People With COVID-19 Antibodies Are Protected for at Least 6 Months

Modesto Morganelli
Novembre 21, 2020

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.

To date, studies have found that antibodies against the new coronavirus offer varying levels of immunity from infection.

Dr Katie Jeffery, director of infection prevention and control for Oxford University Hospitals said: "This is an exciting finding, indicating that infection with the virus provides at least short-term protection from reinfection - this news comes in the same month as other encouraging news about Covid-19 vaccines".

It monitored more than 12,000 healthcare workers employed at OUH and found that the chance of infection was hugely reduced in staff who had previously contracted Covid-19. This also means that repeated vaccinations will not be necessary and that the human body will produce enough immune cells to protect it from the deadly virus.

Study co-author, Dr Christoph Neumann-Haefelin, Head of the Gerok Liver Center at University Hospital Freiburg, also expressed optimism about their results, suggesting that immunity against the new coronavirus can be achieved after an infection, and that, "similarly, vaccines now being tested in trials could provide significant protection against SARS-CoV-2".

The three healthcare workers with antibodies who tested positive for the virus were all well and did not develop symptoms of COVID-19 again.

In addition, 76 staff members without antibodies tested positive for COVID-19, but did not have outward symptoms of the disease, while three of those with antibodies remained asymptomatic, according to the researchers.

The scientists said that understanding immune memory to SARS-CoV-2 is critical for improving diagnostics and vaccines, and for assessing the likely future course of the pandemic. More than 1.2 million people have died in less than a year, from COVID-19 - which is caused by the SARS-CoV-2 virus - and millions more are becoming infected.

The staff tested were followed for up to 30 weeks.

But newer recent research on T-cells was more optimistic, suggesting a response could last for much longer.

An Indian-American doctor and scientist has discovered a potential strategy to prevent life-threatening inflammation, lung damage and organ failure in patients diagnosed with COVID-19.

Children usually develop the disease mildly, but the exceptions (severe covid-19 conditions that lead to death) exist.

"We are therefore confident that the majority of people who have survived SARS-CoV-2 infection have some protection against reinfection with SARS-CoV-2", he added.

But Dr Rupert Beale at the Francis Crick Institute pointed out that this equated to "only a very small proportion of adults (less than 10%, maybe much less than 10%)" who would be protected by pre-existing T cell immunity.

Scientists said the results indicated most people are unlikely to get COVID-19 again if they have already had it in the previous six months.

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