People’s immunity to Covid-19 lasts at least eight months after they have recovered from an infection, researchers reported Wednesday.
A study of 188 people who recovered from Covid-19 infections showed they had broad immune protection months later -- not just antibodies, but also several types of immune cells that the body musters after an infection.
“Our data show immune memory in at least three immunological compartments was measurable in about 95% of subjects five to eight months post symptom onset, indicating that durable immunity against secondary COVID-19 disease is a possibility in most individuals,” they wrote in their report, published in the journal Science.
While there have been worries that the antibody response fades, Dr. Jennifer Dan of the La Jolla Institute for Immunology and the University of California, San Diego worked with her team to see how the immune responses held up for Covid-19 survivors. She said they found just the opposite.
Dan and her team found that peoples' bodies were producing antibodies, memory B cells, CD8 T cells, and CD4 T cells that were trained to home in on Covid-19 for as long as eight months after they became ill.
There have been reports of people getting infected twice by coronavirus, but the researchers noted that large studies showed if it happens, it’s rare.