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New research shows that, in a head-to-head comparison of five tests used to detect COVID-19 antibodies (known as ‘immunoassays’), an assay manufactured by Siemens and one developed by an academic partnership led by the University of Oxford had the most accurate results. The study is published in The Lancet Infectious Diseases.

3D rendering of coronavirus

Testing for SARS-CoV-2 antibodies can be of benefit to understanding how many people have been infected with SARS-CoV-2, and how people respond to vaccines that are being evaluated in research studies. The presence of antibodies may also correlate with protective immunity from SARS-CoV-2 re-infection, although this remains to be clearly demonstrated.

Several manufacturers have developed SARS-CoV-2 antibody immunoassays compatible with global laboratory infrastructures, enabling widespread testing of hundreds to thousands of samples per day. Understanding the performance of these tests is highly relevant to optimising their usage. The scale-up required for regular population-wide testing (e.g., every few weeks or months) might exceed the capacity of currently available commercial platforms, and additional, accurate, high-throughput tests would be of value.

The full article is available on the University of Oxford website

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