In a major revealing discovery, scientists have shown that measles has a devastating effect on the body’s immune system. It makes the immune system weaker and so it becomes difficult to fight off the infections for years.
Scientists have given the name to this condition as ‘immune amnesia’ which means that the body’s resistance system forgets how to fight against disease-causing germs that it once knew how to beat. It also makes the immune system similar to the babies and it is not able to fight against new infections. Experts say that the importance to get a vaccination against measles is highly important.
Measles is caused due to a virus infection that initially causes sneezing and fever and later a rash starts to spread throughout the body. It is estimated that nearly 110,000 people die of deadly disease every year.
The shocking discovery was made by a group of scientists working on the unvaccinated children in the Orthodox Protestant community in the Netherlands. The scientists were studying how measles affects the immune system with the help of blood samples of some kids and who suffered from a measles outbreak in 2013.
When the immune system successfully fights off a disease-causing germ it remembers this information in the B-cells which is also one type of immune cell that is specialized in the formation of antibodies. The measles virus infects and destroys these B-cells thus affecting the formation of antibodies causing ‘immune amnesia’.
Results show that almost 20% of the antibodies were missing from the blood samples of the children who had suffered from measles. Nearly 73% of the antibodies were missing from a children’s blood sample.
Not all antibodies are equally important but if the important ones get wiped out as then there it could be a serious issue due to the weakening of the immune system.