The Telegraph understands that analysis of 15,100 hospital patients across the United Kingdom has identified how carrying excess weight increases the likelihood of serious complications developing from Covid-19.
Scientists at three universities analyzed data from Covid-19 patients to establish the most comprehensive profile of how the virus exploits age, gender and underlying health conditions.
The study, based on statistics and samples from 177 UK hospitals, was analyzed by scientists from the universities of Edinburgh and Liverpool and Imperial College London, and then compared to studies in China, where the coronavirus appeared for the first time.
Researchers were struck by the fact that overweight appears to be more of a factor in hospital admission in Britain, compared to China, where fewer people are obese.
The study was chaired by Professor Kenny Baillie of the University of Edinburgh, Professor Calum Semple of the University of Liverpool and Professor Peter Openshaw of Imperial College London.