Solid paper in PLOS – ‘Validation testing to determine the sensitivity of lateral flow testing for asymptomatic SARS-CoV-2 detection in low prevalence settings: Testing frequency and public health messaging is key’:
Our data show that the Innova LFD can successfully detect SARS-CoV-2 infection in people with a viral titre above approximately 100 viral copies/ml. However, as determined at our site using the ThermoFisher COVID-19 TaqPath assay, it is incapable of detecting infection at comparable PCR Ct values of 30 and over. These levels of infection are indicative of very early or very late stages of infection, and as such, we would strongly recommend that LFD testing is used to screen people at very regular frequency and that a negative result should not be used to determine that someone is free from SARS-CoV-2 infection.IMO ‘very regular frequency’ is the key detail here. Single LFA rapid tests, alone, are not useful as a simple replacement for PCR tests.