COVID Reinfection?

June 15, 2020

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Anchor lead: If you’ve had COVID-19 once, can you get it again? Elizabeth Tracey reports

Even as most of the world struggles with the COVID-19 pandemic, many experts are concerned about whether those who’ve been infected once can contract the infection a second time. Andrew Pekosz, a vaccine expert at Johns Hopkins, comments.

Pekosz: Reinfection of course is obviously something that has to be monitored very carefully. Remember we’ve just gotten through the first couple month of this so there hasn’t been much opportunity for people who have gotten infected once to actually have been infected a second time, and what’s most important is monitoring people for how long their antibody responses stay high after being infected. With some coronaviruses the antibody levels drop within a few months after infection. With others they stay relatively high for a few years. We’re hoping that Sars-CoV2 fits that latter category, but we need to monitor that to make sure that that’s happening. :35

Pekosz says animal models also seem to point to immunity for a time from reinfection but only longer term data will provide a definitive answer. At Johns Hopkins, I’m Elizabeth Tracey.

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