According tomedia BGR, the new coronavirus testing is essential to detect new cases as soon as possible, but also to facilitate future research on population immunization and vaccines. A team of scientists in Australia has developed an antibody test that can deliver positive or negative results in as little as 20 minutes. This detection can also be used in a variety of situations. It can detect people who have just been infected, or they can detect people who have beaten COVID-19. Crucially, it can also be used in tests of new crown vaccines and other drugs to determine whether the drug is effective.
The blood test was described by Monash University scientists leading the study as “the world’s first study.” However, the test does have some drawbacks. For example, it does not detect active COVID-19 infections until the antibody starts circulating in the blood, which can take several days. In addition, it may not work for patients with COVID-19 who survived a few months ago, as recent studies have suggested that antibodies can begin to disappear two to three months after recovery.
But rapid antibody testing can provide a response in as little as 20 minutes, so it can be used to increase antibody testing in communities experiencing a surge in cases. It can also be used to help with contact tracing and vaccine distribution. Australian scientists have created a condensing test, a test to determine the presence and quantity of a substance in the blood. In this case, it is an antibody. The simple lab setup allows doctors to test 200 blood samples per hour, while hospitals running high-end diagnostic machines can run 700 blood samples an hour, the researchers said.
The scientists mixed reagent red blood cells with short peptides in the neo-coronavirus’s stingy glycoprotein fragments, as well as serum or plasma containing antibodies. If the patient has produced antibodies, they bind to fragments of the virus, and red blood cells can be seen by the naked eye. In a negative reaction, no such chemical reaction is observed.
“We found that by producing bioconjugate of peptides that are resistant to D-IgG and SARS-CoV-2 glycoproteins and fixing these to RRBCs, selective coagulation was observed in the gel card in plasma collected in patients with recent SARS-CoV-2 infection serosings compared to healthy plasma and negative controls,” said Professor Gilni Garer, director of BioPRIBioA. “Importantly, no coagulation behavior was found in the negative control reactions of SARS-CoV-2-negative samples, or negative recombination sofic-free in RRBCs and SARS-CoV-2-positive samples.”
A full study detailing the new antibody testing can be found here.