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Antibody study raises new questions about vaccine potential

Thursday August 6th 2020

Only 60% of patients recovering from mild COVID-19 infection developed antibodies, according to a new study, which raises disturbing new questions about antibody protection against the virus.

The Austrian researchers say they may have found a mechanism which allows the virus to use antibodies to improve its infectivity.

The scientists at the MedUni Vienna say that more research is needed to establish what this means for immunity and vaccine development.

The findings, reported in the journal Allergy, came as part of work to develop a test to detect antibodies in patients who have suffered mild illness.

The test identifies antibodies that prevent interaction of SARS-COV-2 receptor binding domain with ACE2.

The study then showed that the virus RBD could interact with antibodies to improve its binding rate to ACE2.

Researcher Rudolf Valenta said: "This is the first study to show elevated binding to ACE2 by immunocomplexes comprising RBD and patient antibodies. Potentially, this can make it even easier for the virus to infect cells."

Antibodies in serum of convalescent patients following mild COVID-19 do not always prevent virus receptor binding. Allergy 30 July 2020

https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1111/all.14523

Tags: Europe | Flu & Viruses

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