A recent study in the New England Journal of Medicine made a genome wide association analysis of 1980 patients with varying severities of COVID-19 to identify genetic factors associated with disease. The authors detected cross-replicating associations with rs11385942 at locus 3p21.31 and with rs657152 at locus 9q34.2 (P<5×10−8). Locus 3p21.3 spans the genes SLC6A20, LZTFL1, CCR9, FYCO1, CXCR6 and XCR1 and locus 9q34.2 coincided with the ABO blood group locus; showing that blood group A was 1.45 times associated with severe COVID-19 and blood group O was almost half as likely to be associated. The authors conclude: “Our genetic data confirm that blood group O is associated with a risk of acquiring Covid-19 that was lower than that in non-O blood groups, whereas blood group A was associated with a higher risk than non-A blood groups”. The authors also found that there was no association between HLA alleles and Covid-19 severity.
Journal Article: Ellinghaus et al., 2020. Genomewide Association Study of Severe Covid-19 with Respiratory Failure. NEJM
Also Read: Could blood groups influence COVID-19 disease severity? by Kenneth Omollo.