According to researchers at Charité – Universitätsmedizin Berlin and the Max Planck Institute, the common cold may help people build up an immunity to COVID-19.
In a study of the blood of 18 people, who previously had the Coronavirus, the research team discovered the presence of T-helper cells which play an important role in a person’s immune response to the COVID-19 virus.
T-helper cells are critical for the development and maintenance of protective antibody responses in humans. Scientists believe these cells may play an important role in the immune response to SARS-CoV-2.”
However, they also found that the same T-helper cells were present in 68 people who had never had the Coronavirus. They were uncertain where they come from, but believe the Common Cold may have resulted in the development of these cells providing people at least a partial immunity to COVID-19.
StudyFinds reported on the comments of one of the lead researchers, Claudia Gieseck-Thiel:
“This suggests that the T-helper cells of healthy individuals react to SARS-CoV-2 because of previous exposure to the endemic ‘common cold’ coronaviruses,” explains Giesecke-Thiel. “One of the characteristics of T-helper cells is that they are not only activated by a pathogen with an ‘exact fit’, but also by pathogens with ‘sufficient similarity’.”