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Dr. Shawn Owen and team developed new COVID-19 antibody test to track immunity to variants

Jul 19, 2022

Dr. Shawn Owen and team developed new COVID-19 antibody test to track immunity to variants

A study lead by Shawn Owen, PhD, Assistant Professor of Pharmaceutics and Pharmaceutical Chemistry and Igor Stagljar, PhD, a professor of biochemistry and molecular genetics, at the University of Toronto’s Temerty Faculty of Medicine found that the antibodies generated in people who were vaccinated and/or recovered from COVID-19 prior to 2022 failed to neutralize the variants circulating today.

Excitingly, the antibody test they developed to measure immunity in the study’s participants will be a valuable tool for deciding who needs a booster and when, which will help save lives and avoid future lockdowns. The research team developed Neu-SATiN, which stands for Neutralization Serological Assay. The effort was spearheaded by Sun Jin Kim, a postdoctoral fellow in Owen’s lab and Zhong Yao, a senior research associate in Stagljar’s lab, who are the co-first authors on the paper.

The research was supported with funding from the Office of the Vice President for Research and the 3i Initiative at the University of Utah, and the Toronto COVID-19 Action Fund.

Full details on the study can be found here: https://healthcare.utah.edu/publicaffairs/news/2022/07/7-covid-variant.php

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