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About the test
The cerascreen® Coronavirus Antibody Test is a reliable test using the ELISA method (it is not a rapid test). The sample is sent in to a certified medical laboratory and tested for coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2) antibodies. Take your blood sample easily at home with the sample taking and send-in kit. Your sample will be analysed in an accredited medical lab.
ELISA analysis for IgG antibodies in the medical lab
Why test only for IgG antibodies?
The cerascreen® Coronavirus Antibody Test uses the most diagnostically conclusive measurement of persistent IgG antibodies. With this antibody analysis, it can be determined if somebody has recently been infected with SARS-CoV-2, even if this infection dates back a few weeks.
Lab test with ELISA method versus the rapid test
The greatest possible test accuracy of the antibody test is paramount! The higher the measurement specificity, the higher the likelihood of a correct test result.
The cerascreen® Coronavirus Antibody Test is based on the approved ELISA method.
This established method is highly accurate and is conducted in a medical lab by specialised professionals. Experts therefore consider these tests to be diagnostically more relevant than rapid tests, which give you a result at home immediately.
How long do antibodies against coronavirus last?
The antibodies in our blood decrease over time after vaccination. This was also revealed in our anonymised analysis of 613 of our antibody tests carried out in the period from March to September 2021. A total of 180 days after vaccination, values were significantly lower in all age groups and with all vaccines than at their peak, which is a few weeks after vaccination.
What else became apparent was that in the 55+ age group, antibody levels never went as high as in younger people. Moreover, they fell again more quickly over time. This is thus in line with recommendations for older people to have their booster vaccination.
Curious about studies on Covid-19 antibodies and how long they last? Head over to our Health Portal article.
Coronavirus (Covid-19) Antibody Test
- Find out with certainty whether your body has developed antibodies to SARS-CoV-2 and whether you have been infected with Covid-19
- Experience safe and discreet sampling at home
- As soon as the sample has reached our lab, the lab will analyse your sample within the following 12 to 48 hours
- Enjoy highly reliable laboratory results of the SARS-CoV-2 antibody test – comparable to taking samples at the doctor’s
- Results are of high significance, due to the measurement of the long-lasting IgG antibody – also for detecting Covid-19 infection in the past
- Tests are carried out in cooperation with accredited medical laboratories
- No risk of infection by visiting GPs or medical staff
- Laboratory and shipping costs included
- Diagnostics in the laboratory using a recognised ELISA method (no rapid test)
- Save more and get the Covid Antibody Test - Double Pack here
Benefits of the Coronavirus (Covid-19) Antibody Test
The sample can be taken safely and discreetly at home. This means there is no need for you to leave your home or visit a doctor. This way, you protect yourself and others from the risk of infection.
The cerascreen® Coronavirus Antibody Test is analysed by a medical laboratory and uses the same method that is used to research the coronavirus. The more antibody tests that are done, the better one can evaluate the status of the pandemic.
Take advantage of our expertise: cerascreen® is the market leader for at-home medical sample-taking and send-in kits in Europe, with eight years of experience in the development and analysis of tests. We have developed more than 50 different approved sample-taking and send-in kits (medical products), analysed 250,000 samples and serve 19 different European countries.Questions
Frequently asked questions about Coronavirus (Covid-19) Antibody Test
Why are antibody tests important?
Not everyone who has been infected with coronavirus experiences symptoms and goes to the doctor’s. And not everyone has been tested. So, it is difficult for researchers to estimate how many people have actually been ill and how many have been infected. An antibody test allows for a rough estimate of unknown cases and thus a better monitoring of the spread of the virus. This is an important factor when it comes to deciding whether contact limitations and other measures can be relaxed.
How do antibody tests help? If you have been infected with coronavirus SARS-CoV-2, you probably carry the antibodies. These antibodies can be detected in your blood by laboratories. This will indicate if you have already been infected with Covid-19 and are therefore likely immune to further infection.
Who should take the test?
The antibody test is helpful for people who want to check if they have already been infected with Covid-19. In some cases, the novel coronavirus causes mild flu-like symptoms or even no symptoms whatsoever. This is why many people are unsure whether they may have already had the virus.
The antibodies can be detected one to two weeks after the beginning of infection. A good rule of thumb is that the test is useful starting at around 14 days after you experienced flu-like symptoms.
If you currently have symptoms of the flu or cold, then a test is probably not useful – antibodies cannot always be detected in the earlier stages. If you want to test for a current infection, you need a PCR test, like the cerascreen® Coronavirus Test to detect the presence of the genetic material of the virus (currently only available in Germany).
How does the test work?
The cerascreen® Antibody Test is a sample-taking and send-in kit for home use. It involves taking a small blood sample from a fingertip and collecting a few drops of blood on a dried blood spot card. You can take it where and when is convenient for you. After taking a blood sample, simply send the dried blood spot card to our diagnostic laboratory using the free return envelope.
The laboratory uses the established ELISA analysis method to test your blood for IgG coronavirus antibodies. When the analysis is complete, you will receive a notification by email or the My cerascreen® app. You can then download your personal results report with your test result.
How conclusive is the test?
The cerascreen® Antibody Test uses scientifically established measurement techniques for detecting Covid-19 antibodies. It is a diagnostically conclusive method for determining if a coronavirus infection has occurred.
Just as with all medical tests, it is not 100% accurate. In rare cases, it can lead to a false positive (you tested positive, but have not yet had the virus) or a false negative (you tested negative, but have already had the virus).
The accuracy of laboratory tests like the cerascreen® Antibody Test is, however, considerably higher than quick tests that give a result without having been analysed in a lab.
What do the results tell me?
The results report will tell you if your result was positive or negative. Positive means that antibodies to SARS-CoV-2 were detected in your blood. ‘Negative’ means they were not detected.
A positive result can be an indication that you have already been infected with the coronavirus.
What is the ELISA analysis method?
ELISA stands for ‘enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay’. It is the standard scientific method that labs use to detect antibodies in the blood. ELISA is typically used for allergy tests or to diagnose infectious diseases and is also the established laboratory method used for SARS-CoV-2 antibody tests.
The virus (the antigen) is attached to a special lab plate, to which your sample is then added. If there are antibodies in your sample, then after a while, they bind to the antigens to form complexes.
Then a special enzyme, which is likewise bound to an antibody, is added. If there are antibody–antigen complexes on the plate, then the newly formed enzyme–antibody bundles will attach to them. This larger complex is then called the ‘ELISA sandwich’.
If these ‘sandwiches’ are present, then a chemical substance added to the enzyme will subsequently change colour. The colour intensity indicates if there are antibodies in the sample and if so, how many.
Do I need to report my result?
No. In contrast with results from a PCR test, you are not required to report your antibody test results. Neither you nor the lab is required to report the result to the public health office.
There are still no special regulations currently for people with a positive antibody test result. Even if one is possibly immune, the contact restrictions still apply.
What does immunisation mean?
When pathogens like a virus enter the body, the immune system is on full alert to fight them. In this process, antibodies are created.
Antibodies are designed for certain pathogens. The specified antibodies recognise the virus or bacteria and bind to it, which allows the defence cells to attack it. If, together with other components of the immune system, they ensure that the pathogens cannot trigger the disease again, this is called immunity.
If your body has produced these antibodies at any time, they remain in the body. How long they remain there for depends on the class of antibody. IgG antibodies for instance can remain active to fight viruses for years in some cases.
Does a positive result mean I am immune?
It is currently not yet scientifically confirmed if one becomes immune after a coronavirus infection. However, researchers are optimistic after early studies with humans and monkeys have revealed that most people develop immunity after recovering from a Covid-19 infection.
Other studies from China and South Korea have suggested that people there have been infected with the virus multiple times. According to some virologists, this could be due to the method of testing, which can result at certain times in a negative result, even though the virus is still present in the body.
How long does immunity last?
Studies from Canada and the United States, for example, have been able to detect neutralising antibodies for up to eight months after a Covid-19 infection. But it is not yet clear how long the antibodies usually remain in the body after vaccination or illness. Researchers are investigating this further – along with the question of how long people are immune to SARS-CoV-2 after vaccination or illness.
Adults in the United Kingdom are now being asked to have their booster dose, which is normally with the Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine or Moderna vaccine. Research needs to be carried out regarding the effectiveness of a booster jab, as this is still considered a recent development.
Scientists also suspect that even after immunity has expired, there is still a certain degree of protection – what we call basic immunisation. In such instances, the coronavirus would presumably only trigger mild symptoms, such as a cough, cold and sore throat after a certain time.
Other studies from China and South Korea have suggested that people there have been infected with the virus multiple times or that the virus was reactivated. According to some virologists, this could be due to the measurement method, which can result at certain times in a negative result even though the virus is still present in the body.
Why are children under 18 not allowed to take the test?
Our tests are not suitable for underage children and adolescents under the age of 18. Under 18s cannot activate the tests online and therefore cannot receive a test result. We ask that you do not administer the tests to your children either.
Children and adolescents need much closer supervision and counselling regarding medical tests and their interpretation. Testing with lancets and chemicals is not without risk and would need to be closely supervised by guardians. In addition, the reference values we give are always based on adult data. In the case of children, the risk of misinterpreting the results would be very high.
We want to fulfil our responsibility as a provider of medical products and ensure that children and adolescents are not unsettled by measurement results that are difficult for them to interpret. Since we cannot control whether the minors' legal guardians actually consent to the test being carried out and supervise them, we exclude tests for under 18s altogether.
If you are under 18 and have purchased a test, please contact our customer support.
Why does it take up to a week for the sample to reach the lab?
Please bear in mind that your results will not be analyzed in the UK but in Germany. For that reason, it can take up to a week for the sample to arrive at the lab. This does not affect the stability of the samples, as the method we are using is optimized for long transports.
Initially, your sample is sent to our collection center in the UK. From there, it is shipped to our central sample sorting facility in Germany, which then distributes samples to our partner laboratories. Once your sample is analyzed there, you will receive a notification and can access your result online.
Please check your mailbox regularly. We will notify you as soon as your sample is sent, arrives, or is analyzed.Reviews
This is how it works
Your test kit contains everything you need to draw a small sample of blood from your fingertip. Then send the sample back to us free of charge in the enclosed return envelope.
After the evaluation in the medical specialist laboratory, you will have online access to your personal result report.
Your access to the test results and the evidence-based findings and tips to improve your health: the my cerascreen® user profile on our website or our app.
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