NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) – The question has been asked, how many antibodies do you need to be immune from COVID-19? If only it were that easy, said infectious disease Doctor Aima Ahonkhai who practices at Vanderbilt University Medical Center.

“I wish we had a number,” Ahonkhia said, “And we’re actually discouraged from using tests, you know, as clinicians to try and say, okay, yes, you’re immune.”

The reason being, that “magic number” seems to be different from person to person and from variant to variant. 

“We’re still in a situation of having a bit of a moving target. There’s a ton of data coming out every day. And, the story is changing slightly as we get into different stages of the pandemic,” explained Dr. Ahonkhai.

Doctors are also faced with the fact that some people’s neutralizing antibodies last longer than others which is why boosters have been recommended. 

“There’s always kind of the conspiracy theories that the pharmaceutical companies are pushing it and, and again, that’s probably on Facebook and social media quite frankly, but that’s not the case. We are following the science,” says Dr. Joseph Gigante a Professor of Pediatrics at Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt.

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And, the science is still being revealed. 

“Even as a physician, and as a public health expert, we are learning every day. And we are doing our very best to share that information in a way that can allow people to make the most responsible decisions for themselves and their loved ones,” Dr. Ahonkhai says, “And sometimes we get it a little bit wrong. But I think the intention is to always get it right.”