‘Female genetic superiority’? How two X chromosomes give women an edge against coronavirus

shutterstock x @ x
Credit: Shutterstock

It was noticeable from the initial outbreak in Wuhan that Covid-19 was killing more men than women. By February, data from China, which involved 44,672 confirmed cases of the respiratory disease, revealed the death rate for men was 2.8%, compared to 1.7% among women.

If women are mounting a more effective immune response to Covid-19, it could be because many of the genes that regulate the immune system are encoded on the X chromosome. Everybody gets one X chromosome at conception from their mother. However, sex is determined …. by the chromosome received from their father: females get an additional X, whereas males do not …. According to The Better Half by American physician Sharon Moalem, having this second X chromosome gives women an immunological advantage. Every cell in a woman’s body has twice the number of X chromosomes as a man’s, and so twice the number of genes that can be called upon to regulate her immune response, he says. Only one of the X chromosomes in each cell will be active at any time, but having that diversity of options gives women a better immunological toolbox to fight infections.

Related article:  27 truths and myths about COVID-19, from Christian healing to Bill Gates conspiracy theories

Moalem describes the possession of XX chromosomes as “female genetic superiority”.


Read the original post

Outbreak Daily Digest
Biotech Facts & Fallacies
GLP Podcasts
Infographic: Here’s where GM crops are grown around the world today

Infographic: Here’s where GM crops are grown around the world today

Do you know where biotech crops are grown in the world? This updated ISAAA infographics show where biotech crops were ...
News on human & agricultural genetics and biotechnology delivered to your inbox.
glp menu logo outlined

Newsletter Subscription

* indicates required
Email Lists
Send this to a friend