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Brain Cells Can Fusion Under The Influence Of Viruses, Resulting In A Malfunctioning Central Nervous System (CNS)



Analysts at The University of Queensland, Australia, have found viruses, for example, SARS-CoV-2 can cause brain cells to fuse, initiating malfunctions that lead to constant neurological symptoms.

The Queensland Brain Institute’s Professor Massimo Hilliard and Dr. Ramon Martinez-Marmol looked into how viruses affect how the nervous system works in a study that was published in Sciences Advances.

SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes Coronavirus, has been recognized in the brains of people with ‘long COVID’ months after their initial infection. “We discovered COVID-19 causes neurons to undergo a cell fusion process, which has not been seen before,” Hilliard said.

“After neuronal infection with SARS-CoV-2, the spike S protein becomes present in neurons, and once neurons fuse, they don not die.”

“They either start firing synchronously, or they stop functioning altogether. Once fusion takes place, each switch either turns on both the kitchen and bathroom lights at the same time, or neither of them,” he continued.

The revelation offers an expected clarification for persistent neurological impacts after a viral infection.

“In the current understanding of what happens when a virus enters the brain, there are two outcomes – either cell death or inflammation,” Martinez-Marmol explained.

“But we have shown a third possible outcome, which is neuronal fusion.”

Martinez-Marmol described that various viruses cause cell fusion in different tissues, yet in addition contaminate the sensory system and could be causing a similar issue there. “These viruses include HIV, rabies, Japanese encephalitis, measles, herpes simplex virus and Zika virus,” he said.

“Our research reveals a new mechanism for the neurological events that happen during a viral infection. This is potentially a major cause of neurological diseases and clinical symptoms that is still unexplored.”


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