Understanding the humoral correlates associated with resolution or exacerbation of disease
Given the relatively recent emergence of SARS CoV2, we are only now beginning to understand how the developing immune response can contribute to both clearance of the infection and enhancement of disease. Much of the early research on natural SARS CoV2 infection focused on the development of neutralizing antibodies. While neutralizing antibodies were routinely detected in survivors of SARS CoV2 infection, these high titers of these antibodies were also frequently detected in individuals who did not survive the infection, suggesting that neutralization antibody titers alone cannot predict survival. More recent studies in both natural human infection and in animal models have suggested that extra-neutralizing antibody functions may also be important in driving resolution of disease, although a true correlate of protection has not yet been identified.
A true correlate of protection is urgently need as it can be used to guide vaccine design; therefore, SeromYx has partnered with Dr. Nahid Bhadelia at Boston University Medical Center and the National Emerging Infectious Diseases Laboratories at Boston University to establish a well-controlled cohort of patients grouped based on the severity of disease, from asymptomatic to severe, who are followed for several weeks through the resolution of disease. Importantly as the severity of COVID and the risk of death is disproportionately increased in minority populations, these groups are enriched in the study. With this cohort established, SeromYx will apply Systems Serology to identify potential correlates that are associated with disease severity and outcome.
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