Proteins that human immune cells release to control viral infections.
Scientists are currently studying the role of interferons at the various stages of SARS-CoV-2 infection, to find ways in which synthetic interferons can be used to treat people with COVID-19.
Interferons are all part of the cytokine class of proteins. They help fight viral infections by strengthening cells to block the spread of viral particles to other cells. Interferons also regulate our immune response to keep it at an optimal level. They prevent the immune system from attacking our cells that have viruses in them, which could cause over-inflammation and tissue destruction. Interferons also spur adaptive immunity through T-cells and B-cells to fight the virus and remember it, so that they are equipped to fight off a subsequent attack.
Immune System Infectious Disease