Family News & Events

Family News & Events
Covid antibodies ‘fall rapidly after infection’

Levels of protective antibodies in people wane “quite rapidly” after coronavirus infection, say researchers.

Antibodies are a key part of our immune defences and stop the virus from getting inside the body’s cells.

The Imperial College London team found the number of people testing positive for antibodies has fallen by 26% between June and September, according to a report on the BBC.

They say immunity appears to be fading and there is a risk of catching the virus multiple times.

More than 350,000 people in England have taken an antibody test as part of the REACT-2 study so far.

In the first round of testing, at the end of June and the beginning of July, about 60 in 1,000 people had detectable antibodies.

But in the latest set of tests, in September, only 44 per 1,000 people were positive.

It suggests the number of people with antibodies fell by more than a quarter between summer and autumn.


Puberty can repair the brain’s stress responses after hardship early in life

Research suggests that impaired stress responses can return to normal during puberty, raising the possibility that imbalances created by early trauma can be erased.

Adversity wreaks havoc, and from there, “you have a system that responds differently,” Sciencenews learned from Megan Gunnar, a developmental psychobiologist at the University of Minnesota who has spent two decades studying the impact of early-life adversity in adopted children.

Early trauma can impair the bodies stress regulation system, potentially setting kids on a path toward behaviour struggles along with increased risk for depression, diabetes and a host of other health problems.

But the findings of Ms Gunnar’s studies, published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, suggest that the body can recalibrate its response to stressors during puberty.

The research is prompting a new view of puberty as an opportunity — a chance for people who had a shaky start to reset their physiological responses to stress.


Substance misuse most common between 26-39 in NI

New statistics from the Department of Health show that men and people aged between 26-39 were most likely to have problems with substance misuse.

A new report released 29 October, ‘Statistics from the Northern Ireland Substance Misuse Database: 2019/20 (Experimental Statistics)’ summarises information on people presenting to services with a drug problem and/or alcohol misuse.

The report shows that the most common age group for clients presenting to treatment was 26-39 years for drug misuse only (39.7%), and for drug & alcohol misuse (44.3%); however clients accessing services for misuse of alcohol only tended to be in older age-groups with 71.5% being 40 years and over.

The majority of clients were male, with only around a fifth of clients presenting to treatment for either drugs only, or for drugs & alcohol, being female. However, for those clients presenting to treatment for problem alcohol use only, two-fifths were female (41.9%).