New study: Pfizer and Moderna vaccines' immune response may last a lifetime

Immunologists published a study today suggesting that people who have been immunized against COVID-19 with the mRNA vaccines from Pfizer and Moderna may never need boosters, or at least for many years. Of course, that depends on enough people getting vaccinated before the virus significantly mutates. From the New York Times:

The results suggest that a vast majority of vaccinated people will be protected over the long term — at least, against the existing coronavirus variants. But older adults, people with weak immune systems and those who take drugs that suppress immunity may need boosters; people who survived Covid-19 and were later immunized may never need them at all.

Exactly how long the protection from mRNA vaccines will last is hard to predict. In the absence of variants that sidestep immunity, in theory immunity could last a lifetime, experts said. But the virus is clearly evolving.

"Anything that would actually require a booster would be variant-based, not based on waning of immunity," Dr. Bhattacharya said. "I just don't see that happening."

imageArne Müseler / (CC BY-SA 3.0 de)