(Image source from: hopkinsmedicine.org)
One of the major concerns that people have been struggling with is with the risks of infection. To get around the situation, two studies conducted found the answer to some of the most enduring questions.
Does a person who has already been infected with Covid-19 develop the infection again?
The two studies which were conducted on monkeys and is the first scientific evidence that shows that the individuals who have survived Covid-19 have low to no risks of reinfection. The scientists have assumed that even when the new antibodies that have been produced in response to the new virus are protective, there is very little information available to back these claims.
The scientists are still unclear how long the immunity lasts.
In one of the conducted studies, the researchers infected nine monkeys with Sars-CoV-2, which is the novel coronavirus that causes Covid-19. After the nine monkeys recovered, the researchers exposed them to the virus again but the animals didn’t get sick.
Dr Dan Barouch, a researcher at the Center for Virology and Vaccine Research at Harvard’s Beth Israel Deaconness Medical Center in Boston further clarified that the findings of the study suggest that the people who have been infected with the virus do develop a natural immunity against the same.
In the second study, Barouch, along with his colleagues conducted the test on 25 monkeys with six prototype of vaccines against Covid-19. This was done to check whether the antibodies that were produced in response were protective or not.
The monkeys were then exposed to 10 control animals that have been infected with the virus. All the control animals had a high viral load in their nose and lungs. The researchers found a substantial degree of protection against the virus in the vaccinated animals.
Out of the 25 animals, 8 of them were completely protected. While these studies don’t necessarily insinuate that the humans also develop a similar kind of immunity or not, the findings are somewhat reassuring at this point.
The studies now need to be peer reviewed and tested further to check how long the immunity lasts and whether or not the recovered patients have the risks of infecting someone in their vicinity or not.
The process is still in progress and will take some time to be asserted as a certified finding. Although, with the findings of the study initially, it can be somewhat reassuring.
By Somapika Dutta