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Found 45 results
  1. News Article
    Up to £20 million is available for new research projects which aim to understand and address the longer-term physical and mental health effects of COVID-19 in non-hospitalised individuals. Increasing medical evidence and patient testimony has shown that some people who contract and survive COVID-19 may develop longer-lasting symptoms. Symptoms can range from breathlessness, chronic fatigue, ‘brain fog’, anxiety and stress and can last for months after initially falling ill. These ongoing problems, commonly termed ‘Long-COVID’, may be experienced by patients regardless of how severe their COVID-19 infection was and irrespective of whether they were hospitalised. UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) and the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) are launching a call to fund two or three ambitious and comprehensive proposals and a small number of study extensions that will address ‘Long-COVID’ in the community. This work will complement other major studies already funded by UKRI and NIHR which focus on long covid in hospitalised patients. Projects are expected to start early in the new year and may be funded for up to three years in the first instance. The call will open on 12 November and close on 9 December 2020. Further information
  2. News Article
    Coronavirus antibodies last at least six months and offer protection against a second infection, a study of healthcare workers suggests. Staff at Oxford University Hospitals were regularly tested both for COVID-19 infections and for antibodies revealing a past infection. The more antibodies people had, the lower their chances of re-infection. A separate study found pre-existing immunity from other coronaviruses also protected against Covid. Infection consultant Dr Katie Jeffery described the Oxford findings as "encouraging news" ahead of forthcoming Covid vaccines. They indicated that having the virus once "provides at least short-term protection" from getting it again, she said. Read full story Source: BBC News, 21 November 2020
  3. News Article
    A drug used to treat rheumatoid arthritis appears to help patients who are admitted to intensive care with the most severe coronavirus infections, researchers say. Tocilizumab, a medicine that dampens down inflammation, improved outcomes for critically ill patients, according to early results from an international trial investigating whether the drug and others like it boost survival rates and reduce the amount of time patients spend in intensive care. The findings have not been peer-reviewed or published in a journal, but if confirmed by more trial data, the drug will be on track to become only the second effective therapy for the sickest Covid patients, following positive results for the steroid dexamethasone earlier this year. “We think these are very exciting results, we are encouraged by them,” said Prof Anthony Gordon, of Imperial College London, the UK’s chief investigator on the REMAP-CAP trial. “It could become the standard of care once we have all the data reviewed by guidelines groups, and also drug regulators.” Read full story Source: The Guardian, 20 November 2020
  4. Community Post
    Hi there, I represent a team of researchers in Reading, who are submitting ethical approval for a project investigating pain research and knee surgery. Part of this process is receiving feedback from an NHS ethics committee and addressing this for the benefit of the science, patients and clinicians involved. One suggestion they have made is that we involve patients within the review of our information sheets, which detail the procedures (both medical & research) that they may consent to. There is no requirement of expertise or experience from any patient who wishes to be involved, we are just very eager to make sure our information is clear, free of jargon and doesn't come across as confusing or intimidating. The committee have indicated this is an optional recommendation, but it is one that I am very keen to engage with. As it's optional, we are unable to shift our deadline for this, and I would unfortunately need the documents reviewed and submitted by Thursday 26th November. If this is something that anybody would be willing to help us with, I'd be very grateful. One information sheet is 2 pages, and the other is 7 pages, if this offers a good idea of how much time it may require. My hope it it would take no more than 30 minutes. If you are able to volunteer your time, please contact me on rich.harrison@reading.ac.uk, and I will forward you the documents for your review. Once again, thank you in advance! Richard
  5. News Article
    Black and Asian people are up to twice as likely to be infected with COVID-19 compared to those of white ethnicities, according to a major new report. The risk of ending up in intensive care with coronavirus may be twice as high for people with an Asian background compared to white people, data gathered from more than 18 million individuals in 50 studies across the UK and US also suggests. The report, published in the EClinicalMedicine by The Lancet, is the first-ever meta-analysis of the effect of ethnicity on patients with COVID-19. The scientists behind it said their findings should be of "importance to policymakers" ahead of the possible roll out of a vaccine. Read full story Source: The Independent, 12 November 2020
  6. News Article
    Study finds 54 days after discharge, 69% of patients still had fatigue, and 53% were suffering from persistent breathlessness. Almost seven out of 10 patients hospitalised due to coronavirus still suffer from debilitating symptoms more than seven weeks after being discharged, according to a new study. Researchers from the University College London (UCL) division of medicine, in collaboration with with clinicians at the Royal Free London (RFL) and UCL, followed 384 patients who had tested positive and had been treated at Barnet Hospital, the Royal Free Hospital or UCLH. Collectively the average length of stay in hospital was 6.5 days. The team found that 54 days after discharge, 69% of patients were still experiencing fatigue, and 53% were suffering from persistent breathlessness. They also found that 34% still had a cough and 15% reported depression. In addition 38% of chest radiographs (X-rays) remained abnormal and 9% were getting worse. Dr Swapna Mandal, an honorary clinical associate professor at UCL division of medicine, said the data shows so-called long COVID is a real phenomenon and that further research is needed to understand how the symptoms of COVID-19 can be treated over an extended period. She said: "Patients whose COVID-19 illness is serious enough for them to require hospital care often continue to suffer significant symptoms for many weeks after their discharge." Read full story Source: Sky News, 11 November 2020
  7. News Article
    Pfizer and BioNTech have said that their coronavirus vaccine may be more than 90% effective, after the two pharmaceutical firms released interim data from their ongoing large-scale trial. Preliminary analysis, conducted by an independent data monitoring board, looked at 94 infections recorded so far in the vaccine’s phase 3 study, which has enrolled nearly 44,000 people in the US and five other countries. Of those participants who were infected with COVID-19, it is currently unclear how many had received the vaccine versus those who had been given a placebo. The current efficacy rate, which is much better than most experts expected, implies that no more than eight volunteers will have been inoculated. The data have yet to be peer-reviewed, and Pfizer said the initial protection rate might change by the time the study ends. The longevity of the immune response provoked by the mRNA-based vaccine also remains unknown. However, the findings are the most promising indication to date that a vaccine will be effective in preventing disease among infected individuals, handing humanity a crucial tool in tackling the pandemic. Pfizer and its German partner BioTech will continue with the phase 3 trial until 164 infections have been reported among volunteers - a figure that will give regulatory authorities a clearer idea of the vaccine’s efficacy. This number is expected to be reached by early December in light of the rising US infection rates, Pfizer said. The two companies said they have so far found no serious safety concerns and expect to seek US emergency use authorisation later this month. Read full story Source: The Independent, 9 November 2020
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