Alliance for Pandemic Preparedness

June 18, 2020

Genomewide Association Study of Severe Covid-19 with Respiratory Failure



  • A genomewide association study involving COVID-19 patients (n=1,980) at 7 hospitals in Europe identified two separate loci associated with genetic susceptibility to severe COVID-19 disease 
  • One locus on chromosome 3 spans genes 6 genes (SLC6A20, LZTFL1, CCR9, FYCO1, CXCR6 and XCR1), several of which have functions that are potentially relevant to Covid-19 
  • A second locus on chromosome 9 coincides with the ABO blood group locus. These genetic results show blood group O is associated with a lower risk of acquiring COVID-19, whereas blood group A is associated with a higher risk of severe COVID-19. These findings are consistent with previous non-genetic studies that have found an association between blood group A and severe COVID-19. 

Ellinghaus et al. (June 17, 2020). Genomewide Association Study of Severe Covid-19 with Respiratory Failure. New England Journal of Medicine.