The Corona pandemic has brought about a global lock down never seen in recent times. Those who are unaware of how fearfully and wonderfully their bodies are made are now full of fear. Many try out any remedy to improve their immunity and somehow protect themselves from this Corona virus.
As a Medical Doctor, I felt it is important to address this issue with facts, that can avoid you inadvertently causing more harm than good. Your body is complex and superbly designed. There are many defense mechanisms constantly at work in your body to protect you from viruses. Medical and Biological sciences are discovering newer ones even as this is being written.
I will give a short summary of the wonderful way in which our defense mechanisms have been designed. Designs always point out to a designer, whom I have had the privilege of knowing personally. I hope that you will understand the love that the Lord God your Designer and Creator has for you. I also hope that none of you would ever think that such sophisticated defense mechanisms just came about by mindless, random accidents of the so-called evolution process, as many would love to believe.
I hope this awareness of the facts will also reduce your fear and anxiety against the Corona virus. This virus does not have eyes, wings, hands, or feet. It is just a piece of RNA code encoded by a fatty membrane. I sincerely hope that your fear will be replaced by faith, trust, and hope.
This does not mean the virus is harmless, and you should not have a false sense of confidence in your own ability to withstand this virus. What I mean by is faith, trust and hope in the God who made you, which I hope will develop or increase as you read this.
I have taken the scientific material mainly from the latest edition of Harrisons Principles of Internal Medicine, known globally as the Bible of Internal Medicine. which every student of modern medicine will know.
The way in which God has designed our bodies, our immune systems, are to be seen to be believed. The details mentioned below are technical, but I am sure you will learn to trust in God and cultivate a heart of gratitude to our Lord, which will make your immune systems in turn work optimally. Science has confirmed that fear and anxiety damage the potential of your immune system to work to its full capability 1, and I believe that peace, love, and forgiveness are keys to healing.
Here are some of the amazing ways known so far to Science of how our defense mechanisms help us to fight viral infections.
HUMAN BODY’S RESISTANCE TO VIRAL INFECTIONS
Physical defense mechanisms: Resistance to viral infections is initially provided by physical factors that are not virus specific. Physical protection is afforded by the many layers of the skin and by mucous secretions that continuously sweep over mucosal surfaces. So, it is important to maintain the integrity of these surfaces by drinking enough water.
Blood borne defenses: Blood actively maintains life by providing a vital function for all cells, tissues, and organs, and thus the life of the whole body 2. So says Leviticus 17:11. Science is discovering the astonishing variety of defense and offense mechanisms present in our blood. Our Immune systems are indeed very cleverly designed.
Here are the main ones.
Cytokines: As soon as the first cell is infected, cytokines are induced. These are substances, such as interferon IFN, interleukin, and growth factors, which are secreted by certain cells of the immune system and confer resistance to RNA virus replication.
Viral infection may also trigger the release of other cytokines from infected cells. These cytokines attract inflammatory and immune cells.
The cellular army: Viral protein epitopes seen on the human cell surface stimulate the expansion of Killer T lymphocyte populations with receptors that can recognize these virus-encoded peptides presented on the cell surface by MHC class I proteins. These Killer T cells are among an elite warrior group roaming in your body.
A cytotoxic T cell (also known as TC, cytotoxic T lymphocyte, CTL, T-killer cell, cytolytic T cell, CD8+ T-cell or killer T cell) is a T lymphocyte (a type of white blood cell) that kills cancer cells, cells that are infected (particularly with viruses), or cells that are damaged in other ways. Cytokines and antigens released by virus-induced cell death further attract inflammatory cells, dendritic cells, granulocytes, natural killer (NK) cells, and B lymphocytes to sites of infection and to draining lymph nodes. IFNs and NK cells are particularly important in containing viral infection for the first several days. Special White blood cells called Granulocytes and macrophages are also important in the phagocytosis [eating up] and degradation of viruses, especially after an initial antibody response.
By 7–10 days after infection, virus-specific antibody responses, virus-specific human leukocyte antigen (HLA) class II–restricted CD4+ helper T lymphocyte responses, and virus-specific HLA class I–restricted CD8+ cytotoxic T lymphocyte responses develop. These responses, whose magnitude typically increases over the second and third weeks of infection, are important for rapid recovery.
Antibodies and Complement: In the initial days, a powerful Immunoglobulin M IgM antibody is secreted glandular-associated B cells. The process is almost magical. Following viral antigen stimulation, IgM-producing plasma cells migrate from the lymph node to bone marrow, where they become long-lived plasma cells. A 5- to 10-day lag time occurs before IgM antibodies appear in blood, and peak IgM levels occur at 21 days. Between the second and third weeks after the first infection other even more powerful IgG or IgA antibodies can then be detected at infected mucosal surfaces. Antibody may directly neutralize virus by binding to its surface and preventing cell attachment or penetration. Complement can significantly enhance antibody-mediated virus neutralization.
Antibody and complement can also dissolve virus-infected cells that display viral membrane proteins on the cell surface.
Cells infected with a replicating enveloped virus usually show the virus-envelope glycoproteins on the cell plasma membrane. Specific antibodies can bind to the glycoproteins, fix complement, and lyse the infected cell.
Surveillance to prevent recurrence: Once our Immune system is activated, it never forgets! Antibody and CD4+/CD8+ T lymphocyte [white blood cells] responses to viral infection can remain at high levels for several months after primary infection but usually wane over time.
Low-level persistence of antibody-producing B lymphocytes and CD4+ or CD8+ T lymphocyte responses as memory cells can provide a rapid response to a second infection or an early barrier to reinfection with the same virus.
God has given you an entire army with diverse defense and offense mechanisms that protect you.. You can choose to fear a virus, or you can choose to trust God.
It is your choice always, for God has also given you free will. By faith we understand that the universe has been created by a word from God so that the visible came into existence from the invisible.
Gratitude to God is an attitude that can also work wonders for your immune system. Peace and joy and other such emotions are the result of knowing this truth, which sets us all free.
Make sure that you follow the guidelines issued by the local health authorities. I wish that you and your family stay safe, healthy, and happy.