People with type O blood may be less likely to contract COVID-19 or suffer severe symptoms related to the illness, according to two studies published Wednesday.
In the first, Danish researchers analyzed a sample of 7,422 people who tested positive for the virus and found that only 38 percent had type O blood, according to research published in the journal Blood Advances.
Meanwhile, 44 percent of people with type A blood had contracted the deadly bug.
In the second study, published in the same journal, Canadian researchers found that critically ill COVID-19 patients with blood types O or B had a median intensive care unit stay of 9 days. By contrast, people with A or AB blood stayed 13.5 days.
The researchers also found that 61 percent of critically ill patients with O or B blood types had to be hooked up to ventilators — significantly less than the 84 percent of people with A or AB blood types who needed the breathing machines.
The reason could be that people with type O blood generally have less clotting problems, which are linked to the severity of COVID-19, Mypinder Sekhon, a physician who authored the Canadian study, told CNN.
But researchers say more research is needed.
“I don’t think [the findings] supersede other risk factors of severity like age and co-morbidities and so forth,” said Sekhon.
“If one is blood group A, you don’t need to start panicking. And if you’re blood group O, you’re not free to go to the pubs and bars.”