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Why is 63% Bangladeshis living in Britain severely exposed to coronavirus infection? Here’s the reason

Two researchers, who studied genetic code of Neanderthal origins to trace the nature and vulnerability of Covid-19, have come to the conclusion that individuals of Bangladeshi origin living in Britain are twice as likely to die from Covid-19 as the general population

Svante Paabo, director of the department of genetics, and Hugo Zeberg, also from Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology, have extensively studied to look for a link with COVID-19.

The research paper published by them tries to explain why individuals of Bangladeshi descent living in Britain are more vulnerable to pandemic infection.

The researchers concluded that a potentially dangerous string of Neanderthal DNA is not evenly distributed among humans across the world.

They said some 16 percent of Europeans carry it.

Sixty-three per cent population from Bangladesh, the highest among South Asian countries, is found to have been carrying the type, also dominant among half the population across South Asia.

Paabo said people infected with the new coronavirus, for example, who carry the genetic coding bestowed by our early human cousins are three times more likely to require mechanical ventilation.

In the study, both tried to delve deep into reasons why some people with Covid-19 land in intensive care while other show up only light symptoms or no symptoms

Alongside, age and co-morbidities, certain genetic factors can make people susceptible to pandemic infection.

“Our study revealed that the genetic heritage from Neanderthals influence the outcome during the Covid-19. Certain factors determine the outcome in an alarming level,” said Svante Paabo.

He said the study has found that a Neanderthal individual from southern Europe carried an almost identical genetic segment spanning some 50,000 so-called base pairs.

The research suggests that humans in modern world and Neanderthals could have inherited the gene fragment from a common ancestor some half-million years ago.

According to both researchers, through most recent interbreeding, modern humans probably have entered the homo sapiens gene pool.

But there is exception for people of East Asia and Africa, where the gene variant is virtually absent.

Also read: “Death penalty for rapists not the solution”: Bangladesh demonstrators want system change”

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