Science From the Front-lines Gender Disparity in COVID 19 Cases

Join C2ST for our 5th Science from the Front-lines program and learn how the severity and manifestation of COVID-19 symptoms are impacted by gender!

Gender differences in COVID-19 disease severity have been described in multiple countries, with reports indicating that men often experience more severe disease and greater mortality. Dr. Kovats will summarize available information about the observed gender differences in COVID-19 severity and outline possible social and biological explanations for this gender disparity. One hypothesis is that men and women differ in aspects of the immune response to SARS-CoV-2 infection. After a brief primer on the innate and adaptive arms of the immune system, Dr. Kovats will review the evidence for sex differences in immune function in humans and animal models and describe how androgens and estrogens modulate immunity. She will explain how COVID-19 patient blood samples might be used to understand the gender differences in immune responses at the molecular and cellular level.