Some antibodies made to fight off the common cold also neutralise the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus which causes Covid-19, new research shows.

A study of more than 300 people who never had Covid-19 found that around five per cent of adults have these versatile antibodies.

However, in a group of under-16s, this percentage shoots up to 44 per cent.

Scientists are currently unable to explain why the presence of these cross-virus antibodies differs in adults and children.