Joint Detection of Serum IgM/IgG Antibody Is an Important Key to Clinical Diagnosis of SARS-CoV-2 Infection

Can J Infect Dis Med Microbiol. 2020 Sep 17;2020:1020843. doi: 10.1155/2020/1020843. eCollection 2020.


Background: This study was aimed to investigate the application of SARS-CoV-2 IgM and IgG antibodies in diagnosis of COVID-19 infection.

Method: This study enrolled a total of 178 patients at Huangshi Central Hospital from January to February 2020. Among them, 68 patients were SARS-CoV-2 infected, confirmed with nucleic acid test (NAT) and CT imaging. Nine patients were in the suspected group (NAT negative) with fever and other respiratory symptoms. 101 patients were in the control group with other diseases and negative to SARS-CoV-2 infection. After serum samples were collected, SARS-CoV-2 IgG and IgM antibodies were tested by chemiluminescence immunoassay (CLIA) for all patients.

Results: The specificity of serum IgM and IgG antibodies to SARS-CoV-2 was 99.01% (100/101) and 96.04% (97/101), respectively, and the sensitivity was 88.24% (60/68) and 97.06% (66/68), respectively. The combined detection rate of SARS-CoV-2 IgM and IgG antibodies was 98.53% (67/68).

Conclusion: Combined detection of serum SARS-CoV-2 IgM and IgG antibodies had better sensitivity compared with single IgM or IgG antibody testing, which can be used as an important diagnostic tool for SARS-CoV-2 infection and a screening tool of potential SARS-CoV-2 carriers in clinics, hospitals, and accredited scientific laboratories.