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Should people who recovered from Covid get vaccinated?

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Public health officials hope to vaccinate as many people as possible to turn the tide of the coronavirus pandemic once a vaccine becomes available — even those who have already recovered from Covid-19.And while it isn’t yet known how the immune systems of Covid-19 survivors respond to a vaccine — particularly among coronavirus “long-haulers,” whose symptoms linger weeks and months after their diagnoses — there is likely to be little risk in getting the shot.”The general recommendation is to get the vaccine, even if you were previously infected,” said Dr. David Thomas, a professor of medicine and director of the infectious diseases division at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. “There are some nuanced questions that we don’t have the answer to yet, but from what we know now, it’s the right call to get the vaccine.”Covid-19 reinfections are thought to be rare, but if natural antibody levels wane over time, it may be possible for a person to become infected more than once. Doctors and infectious disease experts agree that most people should get vaccinated, even if they may have natural protective immunity. In most survivors, a vaccine might even enhance immunity from the initial infections.It’s a …

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Santa’s ‘innate immunity’ to COVID-19 means Christmas flight remains on schedule, Fauci says

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“I hear the ventilation in Santa’s workshop is not the best, and opening windows in North Pole winters problematic. The good news is that mask compliance there is pretty good, and the elves are committed to social distancing,” Hotez, the dean of the National School of Tropical Medicine at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, told the outlet.

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COVID immunity could last up to six months, per study

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Researchers tested 376 people who had survived COVID-19, and 97% of patients with light symptoms still had antibodies after six months. That number rose all the way up to 100% for people who had severe or medium symptoms.

This follows a study out of the Imperial College of London, which tracked over 365,000 people from June to September, and of that group, only 6% had developed an antibody.

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Kids’ immunity and blood vessel strength help protect them from severe cases of COVID-19

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Photo (c) simon2579 – Getty ImagesA new study conducted by researchers from the Murdoch Children’s Research Institute identified two key factors that have been linked with protecting kids from severe cases of COVID-19: differences in immunity and blood vessel make-up. Though childhood cases of COVID-19 have been on the rise, those cases haven’t been as severe as those in older consumers — even for kids who are immunosuppressed and are prone to severe infections. According to the researchers, this is because kids have certain benefits working in their favor. “Children have a stronger innate immune response, which is the first-line defense against COVID-19,” said researcher Dr. Petra Zimmerman. “Another important factor is ‘trained immunity’ which primes innate immune cells after mild infections and vaccinations, leading to a type of ‘innate immune memory,’” she added. “Children infected with COVID-19 often have co-infections with other viruses. Recurrent viral infections could lead to improved trained immunity, making kids more effective at clearing COVID-19.” The biological differences between kids and adultsThe researchers analyzed a great deal of COVID-19 literature to better understand why older adults are much more likely to experience the most severe cases of the virus. The researchers learned that …

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No, the vaccine will not give you COVID-19

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There are a lot of myths floating around about the COVID-19 vaccine, but Todd Brown, a registered pharmacist and clinical instructor in the department of pharmacy and health systems sciences at Northeastern, can disprove at least one of them: The vaccine, he says, will not give you COVID-19. 
The two COVID-19 vaccines that are expected to be approved for emergency use authorization later this month do not use any part of the SARS-CoV-2 virus to create immunity, making it impossible for the vaccine alone to give someone COVID-19, Brown explains.   
Both of these vaccines, which are being produced by pharmaceutical companies Pfizer and Moderna, are mRNA vaccines. They create immunity by enabling cells to produce proteins that mimic parts of the SARS-CoV-2 molecule, triggering the immune response without introducing the virus. 
In fact, it would be impossible for most vaccines to give you the diseases they are intended to prevent, Brown explains.
Todd Brown, a registered pharmacist and clinical instructor in the department of pharmacy and health systems sciences at Northeastern, explains the side effects of the COVID-19 vaccine. Photo by Ruby Wallau/Northeastern University
Most vaccines create immunity when either an inactive version of the pathogen or isolated components …

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Gut bacteria can help rebuild the immune system

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For the first time, researchers have demonstrated how the gut microbiome — the community of microorganisms living in the gut — can influence the immune system in humans. Their work could lead to new treatments for immune-related conditions.The researchers at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in New York, NY, tracked the recovery of patients’ gut microbiota and immune system after bone marrow transplants (BMTs) following treatment for blood cancers. Healthcare professionals use chemotherapy and radiation therapy to destroy cancerous blood cells in conditions such as leukemia and lymphoma. After completion of the treatment, which also kills healthy immune cells, specialists inject patients with stem cells from a donor’s blood or bone marrow. These donated cells slowly restore patients’ ability to make their own blood cells.However, patients have to take antibiotics in the first few weeks after the transplant because they are still vulnerable to infections. These upset the balance of their gut microbiota, killing “friendly bacteria” and allowing dangerous strains to thrive.Once patients’ immune systems are strong enough, they can stop taking the antibiotics, which allows their gut microbiota to recover. The researchers at Sloan Kettering used this unique opportunity to study how the microbiota affects the immune …

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Viral nucleoprotein antibodies activate TRIM21 and induce T cell immunity

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This article was originally published here
EMBO J. 2020 Dec 1:e106228. doi: 10.15252/embj.2020106228. Online ahead of print.

ABSTRACT
Nucleoprotein (N) is an immunodominant antigen in many enveloped virus infections. While the diagnostic value of anti-N antibodies is clear, their role in immunity is not. This is because while they are non-neutralising, they somehow clear infection by coronavirus, influenza and LCMV in vivo. Here, we show that anti-N immune protection is mediated by the cytosolic Fc receptor and E3 ubiquitin ligase TRIM21. Exploiting LCMV as a model system, we demonstrate that TRIM21 uses anti-N antibodies to target N for cytosolic degradation and generate cytotoxic T cells (CTLs) against N peptide. These CTLs rapidly eliminate N-peptide-displaying cells and drive efficient viral clearance. These results reveal a new mechanism of immune synergy between antibodies and T cells and highlights N as an important vaccine target.
PMID:33258165 | DOI:10.15252/embj.2020106228

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Fact check: Sweden has not achieved herd immunity, is not proof that lockdowns are useless

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By Reuters Staff12 Min ReadWith hundreds of thousands of views and over 3,000 shares on Facebook, a video produced by the conservative U.S. nonprofit PragerU claims that “Sweden is the proof that lockdowns are useless” in stemming the spread of COVID-19 and that its population likely has “herd immunity” due to the lack of nationwide shutdowns. These claims are false.Reuters Fact Check. REUTERSThe video in question, which shows the organization’s founder Dennis Prager sitting on a chair by a fireplace with the headline “’Follow the Science’ Is a LIE” can be seen here and here .The following fact check explores the current state of COVID-19 infections and deaths in Sweden, the country’s response to the pandemic over the past several months, and the number of additional infections needed to possibly reach herd immunity.CURRENT COVID-19 SITUATION IN SWEDENWith the highest daily average reported on Nov. 12, COVID-19 infections in Sweden are currently at 99% of the peak, with an average of 4,625 new infections reported each day. At the time of this article’s publication, there have been 257,934 infections and 6,891 confirmed coronavirus-related deaths reported in the country since the pandemic began (here). The Scandinavian county had 10,352,390 inhabitants as of mid-2020 ( …

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We have a vaccine, so when will I become immune? | ITV News

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While there is reason to cheer the much-needed arrival of a vaccine approved for use, we are still months away from something resembling normal life returning. That’s because Wednesday’s welcome news does not mean the UK population can simply visit their GP for a jab and be immune in time for the weekend. Pfizer’s vaccine requires two doses for each person, taken 21 days apart, which means that we will all need a modicum of patience even when we finally get the jab. Moreover, the UK has ordered 40 million doses – so only around a third of the population will be immunised from Covid-19 with this particular vaccine as it stands. But the vaccine is highly effective and will safely protect millions in the UK from the pandemic. Here’s why the vaccine needs a bit of time to give you full immunity from the virus. Who gets it first? The first issue to consider is that the vaccine will be rolled out in a targeted way, prioritising those most in need before gradually spreading to other groups. The Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) has examined data on who suffers the worst outcomes from coronavirus and who …

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