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Centenarians born before 1919 are resistant to COVID-19

  • Authors: Caruso, Calogero; Accardi, Giulia; Aiello, Anna; Calabrò, Anna; Ligotti, Mattia Emanuela; Candore, Giuseppina
  • Publication year: 2022
  • Type: Articolo in rivista
  • OA Link:


Although mortality from COVID-19 progressively increases with age, there are controversial data in the literature on the probability of centenarians dying from COVID-19. Moreover, it has been claimed that men in their 90s and 100s are more resilient than women. To gain insight into this matter, we analysed, according to gender, mortality data during the first year of pandemic of Sicilian nonagenarians and centenarians. We used mortality data from the 2019 as a control. The crude excess mortality between the two years was calculated. Data on deaths of Sicilian 90 + years show that, in line with what is known about the different response to infections between the two genders, oldest females are more resilient to COVID-19 than males. Moreover, centenarians born before 1919, but not "younger centenarians", are resilient to COVID-19. This latter datum should be related to the 1918 Spanish flu epidemic, although the mechanisms involved are not clear.