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Covid19: I was vaccinated, do I need to do an antibody test later? What Scientists Answer

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Covid19: I was vaccinated, do I need to do an antibody test later? What Scientists Answer

As the number of people vaccinated increases, more and more people are wondering if they should have antibody tests after vaccination to make sure that the vaccine has worked in their body.

To the question “Do I have enough antibodies to keep me safe after my vaccination?”, The answer is “yes” to the vast majority of those vaccinated, which is why scientists generally recommend antibody testing after vaccination. But with a few exceptions for some people, especially for those who have a weakened immune system or are taking certain medications, something that concerns e.g. those who have had an organ transplant, have some blood cancers, and those who are taking steroids or other medicines that suppress the immune system. A significant percentage of these people do not produce enough antibodies after vaccination, which is why newer studies are examining the possibility of taking an additional booster dose.

On the other hand, some people who have been vaccinated and do not belong to the above exceptions, then rush for antibody tests for no reason and may even – for no reason – worry if they do not do the right test or at the right time. If someone is in a hurry to get an antibody test after vaccination or is looking for the wrong antibodies and gets negative results, they may think they are vulnerable to coronavirus when they are not.

Most scientists would prefer the vaccinated medium not to test for antibodies at all, as these are unnecessary and may confuse him unnecessarily. In clinical trials, the vaccines elicited a strong antibody response in almost all participants.

“Most people should not even worry about that,” Akiko Iwasaki, a professor of immunology at Yale University, told the New York Times. “If anyone insists on taking an antibody test, they should do so. right.

At the beginning of the pandemic, several antibody tests were designed to look for antibodies to coronavirus N protein because they were abundant in the blood after infection. But these antibodies are not as potent as those needed to kill the virus, nor do they last that long.

More importantly, antibodies to N protein are not produced by approved vaccines, which in turn produce antibodies to the coronavirus protein (S). If someone has never been infected with the coronavirus (to develop antibodies to N protein), is vaccinated and then tests for antibodies to N protein (and not S as they should be), the test will be negative and they will be shocked for no reason .

In May, the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) opposed the use of antibody tests on vaccinated people. Some doctors are not yet aware of the differences between antibody tests and the fact that they measure only one form of immunity to the coronavirus. In addition, rapid antibody tests often give only a negative or affirmative answer (no-yes), ignoring whether the antibody level is low or high.

The scientists point out that if one wants to do an antibody test, it is important to wait at least two weeks after the second dose of an mRNA vaccine (Pfizer / BioNTech or Moderna) so that the antibody levels are sufficiently high and detectable. In the case of the Johnson & Johnson single dose vaccine you may have to wait up to four weeks.

Last but not least, in addition to neutralizing antibodies, vaccines also “build” cellular immunity, which is not measured in antibody tests.


Source: politis.com.cy

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