Faculty News

How a COVID-19 Antibody Test Could Provide Rapid Results

Researchers at the University of Michigan College of Engineering and U-M startup Optofluidic Bioassay are working to create a rapid, portable, low-cost COVID-19 antibody test that would provide near-real-time insights into how patients respond to an eventual vaccine.

In this episode of Michigan Minds, Xudong (Sherman) Fan, U-M biomedical engineering professor and co-founder of Optofluidic Bioassay, explains why antibody tests are important in the battle against of COVID-19 and how the approach at U-M is different from that of other institutions.

“We will be able to track how the human body responds to the viral infection and measure how the human immune system responds to the viral infection,” Fan says. “Antibodies can vary from low level to the high level and gradually drop, so we need a device that can not only detect the presence of antibodies but also is able to track the antibody progress over days, and maybe weeks or a month.”

Fan discusses how their unique approach allows anyone working on a COVID-19 antibody test to use their reagents in the device, and also explains how the antibody test will help provide insights when a COVID-19 vaccine is developed.

Learn more in this episode of the Michigan Minds podcast.

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