Top virologist Drosten: Corona-patient form already after a week of anti-body

Uncertainty prevailed so far with the question of whether the Virus is against the Corona-immune, if it was once infected. In his NDR Podcast of the virologist Christian Drosten said that the fact was to be expected. He referred to a recent study with monkeys.

Can infect Covid-19-patients with the Coronavirus? In a study, researchers at the Chinese Academy of Medical Sciences have been able, at least in the case of monkeys disprove. The first good news, which agreed to be optimistic, stated virologist Christian Drosten of the Charité hospital in Berlin in the NDR Podcast.

Nevertheless, the results of the study should be treated with caution. “Monkeys are not humans in Detail. You need a clinical observation“.

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Shortly after infection, the monkey anti-body developed

The Chinese team of researchers had infected four rhesus monkeys with the Virus of Sars-CoV-2. Three of the animals lost weight, when pneumonia developed. The Virus was in the nose, the throat, the lungs and in the intestines of animals is undetectable.

The fourth monkey was killed by the researchers and dissected to check whether the disease in the lungs also looks really the same as in humans – what actually was the case.

Shortly after infection, the researchers in the blood of these animals antibodies were able to prove against the novel Coronavirus. Soon, the monkeys showed no symptoms.

Monkeys after re-infection immune

After 28 days, all three monkeys were completely healed – two Tests for the Virus were negative. Two of the monkeys were then infected with Sars-CoV-2. It showed The Virus could not be in the stool and in the nose and throat demonstrated samples. Also, tissue samples gave no indication that it had reproduced the Virus. The monkeys, however, were, therefore, immune.

“Rhesus monkeys are so close related to the people that you can think of in the case of diseases that actually, the disease must run very similar, and that the immunity has also great Similarity,” said Drosten, who holds the study therefore is relevant.

Now clinical observations are necessary

Nevertheless, there is a need for clinical observations to be able to have a valid answer to the question of immunity provide. Would be meaningful, therefore, an investigation of a number of genesener Covid-19-patients with the same number of people who have not yet formed antibodies, were observed over three months, to see which group how many (re -) infected by the Virus.

“That would be a study that will certainly see soon, the scientific contributions,” says Drosten.

“Soon” was a deliberately vague statement – currently, many clinicians are clamped in a simple still to write a scientific report. “The wards are full of patients and the Situation is getting more complicated. There is little time for science remains, so you must take the reports that are there now.“

Most of the patients after one week symptom-free

Nevertheless, one speech, of course, a lot of it with colleagues and write all findings to the novel Corona-Virus, says Drosten.

So, you know Schwabing district of Munich hospital, where in February, the first Covid-19-patients in Germany were treated, that the actual symptoms had been overcome in most patients after one week. These are, of course, been no cases, where you have to think had about the transfer to an intensive care unit, restricts Drosten. Nevertheless, it was a “part of the expected patient Population”.

Antibodies are formed against the end of the first week

Furthermore, we have carried out in the case of the former Munich-based patient measurements for the immunity, which showed that they had already developed at the end of the first week of antibodies. For comparison: During Sars-1 virus, the patients developed only towards the end of the second week which. “So this is something I wondered myself both happy to have,” summarizes Drosten. “Because the evidence that the immunity is established very quickly here in this infection.”

Why this is so, and there are so far only hypotheses, says Drosten. So, it could onset that the novel Coronavirus replicate in the throat of the Antigen Stimulus, i.e. the stimulus due to the presence of a Virus, before the Virus migrate to the lungs.

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A possible explanation for the severe course in young patients

“Perhaps it is so that many patients are in the Moment, where the Virus in the lungs moves down at the end of the first week, at the same time in so far that they actually make an immune response, because there was previously to this flow in the neck.” And it was a good Situation – maybe that protects against the infection of the lungs.

It could also explain why some patients, even though they are very young, suffer from a rapid, severe course. “Because it is not conceivable that someone infected in the neck for the first time, but a high dose of Virus from the air breathed into the lungs and that the infection starts in the lungs.” Drosten emphasized, however, expressly, that it was a Declaration or a finding, but a scientific idea.

Some patients were not neutralizing antibody

Something could be found in the Munich of patients: Although could be detected in all of them antibodies, but not all patients with formed antibodies. In particular, antibodies that neutralize the Virus and prevent, the cells to enter.

“This is an interesting observation, at first glance, the first time is sobering. Perhaps one would say, in some of these patients apparently did not react, the immune system correctly. The antibodies don’t work against the Virus,“ says Drosten.

Then again, these patients were still healthy – you need to be rid of the Virus so kind of different. The answer: cytotoxic T-cells in the immune system.

Immune system starts apparently two-fold

“We can see that, although antibodies, but these antibodies are not the direct mechanism of the Elimination of the Virus, but are a by-product of immune activation. And what we enable to be invisible in addition, the cellular immune system, which is the real reason why the infection is eliminated.“

The immune system to jump, so to speak, in two Ways. These findings were helpful for the development of a vaccine.

Anti body tests according to Drosten "completely nutzlos"

Can be specific antibody tests to determine whether you may have been infected already unnoticed with Covid-19? Drosten doubt strongly about it. So the Tests are not very reliable – “you have so high errors that I’d almost advise it.”

Completely useless the Test was also, if one wanted to know whether one has been infected. Finally, it will not been tested for the Virus, but for antibodies, and formed at the end of the first week. “This means that we are blind for the first phase of the Disease.”

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