A Common Childhood Vaccine May Help Treat Coronavirus
Friday, June 19, 2020 12:30 PM
By: Lynn Allison | Newsmax
A team of U.S. researchers says that giving people a booster shot of the measles, mumps, and rubella (MMR) vaccine may help prevent COVID-19 and perhaps reduce the severity of the disease.
The MMR vaccine has been shown to boost immunity beyond the three diseases it targets, and researchers believe that it may help boost overall immunity and train the body to identify and fight off viruses during this pandemic.
According to CNN, the vaccine uses weakened, or attenuated, versions of the measles, mumps, and rubella viruses to trigger an immune reaction in the body. That immune response is broad and may be able to protect against the novel coronavirus as well.
The researchers, including Paul Fidel of Louisiana State University and Mairi Noverr of Tulane University, said that a clinical trial using the MMR vaccine in high-risk populations, especially healthcare workers, is a win-win situation.
“There’s no serious risk in giving the vaccine to most people and the approach might be especially effective for protecting healthcare workers,” they said. “If we’re wrong, well, at least people will have new antibodies to measles, mumps, and rubella.”
An article published in Virology lends credence to this theory. A 2008 study showed that the measles vaccine neutralized SARS-CoV, the virus responsible for the 2003 SARS epidemic.
“It is possible that early childhood vaccines provide some protection against SARS-CoV-2,” said the authors in Virology, referencing the virus that causes COVID-19. “Immunity derived from childhood vaccines typically wanes with age, thereby increasing the risk of severe COVID-19 in the elderly.”