We’ve had some of these stories in the headlines recently, but I wanted to highlight two of them here. It seems that what we all expected would be the case, that is, most people who contract the virus will recover and then maintain long-term immunity against reinfection, it will not work. A Chinese study published in Nature last week suggests that antibodies to the virus may last only a few months.
Antibodies, protective proteins produced in response to an infection, can last only two to three months, especially in people who never showed symptoms while infected.
The conclusion does not necessarily mean that these people can be infected a second time, several experts warned. Even low levels of powerful neutralizing antibodies can be protective, as can T and B cells of the immune system.
But the results offer a strong note of caution against the idea of ”immunity certificates” for people who have recovered from the disease, the authors suggested …
Antibodies to other coronaviruses, including those that cause SARS and MERS, are believed to last about a year. Scientists hoped that the antibodies to the new virus could last at least as long.
Fox News today published a story in which an infectious disease specialist from Columbia University reacts to the Chinese study: