit country in the pandemic, largely on account of the deadly "second wave" this year. India's COVID situation has drastically improved since, with the government on Tuesday reporting the lowest daily caseload in 551 days.
Research conducted by an Indian hospital has found that people with blood groups A, B and Rh+ are “more susceptible” to being infected by COVID-19 whereas those with O, AB and Rh- are less vulnerable to the SARS-Cov-2 virus.
Although the research claims that people with certain blood groups are more prone to a COVID-19 infection, it adds that there is “no association” between blood groups and “susceptibility to severity of disease, as well as mortality”.
A visitor wearing a face mask takes a photo of a model of a coronavirus and boxes for COVID-19 vaccines at a display by Chinese pharmaceutical firm Sinopharm at the China International Fair for Trade in Services (CIFTIS) in Beijing, Saturday, Sept. 5, 2020. With the COVID-19 pandemic largely under control, China's capital on Saturday kicked off one of the first large-scale public events since the start of the coronavirus outbreak, as tens of thousands of attendees were expected to visit displays from nearly 2,000 Chinese and foreign companies showcasing their products and services. - Sputnik International, 1920, 13.10.2021
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The study was conducted by the Departments of Research and of Blood Transfusion Medicine at Sir Ganga Ram Hospital in New Delhi.
A total of 2,586 COVID-19 positive patients were tested through real-time PCR between 8 April and 4 October last year during the research, the hospital said in a press release on Tuesday.
The research was published in the 21 November edition of 'Frontiers in Cellular and Infection Microbiology', a Switzerland-based peer-reviewed journal which publishes research on “pathogenic microorganisms and their interaction with their hosts”.
The doctors involved in the study have further claimed that “male patients of blood group B are more prone to COVID-19 than the female patients with blood group B”.

“Our study also found that Blood Group A and Rh+ types are associated with a decrease in recovery period, whereas Blood Group O & Rh- are associated with increase in recovery period,” Dr Vivek Ranjan, co-author and head of Sir Ganga Ram Hospital’s Department of Blood Transfusion, said.

“However, the ABO and/or Rh blood groups may not be responsible for this association, as these may indicate an unexplored underlying factor like co-morbidity. Therefore, larger, multicentre, and prospective studies are needed to ascertain the relationship between blood groups and SARS-CoV-2,” added Dr Ranjan.
He said that all patients, who were part of the research effort, were Indians.

“It hasn’t been conclusively established as yet that Indians are more prone to contracting a COVID infection than people of other nationalities,” said Dr Ranjan, when asked by Sputnik whether the study findings could also be applied to non-Indians.

“Previous studies have pointed out that B is one of the most prevalent blood groups in the northern part of India. Our research in a way confirms that,” he added.
Jagdishbhai Himmatbhai Solanki, with a breathing problem, is wheeled inside a COVID-19 hospital for treatment during the ongoing coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak in Ahmedabad, India, November 23, 2021 - Sputnik International, 1920, 29.11.2021
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Dr Rashmi Rana, a consultant at the Sir Ganga Ram hospital’s department of research, explained the significance of the study findings.

“Severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) is a new virus, and it is unclear whether blood groups have any impact on COVID-19 risk or progression."

"Therefore, we investigated the association of ABO and Rh blood group with COVID-19 susceptibility, prognosis, recovery time, and mortality in this study,” she remarked.

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