Cookies on this website
We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you click 'Continue' we'll assume that you are happy to receive all cookies and you won't see this message again. Click 'Find out more' for information on how to change your cookie settings.

A new study led by the University of Oxford has found that previous infection, whether symptomatic or asymptomatic, does not necessarily protect you long-term from COVID-19, particularly against new Variants of Concern.

Artist's impression of coronavirus with DNA strands and blood cell antibodies

The Protective Immunity from T cells to COVID-19 in Health workers study (PITCH) – conducted in collaboration with the universities of Liverpool, Sheffield, Newcastle and Birmingham with support from the UK Coronavirus Immunology Consortium – examined how the immune system responds to COVID-19 in 78 healthcare workers who had experienced either symptomatic or asymptomatic disease (66 vs 12). An additional eight patients who experienced severe disease were included for comparison.

Blood samples were taken monthly from one to six months post infection to examine different elements of the immune response. This included different types of antibodies – such as Spike-specific and Nucleocapsid-specific antibodies produced to target different parts of the virus, alongside B cells that manufacture antibodies and keep the body’s memory of the disease, and several types of T cell.

Read the full story on the University of Oxford website

Similar stories

Tamoxifen repurposing study shows no benefit in treating deadly fungal meningitis

Hopes that tamoxifen could improve survival for a deadly form of fungal meningitis have been dashed by the results of a clinical trial conducted by University of Oxford researchers and published today in eLife.

Oxford researchers awarded funding to complete community COVID-19 antiviral trial

Researchers from the Nuffield Department of Primary Care Health Sciences, University of Oxford, have today announced that they have been awarded funding through the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) to work with several UK universities and carry out a first-of-its-kind clinical trial, testing novel antiviral COVID-19 treatments for use early on in the illness by people in the community with COVID-19 who are at higher risk of complications.

New therapeutic targets identified to treat inflammatory bowel disease

Millions of patients with ulcerative colitis or Crohn’s disease, collectively known as inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), are given fresh hope as a new study shows why some of them do not respond to current treatments.

Oxford researchers call for an urgent re-evaluation of “weak” opioid safety profile

A new study associates dispensation doses of tramadol with increased risk of mortality, cardiovascular events, and fractures compared to the use of codeine to treat pain.

Labelling proteins through the diet gives new insights into how collagen-rich tissues change as we age

A new study, published in eLife, uses advanced tissue analysis technology to show how the incorporation of new proteins changes in bone and cartilage with age.

Drug could help diabetic hearts recover after heart attack - Oxford research

Researchers at the University of Oxford have identified a drug that could ultimately help improve heart function in people with diabetes who have heart attacks.