February 28, 2024

What if COVID-19 immunity doesn’t last?


In this article for MIT Technology Review, Antonio Regalado surveys what we know about coronaviruses in general in order to answer these questions: Will those who recovered from COVID-19 have immunity over the coronavirus? How long will this immunity last?

Because we are only a few months into the SARS-COV-2 pandemic, we will not be able to find conclusive answers to these questions yet. We can, however, begin to see some possibilities by looking at the information we know from studies of the common coronavirus and SARS.

Editor’s Note: Though there are many unanswered questions relating to COVID-19 and the coronavirus that causes it, experts are beginning to see the important role that immunity plays in this circumstance. 

If the novel coronavirus will become seasonal, and with each season we expect some mutation of the original coronavirus, then artificial immunity from vaccines may not be the best solution at all. Instead, we need a proactive adaptive immune system and a balanced innate immune system [see What Happens When You Boost Your Immune System? to understand the difference between these two] to decrease risks of the novel coronavirus. A strong immune system will be our best protection against any second-wave COVID reinfection.

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