In this episode of the Epigenetics Podcast, we caught up with Dr. Sandra Atlante and Dr. Carlo Gaetano from the Instituti Clinici Scientifici Maugeri in Pavia, Italy, to talk about the roles epigenetic mechanisms play in COVID-19.

In early 2020 a novel coronavirus, SARS-CoV-2, emerged in Wuhan, China. This coronavirus causes the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) and rapidly spread all over the globe. In a worldwide effort, scientists and doctors tried to find drugs and looked for vaccines to help contain the spreading of the virus. It seems that an overreaction of the immune system, the so called "cytokine storm," could be one of the major complications of this disease. This reaction is not directly linked to the viral infection but is an overreaction of the body's own immune system. Therefore, small molecules that regulate gene expression via chromatin modifying enzymes might help keep the immune system in check.

In this episode we discuss how Dr. Gaetano and Dr. Atlante set up studies to investigate the epigenetic response to a SARS-CoV-2 infection, which epigenetic factors play a role in disease progression, and what we can expect from mutations of the virus in the future.

 

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