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Home » Coronavirus » Herd immunity to COVID-19. How long the vaccine protection lasts? 3
Herd immunity to COVID-19. How long the vaccine protection lasts? 3
Right. So, you know, the global climate situation affects everyone. And the sooner people get vaccinated, the more likely you’ll get to this proverbial herd immunity, which is the term that’s so much used and often abused.
One of the major problems for the future about this herd immunity is the length of protection of the vaccination. And this is something that has not been figured out at the moment. So it could be that coronavirus immunity is only nine months or only a year. Then you need re-vaccination or maybe the two different types of vaccines, which will be available soon: the adenovirus vector, virus-driven COVID-19 vaccine, and the mRNA vaccine. The mRNA-based COVID-19 vaccine may be more effective in the beginning. And the adenovirus vector-driven vaccine may be effective for a longer time. To be most effective, both vaccines may have to be combined. This is the data we need shortly.
What could be responsible for this differential protection, length, and methods of coronavirus vaccines? Does the length of immunity relate to the sort of humoral and cellular immunity arms that are being affected by these COVID-19 vaccines? What is known to date? What do you hear from your colleagues and your research?
So from my research, the mRNA-based vaccines are better to stimulate the humoral immune response and mainly produce neutralizing antibodies. The adenovirus vector-driven vaccine is better in stimulating T memory cell responses. So the cellular arm of the immune response, T memory cells, are responsible for the long-term efficiency of a vaccine. Antibodies are responsible for the short term efficacy. And this is a little bit what we see. So short-term, the mRNA-based coronavirus vaccines are better than the adenovirus vector-based COVID-19 vaccines. But the T cell response is much better with the adenovirus-based coronavirus vaccines.
It’s very interesting. So it’s quite possible that people will need to be immunized against coronavirus with what is available at this time, which is an mRNA-based vaccine. And then people have to be re-immunized with adenovirus-based vaccines in the future for longer-term protection against COVID-19.
A very nice paper had been published in the New England Journal of Medicine on Christmas Day. It demonstrated that even with only one shot of the mRNA vaccine, the antibody responses against COVID-19 are very good. But I’m sure the long term immune response against coronavirus will be not as good. And this makes it more likely that the mRNA-based COVID-19 vaccine is given first. Then adenovirus vector-driven vaccine is given second. It could be a very good strategy for vaccination: to combine the short and long-term advantages of both vaccination strategies.
Well, that’s, I think, a very important point. But the coronavirus mutates.
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