HealthDay News — Children and adolescents with mild or asymptomatic severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) infection generate robust and durable humoral immune responses, according to a study published online July 6 in JCI Insight.

Carolina Garrido, Ph.D., from the Duke University School of Medicine in Durham, North Carolina, and colleagues evaluated humoral immune responses in 69 children and adolescents with asymptomatic or mild symptomatic SARS-CoV-2 infection.

The researchers found that at the time of acute infection and two and four months after acute infection, robust immunoglobulin (Ig)M, IgG, and IgA antibody responses to a broad array of SARS-CoV-2 antigens were detected in all participants. These antibody responses were associated with virus-neutralizing activity; in 94 percent of children, this was still detectable four months following acute infection. Compared with antibody responses and neutralizing activity from 24 adults with mild symptomatic infection, those observed in children and adolescents were similar or superior.

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“These findings are encouraging, especially because we cannot yet vaccinate children under the age of 12 against the virus,” a coauthor said in a statement. “The study shows that children who’ve had mild infections or even those who did not have any symptoms, develop an immune response that will likely provide some protection against future infections.”

Several authors disclosed financial ties to the biopharmaceutical industry.

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