Clinicians and researchers observing the natural history of endemic and epidemic infections have always been fascinated by the vagaries of these diseases, in terms of both the changing nature of the disease severity and phenotype over time and the variable susceptibility of hosts within exposed populations. SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19 and is believed to originate from bats, quickly transformed into a global pandemic. The pandemic of the novel severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) has been posing great threats to the global health in many aspects. Currently, there are no proven effective vaccines or therapeutic agents against the virus. Comprehensive understanding of the biology of SARS-CoV-2 and its interaction with hosts is fundamentally important in the fight against SARS-CoV-2. Advanced age, male sex, and comorbidities such as hypertension and cardiovascular disease as well as diabetes and obesity have been identified as risk factors for more severe COVID-19. However, which and to what extent specific genetic factors may account for the predisposition of individuals to develop severe disease or to contract the infection remains elusive. The increasing availability of data from COVID-19 patient populations is allowing for potential associations to be established between specific gene loci and disease severity, susceptibility to infection, and response to current/future drugs.
Part of the book: Genetic Polymorphisms