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Medic who survived Covid-19 is antibody superdonor


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A woman has a COVID-19 rapid test done by personnel of the Ministry of Public Health at the 27 de Febrero neighborhood in Santo Domingo. (Photo by ERIKA SANTELICES/afp/AFP via Getty Images)

A woman has a COVID-19 rapid test done by personnel of the Ministry of Public Health at the 27 de Febrero neighborhood in Santo Domingo. (Photo by ERIKA SANTELICES/afp/AFP via Getty Images)

afp/AFP via Getty Images

A woman has a COVID-19 rapid test done by personnel of the Ministry of Public Health at the 27 de Febrero neighborhood in Santo Domingo. (Photo by ERIKA SANTELICES/afp/AFP via Getty Images)

A British paediatrician who nearly died from coronavirus has been identified as an antibody superdonor whose blood plasma can significantly boost other patients' chances of survival.

Dr Alessandro Giardini, who spent seven days on a ventilator after contracting the virus, has been found to have antibody levels 40 times higher than the normal convalescent patient.

The 46-year-old father of two is now leading the campaign for other recovered patients to donate their blood plasma.

His extraordinary antibody levels were discovered as part of an NHS trial to analyse the blood of more than 400 Covid-19 patients.

The results have enabled NHS Blood and Transplant to identify men over 35 who were ill enough to have needed hospital treatment as their prime candidates for donation.

Even patients with far lower levels of antibodies could benefit others.

Dr Giardini, a paediatric cardiologist at London's Great Ormond Street Hospital, was found to have an antibody level of one in 2,560, meaning his antibodies can be detected in a sample of one part plasma and 2,559 parts diluent.

"It was a very hard experience, not knowing if you will see your family again. I have two young children," he said.

"I was aware of the convalescent plasma programme so I was expecting the call to come in and donate. I felt I had to give back."

Prof David Roberts, from NHSB, said: "People who are more seriously ill produce more antibodies, which can be transfused to potentially help others. The evidence so far is that men and older people are more seriously affected by coronavirus."

He added: "Convalescent plasma donation is safe and easy and you could save lives. If you get the call, please donate." (© Daily Telegraph, London)

Irish Independent