Men may become more severely ill from the novel coronavirus due to a lack of a vaccine, a new study published Wednesday in Nature suggests.

What’s going on:

  • Older men appear to be twice as likely to become severely ill from the novel coronavirus compared to women of the same age, The New York Times reports.
  • A new study published in Nature seems to offer a clue — men, especially those who are older than 60, may need a vaccine to become fully protected against a virus like the coronavirus.

Why is this possible?

  • The natural course of the virus has not spared “adequate immune responses in men,” according to The New York Times.
  • This connects with previous research that suggests women can “mount faster and stronger immune responses, perhaps because their bodies are rigged to fight pathogens that threaten unborn or newborn children,” according to The New York Times.

“You could imagine scenarios where a single shot of a vaccine might be sufficient in young individuals or maybe young women, while older men might need to have three shots of vaccine.” Dr. Marcus Altfeld, an immunologist at the Heinrich Pette Institute and at the University Medical Center Hamburg-Eppendorf in Germany, told <a href="https://www.nytimes.com/2020/08/26/health/coronavirus-men-immune.html">The New York Times.</a>

More research exists on this

There has been plenty of research on how men deal with the novel coronavirus compared to how women experience it. Here are a few links to those stories: