Blood Test Aims to Measure COVID Immunity
A small blood sample and 24 hours might be all that's needed to find out how strong your immune system is against a first or repeat coronavirus infection. Scientists created a test that indirectly measures your T-cell response — an important, long-term component of immunity that can last long after antibody levels fall off — to a challenge by the virus in whole blood. The test mimics what can be done in a formal laboratory now but avoids some complicated steps and specialized training for lab personnel. This test, researchers say, is faster, can scale up to test many more people, and can be adapted to detect viral mutations as they emerge in the future.
@notan The new test adds synthetic viral peptides — strings of amino acids that make up proteins — from the coronavirus to a blood sample. If there is no T-cell reaction within 24 hours, the test is negative. If the peptides trigger T cells, the test can measure the strength of the immune response.