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Call in the T-Cell Cavalry to Fight COVID in the Immunocompromised (OPINION-MedPage Today)

Preliminary research suggests immunotherapy could play role in protecting vaccine non-responders

The normal vaccine response that elicits antibodies and immune cells to fight infection are absent in these immunocompromised individuals, who fall into two categories: those living with congenital or acquired diseases that weaken their immune system, or those with pre-existing conditions whose treatment requires dampening of the immune system (e.g., patients with blood cancers or transplant recipients). This vulnerable population represents a sizable proportion of the U.S. population. A 2018-2019 analysis in JAMA Network Open estimated that 2.8% of adults in America were on a treatment regimen that dampened their immune system. That percentage may seem small but extrapolate it to the entire U.S. population and you hit 9 million vulnerable people. This doesn’t even include immunocompromised individuals who are not taking immune-suppressing medication.

Catherine Bollard, MD, MBChB, MedPage Today
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