7:40 AM 7/31/2020
Cross-reactivity: Covid-19 and common cold Coronaviruses
“So how could their immune system have reactive T cells if they never had Covid-19? They were “probably acquired in previous infections with endemic” coronaviruses, the researchers — from various institutions in Germany and the United Kingdom — wrote in the new study. Using this T cell memory from another-yet-similar infection to respond to a new infection is called “cross-reactivity.”
“Alessandro Sette and Shane Crotty, both of the University of California, San Diego, wrote in a comment paper published in the journal Nature earlier this month, that “20–50% of unexposed donors display significant reactivity to SARS-CoV-2 antigen peptide pools,” based on separate research — but they noted that the source and clinical relevance of the reactivity remains unknown.
Sette and Crotty wrote that “it is now established that SARS-CoV-2 pre-existing immune reactivity exists to some degree in the general population. It is hypothesized, but not yet proven, that this might be due to immunity to” common cold coronaviruses.”
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