South-African Covid variant: first case of severe reinfection in France

Published by Laurent P. · Published on 12 February 2021 at 20h18 · Updated on 15 February 2021 at 14h33
This Friday February 12, the AP-HP has reported a first case of Covid reinfection – by South-African variant – has been found in France. A 58-year-old male contracted the virus in September 2020 and has been contaminated again in January. The man developed severe disease when contaminated for the second time.

A first case of Covid reinfection because of South-African variant has been reported in France… The AP-HP has announced a 58-year-old man has been contaminated by coronavirus this past January after being sick in September 2020 already. With this reinfection, the man has developed severe disease, Assistance Publique des Hôpitaux de Paris scientists say.

Our case illustrates that the [South-African] variant can also be responsible for severe reinfections after a first mild infection” with classic onset of the virus, searchers explain in a study released this Wednesday February 10 in Clinical Infectious Diseases. They go on: “This is, to our knowledge, the first description of reinfection with the South African [variant] causing severe Covid-19, four months after a first mild infection”.

This is a first in France, but not in the world. In August 2020, two cases have been documented on the matter already, a first one, a 33-year-old Hong-Kong man who had been infected by two Covid variants in four months. The second one, a 25-year-old American man who tested positive in April 2020 and reinfected 48 days later. Cases scientists managed to isolate and study, but are probably not the only ones.

As for the French case, it involves a 58-year-old man who has asthma history. During the first contamination, checked with PCR test, he seemed to have develop mild affliction including fever and breathing issues and ultimately has been hospitalized at Louis-Mourier hospital in Colombes. Another PCR test have been taken and ended out positive. Sequencing also enables to find it involves the SA variant.

Still at the hospital and under breathing support, the man is in a critical condition. When he was hospitalized, serologic tests have been taken showing he had antibodies, a proof of a previous infection. Results say “immunity developed at the end of the first infection did not prevent reinfection by South African variantAP-HP explains. For the record, as for coronavirus immunity, studies are being conducted. Some scientists bet on long-term immunity, for over eight months, as others speak about shorter immunity, up to three months.

Immunity did not prevent this first case of reinfection in France.

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