LivingThe placenta can block the transmission of Covid to...

The placenta can block the transmission of Covid to the baby during pregnancy

One of the main concerns of pregnant women at the beginning of the pandemic was whether the coronavirus could cross the placenta and infect the baby, which is known as vertical transmission. Although some cases have been documented, the truth is that transmission from mother to fetus is rare, since the placenta acts as a shield protecting the baby.

Just yesterday we talked about a case in which the pregnant woman was admitted to the ICU in a very serious condition, and yet her baby was born without infection.

Now we know of a new study from the Boston University School of Medicine (United States), and published in the scientific journal ‘ American Journal Of Pathology’, which shows that ACE-2, the receptor that allows SARS-CoV -2 enters cells, it is found at lower levels in the placentas of women with COVID-19 in pregnancy compared to women with normal pregnancies.

“We believe that when a woman has COVID-19 during pregnancy, the placenta sheds ACE-2 as a way to block the transmission of SARS-CoV-2 to the fetus ,” explains Elizabeth S. Taglauer, co-author of the research.

The placenta, a natural protector against SARS-Cov-2

The researchers analyzed placentas from two groups of women who gave birth between July 2020 and April 2021.

The first was made up of women with normal pregnancies and no reports of SARS-CoV-2 infection. The second group of women were SARS-CoV-2 positive and had active COVID-19 during pregnancy. They then observed ACE-2 expression in their placentas under a microscope and compared ACE-2 expression in the placenta using genetic and protein analysis techniques.

“The placenta is one of the few “success stories” of the pandemic

According to the researchers, the placenta has many similarities to the lung , so this study also highlights the importance of studying the placenta to help understand a variety of lung diseases and highlights the important role of controlling ACE-2 as a way of prevent SARS-CoV-2 infections.

“The placenta is one of the few ‘success stories’ of the pandemic. If we understand how the placenta naturally protects babies from COVID-19 , this may provide important insights for therapies and strategies to help prevent other infections by SARS-CoV-2 continue to spread,” adds Taglauer, a neonatologist at BMC.

Vía | Science Daily

Photos | drobotdean –
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