Blood cell size and hardness may change in COVID-19 patients

Scientists from the Max Planck Center for Physics and Medicine and the German Center for Immunotherapy studied blood samples 55

people - 17 patients with different infectionsseverity, 14 recovered from COVID-19 and 24 healthy people. During the study, they studied more than 4 million blood cells from patients and compared them with those of healthy people.

We found significant changes in lymphocyte stiffness, monocyte size, neutrophil size and deformability, as well as heterogeneity in red blood cell change and size.

Research text

As a result, it turned out that patients withwith coronavirus or those who had already been ill, the lymphocytes were much softer than those of healthy participants in the experiment. Therefore, they, in particular, deformed more easily. Other blood cells - monocytes - in the first group increased in volume.

These changes, the authors note, can impede blood circulation and contribute to hypoxemia - a low oxygen content in the blood.

The authors suggest that such changes can reveal coronavirus infection, for example, in a latent form.

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