Why Do Some COVID Patients Fare Better?

Posted in Crosswalk, Fall 2020, News Briefs

Drexel’s College of Medicine and Tower Health are among 10 leading medical institutions nationwide to embark on a study funded by the National Institutes of Health’s National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases intended to answer the many baffling questions about COVID-19.

The “ImmunoPhenotyping Assessment in a COVID-19 Cohort” study, or IMPACC, will study approximately 2,000 patients nationwide who are undergoing treatment for COVID-19 in a hospital. Drexel and Tower researchers are tracking adult COVID-19 patients at Tower Health facilities. The research will compare severity of the disease with amounts of the virus detected.

All this information, researchers say, may help in improving care for COVID-19 patients.

“We look forward to harnessing our expertise in infectious diseases to garner critically important insights into why some patients fare better than others against this devastating disease,” says principal investigator Charles B. Cairns, MD, the Walter H. and Leonore Annenberg Dean of the College of Medicine and senior vice president for medical affairs. “As the work could not be more urgent and the stakes could not be higher, I’m gratified knowing my Drexel research colleagues and exceptional care team partners at Tower Health may help turn the tide against COVID-19.”

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1. Beginning in the first 36 hours of patients’ time in the hospital, researchers will track study participants in the hospitals for up to 28 days.

2. The tracking will include DNA samples from blood and nasal swab samples during medical care.

3. Researchers will also get samples during patients’ follow-up appointments every three months, for up to a year, to assess their recovery and level of immunity, if any.