Do You Need a Booster if You Have a High Antibody Level?

By John Munsell,Chief Executive Officer, Bizzuka

With all the talk surrounding COVID-19, booster shots, antibodies, and natural immunity, one very important question has surfaced:

Do you need a booster if you have a high antibody level?

This question is particularly popular among Apple employees, who are now required to show proof of COVID booster shots in order to remain employed.

Are booster shots even safe for those who've recently been infected with the Omicron variant?

With so many people currently recovering from this variant, the concern of a mandated booster shot overloading one's immune system is valid.

For those who opt out of Apple's booster requirement, they'll need to provide negative COVID tests in order to keep their jobs.

Understanding the different antibody tests available

By now, many Americans have received a standard IgG/IgM antibody test out of sheer curiosity. We all want to know whether that "cold" we thought we had may have been COVID, or if we've possibly been asymptomatic carriers.

These over-the-counter antibody tests can be purchased at just about any pharmacy and will tell you whether you've contracted COVID-19 before. IgG/IgM antibody tests detect the presence of antibodies that your body creates to respond to the virus.

What these tests don't tell you, however, is the functional level of antibodies that are present and necessary to help fight the virus – which is essential information if you really want to know if it’s time to get a booster shot.

So, how do you determine your level of COVID immunity?

First, we need to define what a “high antibody level” means. If you’ve taken an IgG/IgM test, that really only confirms that you’ve been exposed to the virus. It does not, however, give you any indication as to whether you have a high antibody level that will help you ward off or fight the virus if you’re exposed to it again… or perhaps to a new variant.

Neutralizing antibodies (NAbs) are binding antibodies that specifically block the spike protein of the COVID-19 virus from attaching to your cells and replicating. NAbs are the antibodies that, at a high enough concentration, can either keep you from becoming symptomatic or can keep you from becoming hospitalized. 

NAbs are the antibodies that, at a high enough concentration, can either keep you from becoming symptomatic or can keep you from becoming hospitalized. 

The best way to determine whether you have a high antibody level, either acquired through vaccination or previous infection, is by determining what percentage of your IgG/IgM antibodies are neutralizing antibodies. 

The best and most accurate way to determine your NAb percentage is with a Surrogate Virus Neutralization Test (sVNT).

If you don't measure your immune strength before getting a booster shot, you risk receiving it late, wasting it, or overloading your immune system.

The Anzu Immunity Profile is an FDA/EUA approved sVNT that provides you with a special look at your own personal immune protection against the original strain of COVID-19 and the Delta variant (Omicron to come). It will also tell you if you've been exposed to the virus within the past 3-6 months.

How do sVNTs work?

The Immunity Profile assay is simple. All you have to do is find your local testing center. You’ll go in for either a blood draw or a finger prick. When the nurse opens your test kit, it will have a unique barcode that identifies the collected specimen with you, specifically. 

Scan this code with your smartphone, and you'll be prompted to download our free EVE patient app. This is where you'll register your specimen and receive notifications in real time once your test results are complete.

Rather than simply detecting the presence of antibodies, the Anzu Immunity Profile provides you with your unique percentage of NAbs to overall antibodies. This gives you an easy way to comprehend your own personal level of immunity.

Rather than simply detecting the presence of antibodies, the Anzu Immunity Profile provides you with your unique percentage of NAbs to overall antibodies. This gives you an easy way to comprehend your own personal level of immunity.

If your percentage is in the yellow or red zone of the immunity gauge on the app, it's safe to say that you should consider a booster shot (or start your vaccine sequence) to bring your antibodies back up to the green zone.

If your antibodies are already in the green zone, that means you have a high level of neutralizing antibodies and are unlikely to need a booster shot for at least a couple more months. 

Your results will remain stored in our HIPAA-compliant app as a part of your ImmunoCard®. If you've been vaccinated, you can also store your vaccine credentials here.

Your results will also come with a retest date. We recommend retesting your antibodies every 4-6 months, because they do wane overtime.

What employers need to know

If you're an employer looking to implement protocols based on immunity management in addition to or in place of vaccine mandates, our Immunity Management System dashboard can help you do just that.

Like our app, this dashboard is also HIPAA-compliant and will allow you to view the immune strength of everyone on your team (as well as their retest dates).

This data will help you build safety protocols and procedures in the workplace for employees with natural immunity, vaccinated immunity, or both.

Immunity Management is the key to ensuring your employees’ safety on and off the job.

Interested in learning more about the Anzu Immunity Profile? Check out our free Immunity Score webinar. Here, you'll learn about the science behind our system and gain more information on implementing an immunity passport in the workplace.

Want to become a testing center for the Immunity Profile? Let us know here and we’ll send you all the details.


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The Immunity Score

THE Critical Metric for Keeping People Safe in the Workplace