As the COVID-19 pandemic keeps causing concerns, with new variants spreading worldwide, it is now widely recognized that we must move beyond a “test&trace” only approach. World leaders and health institutions today aim to achieve high immunity rates among the population, facing the unprecedented challenge of a worldwide vaccination campaign against an emerging virus, for which no vaccine existed until a year ago.
“Alongside with our genetic tests to detect SARS-CoV-2 anywhere, and at any time, we knew that we had to put our knowledge at the service of vaccination campaigns even further, leveraging the versatility of our AI platform to deliver a new kind of immunology test.” So says Stefano Lo Priore, Founder and CEO at Hyris, a global biotech company renowned for its innovative and inclusive approach to genetic analysis. Hyris offers a wide range of solutions to support the fight against COVID-19 worldwide. Several Medical professionals and decision-makers have already made use of the Hyris System™ to reliably detect the presence of all the main Variants of Concern.
As a key part of a long-term strategy to fight COVID-19, Hyris keeps supporting Immunology Research, now presenting its new test to detect the body’s T Cell immune response to SARS-CoV-2 on 17 December 2021, at “A-WISH”, Alicante-Winter Immunology Symposium in Health. Organized by the Spanish Society of Immunology (SEI) and the University of Alicante (UA), the “A-WISH” Symposium promotes the advancement of the study of immunology, infectious diseases and vaccinology as well as Life and Health Sciences. This first edition specifically aims to address strategies for the COVID-19 response and pandemic preparedness, the development of the vaccines against SARS-CoV-2 and the immunological response to infection and different COVID-19 vaccines.
“Until now, antibody testing has been considered the only tool to measure immunity to SARS-CoV-2,” explains Isabella Della Noce, Chief Biologist at Hyris, “but individuals exposed to the virus or vaccinated do not necessarily develop or maintain antibody positivity. That is why we need to focus on T-Cells as they act together with antibodies to prevent pathogen spread and remove virus-infected cells. An individual negative to an antibody test could still be immune, thanks to responsive T-Cells. Therefore, measuring T-Cells response is a new disruptive approach to fight SARS-CoV-2.”
The new Hyris T-Cells clinical Test was developed through exclusive agreements between Hyris and some illustrious healthcare scientific organizations, such as with Singapore Duke-NUS Medical School and New York Ichan School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, both well renowned worldwide for their publications and studies within the immunology and virology fields.
“This new test enables quick evaluation of T-cell immune responses in COVID-19 convalescent patients as well as vaccinated people, also indicating where patients are responsive due to vaccination, virus exposure or both”, specifies Lorenzo Colombo, Global Chief Technical Officer at Hyris. “And that’s where PCR testing comes into the picture. Not only data show that PCR is fully comparable in accuracy and sensitivity with other assays traditionally used to measure the body’s immune response, but it is more convenient and faster as a widely used diagnostic technology. This is indeed a new dimension for vaccine strategies”.
This new test workflow has been already adopted by international research projects and committees, such as VACCELERATE, the European Program for the acceleration of phase 2 & 3 COVID-19 vaccine trials and the creation of a pan-European platform for clinical trial design and conduct, and the Spanish governmental Project Ene-Covid, the “Estudio Nacional de sero-Epidemiología de la Infección por SARS-CoV-2 en España”.
“To support and validate vaccination campaigns worldwide, we need much greater access to accurate tests, especially in the Immunology field,” concludes Lo Priore. “This disruptive approach can also be applied to other immunology areas, such as oncology or related to even more specific human pathogens. It can also focus strategically on specific patients’ categories, such as, for example, immune-compromised, transplanted or cancer patients. Our immune system really is the perfect “source-code” to our knowledge, about how to take care of life”.
The 2021 “A-WISH” Symposium will bring together a group of internationally recognized immunologists, microbiologists, molecular biologists, epidemiologists, virologists and professionals from a wide range of disciplines in the biomedical field to present and discuss the most recent results of top-tier immunology scientific research and innovations. Hyris will participate in the discussion, aiming to accelerate the development of new approaches to disease prevention.