Or can you get the corona virus again after you recover? Why are some patients sicker than others? Will the disease return every winter? Will the vaccine work? Can some of us go back to work with an Immunity Passport? What long-term measures are needed to deal with this virus?
While the number of victims of COVID-19 in the world is increasing day by day, these questions are also being asked more and more.
One thing all these questions have in common is the immune system and we know very little about it.
How can you develop immunity against the corona virus?
Our body’s immune system is a shield against infections and has two parts.
The first part begins with the identification of an external invader in the body. This is called the net immune response, in which the white blood cells destroy the infected cells and release chemicals that cause inflammation.
But this system does not affect the corona virus. It does not understand it and therefore your body is not developing resistance against it.
Instead, you need an adaptive immune response or an immune response that changes as needed. It contains cells that make specific antibodies that fight off the virus. There are also T cells that target cells that have been infected with the virus and this process is called cellular response.
This work takes time. According to research, it takes about ten days for antibodies targeting the corona virus to develop. These antibodies can build a strong immune system in people infected with the virus.
If the immune response that changes as needed is strong enough, it can have a lasting effect on the virus, which can protect you from it in the future. However, it is not clear whether people with mild symptoms or no symptoms may develop an immune response that changes as needed.
How long does immunity against the virus last?
The immune system’s memory is similar to ours. It clearly remembers some infections and forgets some. Like measles infection is memorable. Once vaccinated, you should not have the disease for life. However, experts also say that people of a certain age should be re-vaccinated with modern vaccines.
But there are many infections that the immune system cannot remember, such as recurrent respiratory illness in cold weather in children or the flu or the common cold whose virus changes form.
The new coronavirus, known as Covid-19 or SARS-CoV-2, which affects the world, has not yet been known for how long immunity can last. The other six coronaviruses that infect can be estimated.
Four of them cause symptoms of the common cold and the duration of immunity against them is short, and research has shown that some patients are infected with the virus twice a year.
But the common cold is not so severe. In contrast, the two covarna viruses are more disturbing. These are the viruses that cause Sawyer Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) and Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS). These antibodies have been identified many years later.
“The question is not whether your body has an immune system, but how long it lasts,” said Paul Hunter, a professor at the University of East Anglia.
“It’s definitely not a lifetime,” he said. Research on SARS antibodies has shown that immunity lasts for one to two years and that is not certain.
However, they also say that even if you do not get rid of the virus completely, the second time the effect will not be as great as the first time.
Are people suffering from covid-19 again?
There are reports that people have contracted corona again shortly after recovering.
A 70-year-old patient of Corona in Japan is the person who made the doctors aware of the disturbing facts in this regard. The patient was isolated in Tokyo in February this year after Corona was confirmed.
The Japanese news agency NHK says the man returned to his daily life after recovering, but a few days later he fell ill again and developed a fever. He returned to the hospital and was shocked to learn that he and his doctors had been diagnosed with the corona virus again.
One idea is that the patient may have actually contracted the virus again, while another is that the virus lurks in the body and re-invades after a while.
However, the scientific consensus is that this could be a test error and the patient was mistakenly told that he was no longer infected with the corona virus.
So far no human has been deliberately infected with the corona virus for testing for immunity, but some monkeys have been tested.
The virus was injected twice into the monkeys’ bodies. Once to form an immune system and then three weeks later. These limited experiments showed that the monkeys did not show any symptoms of the disease when they were re-injected.
Am I safe if I have antibodies?
There is no guarantee that this is why the World Health Organization (WHO) has said that governments should not issue certificates to people who have recovered from the coronavirus, stating that the person’s body is immune to the virus. Has been created.
The purpose of issuing this immunity passport is to ensure that those who are found to have antibodies to the virus in their body can return to work. This can be important for staff working in hospitals and care homes.
But where you will find some antibodies in every patient, they are not all the same. Neutralizing antibodies are the antibodies that attach to the corona virus and prevent it from infecting other cells.
According to a study of 175 people who recovered from Corona in China, such antibodies were found in very small numbers in 30% of them. That’s why the World Health Organization says “cell immunity is critical to recovery.”
Another problem is that even if antibodies protect you from the corona virus, you can still spread the virus to other people.
Why is immunity important?
It is important to know how often and how often Covid-19 can affect you.
Your immune system can also be affected by the virus. If people are able to prevent it to some extent, it will make the disease less dangerous.
If it is difficult to develop long-term immunity, it may result in difficulties in vaccine preparation or it may affect the method and duration of vaccine use. And the period of immunity, whether it is due to an infection or the use of a vaccine, will tell us how successful we can be in stopping the spread of the virus. These are big questions that we do not currently have the answers to.