Can you become immune to the Coronavirus?

A recovered coronavirus patient donated plasma at the Hainan Blood Center in Haikou, China, in February.
Source: Xinhua/Alamy Live News

Date Published: March 25, 2020

Source: The New York Times

People who have recovered from COVID-19 infection can become immune to the virus because of antibodies. Generation of antibodies in response to an infection, such as those from measles, can result in lifetime immunity while antibodies to coronaviruses that cause the common cold remain for one to three years. However, even short-lasting antibody protection may produce milder symptoms if reinfection with COVID-19 were to occur. Antibody tests to assess COVID-19 immunity are used in Singapore and China but are just beginning to be used in the West. This creates a possibility of treatment, where antibodies from those who have recovered from COVID-19 could be given to those who are ill. This treatment approach has been used previously for other infections. However, safety issues would need to be addressed before this approach can be widely used.

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Summary by: Jayoti Rana