Autopsies of those who died with COVID-19 find virus in the brain, multiple organs: study – CTV

Jan. 5, 2023

Autopsy results from 44 people who died with COVID-19 show how the virus spreads through not just the respiratory system, but the entire body, including the brain, persisting for months in some patients.

A description of the results, published in the peer-reviewed journal Nature in December, highlights how far-reaching the burden of infection can be, with viral fragments found in 79 of 85 locations in the body across the 44 patients.

The small study forms “the most comprehensive analysis to date of the cellular tropism, quantification and persistence of SARS-CoV-2 across the human body, including the brain,” according to its authors.

“Our results show that although the highest burden of SARS-CoV-2 is in respiratory tissues, the virus can disseminate throughout the entire body.”

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