New test helps people understand their body’s response to Covid vaccine.
“Unlike other tests the Center For Disease Control (CDC) warns against, cPass, developed by Genscript and sold by Epitome Risk, zeros in on the exact subsect of antibodies that block the virus from attacking your cells,” says Lisa Wilson, Epitome Risk’s co-founder. cPass has been awarded the Federal Drug Administration (FDA) Emergency Use Authorization.
“When someone gets vaccinated the immune system makes a bunch of antibodies to the SARS-CoV-2 but only a fraction can actually block or inhibit the virus from infecting our cells,” explains Sean Taylor, PhD, from Genscript FAS manager. “Inhibition rate relates to the number of those key blocking antibodies. This test is new and tests more than general antibodies — it tests for the specific exact subsect of antibodies that block the virus from attacking your cells. It’s a game changer in the fight against SARS-CoV-2.”
Epitome Risk is a provider of risk management, COVID-compliance measures, and safety support for corporate and professional sporting events, and television and film productions. Epitome Risk was looking for a neutralizing antibody test and began working with Genscript to tailor an offering for their clients.
FourthWall Testing is a private lab owned by Epitome Risk that offers rapid COVID testing services, neutralizing antibody testing, and immune assessment solutions. Wilson says the cPass test can be ordered online for $170, which can be reimbursed through flexible spending accounts, and includes roundtrip shipping to your home and back to the lab. Test results are provided to clients in 24-28 hours. Epitome Risk has been measuring neutralizing antibodies since December 2020. “FourthWall Testing is one of the only labs in the world performing a longitudinal study of vaccinated people,” says Wilson.
The cPass test has broad implications for the general public. Wilson tells a story of a surgeon who received the vaccine but with the test found his neutralizing antibody levels didn’t meet the criteria for safety. Wilson on the other hand found through her testing that she was well above the cutoff so she feels confident being out in the world.
The CDC website issued interim guidelines for COVID-19 Antibody Testing stating that “Although the immune correlates of protection are not fully understood, evidence indicates that antibody development following infection likely confers some degree of immunity from subsequent infection for at least 6 months.”
As SARS-Cov-2 vaccines roll out across the world, fast, accurate COVID-19 neutralizing antibody testing is more important than ever. There is still much that the scientific community doesn’t know about the vaccines: namely, how effective they are and how long immunity lasts. These two blind spots — effectiveness and length of immunity can leave families, businesses, productions, and events vulnerable to an outbreak.
Featured Image: cPass, developed by Genscript and sold by Epitome Risk, allows for the measurement of COVID antibodies in a patients’ blood. Photo: Epitome Risk