Should kids seriously go out in high school

Charité study: Children probably transmit the coronavirus in the same way as adults

BERLIN. Children are likely to spread the coronavirus in the same way as adults. This is the preliminary result of an analysis by scientists led by the virologist Prof. Christian Drosten from the Berlin Charité. If the findings are confirmed, this will have consequences for the planned school and daycare openings - they will not be able to come as quickly as many people would like. Accordingly, the researchers are already warning against lifting the restrictions prematurely.

So far, many questions about the role of children in Sars-CoV-2 remain unanswered. Too few children are included in many studies on this, so that the results are not statistically significant, Drosten described a fundamental problem.

The measures to contain the pandemic have had an effect in many countries, the researchers write. With the loosening of the contact restrictions, there are also increasing discussions about the extent to which the closure of schools and kindergartens has contributed to this success - and how reopening could affect the spread of the virus. So far, it is unclear to what extent children pass the virus on to others. Investigating this question is difficult, precisely because schools were closed early and because the virus was passed on mainly by adult travelers, especially in the early stages of the epidemic.

The number of viruses does not differ in children

The current finding now seems all the more important: The number of viruses that can be detected in the airways does not differ in different age groups, as the researchers report in a study that has been published in advance and has not yet been checked by independent experts. “Children could be just as infectious as adults.” However, based on their results, the scientists are already warning against the unrestricted opening of schools and kindergartens in Germany.

It literally states: “As regards the unlimited reopening of schools and kindergartens, we must exercise extreme caution in the current situation where a large part of the population is still not immune and transmission must be kept low by non-pharmacological measures alone to let."

Viral loads by PCR as seen in our laboratories. No significant difference between children and adults. Age categories: Kindergarten (KG), Grade school (GS), Highschool (HS), etc. with age ranges and (counts).

- Christian Drosten (@c_drosten) April 29, 2020

Drosten's team had now determined the amount of Sars-CoV-2 viruses in samples from 3712 infected people, which were examined between January and April 26 in a Berlin test center. They found no difference in viral load between different age groups. When assessing the risk of infection in schools and kindergartens, the same assumptions must be made that also apply to adults, the researchers write.

With the flu and many other colds, we know that children have very high amounts of virus in their throats, Drosten had already explained two days ago. Your inexperienced immune system has nothing to do against pathogens, so that they can multiply strongly. Compared to adults, the virus concentration in the throat of children can be 10,000 times higher, the virologist described.

If more daycare care should be made possible again in Germany, he spoke out on Tuesday for clear recommendations for action to parents: For example, that one should be aware of the possible introduction of infections and should stay at home and be tested immediately if symptoms occur. In addition, one should not visit older people.

Are Children Under 10 Immune? Obviously not

A joint study by four university children's clinics in Baden-Württemberg started last week (News4teachers reported). It should clarify the question of whether children up to ten years are even immune to the corona virus. This will review an Icelandic study on the subject, it said. The Icelandic scientists had found in their study that not a single child under ten years of age was infected with the corona virus out of 13,000 test subjects. In people aged ten and over, it was 0.8 percent, as reported by the New England Journal of Medicine.

The head of the Heidelberg children's clinic now involved, Prof. Georg Hoffmann, told the Rhein-Neckar-Zeitung that he hoped the Icelandic findings were valid. But: "There is also a study from China, which in turn shows that children are infected similarly to adults - and also transmit the virus, which was not the case in Iceland." Unfortunately, the findings from China now seem to be confirmed. News4teachers / with material from the dpa

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