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Exposure to common cold coronaviruses can teach the immune system to recognize SARS-CoV-2 – MedicalXpress

  • Your immune system’s ‘memory’ T cells keep track of the viruses they have seen before.
  • New study led by scientists at La Jolla Institute for Immunology (LJI) shows that memory helper T cells that recognize common cold coronaviruses also recognize matching sites on SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19.
  • Having a strong T cell response, or a better T cell response may give you the opportunity to mount a much quicker and stronger response.
  • 40%-60% of people never exposed to SARS-CoV-2 had T cells that reacted to the virus showing that their immune systems recognized the virus.
  • This finding turned out to be a global phenomenon and was reported in people from the Netherlands, Germany, the United Kingdom and Singapore.
  • This discovery suggests that fighting off a common cold coronavirus can induce cross-reactive T cell memory against SARS-CoV-2.

https://medicalxpress.com/news/2020-08-exposure-common-cold-coronaviruses-immune.html

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SARS-CoV-2 becoming endemic – Sunetra Gupta

Interview highlights:

  • We have already developed herd immunity to COVID-19 and will continue to manage it through herd immunity.
  • Flu is much more dangerous than COVID-19.
  • COVID-19 will settle into an endemic state just like flu.
  • Hopefully vaccines will be important in protecting the vulnerable.
  • Another way to protect the vulnerable sector is to allow the population to develop natural immunity.
  • There’s no reason to think the virus will mutate into a lower level of virulence.
  • During the 1918 flu because of a large number of ‘immunologically naive’ individuals but this is not the case with COVID-19.
  • Most of us have some degree of coronavirus immunity and therefore some protection to COVID-19.
  • The current H1 influenza strain is antigenically identical to the 1918 flu. H1 flu doesn’t kill as many people as the 1918 flu because most people already have cross immunity.

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