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Here's How to Measure Immunity Against COVID-19

(Representational Photo: Shutterstock)

(Representational Photo: Shutterstock)

In the antibody test, a screening is done to detect the antibodies in your blood and tells us if the person was infected in the past despite showing no symptoms.

According to medical experts, the production of antibodies — microscopic protein components -are used to measure immunity against any virus. This means that when someone is infected, their body produces antibodies which attacks the virus by fighting the infection and protects us from getting that infection in the future. That’s how a vaccine works too as it builds antibodies in your body building immunity against a virus.

Now, Antibodies tests, also known as serology tests, are being conducted to check if one’s immune system is strong enough to fight off Covid-19. In the antibody test, a screening is done to detect the antibodies in your blood and tells us if the person was infected in the past despite showing no symptoms.

Dr Bruce Walker, an immunology expert from Harvard Medical School, told WUSA9 news that antibodies help in clearing out the virus and then stick around to protect the person from encountering the disease again but the case of coronavirus is new.

He explains that they have noticed a pattern of antibodies peaking, then eventually coming down to form a plateau and then decay some more over time. While they are not sure if the decay is enough to produce a lasting immunity against the virus, the experts want to look at how long the antibodies linger in the body.

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According to America’s Centers for Disease Control and Prevention CDC), antibodies develop within 1 to 3 weeks of infection. It states that Antibodies test should not be used to diagnose someone with an active infection while adding that the tests are only for serological and epidemiological purposes and do not provide any protection from future infection.

It shows if you had the virus in the past and didn’t experience any symptoms at the time. However, as per WebMD website, with antibody tests, professionals want to determine how common the virus is.

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first published:June 24, 2021, 13:00 IST