New blood test could improve COVID-19 defenses assessment
16/06 - A new blood test that measures T cells may yield more accurate information about the body's ability to control the coronavirus than tests that measure antibodies, researchers say.
Unlike antibodies, T cells do not prevent infection from occurring, "but they protect from disease," said study co-author Dr. Antonio Bertoletti of Duke-NUS Medical School in Singapore, in an email. They "recognize the infected cells... and destroy them. T cells are also important for the efficient maturation of B cells, (which) also help to produce antibodies," he said.
In some people with weakened immune systems, COVID-19 vaccines can induce T cell responses even if they do not induce antibody responses. "Measuring T cell activation is critical to assess the full extent of a person's immunity," said coauthor Ernesto Guccione of The Tisch Cancer Institute at Mount Sinai in a statement. Coronavirus variants like Omicron evade most of the neutralizing ability of antibodies, but T cells are still able to recognize the virus despite the mutations, he noted, making it even more important to have tests that can measure T cells.
The new test is presently available only for research purposes but is scalable to use broadly in the population, the researchers reported on Monday in Nature Biotechnology.
Vous désirez lire la suite de cet article ?