One in ten Brits had caught coronavirus by December, study claims

ALMOST nine per cent of the UK had caught Covid-19 by December, a study claims.

Using monthly blood samples from 20,000 people, UK Biobank discovered almost 9 per cent of the UK had caught the bug by December.

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This means nearly six million Brits were infected with Covid in the first nine months of the pandemic.

Scientists working on the research also found antibodies in people previously infected six months after they were ill.

This means there could be a degree of protection against reinfection for at least half a year.

The capital saw the highest level of infection, according to the study, with 12.4 per cent of Londoners having antibodies.

It also found 43 per cent of people with antibodies had reported losing their sense of taste and smell.

But a quarter who had been infected showed no symptoms at all.


Sir Patrick Vallance, Government chief scientific adviser, said: “These latest results provide useful confirmation of the maintenance of antibodies to SARS-CoV-2 over six months.”

UK Biobank chief scientist, Professor Naomi Allen, said: “This important study has revealed that the vast majority of people retain detectable antibodies for at least six months after infection with the coronavirus.

“Although we cannot be certain how this relates to immunity, the results suggest that people may be protected against subsequent infection for at least six months following natural infection.”

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