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Report: COVID-19 immunology research

Published 1 May 2020

Our COVID-19 and immunology taskforce have published a summary of their investigation, highlighting the following questions to mobilise and coordinate the UK's immunology research response to COVID-19:

Rapid learning about immunity for public health impact

  1. What, if any, antibody properties confer protection against the virus, and what proportion of antibody responses are protective?

  2. What are the roles of immune cells from the adaptive (T-cells) and innate systems, such as Natural Killer cells and T-cells, in protective immunity?

  3. What is the sero-prevalence of SARS-Cov-2 antibodies? What proportion of individuals mount either an antibody, or a cellular response or both after infection?

  4. How can laboratory-based antibody tests be safely scaled to reliable commercial equivalents that are not confounded by cross-reactivity to other coronaviruses?

Rapid impacts for COVID-19 treatment

  1. What is the full immunopathology of COVID-19 in the lung and other organs?

  2. What are the biomarkers predictive of severe disease?

  3. What is the potential role for antiviral and immunomodulation therapies in COVID-19 treatment?

  4. How can we reliably test whether COVID-19 patients remain infectious?

The review aims to help researchers, funders and policymakers navigate existing research findings and focus future research on areas that will make the biggest difference to patients and society. For those without a research background, we have also summarised the review findings in an accessible question and answer blog.

Download the full report here

Read the press release