- Japan Epidemiological Association
- Journal of Epidemiology (ISSN:09175040)
- pp.JE20210324, (Released:2021-11-13)
Background: Tokyo, the capital of Japan, is a densely populated city of >13 million people and thus at high risk of epidemic severe acute respiratory coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) infection. A serologic survey of anti–SARS-CoV-2 IgG would provide valuable data for assessing the city’s SARS-CoV-2 infection status. This cross-sectional study therefore estimated the anti–SARS-CoV-2 IgG seroprevalence in Tokyo.Methods: Leftover serum of 23,234 hospital visitors was tested for antibodies against SARS-CoV-2 using an iFlash 3000 chemiluminescence immunoassay analyzer (Shenzhen YHLO Biotech) with an iFlash–SARS-CoV-2 IgG kit (YHLO) and iFlash–SARS-CoV-2 IgG-S1 kit (YHLO). Serum samples with a positive result (≥10 AU/mL) in either of these assays were considered seropositive for anti–SARS-CoV-2 IgG. Participants were randomly selected from patients visiting 14 Tokyo hospitals between September 1, 2020, and March 31, 2021. No participants were diagnosed with coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), and none exhibited COVID-19–related symptoms at the time of blood collection.Results: The overall anti–SARS-CoV-2 IgG seroprevalence among all participants was 1.83% (95% confidence interval [CI]: 1.66%-2.01%). The seroprevalence in March 2021, the most recent month of this study, was 2.70% (95% CI: 2.16%-3.34%). After adjusting for population age, sex, and region, the estimated seroprevalence in Tokyo was 3.40%, indicating that 470,778 individuals had a history of SARS-CoV-2 infection.Conclusions: The estimated number of individuals in Tokyo with a history of SARS-CoV-2 infection was 3.9-fold higher than the number of confirmed cases. Our study enhances understanding of the SARS-CoV-2 epidemic in Tokyo.