Health & Fit Heinsberg study: Tests with uncertainties

23:45  14 april  2020
23:45  14 april  2020 Source:   sueddeutsche.de

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Home Breaking News Heinsberg study : tests with uncertainties . • Other scientists are criticizing the study on the Corona hotspot Heinsberg . • It is still unclear how well the antibody test works. • In addition, the results cannot be easily transferred to other regions. Tests with uncertainties . Science is science, and politics is politics. Both work on very different principles.

Deaths reported in the catchment area of the study . The proportion of infected people in the population, the so-called prevalence, was determined in a sample of 919 participants, of whom 15.5 percent tested positive for antibodies against Sars-CoV-2, and thus the disease Covid-19 should already be behind . This could also be derived from the numbers. But this would be negligent. Because the mortality rate of the virus infection in Germany can only be estimated with great uncertainty based on the study in Heinsberg .

Armin Laschet, Ministerpräsident von Nordrhein-Westfalen und Hendrik Streeck, Direktor des Institut für Virologie an der Uniklinik in Bonn, auf dem gemeinsamen Weg zur Pressekonferenz. © dpa Armin Laschet, Prime Minister of North Rhine-Westphalia and Hendrik Streeck, Director of the Institute of Virology at the University Hospital in Bonn, on the way to the press conference.

• Other scientists are criticizing the study on the Corona hotspot Heinsberg.

• It is still unclear how well the antibody test works.

• In addition, the results cannot be easily transferred to other regions.

tests with uncertainties

science is science, and politics is politics. Both work on very different principles. And when they are too close to each other, it often becomes difficult - as the Gangelt case recently showed. The 12,000-inhabitant town in the district of Heinsberg in North Rhine-Westphalia is one of the corona hotspots in Germany. That is why scientists from the University Hospital Bonn have started to investigate questions about the spread and lethality of the corona pandemic in the case of this community.

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Part of a series of articles about. Quantum mechanics. Schrödinger equation. Introduction. Glossary. History. v. t. e. In quantum mechanics, the uncertainty principle (also known as Heisenberg's uncertainty principle)

Typical field test measurement uncertainties are presented for different sets of instrumentation. The effect of different equations of state on the calculated performance is also discussed. Test parameters that correlate to the most significant influence on the performance uncertainties are identified and suggestions are provided on how to minimize their measurement errors. Results show that compressor efficiency uncertainties can be unacceptably high when some basic rules for accurate testing are violated.

In the unanimous opinion, this is a sensible undertaking. Nevertheless, the Heinsberg study has now raised more questions than answered. The director of the study, the AIDS expert Hendrik Streeck from the University Hospital Bonn, hastily presented the first interim results on Maundy Thursday in a press conference at the Düsseldorf State Chancellery. The virologist, who is part of the Corona Advisory Board of North Rhine-Westphalia's Prime Minister Armin Laschet (CDU), wanted, as he emphasized, to provide the first figures before the Prime Ministers' meeting on Wednesday, in which a decision to relax the Corona measures would be made should. But with this press conference Streeck received a lot of criticism. Immediately after his presentation, other researchers questioned the meaningfulness of his results.

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The virologist had formulated such positive messages: In 400 households, his team had examined 1000 people for the study to see if they were already immune to Sars-CoV-2, said Streeck. The results of 509 people from 240 households are now evaluated. The conclusion: About 15 percent of the citizens had formed antibodies against the new coronavirus Sars-CoV-2, they are now immune. On the way to herd immunity, for which 60 to 70 percent of a population must have developed immune protection in order to curb the further spread of an infection, the village has already come a long way. And from this, the Bonn scientists calculated another reassuring message: only 0.37 percent of those infected had died - while the Johns Hopkins University for Germany has so far determined a quintuple higher rate of almost two percent.

Sars expert Christian Drosten warned against wrong conclusions from the antibody tests

But the Sars expert Christian Drosten from the Berlin Charité warned against premature conclusions. He criticized last week that the Bonn working group had not made their data transparent enough. In addition, he warned of incorrect conclusions from the antibody test used in Heinsberg. "These laboratory tests have a high rate of false positive signals, purely technical," he said. Because the tests available so far cannot distinguish antibodies against the new coronavirus from antibodies against the four common coronaviruses, which many people get sick in every cold season. In addition, the immunity of the people in Heinsberg cannot simply be concluded from other regions, according to Drosten.

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Selection criteria: We included test accuracy studies of any design that evaluated antibody tests (including enzyme-linked immunosorbent assays, chemiluminescence immunoassays, and lateral flow assays) in people suspected of current or previous SARS-CoV-2 infection, or where tests were used to screen for infection. We tabulated available data by test manufacturer. We have presented uncertainty in estimates of sensitivity and specificity using 95% confidence intervals (CIs).

study leader Streeck told the SZ on Tuesday that the antibody test used by his team from the Lübeck-based company Euroimmun had a specificity of more than 99 percent according to the manufacturer. If he discovered antibodies to Sars-CoV-2 in a person's blood, then that person was more than 99 percent likely to have been infected with this virus. The Bonn scientists also validated the manufacturer's information in their laboratories, says Streeck: "So far, our own comparative samples have even shown 100 percent specificity, but they are still limited in scope." However, the studies of other working groups do not quite match these results. Charlotte Jørgensen from the university in Roskilde, Denmark, compared the different test methods to significantly poorer values ​​for the Euroimmun test. In her study, which has not yet been reviewed, she concludes, as does the Sars expert Drosten, who has made similar attempts that the test not only shows Sars-CoV-2, but also reacts to other coronaviruses. It would therefore be doubtful that 15 percent of the people in Gangelt are already immune to Covid-19.

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Epidemiologist Gérard Krause from the Helmholtz Center for Infection Research in Braunschweig also commented on aspects of the Heinsberg study. You can't just extrapolate from households, he warned. Because whether one examines 1000 people from 1000 households or 1000 people from 400 households makes a difference as far as the number of immunized is concerned: the people who live in one household infect each other faster than their neighbors or strangers. In this way, the number of citizens who have already had an infection could appear larger than it actually is. When asked, Krause said: "Detailed comments on the method of the study in Gangelt would be premature based solely on the information currently available." From discussions with a colleague involved, he had no reason to suspect omissions in the epidemiological methodology.

The study attracted criticism on another point: it was advertised by the PR agency "Storymachine", which the former picture editor-in-chief Kai Diekmann founded. The company was involved in the announcement of an alleged breast cancer test from Heidelberg University in early 2019 and has seriously damaged the university's reputation internationally. Streeck said that he thought it was right to present the corona research that is currently the focus of attention "so openly", also as a Facebook page with the title "Heinsberg protocol". He emphasized that neither he nor his university had paid for Storymachine, that the company had offered its services on its own initiative.

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