New insights into human immune memory from SARS-CoV-2 infection and vaccination

Gemma E. Hartley, Emily S.J. Edwards, Robyn E. O’Hehir, Menno C. van Zelm*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlePopular

5 Citations (Scopus)
2 Downloads (Pure)


Since early 2020, the world has been embroiled in an ongoing viral pandemic with SARS-CoV-2 and emerging variants resulting in mass morbidity and an estimated 6 million deaths globally. The scientific community pivoted rapidly, providing unique and innovative means to identify infected individuals, technologies to evaluate immune responses to infection and vaccination, and new therapeutic strategies to treat infected individuals. Never before has immunology been so critically at the forefront of combatting a global pandemic. It has now become evident that not just antibody responses, but formation and durability of immune memory cells following vaccination are associated with protection against severe disease from SARS-CoV-2 infection. Furthermore, the emergence of variants of concern (VoC) highlight the need for immunological markers to quantify the protective capacity of Wuhan-based vaccines. Thus, harnessing and modulating the immune response is key to successful vaccination and treatment of disease. We here review the latest knowledge about immune memory generation and durability following natural infection and vaccination, and provide insights into the attributes of immune memory that may protect from emerging variants.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3553-3566
Number of pages14
JournalAllergy: European Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2022
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022 The Authors. Allergy published by European Academy of Allergy and Clinical Immunology and John Wiley & Sons Ltd.


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