A new study has revealed that having common cold antibodies can actually help people not to get COVID-19. It is also true for people who never got a common cold. It is possible for the body to come across a virus and create antibodies against it without triggering the infection. According to this new study, it can also happen when a person has common cold antibodies in his blood, knowingly or unknowingly and these antibodies reduce his chances of getting COVID-19.
The complete study findings are published in the journal ‘Science’.
This study was not really planned and the researchers were not trying to find out the link between common cold and COVID-19. They were working on the efficacy of tests to identify the COVID-19 antibodies when they accidentally came across this unique relation.
Typically, the human body produces antibodies which are the record-keeping proteins of a pathogen. The antibodies are produced when the virus makes entry inside the body and tries to invade the body’s machinery. While the COVID-19 immunity is still a question, there are bright chances that common cold antibodies can save a person from COVID-19.
While the research team was checking the performance of their newly designed test, they came to see that people having common cold antibodies show a different response to the COVID-19, even if they never actually got the virus.
After going through 300 samples taken from people before the pandemic started, and identifying the antibodies of the common cold. Interestingly, they had special protection against the coronaviruses including some of those which cause cold.
Coronavirus is not just one virus but a group of similar viruses, all of which cause respiratory distress.
But this is not a conclusive end, and the researchers highlight the need of understanding this relation in detail. The U.S Centers for Disease Control and Prevention explains that the common cold is the most prevalent among school-going children and also a reason for them to miss school. Normally, no one experiences 3-4 episodes of common cold per year and if someone is experiencing its symptoms more, it may be a sign of a different viral strain.
But these findings are not incomplete because antibodies don’t always play a helpful role in immunity. While incidences of COVID-19 in children are fewer, The American Academy of Pediatrics is working to track this infection in children, using the available data. According to its findings, only 0.6% and 6.4% of children were hospitalized due to COVID-19 related complications. But overall, the chances of a severe illness caused by coronavirus are very rare in children.
Having the antibodies of the common cold is only one thing and there are high chances of more factors involved which may save children from coronavirus. In addition to this, the antibodies made in response to one type of coronavirus may sometimes provide help against other types of coronavirus. In any case, wearing the face mask, maintaining social distancing, and following the basic hand hygiene rules are necessary to avoid contracting the virus.