BENGALURU: At the height of Covid-19’s second wave, patients were scrambling for ICU beds and ventilators, with many losing their lives as a result of hospital shortages.
Now, a simple blood test may be able to identify the risk status of a hospitalised Covid-19 patient. Metropolis Healthcare Ltd, a diagnostic service provider, has launched the blood test, called CoviRisk-TNBK (IVD approved flow cytometry-based lymphocyte subset assay, which estimates the T, B, and Natural Killer (NK) cells besides the CD4 and CD8 sub-populations of T-cells in peripheral blood) for cell-mediated response to SARS-CoV2 which can assist clinicians to identify the severity and prognosis within six hours.
Speaking to TNIE, Dr Sanjay Gohil, MD (Path) Consultant Pathologist, Metropolis Healthcare
Ltd. said that in individuals with severe clinical courses, the disease often manifests in two waves. In the first, the patient has typical clinical symptoms of respiratory tract infection, and after 8-12 days, it starts with sudden worsening of respiratory status.
“Diffuse ground-glass opacities on CT, lymphopenia, elevated D-dimer levels and prolonged prothrombin time are common laboratory abnormalities in these critically-ill patients. Multiple studies and evidence suggest that Flow Cytometry data can be used to explore the role of T-cell sub-types as a surrogate biomarker to risk, disease severity and clinical outcomes for patients suffering from Covid-19. CoviRisk TBNK by Flow Cytometry can be one such biomarker,” he said.
Meanwhile, Dr Kirti Chadha, Group Head, Medical Affairs at Metropolis Healthcare Ltd, said, “The CD4 and CD8 T cells are important for triggering an immune response to bacterial and viral infections. The CBC blood test is carried out in patients with infections. While it can detect lymphopenia in blood, it cannot measure the specific lymphocyte populations that are impacting the normal immune response.
In Covid-19 patients, the CD4 and CD8 T cell counts typically decrease with increasing severity of the disease and can help assess the immune response of Covid-19 patients. The CD3+, CD8+, T-lymphocytes, CD16+, CD56+, NK cells, C1q as well as IL-6 may play critical roles in the inflammatory cytokine storm. The dysregulation of these immune parameters, along with bacterial co-infection, are important causes of exacerbation of the patients’ condition and death.”