Study by Indian-origin researchers says Covid-19 antibodies may last at least 5-7 months

Prashasti Awasthi Mumbai | Updated on October 15, 2020 Published on October 15, 2020

‘This research has armed us with the knowledge that lasting immunity is a reality’

A team of researchers led by an Indian-origin scientist has concluded that coronavirus antibodies may last for at least five months.

For the study, the researchers collected around 6,000 samples of Covid-19 positive people. The study was published in the journal Immunity.

Deepta Bhattacharya, associate professor at the University of Arizona, said in a statement: “We clearly see high-quality antibodies still being produced five to seven months after SARS-CoV-2 infection.”

He added: “Many concerns have been expressed about immunity against Covid-19 not lasting. We used this study to investigate that question and found immunity is stable for at least five months.”

Also read: Scientists develop a new method to test for virus and antibodies using holographic images: Study

The research was conducted with Professor Janko Nikolich-Zugich.

The experts noted in their findings that when a virus first infects cells, the immune system deploys short-lived plasma cells that produce antibodies to immediately fight the virus. Those antibodies appear in blood tests within 14 days of infection.

The second stage of the immune response is the creation of long-lived plasma cells, which produce high-quality antibodies that provide lasting immunity.

Bhattacharya and Nikolich-Zugich tracked antibody levels over several months in people who tested positive for SARS-CoV-2 antibodies.

The researchers found the prevalence of SARS-CoV-2 antibodies in blood tests at viable levels for at least five to seven months. They also believe immunity lasts much longer.

Also read: Study finds long-lasting antibodies in patients who have recovered from severe Covid-19

Arizona Health Sciences Senior Vice President Michael D Dake said in an official statement: “Whether antibodies provide lasting protection against SARS-CoV-2 has been one of the most difficult questions to answer.”

“This research not only has given us the ability to accurately test for antibodies against Covid-19 but also has armed us with the knowledge that lasting immunity is a reality,” Dake said.

This comes as the researchers and scientists across the world are trying to wrap their minds around the issue of immunity from the coronavirus and the reinfection cases.

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Published on October 15, 2020
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