Brain Fog & Beyond: Long COVID Tied to Immune System, Gut Virus 

United States: Peculiar signs of uncharacteristic immune cell activity in several organs of those with long COVID symptoms have been reported. 

The study of the case has been conducted by a large group of medical researchers at the University of California, San Francisco, and CellSight Technologies. 

Some of the patients have also shown traces of SARS-CoV-2 RNA present inside their guts for almost two years after their contractions with infection. 

How was the study conducted? 

The scientists examined PET scans of twenty-four people who had recovered from at least one COVID-19 infection, as medicalxpress.com reported. 

Brain Fog & Beyond: Long COVID Tied to Immune System, Gut Virus. Credit | Shutterstock
Brain Fog & Beyond: Long COVID Tied to Immune System, Gut Virus. Credit | Shutterstock

The findings were published in the journal Science Translational Medicine. 

The scientists found during several years of research that COVID is a true biological condition, which is associated with several symptoms such as brain fog and heart, lung, and kidney problems. 

Moreover, presently, there is no availability of treatment other than symptom management. Although scientists are still working on understanding its evolving nature, they are doing their best to prevent its spread to new individuals and also to treat those already infected. 

In order to do so, the scientific group performed full-body PET scans of 24 who once had SARS-CoV-2 viral infection and survived. As per the experts, such scans reveal metabolic or biochemical functions of the tissues and organs, helping to diagnose problems. 

Findings of the study 

Out of those scanned, 18 were diagnosed with long COVID. 

Further, the research team diagnosed an abnormal T cell activity in the same parts of the body of the patients with long COVID had identified as problematic—in the brain stem. For instance, in the patients feeling brain fog condition, as medicalxpress.com reported. 

Moreover, the team of researchers also noted an abnormal immune cell activity in some organs in those people who did not have long COVID, although in lesser degrees. 

The research team suggested that COVID-19 is said to be a real biological illness, and therefore, the SARS-CoV-2 virus could persist and live inside the body much longer than has been thought.