PCR positivity detected after symptom onset rarely reflects replicating likely contagious virus.

PCR remains + for so long

In @NatureComms van Kampen et al. show this well.

Look at how few PCR + samples (dots) also have detectably 'Live' virus (black)

This 👆provides terrific evidence for why antigen tests (for infectious virus) keep APPEARING to have low sensitivity..

B/c Rapid Antigen Tests are erroneously compared to PCR.

Any decision to do so misses the massive difference in & unique strengths of each technology @US_FDA
It's not that PCR positivity is false. It is instead simply that the kinetics of the virus RNA is dramatically different from the kinetics of the viable virus. The latter is removed immunologically very quickly. The former is not and, in some people, the RNA lasts for weeks.
You can follow @michaelmina_lab.
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