Does Your Blood Type Make You More Vulnerable to COVID?

Epicentre News • 09 February 2022

There have been theories circulating since the start of the pandemic that certain blood types are more vulnerable to being infected with COVID and/or having a serious case of COVID-19. We’ve looked at scientific papers and our own patients data to get some answers.

What Do Researchers Say?

Blood group’s connection to certain infectious diseases have been debated for a long time (Shokri et al., 2022). Shokri et al., (2022) found in their review (they looked at all the scientific research that had been done on the subject) that the blood type O protects people against COVID-19, whilst the blood group A predisposes people to being infected.

Shokri et al., (2022) thinks that people who don’t have type O blood, who are infected with COVID‐19 are also at higher risk of developing severe outcomes in comparison to O blood group.

Why Do Researchers Think This Happens?

The interaction between blood groups and a COVID-19 infection is hypothesized (an educated guess based on evidence) to be as a result of natural antibodies against blood group antigens that may act as a part of innate immune response to fight viruses (Shokri et al., 2022).

Or, blood group antigens could work as extra receptors (places that the virus can latch onto) for the virus and individuals who are capable of expressing these antigens on epithelial cells (the cells that cover all body surfaces, line body cavities and hollow organs, and are the major tissue in glands) would then have a high tendency to be affected by COVID-19 (Shokri et al., 2022).

Our Findings

The image above is interesting as it seems to go against researcher’s hypnosis, however 25 people are not a sample that can be used to represent all of those infected with COVID-19. But it is intriguing to note what is happening with our positives.

Furthermore, in discussions with our teams, there is anecdotal evidence that from many of our patients that test negative when their whole family tests positive are often O+. This could speak to a limited protection given to those in this blood group.

More research needs to be done on this question and Epicentre will be collecting more information and sharing it in future newsletters.