Long-COVID, COVID-19 variants, and the emergence of pulmonary fibrosis in recovered COVID-19 patients

COVID-19 is a virus belonging to the beta-coronavirus class, similar to the virus that causes severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS). It has been reported that fibrosis could begin to be observed several weeks after infection during the SARS epidemic.

In subsequent follow-up studies, more than 20% of SARS survivors at one year later had pulmonary fibrosis, indicating that pulmonary fibrosis is a long-term problem [David S. Hui et al., Chest., 2005; Lixin Xie et al., Respir Res., 2005]. In COVID-19 patients, it was reported that fibrosis symptoms were observed in the analysis using CT [Zheng Ye., European Radiology, 2020], and more data supporting the prevalence of post-COVID-19 is being released as the pandemic continues.


The process of fibrogenisis occurs as in the diagram below.


The progression of fibrogenesis



With pulmonary fibrosis an already underserved patient population, the demand for novel therapies for the lung will only continue increasing, even once the pandemic starts to subside. SMC is supporting this drive for development with our bleomycin-induced pulmonary fibrosis model, with which we have extensive experience.


Although the bleomycin-induced pulmonary fibrosis model is chemically induced, rather than a viral model, there are a number of similarities between this model and COVID-19 that make it a useful platform for research and development in this area.


Want to learn more about this model and how it could be of use to you?


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