UC doctor part of national team working on new COVID-19 test

UC doctor part of national team working on new COVID-19 test

CINCINNATI (FOX19) - A University of Cincinnati doctor is part of a national team working on a new test they hope can determine the effectiveness of antibodies against COVID-19.

UC transplant surgeon Doctor Steve Woodle said what makes COVID-19 so unusual is that some antibodies might make the virus worse instead of protecting the individual.

“There’s scientific evidence that is accumulating, indicating that some antibodies can be good for you and some antibodies may be bad for you,” he explained.

Woodle said, unlike current tests, this new procedure not only tells doctors if a person has the antibodies but how effective they would be in strengthening the immune system.

“This test looks at five different types of antibodies and picks out particular combinations that exist in people who get well and people who struggle with recovering from the virus,” Woodle explained.

Also, he said the new procedure can reduce the number of false positives for COVID-19 where the patient just has a common cold.

“No other test has that built into it that’s currently available in the market, but this test brings that,” Woodle said.

As far as the fight against COVID-19 is concerned, Woodle said it is all hands-on deck.

“I see some of the world-class scientists in Cincinnati drop a lot of what they’re doing to focus on COVID,” explained Woodle.

With fast track approval from the FDA, Woodle said this new test could be available within the next 30 days.

He thinks insurance companies will more than likely cover it, but for those who are uninsured it will be left up to state and federal governments find the money to pay for it.

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