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Dried blood spot sampling offers inexpensive way to widen access to antibody testing for COVID-19

October 6, 2020

Using dried blood spot samples (DBS) is an accurate alternative to venous blood in detecting SARS-CoV-2 antibody tests, a new study by immunology experts at the University of Birmingham has found.

Currently antibody testing for COVID-19 uses serum or plasma, which requires a full intravenous blood sample, collected by a trained phlebotomist. For population-wide or high volume testing, the use of such sampling is limited by logistic challenges, resources, and costs, as well as the risk of SARS-CoV-2 exposure from direct patient contact. In contrast, DBS sampling is simple, inexpensive and can be self-collected by the patient at home, using a simple finger prick.

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