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Posted by9 months ago
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Two doses of an mRNA (Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna) vaccine or one dose of viral vector (Johnson & Johnson) COVID-19 vaccine was insufficient to produce adequate immunity to a lab-created Omicron variant, but a booster dose of an mRNA COVID-19 vaccine provided the best immune protection.

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Does immunity fade or was the vaccine just not strong enough?

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· 9 mo. ago
PhD|Chemical Biology

Neutralizing immunity from circulating antibodies fades. However memory B cell mediated immunity should persist. Which is why the vaccines continue to be effective against severe disease.

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level 2

The Omicron spike protein is different enough from the vaccine spike protein to make protection insufficient from two vaccinations. Boosting provides a third chance for the immune system to generate antibodies that can neutralize Omicron. So it’s not that your immunity fades — you get a different, better protection from boosting 6 months after your initial two doses (or infection) than you do from initial vaccination/infection alone.

Source: https://www.nejm.org/doi/full/10.1056/NEJMc2119641

Data “suggest that boosting and promoting affinity maturation of antibodies in persons who have previously been infected or vaccinated with the use of existing Wuhan-hu-1–based vaccine immunogens, will provide additional protection against infection with the omicron variant and subsequent disease.”

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level 2

It’s not that the vaccines are weak

It’s that they’re just not as effective for this particular strain of Covid.

The vaccines still have the over 90% efficacy for Covid 19 and Delta.

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level 2

Both.

Immunity fades, but the immunity created by a third exposure tends to be stronger then immunity created by a first exposure.

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Immunity fades and viruses mutate. It's the same reason there are annual flu jabs

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level 1

I'm confused. Shouldn't it have to do with how recent the vaccines were taken opposed to how many you have had? Unless the booster is somehow different than the first two doses?

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Currently the vaccines are based on a winter/spring 2020 COVID variant. The original probably, they are functionally providing neutralizing immunity with high antibodies for like 2-4 months after you get a booster.

They also provide b and T cells and boost their capabilities every time you get a booster.

B cells hyper mutate every time they're activated to provide a wide swath of probable mutations for if you see a slightly different virus in the future.

So yes. Currently the vaccines protection from infection altogether is based on the immediate recency of when you got it.

4-6 months after a booster, your antibodies are definitely lower and you'll probably catch a symptomatic case. But the b and T cells will ramp up quickly and neutralize it without you dying.

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I wondered this myself. My son (because of his age) was only just vaccinated. My wife and I were recently boosted. My daughter, who (because of her age) only recently became eligible for the booster but caught covid before the appointment. We were all exposed to her before knowing she had it yet (so far) none of us have caught it from her.

My thought is since my son is recently vaccinated, it's on the same level as being boosted. I think they should have put some time parameters around the study.. because I don't think the booster is any different than the original vaccines. It's just a 3rd vaccine dose, right? Getting the booster assumes everyone is 6 months into their original vaccination I guess.

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I show you a photo of someone you should keep an eye out for, you only remember that for a short period of time. I show you that photo again and it sticks in your memory more. I show it to you again some time later and you're like "dude, I get it, I know this guy, I am keeping an eye out for him!"

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level 1

What's the difference between the booster and the mRNA shots?

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The shots are the same, but your immune system can learn more thoroughly from repeated exposure.

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