IIT Madras and Jadavpur University are conducting research to gain insight into the spread of covid-19.

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The study conducted by IITM, Jadavpur University and Northwestern University aimed to illustrate the entry of viruses into the lungs and the development of severe illnesses, as well as ways to prevent such transmission. Mathematical models and simulations were utilized to examine how COVID-19 travels from the nose and throat to the lower respiratory tract and how viruses that infect the mucous membrane of the respiratory system spread as droplets into the lungs and lead to severe illnesses.

IIT Madras’s alumni and corporate relations dean, Mahesh Pachagnula, Jadavpur University’s department of nuclear studies and application’s Aranyak Chakravarty and Northwestern University’s mechanical engineering professor, Neelesh A Patankar, collaborated on a research study whose results were published in an open-source journal, Frontiers in Physiology.

The research concluded that taking medication to stop sneezing and coughing can stop mucous droplets from getting into the nose and throat and being transmitted into the lungs. Additionally, it was found that immunization can help ward off developing pneumonia and other serious lung illnesses.

Mahesh Panchagnula further explored this investigation, stating: “We probed the aforementioned hypothesis by using mathematical calculations to simulate droplets making their way from the nose and throat to the lower respiratory tract. Our model showed that pneumonia and other lung issues can develop 2.5 to 7 days after the onset of COVID-19 symptoms. This is due to the contaminated mucus droplets being carried from the nose and throat to the lungs.”

Expanding on his statement, Aranyak Chakravarty said that their research revealed a significant conclusion: not only is airborne transmission of infected mucous droplets a major factor, but the severity of the infection is also heavily dependent on the immune system of the infected individual.

Neelesh Patankar emphasizes the significance of immunization in avoiding severe infection. Vaccines promote the formation of B-lymphocytes and T-lymphocytes (or memory cells). T− lymphocytes stop the spread of the virus, while B lymphocytes create antibodies that eliminate the virus.

Mayank Tewari

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