This is demonstrated by the results of a new study that observed a link between the ability to perceive bitter taste and the risk of Covid-19: “Bitter taste receptors seem to play a key role in innate immunity against trait pathogens, such as Sars. -Cov-2 and influenza virus.
People who are more sensitive to bitter tastes may be less susceptible to coronavirus infection and better fight disease. This was discovered by a research team at the Pennington Biomedical Research Center in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, which found an association between taste ability and the risk of Covid-19. The analysis found that people who are less sensitive to bitterness are more likely to be hospitalized and have symptoms for longer periods of time for coronavirus infection. On the contrary, those who experience bitterness will become more intense (Super taster) Represents a much smaller percentage of positives, depending on Journal of the American Medical Association.
This study of 1,935 adults (with an average age of 45 years) underscores that out of a total of 226 positive cases, 55 require hospitalization. Among these people, 47 (85.5%) of the subjects had little or no sensitivity to bitterness, and only 15 (5.6%) of the 266 positives were super tasters.
People’s ability to perceive bitter taste is related to genetics, especially bitter taste receptor gene variants, Called TAS2R38It was determined by testing: participants were asked to describe the taste of paper treated with phenylthiourea, thiourea, or sodium benzoate: the first two substances may have an extremely bitter taste (or cause no sensation), while sodium benzoate was Think of it as a sweet taste. , Salty, bitter taste, even in this case it will not cause any sensation.
In general, these three trials helped determine whether a person is a super taster and thus a potential carrier of the TAS2R38 bitter receptor gene, and divided 1,935 study participants into three categories: 508 (26.3%) They are super gourmets, with 917 gourmets (47.4%) and 510 non-gourmets (26.4%), that is, people whose perception of taste is below average.
As mentioned earlier, different sensitivities to bitterness seem to be not only related to different infection risks, but also Severity of diseaseThe researchers believe that this may be related to how the activation of bitter taste receptor genes triggers an immune response, which is mainly produced by the production of nitric oxide (a compound that can destroy pathogenic microorganisms), which depends on calcium ions.These ions, in turn, may also cause the release of certain cells in the airway tissue Antibacterial compound.
However, the intuition of the researchers suggests a new method for assessing the risk of Covid-19 and how to determine the disease. “Bitter taste receptors seem to work Key role in innate immunity Fight against pathogens of the upper respiratory tract -Mark scholars-. This discovery has potential global significance for our understanding of Sars-Cov-2 infection and seasonal viruses (such as influenza).“.