Immunity to Covid-19 in recovered patients may only last a few months, say German researchers, suggesting that coronavirus antibodies may not remain in the body for long.
According to The Brussels Times, the new results reduce hope for a vaccine or collective immunity.
The study showed that patients at a clinic in Munich showed a significant drop in the number of so-called neutralising antibodies in the body.
“In four of our nine patients, we found a drop in neutralising antibodies in a special test that can only be carried out in a high-security laboratory,” Clemens Wendtner of the hospital’s infectious diseases department was quoted as saying by brusselstimes.com.
“The impact on long-term immunity and vaccination strategies remains speculative but this needs to be monitored,” he added. The findings suggested that recovered patients could become re-infected with coronavirus, although further tests have yet to confirm this.
According to the study, the body’s immune response consists of B cells, which secrete antibodies, and T cells, which are capable of recognising and killing previously detected antigens. Both are necessary for long-term immunity. Wendtner’s findings are consistent with other studies around the world, the media report said.
Last month, another study published in the journal Nature Medicine revealed that people who develop coronavirus-fighting antibodies might not keep them very long, especially if they didn’t have symptoms.
A Spanish study published this month in the journal The Lancet found that only 5 per cent of the population in Spain has developed antibodies, nowhere near the levels needed to achieve ‘herd immunity’.
(This story has been published from a wire agency feed without modifications to the text. Only the headline has been changed.)
As you are no doubt aware, Swarajya is a media product that is directly dependent on support from its readers in the form of subscriptions. We do not have the muscle and backing of a large media conglomerate nor are we playing for the large advertisement sweep-stake.
Our business model is you and your subscription. And in challenging times like these, we need your support now more than ever.
We deliver over 10 - 15 high quality articles with expert insights and views. From 7AM in the morning to 10PM late night we operate to ensure you, the reader, get to see what is just right.
Becoming a Patron or a subscriber for as little as Rs 1200/year is the best way you can support our efforts.