How To Accelerate SARS-CoV‑2 Biomarker Discovery?

As the world is strug­gling through a glob­al pan­dem­ic, the pres­sure on aca­demia to pro­duce high-qual­ity COVID-19 research is mount­ing. In the con­text of a health­care sys­tem over­stretch and tre­mend­ous soci­et­al impact, there is still no estab­lished cur­at­ive treat­ment. There is also much to be learned about bio­mark­ers that pre­dict adverse out­comes, assist in patient man­age­ment, and inform us about long-term post-COV­ID-19 con­sequences.
In short: We know very little and the pres­sure to learn more is huge.

As a sci­ent­ist in the SARS-CoV­‑2 field, you’ve prob­ably exper­i­enced the need to pro­duce fast, accur­ate, and pub­lic­a­tion-ready research first hand. In this art­icle, we’ll show you how pro­tein arrays can optim­ize your pro­cess, fast-track­ing dis­cov­ery and mean­ing­ful sci­entif­ic con­tri­bu­tion.

COVID-19 Research: What We Have Yet to Learn

In the wake of the SARS-CoV­‑2 out­break, the sci­entif­ic com­munity faced unpre­ced­en­ted soci­et­al and media atten­tion. Terms like “PCR test­ing” or “mRNA vac­cine” became buzzwords, while people around the world placed their hope in research­ers to fig­ure out the vir­us and how we can beat it.

The cur­rent pan­dem­ic is a unique oppor­tun­ity for research­ers to make an imme­di­ate and cru­cially needed dif­fer­ence in patient lives. And there is plenty to be learned.

When it comes to the 2019-nCoV infec­tion, we have had very little time for research and much of the early find­ings came from stud­ies in China. It is then cru­cial for sci­ent­ists world­wide to engage in COVID-19 research to observe the dif­fer­ent bio­lo­gic­al pat­terns across geo­graph­ic­al and eth­nic back­grounds.

Biomarkers for Prediction, Classification, and Risk Stratification

What hap­pens when a per­son con­tracts COVID-19?

Clin­ic­ally, around 80% of patients are either asymp­to­mat­ic or present with a mild form. How­ever, about one in ten people will suf­fer from severe symp­toms and require hos­pit­al admis­sion. Know­ing which patients are most at risk will not only improve out­comes but provide cru­cial plan­ning sup­port to an already over­stretched health­care sys­tem.

COVID-19 bio­mark­er dis­cov­ery oppor­tun­it­ies include explor­ing para­met­ers that cor­rel­ate with:

  • Dis­ease pro­gres­sion
  • Sever­ity of symp­toms
  • Need for hos­pit­al­iz­a­tion
  • Like­li­hood of devel­op­ing post-COV­ID issues

We already have a body of research, sug­gest­ing inflam­mat­ory, haemat­o­lo­gic, and bio­chem­ic­al bio­mark­ers asso­ci­ated with severe COVID-19. (Dan­wang et al., 2020) Fur­ther, explor­ing this top­ic can lead to dis­cov­er­ing new dia­gnos­is and mon­it­or­ing bio­mark­ers, as well as treat­ment tar­gets for med­ic­a­tion that lowers the risk of neg­at­ive patient out­comes.

Exploring COVID-19 Relationships

Most COVID-19 patients recov­er from the acute phase, but we still have a long way to go toward under­stand­ing the long-term con­sequences of the dis­ease. You can use bio­mark­er research to learn about:

SARS-CoV‑2 and Autoimmunity

Exper­i­ence shows that med­ic­a­tion used for autoim­mune dis­eases also has a place in the COVID treat­ment pro­tocol. It seems that the vir­us shares mul­tiple clin­ic­al fea­tures, immune mech­an­isms and patho­gen­ic responses with rheum­at­o­lo­gic­al dis­eases.
COVID-19 is highly sus­pec­ted to trig­ger autoim­munity, indu­cing new-onset of dis­eases like Guil­lain-Bar­ré syn­drome or anti­phos­phol­ipid syn­drome. (Dot­an et al., 2021)
Test­ing autoantibody reac­tions is one of the chief applic­a­tions of our pro­tein arrays. Not only can this help you achieve sig­ni­fic­ant res­ults faster, but it’s also an area of research where con­clu­sions will have a dir­ect impact on patient jour­neys.

The Brain on COVID-19

While pub­lic dis­cus­sion has been focused on the imme­di­ate res­pir­at­ory con­sequences of COVID-19 (which cause most hos­pit­al admis­sions), mount­ing evid­ence demon­strates the neur­o­lo­gic­al impact of the dis­ease. COV­ID-19-related neur­o­lo­gic­al dis­ease affects the whole neur­ax­is. (Pater­son et al., 2020) From enceph­alo­path­ies to peri­pher­al neur­o­lo­gic­al dis­orders (includ­ing Guil­lain-Bar­ré syn­drome), the brain-related effects of the dis­ease are yet to be stud­ied thor­oughly.

Accord­ing to the Ger­man Neur­o­logy Found­a­tion (DGN), 87% of neuro-con­sequences of COVID-19 have per­sist­ent symp­toms. Fur­ther research is cru­cial to explore the mech­an­isms and guide treat­ment. And there is already an emer­ging body of stud­ies, such as Prof. Dr Har­ald Prüß at Char­ité Berlin’s work in identi­fy­ing anti­bod­ies against nerve cells. (Franke et al., 2021)

Our pro­tein arrays can speed up bio­mark­er dis­cov­ery by help­ing you to screen for over 10,000 inter­ac­tions in a single exper­i­ment.

How Protein Arrays Optimize COVID-19 Research

In the con­text of a glob­al pan­dem­ic, the chal­lenges faced by aca­demia and industry are even more acute. You want to pro­duce accur­ate, repeat­able, rel­ev­ant res­ults and you want to do it in a timely man­ner. When it comes to COVID-19, sample scarcity can also be an issue. Here is why our bio­mark­er dis­cov­ery ser­vice with pro­tein arrays is your best fit solu­tion:

  • Fast dis­cov­ery with an array con­sist­ing of over 10,000 anti­gens. Rather than test­ing for inter­ac­tions one by one, you can extract com­pre­hens­ive inform­a­tion from a single exper­i­ment.
  • Unbiased study where pro­teins aren’t selec­ted based on hypo­thes­is. For nov­el dis­eases like COVID-19, this allows break­through dis­cov­er­ies.
  • Increased chance for decis­ive res­ults and full access to your data.
  • Only 50 µl needed for an ana­lys­is. If your COVID-19 patient samples are scarce, pro­tein array ana­lys­is is the most effi­cient way to study them. All we need is a few µl, and we can send back whatever is left after the exper­i­ment.
  • Human samples for dis­tin­guish­ing SARS-CoV­‑2 avail­able from our part­ner in.vent Dia­gnost­ica GmbH: broad product range includ­ing early-stage dis­tinc­tion pan­els and risk group pan­els

Additional anti-SARS-CoV‑2 Antibody Screening

We also offer more con­ven­tion­al test­ing (for the pres­ence or absence of the vir­us) to help in sample pre-selec­tion. All lis­ted SARS-CoV­‑2 meas­ur­ing sys­tems have been tested by ourselves and your samples will be sent to our fully equipped ISO 9001 & 13485 cer­ti­fied labor­at­ory. We only need 5–10 µl per determ­in­a­tion, and we’re happy to do double determ­in­a­tion, too, if you need it.
Fol­low­ing serum/plasma ana­lyses for anti-SARS-CoV­‑2 anti­bod­ies are pos­sible:

  • Nuc­le­o­capsid IgM, IgA, IgG
  • Spike S1 IgG
  • Nuce­lo­capsid, total-Spike (S1/S2 Ecto­do­main) IgA
  • Total-Spike (S1/S2 Ecto­do­main) IgG
  • Nuce­lo­capsid, total-Spike (S1/S2 Ecto­do­main) IgM
  • Neut­ral­iz­ing anti-SARS-CoV­‑2 Anti­bod­ies

Start Your SARS-CoV‑2 Project!

COVID-19 research comes with a set of chal­lenges that the sci­entif­ic com­munity has rarely faced before. We are facing a glob­al pan­dem­ic, deal­ing with an infec­tious dis­ease while grap­pling to under­stand its far-reach­ing, multi-sys­tem effects. As a research­er in the bio­med­ic­al field, you’re likely already feel­ing the pres­sure to deliv­er high-qual­ity, repeat­able, pub­lic­a­tion-ready res­ults and do so faster than ever. Pro­tein arrays help you explore your COVID-19 samples in the most effi­cient way pos­sible. With our bio­mark­er dis­cov­ery ser­vice you can not only test for 10,000+ anti­gens at once, but we’ll only need a few µl to run the exper­i­ments, and we’ll gladly col­lab­or­ate in sample pre-selec­tion.

Are you ready to start mak­ing a dif­fer­ence in COVID-19 research? Let’s talk about how we can help with your samples.


  • Dan­wang, C., Endomba, F.T., Nkeck, J.R. et al. A meta-ana­lys­is of poten­tial bio­mark­ers asso­ci­ated with sever­ity of coronavir­us dis­ease 2019 (COVID-19). Bio­mark Res 8, 37 (2020).–00217‑0
  • Dot­an, A., Muller, S., Kan­duc, D., Dav­id, P., Halp­ert, G., & Shoen­feld, Y. (2021). The SARS-CoV­‑2 as an instru­ment­al trig­ger of autoim­munity. Autoim­munity reviews, 20(4), 102792.
  • Pater­son, R. W. et al. The emer­ging spec­trum of COVID-19 neur­o­logy: clin­ic­al, radi­olo­gic­al and labor­at­ory find­ings. Brain 143, 3104–3120 (2020) DOI: 10.1093/brain/awaa240
  • Franke, C. et al. High fre­quency of cerebrospin­al flu­id autoantibod­ies in COVID-19 patients with neur­o­lo­gic­al symp­toms. Brain, Beha­vi­or, and Immunity, 93, 415–419 (2021).

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