Circadian Rhythm and COVID Test


ORLANDO, Fla. (Ivanhoe Newswire) — There has been talks of a twindemic with both flu and COVID hitting during the winter months. And with the flu season in full swing, getting accurate COVID test results is crucial. But new research shows the time of day you take your COVID test may play a factor in your results. Ivanhoe has the details.

Most of us have experienced this once, twice, or even multiple times over the course of the COVID-19 pandemic. Accurate test results allow us to know what safety precautions to take when out in public. But…

“We may be getting a lot of false negative results,” explained Ben Stobbe, RN, MBA, Assistant Vice Chancellor for EXCEL Clinical Stimulation.

According to research by Vanderbilt University, the time of day you take your COVID test may play a role in how accurate your test results are. The researchers found COVID test results were up to two times as likely to have an accurate positive test result if they tested in the middle of the day compared to night. That’s because COVID-19 virus shedding, or when infected cells release infectious virus particles into the blood and mucus, appear to be more active in the middle of the day due to the body’s natural circadian rhythm. Their research found that COVID-19 viral loads tend to be lower after 8:00 pm, so a COVID test after that time can lead to inaccurate results, which can have negative consequences.

“A false negative out in the community could allow somebody to go out and be a little bit more free,” continued Stobbe.

And not take the proper precautions to keep COVID from spreading.

COVID-19 is not the only virus to be affected by a host’s circadian rhythm. Past research has found other viruses and bacterial infections, such as malaria, zika, and even hepatitis c, can be greatly impacted by your body’s internal clock.

Contributors to this news report include: Milvionne Chery, Producer; and Roque Correa, Editor.


REPORT #2922

BACKGROUND: Influenza (flu) and COVID-19 are both contagious respiratory illnesses, but they are caused by different viruses. COVID-19 is caused by infection with a coronavirus, and flu is caused by infection with influenza viruses. COVID-19 seems to spread more easily than flu. Compared to flu, COVID-19 can cause more serious illnesses in some people, take longer before symptoms show, and people can be contagious for longer. Because some of the symptoms of flu, COVID-19, and other respiratory illnesses are similar, the difference between them cannot be made based on symptoms alone. Therefore, testing is recommended to tell what the illness is and to confirm a diagnosis.


CIRCADIAN RHYTHM AND COVID: Scientists at the Aix-Marseille University in France have analyzed the implications of circadian rhythms (CR) in the infection of SARS-CoV-2, which is the virus responsible for COVID-19. The study, published in Microbial Pathogenesis, showed that the time of day of infection could impact the severity of the viral infection and the host immune response. Researchers examined circadian oscillations of resting monocytes. During the 24-hour cycle, total ribonucleic acid (RNA) was extracted every three hours, with the expression of BMAL1 and CLOCK genes studied in unstimulated monocytes. The findings suggested that SARS-CoV-2 likely manipulates the CR for its own gain. Therefore, CR represents a potential therapeutic target for healthcare providers in managing the progression of COVID-19.


NEW STUDY FOR REGULATING INTERNAL CLOCK: Glucocorticoid (GC) is a stress hormone released from the adrenal glands, which regulates metabolic processes, immune function and circadian physiology. GC has been used clinically to treat auto-inflammatory diseases such as allergies, arthritis, and asthma. It has also been used to treat against respiratory viral infections including severe acute respiratory syndrome, Middle East respiratory syndrome, and other influenza-associated pneumonia. Recently, a synthetic GC, dexamethasone, has been used to treat critically ill patients with COVID-19, decreasing the death rate by about one-third. In addition to its known immune-suppressive action, dexamethasone is widely used to synchronize the circadian clock in tissue cultures in laboratory conditions, further supporting the theory that clock synchrony may be beneficial in fighting infections. Studies have shown that night-time GC administration is more effective in preventing autoimmune flares by reducing pro-inflammatory cytokines during the night.


* For More Information, Contact:

Vicky Cerino, Public Relations

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