COVID-19: WHAT IS CONVALESCENT PLASMA THERAPY AND HOW DOES IT WORK AGAINST NOVEL COROANVIRUS
2 years ago
COVID-19: Convalescent Plasma Therapy For Coronavirus treatment.
To fight with the novel coronavirus, scientists and researchers have been working endlessly to develop appropriate treatment for patients infected with the COVID-19. During testing the researchers have come across the Convalescent Plasma therapy to treat the novel coronavirus infection. Countries such as China and the US have already started the clinical trials of the Convalescent Plasma Therapy due to the absence of a coronavirus-specific treatment.
What is Convalescent Plasma Therapy?
When a pathogen like a coronavirus infects the immune system, and in return, the immune system started producing antibodies. Antibodies are a type of protein discharged by immune cells called B lymphocytes whenever they come in contact with a foreign attacker like COVID-19. White blood cells attack the identified invaders, and the body gets rid of the infection.
Plasma therapy is like blood transmission, reaping the antibody from a recovered patient and ingesting in an ill person. Convalescent plasma refers to the liquid part of the blood from recovered coronavirus patients. The concept behind convalescent plasma therapy is to transfer immunity in a sick person using the blood plasma of a healthy person. Therefore during this therapy, blood from recovered patients, which is rich in antibodies, and accustomed to treat other sick people.
How the treatment is given
Blood is drawn from a person recovering from COVID-19 disease. Blood Serum is isolated and tested for virus-neutralizing antibodies. The Convalescent serum that is rich in antibodies, is given to a COVID-19 patient showing severe symptoms. The method for donating plasma is similar to blood donation. It is necessary to examine the prospect before extracting the blood serum and must be declared cured. The plasma therapy is not simple to implement, especially due to the problem in obtaining significant amounts of plasma from survivors. In diseases like novel coronavirus, where most patients with severe symptoms are aged, and also suffer from other medical conditions such as diabetes, hypertension, and so on, the effectiveness remains questionable.
Is it effective?
The convalescent serum has been used during past viral epidemics such as H1N1 Influenza virus in 2009 and the Ebola outbreak in 2018. It is not yet clear that which process will be followed by COVID-19 antibodies to fight the disease. However, it is expected that the infusion of plasma will promote acquired immunity until the patient develops their targeted ability to combat the virus. According to tests conducted on Coronavirus patients in China, therapy came out as a promising option for severe cases.
The Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) has allowed Kerala to conduct plasma therapy. Kerala is the first state in the country that has been permitted to undertake this out. However, ICMR does not recommend it as a treatment option.
Our scientists are working on vaccine generation against COVID 19 but till now there is no victory we have gain. So this convalescent plasma therapy can act as a short-cut for a cure.
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