Washington (AFP) – Test monkeys contaminated with the unique coronavirus responsible for the COVID-19 pandemic were protected from reinfection for up to 28 days later on, a Chinese research study out Thursday in the journal Science said.While the monkeys displayed preliminary resistance, its unclear for how long such resistance will last in humans – it will be required to wait months, and even years, to understand if the millions of individuals contaminated at the start of the pandemic are safeguarded from re-infection. Researchers from Peking Union Medical College performed an experiment on rhesus macaques, frequently utilized because of their similarities to people, to learn if they have a short-term resistance to the virus.Six rhesus macaques were infected in their trachea with a dose of the SARS-CoV-2 virus. They established moderate to moderate symptoms, and took about 2 weeks to recover.Twenty-eight days after the first infection, four of the six monkeys received another dose of infection, but this time, despite a quick increase in temperature, they revealed no indication of reinfection, the study authors wrote.By taking regular samples the researchers discovered that the peak viral load was reached three days after the monkeys were infected.The monkeys revealed a stronger immune action after the first infection, producing more so-called neutralizing antibodies which might have protected them against short-term reinfection, the scientists wrote.More experiments are needed to see for how long this immune defense remains, the authors stated.
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