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Study to probe coronavirus immunity in Cyprus

The Cyprus Institute of Neurology and Genetics (CING)

New research by the Cyprus Institute of Neurology and Genetics aims to provide insight into the coronavirus outbreak and particularly the degree of immunity to the virus,  the institute announced on Tuesday.

The research programme  of the department of molecular virology, which was approved by the National Bioethics Committee of Cyprus, will investigate the presence of antibodies in individuals who tested positive for the Covid-19 virus, in individuals who tested negative and in persons who have not been tested at all.

According to the director of the department of molecular virology Christina Christodoulou, it is conducted nationwide and is based on blood samples taken on a voluntary basis after the volunteers sign a consent form.

Christodoulou described the study as particularly important, explaining that it would greatly help the scientific community in Cyprus and other countries, by providing information on the immune system’s ability to produce antibodies against Covid-19.

“The research will provide data on the quality of the specific immune response against different antigens of the virus,” she said.

“Those of our fellow citizens who know they tested positive for the coronavirus, with or without clinical symptoms, as well as other fellow citizens who have never tested positive, are welcome to take part in the study.”

“Overall, the results that will emerge from this study can be used to determine decisions for the future,” researcher at the institute Giorgos Krasias added.

He further explained the findings of the study will be of practical use since individuals who test positive for antibodies to Covid-19 could become blood donors for plasma isolation, which can then be used for therapeutic purposes in patients with the coronavirus.

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