Evaluation of the Diagnostic Performance of Different Principles of SARS-CoV-2 Commercial Antibody Tests in COVID-19 Patients

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DİNÇ H. Ö., Ozdemir Y. E., ALKAN S., DALAR Z. G., Gareayaghi N., SİREKBASAN S., ...More

MIKROBIYOLOJI BULTENI, vol.55, no.2, pp.207-222, 2021 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 55 Issue: 2
  • Publication Date: 2021
  • Doi Number: 10.5578/mb.20219907
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus, BIOSIS, EMBASE, MEDLINE, TR DİZİN (ULAKBİM)
  • Page Numbers: pp.207-222
  • Keywords: COVID-19, IgA, IgG, IgM, SARS-CoV-2
  • Bezmialem Vakıf University Affiliated: Yes


Following the emergence of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus-2 (SARS CoV-2) and using only PCR for diagnosis, antibody tests have been rapidly developed by various commercial companies. There are differences between the sensitivity and specificity of these tests due to the usage of different viral target proteins and antibody subclasses. In order to evaluate the diagnostic use of these tests, we aimed to examine the diagnostic performance, especially sensitivity and specificity, of SARS-CoV-2 IgM, IgA and IgG tests of various companies (Abbott, Roche, Euroimmun, Dia.Pro, Anshlabs, Vircell, UnScience and RedCell), which have different principles (ECLIA/CLIA, EIA, LFA). Current (n= 180) and past (n= 180) COVID-19 patients with clinical and molecular diagnosis of COVID-19 admitted to Istanbul University-Cerrahpasa, Cerrahpasa Faculty of Medicine Hospital, Pandemic Polyclinic with suspected COVID-19 infection, were included in our study. The patients admitted within the first 3 weeks after the onset of symptoms were included in the current patient group, and those admitted at the third and after the third week were included in the past patient group. Serum samples (n= 180) obtained from Istanbul Sisli Hamidiye Etfal Training and Research Hospital, Blood Center between April and June 2018 before the COVID-19 pandemic were included in the study as a control group. All the tests included in our study were studied with the recommendations of the manufacturer companies. Between the IgG detection tests with different principles in patients with past COVID-19, the sensitivity and specificity values of the most effective tests were; 86.7%/99.4% (Abbott), 86.1%/98.9% (Dia.Pro), 91.3%/95% (RedCell). Between the IgM detection tests with different principles in current COVID-19 patients, the sensitivity and specificity values were; 67.8%/99.4% (Abbott), 68.9%/98.6% (Vircell), 50%/97.5% (RedCell). Abbott IgM with a kappa coefficient of 0.67 and Vircell IgM + IgA test with a kappa coefficient of 0.65 showed the best fit in patients with current COVID-19 infection. In patients with past COVID-19, Abbott IgG with 0.86 kappa coefficient and Dia.Pro IgG test with 0.85 kappa coefficient showed the best match. Due to the low sensitivity of IgM detection antibody tests, they should not be preferred instead of real-time reverse transcriptase polymerase chain reaction in routine diagnosis. IgG detection tests may be preferred to detect the antibody response and the titers in people who have had COVID-19 for population seroprevalence and especially therapeutic immune plasma production. However, it is thought that the combined use of both ECLIA/CLIA-based and EIA/ELISA-based tests together may be more effective in routine use for SARS-CoV-2 IgG tests.