As reported by business daily Kommersant, researchers at the private DNKOM laboratory examined 1,512 people from the Russian cities of Moscow, Ryazan, Kursk, and Nizhnevartovsk, and concluded that, after 74 days of observation, there is no chance of most people becoming sick again from COVID-19.
The study showed that a second infection could only affect patients with underlying issues, such as allergies, diabetes, autoimmune diseases, and obesity.
In addition, people who take significant doses of anti-inflammatory drugs may also be re-infected by COVID-19, as the medicines suppress immunoresistance.
On August 24, a man from Hong Kong made international headlines when he was confirmed to have been re-infected by COVID-19, four and a half months after first being diagnosed. The second time around, the Hong Konger was completely asymptomatic. There have been similar reports from around the world, including in Russia, but none of these claims have been confirmed.
According to Alexander Gintsburg, the head of Moscow’s Gamaleya Institute of Epidemiology and Microbiology, re-infection is possible if someone has COVID-19 without any major symptoms.
“They definitely do not develop immunity and still need to be vaccinated,” he explained. “They will get sick for the second or third time and will suffer in the same mild form.”
On August 11, Russian President Vladimir Putin announced that the country had registered the world’s first Covid-19 vaccine, due to be available to the general public from January 2021. Developed by the Gamaleya Institute, the vaccine has been criticized by some Western experts for what they perceive as improper testing.