2 New Studies: COVID-19 Herd Immunity Is Much Closer Than Antibody Tests Suggest
Best News Ever! From Reason, here:
“One interesting observation was that it wasn’t just individuals with verified COVID-19 who showed T-cell immunity but also many of their exposed asymptomatic family members,” said Karolinska researcher Soo Aleman. “Moreover, roughly 30 per cent of the blood donors who’d given blood in May 2020 had COVID-19-specific T cells, a figure that’s much higher than previous antibody tests have shown.”
“Our results indicate that roughly twice as many people have developed T-cell immunity compared with those who we can detect antibodies in,” noted Karolinska Center for Infectious Medicine researcher Marcus Buggert.
Study co-author Hans-Gustaf Ljunggren told The Telegraph that if the study’s findings are replicated, they would apply to any country. London, for instance, might have about 30 percent immunity and New York above 40 percent. If so, some parts of the U.S. are much closer to herd immunity than population-wide antibody testing currently suggests.
Herd immunity is the resistance to the spread of a contagious disease that results if a sufficiently high proportion of a population is immune to the illness. Some people are still susceptible, but they are surrounded by immune individuals who serve as a barrier, preventing the microbes from reaching them. Epidemiologists typically estimate that the COVID-19 threshold for herd immunity is around 60 to 70 percent.