Just the News posted an article yesterday stating the following:
A new study from scientists in the United States suggests that a significant majority of the population may already have some level of immunity to the coronavirus, a possible explanation for why so many individuals seem to experience few to no symptoms from the disease.
Now they tell us.
The article continues:
The study, written by researchers in California, New York and North Carolina and soon to be published in the journal Cell, discovered that certain types of cells in blood samples taken from donors in 2015-2018—well before COVID-19 arose—were reactive against the COVID-19 virus. In other words, those blood samples were at least partially immune from the coronavirus even though they had never been exposed to it.
“CD4+ T cell responses were detected in 40-60% of unexposed individuals. This may be reflective of some degree of crossreactive, preexisting immunity to SARS- CoV-2 in some, but not all, individuals,” the researchers state in the paper.
The article concludes:
The research could provide an important clue for public health officials hoping to figure out why significant numbers of COVID-19 infections are either asymptomatic or else largely mild. The disease affects elderly and less healthy individuals most severely, with younger and healthy individuals for the most part spared its worst effects.
Though the term “coronavirus” has become ubiquitous in recent weeks as a way to describe the virus causing the current pandemic, coronaviruses are actually a variegated strain of infectious agents that cause illnesses ranging from the common cold to SARS.
The researchers in their paper suggest that the immune response seen in the uninfected blood samples could have been generated by the coronaviruses that cause the common cold.
While I am still convinced of the need to protect the elderly and those with certain medical conditions, I wonder if the full lockdown was necessary. At any rate, it is good to know that large groups of Americans already have immunity to the coronavirus. As the death toll rises (as it most certainly will as the disease runs its course), we need to remember that the 1969 Hong Kong Flu killed 100,000 people in America. We did not lockdown for that epidemic, and frankly, I doubt that we will lockdown for any epidemic in the future. We need to protect the vulnerable, but the rest of us need to get on with our lives.