A group of researchers from the University of Hong Kong has reported that a man was infected a second time with SARS-CoV-2, becoming the first documented case of reinfection, indicates a press release on the investigation.
According to local media, the 33-year-old patient was discharged from the hospital in April after being admitted for COVID-19. However, in August he tested positive again after returning from a trip to Spain.
Not a persistent carrier
Although the researchers did not know if it was a “persistent carrier” of SARS-CoV-2, after conducting a genetic sequencing study of the Virus, the results showed that the strains contracted by the patient are “clearly different.”
“Many believe that recovered COVID-19 patients have immunity against reinfection because most developed a serum neutralizing antibody response. However, there is evidence that antibody levels in some patients decrease after a few months,” the researchers reported.
According to the academics, “since immunity can be short-lived after infection,” recovered patients will need to be vaccinated against the Virus. In the same way, they assured that they should maintain social distancing and continue to wear masks.