Izraelson, M., Metsger, M., Davydov, A.N., Shagina, I.A., Dronina, M.A., Obraztsova, A.S., Miskevich, D.A., Mamedov, I.Z., Volchkova, L.N., Nakonechnaya, T.O., Shugay, M.,…, Shams, I., Britanova, O., Chudakov, D. 2021. Distinct organization of adaptive immunity in the long-lived rodent Spalax galili. Nature Aging, pp.1-11.

Image adopted from: Cellular senescence as a potential mediator of COVID‐19 severity in the elderly Nehme et al. Aging Cell, Sep 2020

While the COVID-19 was spreading in Wuhan, China, and just before it became pandemic our flag-organism, the subterranean Spalax, showed a uniquely restrained inflammatory response during cellular aging- a phenotype which explains its long lifespan and healthy aging (Odeh & Manov 2020). Meanwhile data on covid-19 accumulated, and turns out that it is most deadly to eldery people due to the extensive inflammatory response led by infection-induced cellular senescence of the host cells, and consequently the release of an inflammatory 'cocktail', entering a vicious cycle by inducing more senescent cells and producing more inflammatory factors. Adaptive immunity organization can also underlie healthy aging and longevity. Here, Spalax surprises us one more time with its strategies that were never observed in other organisms: while the diversity and numbers of naive cells decline with age in humans and other mammals, a sustained proliferation of naive T-cells evidenced by the diversity in its T-cell receptor along Spalax life span is observed, providing the means to respond to novel pathogens, and initiate an adequate immune response (Izraelson et al).

Both 'sides of the coin' clearly support healthy aging and, ironically, seem to act as an effective anti Covid-19 machinery