Research Team Receives Almost 1 Million for COVID-19 Study


Ottawa, Ontario — Tuesday July 21, 2020

Maala Bhatt and Roger Zemek have been funded twice for their study “Natural Evolution of Serum Antibodies in Children and Adults with SARS-CoV-2 and Household Contacts.” They received $926,492.00 from the province of Ontario’s COVID-19 Rapid Research Fundand $245,000 from the PSI COVID-19 Expedited Funding Stream/2020.

The study will include children and adults with known COVID-19 to test households for antibodies. They’ll recruit 35 children and 115 adults with COVID-19 along with their household contacts (600 total people). Enrolled participants will supply samples at 4 time-points over 12-months to test for antibodies specific to the virus causing COVID-19. They will test these samples using a cutting-edge process at the Langlois Laboratory which possesses the equipment, expertise and resources for a rapid response.

This study will advance the understanding of how antibodies develop in response to COVID-19 infection.  Antibodies may be a key element of protection to COVID-19 and will provide insight into how the virus spreads within households. The team has partnered with regional and provincial public health agencies. Results from this study will be essential to inform key decisions regarding the relaxation of physical distancing rules that impact children and their families.

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