PARIS | frequent infections by coronaviruses, seasonal, responsible every winter, colds and bronchitis in early childhood, do not protect from infection with the new coronavirus, or severe forms related to the COVID-19 related to Kawasaki disease, according to a study.
The study, co-ordinated by the Necker hospital and the Pasteur Institute, and posted on the site of pre-publication Medrxiv, confirms the high frequency and the high rate of antibodies against the coronavirus seasonal in the general population, this did not, however, infections with these viruses every winter.
“Infection by the coronavirus seasonal does not offer significant protection against the infection by the virus SARS-CoV-2, and the other associated diseases such as syndrome related to Kawasaki disease,” notes Marc Eloit, head of the laboratory of discovery of pathogens at the Institut Pasteur in a press release.
“If the virus of the COVID-19 behaves as a coronavirus seasonal, this observation raises questions about the ability of the population to achieve a level of immunity sufficient to prevent recurrence regular of the disease,” indicates the researcher, co-author of the study.
The antibodies against the four coronavirus seasonal (NL63, HKU1, 229E, OC43) have been found in 67-100 % of children in function of the virus.
The level of these antibodies was comparable between the children with a serology test that is positive for SARS-CoV-2, and those who were seronegative, whether patients with syndrome related to Kawasaki disease or those who have a form of no or little symptomatic of the COVID-19, shows the study.
Neutralizing antibodies to the virus SARS-CoV-2 were present in 56% of the children positive, with a relative frequency increasing with time (up to 100 % in the end of the study, 2 months of the peak of the epidemic).
More than half (69.4 per cent) of these children had never had symptoms suggestive of infection.
The question of the possible cross-reactive immunity provided by the four coronavirus seasonal vis-à-vis the COVID-19 has recently been raised after the demonstration of antibodies and immune cells recognising the new coronavirus in people prior to the epidemic phase.
The children are forms of COVID-19 little symptomatic that often go unnoticed. The severe related to Kawasaki disease are very rare.
The study Rep-COVID took place from 1 march to 1 June, in seven parisian hospitals and of the close crown, with 775 children (aged 0 to 18 years), of which 36 had inflammatory syndrome related to the COVID-19 and related to Kawasaki disease.