Tokyo, December 27: According to a study conducted by Japanese researchers, patients who have suffered from COVID-19 might face an increased risk of heart failure due to persistent viral infection in their hearts, even in the absence of apparent heart disease. The team including researchers from Riken, Japan’s largest scientific institute claimed, the world could be heading towards a pandemic of heart failure triggered by the repercussions of the coronavirus infections. The new report was published by the team of researchers on Saturday, December 23.

An experiment was conducted where the research team first created heart tissue using induced pluripotent stem (iPS) cells. When a large amount of virus was infused inside the tissue, it led to a decline in cardiac function that did not recuperate. When only 10% of the previous viral load affected the tissue, a particular level of cardiac function remained, but the infection persisted for four weeks. According to researchers, it’s possible that some patients won’t develop heart failure even if the infection persists. COVID-19 Variant JN.1 in Delhi: National Capital Reports First Case of New Coronavirus Strain.

Coronavirus infection occurs when a protruding spike protein on the surface of the virus latches onto the ACE2 receptors present on human cell surfaces. The report states, the ACE2 receptor that the coronavirus latches to is very common in the heart than in other organs. Some Covid patients have been reported to experience less cardiac function, but the specific details of this mechanism remains unknown at present. COVID-19 Variant JN.1: India Sees Single-Day Rise of 529 Coronavirus Cases.

 Though the exact reason behind this phenomenon is unclear. The report stresses on the need for countermeasures and claims the scenario may have changed due to Covid-19 pandemic as the number of individuals vulnerable to future heart failure due to the lasting presence of SARS-CoV-2 infection is projected to grow exponentially.

(The above story first appeared on LatestLY on Dec 27, 2023 09:37 PM IST. For more news and updates on politics, world, sports, entertainment and lifestyle, log on to our website