Scientists are learning more about just how strong the immune response can be for someone who has previously been infected with COVID-19 then gets the vaccine — a phenomenon called “hybrid immunity.”
“The best thing we can hope for is that three vaccine doses will emulate the super immune response, found among those previously infected with the virus,” said Dr. Paul Goepfert, an infectious disease physician and director of the Alabama Vaccine Research Clinic. “This [type of immunity] will protect against variants in the future.”
With the world still slogging through the pandemic and contending with the delta variant’s threat of breakthrough infections, “super immunity” becomes an appealing concept.
In one review published in Science, people with that hybrid immunity see an immediate and “striking” improvement in protection- up to a 100-fold increase in their antibody response as compared to what they built up after their COVID-19 infection-Dr. Shane Crotty, review author and virologist at the La Jolla Institute for Immunology, said.
Experts are also discovering these hybrid antibodies appear to be more versatile and recognize more variants, including those as distant as the original SARS virus, Crotty said.
One yet to be peer reviewed study of previously COVID-19 positive patients who were then vaccinated at least six months later found participants were able to fight off both variants of concern tested: delta, the most infectious, and beta, the most lethal.
“With prior infection, their antibodies are able to recognize numerous variants, but with the addition of the vaccine, they are able to generate a large number to have a stronger effect against the virus,” Crotty said.
Like an exercise regimen that pairs weight lifting with cardio, Crotty explained that these individuals benefit from the combination of quantity and varied quality of the immune response they build. And that could indicate promising signs for boosters.
Scientists are seeking to replicate that strong protection, but without people having to contract COVID-19, as it’s universally agreed that infection is not an optimal immunization course.
Instead, they’re hoping booster doses of vaccines could convey a similar effect.
But timing is key when it comes to additional doses, whichever vaccine is given. Researchers say that exact right interval when immune response has matured – but before protection begins to wane — is the ideal target.
“Our immune system is built to have repeated exposures to the same antigen,” which will “substantially” enhance immune protection, Dan Barouch, director of the Center for Virology and Vaccine Research at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center said.
Disclaimer :- This story has not been edited by The Sen Times staff and is auto-generated from news agency feeds.
Source: Daily News