How Long Does COVID Immunity Last Anyway? : Short Wave With booster shots on the horizon for some people, one of the biggest questions is: Am I still protected against COVID-19 if I've only had two doses of the vaccine? As science correspondent Michaeleen Doucleff reports, the answer is...complicated.

Read more of Michaeleen's reporting on COVID immunity: https://n.pr/2XIQ6KX

Reach the show by emailing shortwave@npr.org.

How Long Does COVID Immunity Last Anyway?

How Long Does COVID Immunity Last Anyway?

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Illustration of antibodies (y-shaped) responding to an infection with the new coronavirus SARS-CoV-2. KATERYNA KON/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRA/Getty Images/Science Photo Libra hide caption

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KATERYNA KON/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRA/Getty Images/Science Photo Libra

Illustration of antibodies (y-shaped) responding to an infection with the new coronavirus SARS-CoV-2.

KATERYNA KON/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRA/Getty Images/Science Photo Libra

With booster shots on the horizon, the big question is: Am I still protected against COVID-19 if I've only had two doses of the vaccine? As science correspondent Michaeleen Doucleff reports, the answer is...complicated.

Over the past several months, studies have found that after vaccination, some people mount an extraordinarily powerful immune response against SARS-CoV-2, the coronavirus that causes the disease COVID-19. Their bodies produce very high levels of antibodies and they also make antibodies with great flexibility. That means they could be capable of fighting off the coronavirus variants circulating now and ones that may emerge.

Reach the show by emailing shortwave@npr.org.

This episode was produced by Rebecca Ramirez, edited by Gisele Grayson and fact-checked by Berly McCoy. Leo del Aguila and Alex Drewenskus were the audio engineers.