DURHAM Tees Valley Research Alliance has
joined the fight against coronavirus by recruiting COVID-19
patients to participate in a ground-breaking new study.
"Almost 500 patients have been enrolled into COVID treatment
trials across the Durham Tees Valley, with 11,000 enrolled
"In addition, for all patients who are COVID positive and
admitted to hospital, we collect vital data for the global CCP
ISARIC study. This detailed information informs the data presented
in the Downing Street briefings and helps to identify possible
patterns or problems that can be addressed in the treatment
Dr Kenneth Baillie, chief investigator on the GenOMICC study,
said: "Our genes play a role in determining who becomes desperately
sick with infections like COVID-19. Understanding these genes will
help us to choose treatments for clinical trials."
Chris Wigley, CEO of Genomics England said: "NHS trusts are
absolutely vital to the national response to this terrible
pandemic, so I am extremely glad that DTVRA has joined our efforts
to gain new insights into how this virus affects us."
The study, performed by the partnership between the GenOMICC
Study Consortium (led by the University of Edinburgh) and Genomics
England, will help develop a better understanding of the varied
effects of the virus on people and support the search for
Durham Tees Valley Research Alliance (DTVRA) brings together
County Durham and Darlington, North Tees and Hartlepool and South
Tees Hospitals NHS Foundation Trusts, to provide more opportunities
for patients to participate in research and clinical trials.
Researchers from the University of Edinburgh's GenOMICC project,
will work together with Genomics England and over 170 NHS hospitals
on the study which aims to sequence the genomes of 20,000 people
who are severely ill with COVID-19 - around 2,000 patients have
already been recruited.
The data collected by Durham Tees Valley Research Alliance
(DTVRA) and others will be compared to that from a further 15,000
COVID-19 patients who experienced only mild symptoms. This data
will be collected from participants in the 100,000 Genomes Project
and UK Biobank.
This ground-breaking research may help explain why some patients
with COVID-19 experience a mild infection, others require intensive
care and why for some it is sadly fatal.
By discovering why some people are predisposed to developing
life-threatening symptoms, the initiative will enable novel
insights into the virus, as well as possible human factors that
influence the effects of the disease, and whether a combination of
both shape outcomes for NHS patients.
Jane Greenaway, associate director of Durham Tees Valley
Research Alliance, said: "All three trusts are participating in a
range of Chief Medical Officer urgent public health COVID-19
research studies with some of our trusts amongst the top 10
recruiting sites in the country for trials of different treatment
options for COVID-19.
"Our research staff have been working tirelessly throughout the
pandemic to ensure that as many patients as possible are offered
the opportunity to take part in these treatment trials.
Published 18th May 2020
'I cannot commend the clinic enough. It is marvellous we
have this service at all and well done to you all.'
Patient, Coronary Heart Disease / Heart Failure Service, Shotley
Bridge Community Hospital