According to virology professor Alexandra Trkola, a cold with coronaviruses could particularly affect the severity of a Covid 19 disease.

the essentials in brief

  • Cross-reactions shorten the course of the disease and alleviate its severity.
  • This is exactly what you can achieve with vaccinations, “only much, much more efficiently”.
  • This is what the virology professor Alexandra Trkola from the University of Zurich says.

According to a study, previous infections with a harmless cold with coronaviruses also confer some protection against Sars-CoV-2. A so-called cross reaction could particularly affect the severity of a Covid 19 disease.

«Immune reactions specifically directed against Sars-CoV-2, which originate from memory cells, are of course far more effective than cross-reactive ones. But although the protection is not complete, cross-reactions shorten the course of the disease. In addition, alleviate its severity, “said the virology professor Alexandra Trkola from the University of Zurich according to a message from the university on Monday. This is exactly what you can achieve with vaccinations, “only much, much more efficiently”.

Simple cold protects

Trkola and her team analyzed the amount of different antibodies against four human coronaviruses in the blood. This comes from 825 donors from the time before the occurrence of Sars-CoV-2. In addition, she examined 389 samples from donors who had been infected with the novel coronavirus.

Accordingly, previous immunity to a cold with coronaviruses can protect against Sars-CoV-2 to a certain extent. This can promote the development of a Sars-CoV-2-specific immunity. This in turn creates a lower risk of severe hospitalization.

The effect of this cross-reaction could be a “plausible explanation for the high proportion of asymptomatic and mild Sars-CoV-2 infections”. This is what the research team reports in the specialist magazine “Nature Communications”.

No 100 percent protection against corona viruses yet

Coronavirus immunity is often not long-lasting. According to the researchers, this is a limitation that the new vaccines hope to overcome. If this succeeds, “we would take a big step closer to comprehensive protection against corona viruses, including new variants,” said Trkola. However, the condition would be that immunity to Sars-CoV-2 also strengthens the defense against other human coronaviruses,

More on the subject:

University of Zurich coronavirus study


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