Diagnostic testing for COVID-19

Jean-Luc Gala, Omar Nyabi, Jean-François Durant, Nawfal Chibani, Mostafa Bentahir Published in the journal : May 2020 Category : Méthodes diagnostiques du COVID-19

Diagnosing COVID-19, which has recently been renamed COVID, in a quick and accurate manner constitutes the cornerstone of pandemic control. However, this evidence shared by almost everyone is being challenged by the truly-multifaceted nature of the SARS-CoV2 infection, which is the well-identified viral cause of COVID. In addition to the completely asymptomatic forms, there are indeed mild or pauci-symptomatic forms, moderate-to-severe forms, the latter requiring hospital care, as well as very severe forms requiring intensive care admission and assisted ventilation. All of these viral infection manifestations are likely to contribute to virus transmission within communities. Among the diagnostic tests to confirm COVID, we have used the reverse transcription reaction followed by a real-time quantitative chain polymerization reaction (RT-qPCR) rapid diagnostic testing based on specific SARS-CoV-2 antigen detection in the early phase of infectious manifestations. In addition, we have applied serum antibody testing, such as ELISA and lateral flow assay, in both the later phase and following recovery. Owing to the lack of an optimal "reference test", the respective sensitivities and specificities reported in the different published studies must all be considered with great caution. For this reason, we shall only briefly comment on them.

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