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CD8 T Cells May Fight COVID-19 Infection in Hematological Cancer When B Cells, Antibodies Wane

In patients with blood cancers who contract COVID-19, CD8 T cells may fight the infection when B cells and antibodies are depleted by drug treatment, researchers suggest.

“We were very concerned about our patients being treated with anti-CD20 during COVID-19 and we were encouraged to see that there were many patients who recovered, despite having no B cells or antibody responses,” Dr. Alexander Huang of the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania told Reuters Health by email. “This suggested that other cell types could possibly compensate, even if we depleted B cells for therapeutic reasons.”