13-Oct-2020 | Market Research Store

According to the University of Birmingham, the researchers are now exploring the use of dried blood spot samples (DBS) to provide a reliable and accurate substitute to venous or capillary blood sampling in identifying SARS-CoV-2 antibody tests. This new study is a breakthrough during the time of COVID-19 pandemic. At present, the antibody testing is carried out using serum and plasma to detect the presence of the coronavirus. However, the major drawback of this method is the requirement of complete intravenous blood sample. For larger population, this kind of sampling is logistically challenging, costly, and resource insufficient which thereby increases the exposure to SARS-CoV-2 through direct patient contact.

On the other hand, the latest DBS sampling is simple, cost effective, and finger prick based test that the patient can use at home. The blood sample is collected on a forensic grade card for further processing in the labs. This new testing opens a new door for antibody testing in the resource limited nations. The researchers have been able to find DBS samples to show 98% sensitivity and 100% specificity in detecting anti-SARS-CoV-2 S glycoprotein antibodies. The dry blood spot sampling is found to prove as a reliable substitute for antibody testing and it also helps overcome the current limitations and dependency on skilled phlebotomists.

The new testing alternative offers better options for testing wider population level and focusing on the vulnerable groups including the elderly or chronically ill patients. The exposure to the healthcare professionals during the sample collection is also reduced to a greater extent when using the DBS sampling. The simple and cost-effective technique permits population-wide antibody testing with consistent effectiveness in various countries, especially the low and middle-income countries. The dry blood sampling is a boon for the regions believing venipuncture to be unethical or regions occupied with diverse population.

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