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On Live Science: Can antibody tests tell if you’re immune to COVID-19?

On Live Science: Can antibody tests tell if you’re immune to COVID-19?

Here’s everything you need to know about coronavirus antibody tests:

On Live Science: Can antibody tests tell if you’re immune to COVID-19?A tricky part of antibody testing is that we don’t know what it means for long-lasting or even short-term immunity. Some people who have beaten COVID-19 may not generate antibodies at all, but that may not mean they’re not immune. For instance, a study published April 6 to the preprint database medRxiv, which has not been peer-reviewed, found that of 175 COVID-19 patients in China, about 30% (who tended to be younger) had very low levels of antibodies — yet those people also recovered just fine. And it’s also possible that the body makes different antibodies than a test will pick up, meaning you could be immune but still test negative.

On the flip side, some people may develop antibodies, but those antibodies may not be very effective at neutralizing the virus, Ott said.

Other coronaviruses paint a mixed picture on immunity. People generated antibodies to the more severe coronaviruses, SARS and MERS (Middle East respiratory syndrome), for at least a few years, according to a 2017 study in the journal Viral Research. But strains of coronaviruses that cause the common cold can reinfect the same person within a year, according to a study still undergoing peer review but published online by Columbia University. It’s still too early to say which camp SARS-CoV-2 falls into.

“Bottom line, if you make antibodies, you probably have some type of immunity. But we don’t know what and how long,” Ott told Live Science.

That means reliable antibody tests can estimate how many people have been infected, but they can’t tell an individual that they’re immune to the disease.

Right now, tons of antibody tests have flooded the market. But the results can be tricky to interpret because we don’t know how reliable they are, Ott said.

 “Science needs time to do things properly,” Ott said. “That virus is not leaving us much time. But sometimes it doesn’t help to rush something.”

Read more

What are antibody tests?

How do antibody tests work?

What makes an antibody test good?

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On Live Science: Can antibody tests tell if you’re immune to COVID-19?

American Integrative Pharmacy is located in Torrance, CA serving residents in and around Orange County, Los Angeles, Long Beach, Lomita and surrounding areas. Online prescription sales are available across the US.

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