SARS-CoV-2 immunity can last over six months, study finds

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At present, over 56.56 million people worldwide have been infected with severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), the pathogen that causes coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), which has led to over 1.35 million deaths.

On the other hand, over 39.35 million people have recovered from the infection. The question currently baffling researchers is the longevity or duration of immunity against reinfection among those recovered.





US-based scientists – from the La Jolla Institute for Immunology, University of California, San Diego and Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai – have released a study on preprint server bioRxiv*, titled “Immunological memory to SARS-CoV-2 assessed for greater than six months after infection,” contributing to the enormous research effort currently underway in this area.

Background

As the researchers note, to understand the efficacy of vaccines currently in development, it is important to know the longevity of immunological memory against SARS-CoV-2. This would also help develop better diagnostic methods for the infection, they added.

Overall, the future course of the pandemic could be more accurately predicted if the individual immune reaction to SARS-CoV-2 infection can be quantified and its longevity defined.

Antibodies

The viral infection is known to release SARS-CoV-2-specific antibodies and stimulate the CD4+ T cells and CD8+ T cells. …

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