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Coronavirus and antibodies co-exist in young infected patients

CAPE TOWN – A recent study published in Journal of Pediatrics, found that young patients could carry both Covid-19 antibodies and the virus itself simultaneously.

As the worldwide race to develop an official Covid-19 vaccine continues, studies throughout the world aim to improve the understanding of the novel virus.

The study was published in the Journal of Pediatrics 3 September with researchers hoping to improve their understanding of the effects of Covid-19 on children focusing on viral infection to viral clearance as well as the response of antibodies.

The study took place between March 13 to June 21 with the analysis including 6369 patients who underwent PCR testing and 215 patients who underwent antibody testing with the team reporting on the proportion of positive and negative tests and time to viral clearance.

The researchers found that out of the 215 young patients who underwent antibody testing, 33 tested positive for the virus and antibodies and within 9 of the 33 were found to have antibodies in the blood while at a later stage testing positive for Covid-19.

Lead author of the study and director of Laboratory Informatics at Children’s National said: “With most viruses, when you start to detect antibodies, you won’t detect the virus anymore. But with Covid-19, we’re seeing both. This means children still have the potential to transmit the virus even if antibodies are detected.”

The study also noted that the patients aged 6 to 15 years displayed longer infection times from testing positive to negative compared to patients aged between 16 to 22 years of age.

Their findings raise a concern with the U. S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention(CDC) reporting in a systematic review estimating 16 percent of children infected with SARS-CoV-2 are asymptomatic and according to the organisation, the signs of Covid-19 in children are similar to other infections such as influenza and also noninfectious process.


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