COVID-19 Reinfection Unlikely For 6 Months, Says Study

Modesto Morganelli
Novembre 20, 2020

The research indicates patients had the highest levels of virus early on in their illness and "live" virus, capable of replicating, was found up to nine days after symptoms began.

The researchers assessed how much SARS-CoV-2 was detected between the mouth and the lungs at various time intervals.

They observed that the number of viral RNA particles (fragments of genetic material from the virus) in people's throat samples reached its zenith within five days.

In SARS and MERS, viral loads peaked several days later than COVID-19, sometimes up to two weeks after the onset of symptoms.

'It provides a clear explanation for why Sars-CoV-2 spreads more efficiently than Sars-CoV and Mers-CoV and is so much more hard to contain. What if we don't find a vaccine for Covid-19?

Scientists had feared that those who developed only mild infections would be unlikely to have a strong immune response, but nearly all developed cells capable of creating new antibodies if they encountered the virus again.

The patients varied in age from 19 to 81 years old.

Eighty-four delirious patients died in hospital, and scientists say delirium increases the risk of death by 24 per cent and likelihood of ICU admission by 67 per cent.

United Kingdom scientists say their study emphasises early isolation is critical to stopping spread.

'We also need to raise public awareness about the range of symptoms linked with the disease, including mild symptoms that may occur earlier on in the course of the infection than those that are more prominent like cough or fever'.

One of the report's authors, Professor David Eyre of the University of Oxford's Nuffield Department of Population Health, said: "This ongoing study involving a large cohort of healthcare workers has shown that being infected with COVID-19 does offer protection against re-infection for most people for at least six months - we found no new symptomatic infections in any of the participants who had tested positive for antibodies, while 89 of those who had tested negative did contract the virus. By the time some people get the results of swabs, they may be past their most infectious phase".

A study conducted in the United Kingdom found that an antibody response in the 96 infected individuals who were part of the study depended on the severity of the disease.

The limitation of the study is that it did not look at asymptomatic people.

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