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Corona study Tirschenreuth: More undetected corona infections than expected


In 2020, the Bavarian municipality of Tirschenreuth was a Corona hotspot. A study now shows that the number of infections was five times as high as expected. And that is exactly what the community now seems to benefit from.

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Tirschenreuth in Northern Bavaria.

Until autumn 2020, this was the district with the highest incidence nationwide - 1,500 registered infected people per 100,000 inhabitants.

No other district was so badly affected by Corona in terms of population.

In a few weeks, more than 130 people, mostly elderly, died here.

How many have actually been infected there so far, virologists are trying to find out in a long-term study - by taking blood.

Ralf Wagner, University of Regensburg: "We are looking for antibodies. What the immune system develops after the infection, and then we can retrospectively determine how many people have actually been infected with the virus."

Over 4,000 volunteers took part in the study, the third phase is now running - and the participants are convinced of their contribution.

Andreas Wenzel, study participant: "Yes, I actually think it's good that it is checked what the cause is, or how the virus actually behaves. Simply that you get more information about the virus, how the antibodies behave."

Evi Hering, study participant: "Well, I think that this will do a little bit for the district. Also for me. I now know whether I really have antibodies now. If I have them now, then I know that. I mean if no one participates, it's also nothing.

In addition to the blood samples, the participants had to fill out a questionnaire on the living situation, job and other living conditions.

How many people have now survived a corona infection - sometimes without knowing it?

Wagner and his team have already evaluated the results from the first Covid 19 wave 2020 in Tirschenreuth.

Ralf Wagner, University of Regensburg: "We found that 8.6 percent of the population in Tirschenreuth was infected with the virus over the age of 14. That is about five times as much as the official figures suggest. So, we are talking about an unreported number of a factor of five. This means that 80 percent of those who were infected with the virus had at least no definite diagnosis about the infection. "

In the 14-20 year olds, 92 percent of those infected went undetected as such. All of these people have been shown to have raised antibodies to SarsCov2. And meanwhile the infection rate in Tirschenreuth is different than last year. In mid-April, the district was the only one in Bavaria with an incidence of less than 100. Virologist Wagner suspects: Together with the vaccinations, the high number of survived infections is the reason for this.

Source: spiegel

All tech articles on 2021-05-04

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