Natural immune response and protection from SARS-CoV-2 reinfection

Acta Virol. 2021;65(4):333-338. doi: 10.4149/av_2021_401.


The novel severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) and the associated disease Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) continues to spread throughout the world, causing millions of infections and dead. One major question in predicting the course of the COVID-19 pandemic is how well and how long the immune response protects the host from reinfection. Although more studies are needed, evidence suggests that virus-specific B cell response in people with SARS-CoV-2 infection is rapidly generated and seems to be more reliable marker of long-lasting humoral responses than serum antibodies. Here we reviewed all related major studies of immune response to SARS-CoV-2 virus to better understand the natural protection against the virus, and the risk of reinfection. The ability of our community to eradicate this virus will mostly depend on our knowledge of the immune response, critical not only for vaccine development and distribution but also for therapeutic options. Keywords: SARS-CoV-2 virus reinfection; humoral immune response; SARS-CoV-2 virus variants; vaccination.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • COVID-19*
  • Humans
  • Immunity, Humoral
  • Pandemics
  • Reinfection
  • SARS-CoV-2*
  • Vaccine Development