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Press release September 2023: STRAVINSKY opens participant recruitment


Press release from September 2023

We're pleased to announce that the ‘Stratification of Clinically Vulnerable People for COVID-19 Risk Using Antibody Testing’ (STRAVINSKY) study has recruited its first patient in an important step forward in our work to establish whether antibody levels predict risk of COVID-19 infection in patients who are clinically vulnerable.  

STRAVINSKY is a new 2-year study, funded by the National Institute for Health and Care Research (NIHR), which aims to build our understanding of who is most clinically vulnerable to COVID-19 infection and identify individuals or disease groups at highest risk. Using this information, STRAVINSKY will be able to assess the effectiveness of COVID-19 booster vaccine programmes or new treatment strategies for these patients as well as respond if significant new COVID variants are detected.

STRAVINSKY is recruiting up to 2,600 patients to take part in this research who either have conditions or take medication that affect the functioning of their immune system.  This includes people with conditions such as cancer, autoimmune conditions (such as rheumatoid arthritis or multiple sclerosis), immunodeficiency, solid organ transplant, liver cirrhosis, inherited blood disorders, HIV, chronic kidney disease, diabetes, Down syndrome, Parkinson’s disease, heart failure and bone marrow transplant.

Patient recruitment has opened at two of the 11 STRAVINSKY hospital sites so far, with more sites due to begin recruitment in the coming weeks. Visit this page to find out more information for individuals considering taking part in STRAVINSKY. Sites will contact eligible patients on their databases when they start recruitment. Sites where the STRAVINSKY project will run are: Birmingham, Cardiff, Glasgow, Leicester, London, Oxford, Newcastle, Nottingham, Portsmouth, Sheffield and Southampton.

Lead researcher, Professor Alex Richter from University of Birmingham, said: 

“Although the COVID-19 vaccine programme has been very successful, we know there are still some patients with weakened immune systems who remain at high risk of becoming very ill with COVID-19. The STRAVINSKY study aims to find out if an antibody test result can predict these individuals’ risk of severe COVID-19 infection. To do this, we want to recruit up to 2,600 patients who are clinically vulnerable from all backgrounds to take part in our study.  Their participation will be crucial in allowing us to build our understanding of the risk of COVID infection experienced by people with different conditions.  We also want to find out if measuring antibodies is a helpful predictive tool in identifying those individuals most at risk of catching COVID-19, which will help us provide better clinical care for these patients in the future.” 

Find out more information about STRAVINSKY and how to take part in the study