Infectious Disease Sciences (IDS) researchers are playing a key role in the development of new COVID-19 prevention and treatment strategies. Our researchers are heading up several population-based studies as well as leading the way in clinical response to the virus.
Content last updated 10/22/20
Michael Boeckh and Alpana Waghmare are co-leading CovidWatch: Investigating the infection rate of SARS-CoV-2, how long a person that encountered the virus is able to spread the virus, and if an individual can be re-infected again. This may also help us understand which immune responses help to protect a person and need to be generated by a vaccine.
Michael Boeckh is part of a multi-organizational team collaborating on the Seattle Coronavirus Assessment Network (SCAN): By collecting nasal swabs from a representative sample of healthy and sick people across Seattle and King County, the study aims to develop a better understanding of the outbreak and help inform public health decisions.
Michael Boeckh is leading a trial that will be conducted at the Fred Hutch COVID-19 Clinical Research Center. The purpose of this trial is to evaluate treatment with IV-administered REGN-COV2, a combination therapy with two antibodies, in an outpatient setting in participants with confirmed SARS-CoV-2 infection, the virus that causes COVID-19, both asymptomatic and symptomatic.
Larry Corey is head of the Fred Hutch-based operations center for the COVID-19 Prevention Network (CoVPN), which was formed by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) at the United States (US) National Institutes of Health (NIH). CoVPN will work to develop and conduct studies to ensure rapid and thorough evaluation of US government-sponsored COVID-19 vaccines and antibodies for the prevention of COVID-19 disease. For more information on active trials, or to volunteer for a COVID-19 prevention clinical study, please see the CoVPN website.
Elizabeth Duke is leading a trial that will be conducted at the Fred Hutch COVID-19 Clinical Research Center. The purpose of this trial is to evaluate treatment with orally-administered EIDD-2801 in an outpatient setting in participants with confirmed SARS-CoV-2 infection, the virus that causes COVID-19.
Josh Hill is leading a trial that will be conducted at the Fred Hutch COVID-19 Clinical Research Center. The purpose of this trial is to evaluate treatment with IV-administered Remdesivir in an outpatient setting in participants with confirmed SARS-CoV-2 infection, the virus that causes COVID-19, who are at risk for disease progression.
Anna Wald is leading:
Content last updated 8/14/20
Current projects underway include:
Content last updated 8/14/20
Larry Corey, Emily Ford, and Anton Sholukh published a sero-epidemiology study of SARS-CoV-2 in Blaine County, ID, with follow up analysis of humoral response to seasonal coronaviruses and functionality of SARS-CoV-2 antibodies (a collaboration with Ketchum FD, University of Washington [UW] Virology and Albany College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences).
Keith Jerome and Larry Corey conducted a population epidemiology study to characterize trends in PCR test positivity for SARS-CoV-2 in Washington (WA) State and the Seattle area before and after statewide physical distancing guidelines and stay-at-home orders.
Keith Jerome and Amanda Casto have completed a comparative assessment of the sensitivities and specificities of SARS-CoV-2 molecular assays using different primer sets and one commercial assay kit.
Keith Jerome and Pavitra Roychoudhury
Keith Jerome, Samuel Minot, and Pavitra Roychoudhury evaluated metagenomic approaches for unbiased detection of emerging pathogens including SARS-CoV-2.
Chikara Ogimi has reviewed current knowledge and recent discoveries on the virology, epidemiology and disease associated with common, community-acquired human coronaviruses and coronaviruses responsible for past epidemics in pediatrics and immunocompromised hosts.
Steve Pergam, Catherine Liu, and Keith Jerome investigated SARS-CoV-2 prevalence, clinical characteristics and outcomes in symptomatic Seattle-area healthcare workers.
Josh Schiffer, Larry Corey, Anna Wald, and Josh Hill are pursuing early test-and-treat approaches to SARS-CoV-2 by developing a pipeline of randomized clinical trials, negotiating contract with pharma partners, and developing the Fred Hutchinson COVID CRC for early treatment trials of COVID-19. To date, they have formed the Planning and Implementation Committee for Gilead’s planned outpatient trial of remdesivir, published a review in Open Forum Infectious Diseases, are in negotiation for two industry-funded trials, have one investigator-initiated study in preparation with private funding secured, and the clinic site is nearly complete. With Shelly Karuna and Rachel Bender Ignacio.
Josh Schiffer, Fabian Cordozo Ojeda, and Dan Reeves developed a SARS CoV-2 transmission model that links observed viral shedding kinetics with key epidemiologic features of transmission, identifies viral loads necessary for SARS-CoV-2 transmission, and explains why super-spreader events are more common for SARS-CoV-2 than for influenza. With Ashish Goyal and Bryan Mayer.
Alpana Waghmare, Josh Schiffer, Michael Boeckh, Keith Jerome, Elizabeth Duke, and Dan Reeves demonstrated that self-sampling with mid-nasal foam swabs is well-tolerated and provides quantitative viral output concordant with mid-turbinate flocked swabs. Showed that nasal cytokine levels correlate and cluster according to immune cell of origin, and that periods of stable viral loads are followed by rapid elimination, which could be coupled with cytokine expansion and contraction using mathematical models. Studies are ongoing to determine the utility of the foam swab for SARS-CoV-2 testing at home.
Anna Wald, Elizabeth Duke and Amanda Casto are study investigators in the ACTT-1 NIH randomized controlled trial (RCT) of remdesivir for hospitalized patients, which assessed remdesivir for COVID-19 treatment in patients hospitalized with COVID-19 and requiring supplemental oxygen therapy. Preliminary report.
Content last updated 8/14/20
Michael Boeckh is leading The CovidWatch Study, funded by Amazon. A Longitudinal Observational Study To Determine SARS-Cov-2 Incidence, Asymptomatic And Symptomatic Infection, And Immune Correlates In Healthy Individuals With High Risk Of Exposure.
Josh Hill will serve as a PI of clinical trials for patients with SARS-CoV-2 infection who do not require hospitalization, using small molecule and cellular therapies to prevent disease progression.
Manoj Menon submitted a proposal to serve as a site of a clinical trial testing anticoagulation strategies for COVID-19. This funded trial is awaiting approval from the UW ITHS COVID-19 Research Review Working Group.
Steve Pergam. Vanderbilt U01 COVID supplement. Comparison of High vs. Standard Dose Flu Vaccine in Pediatric Stem Cell Transplant Recipients. Will retrospectively identify immunocompromised patients with prior COVID-19, and will prospectively enroll immunocompromised patients who had a proven or suspected COVID-19 infection or have had an exposure to SARS-COV-2.
Warren Phipps. Submitted response in July to NIH U54 funding opportunity to establish SARS-CoV-2 Serologic Sciences Centers of Excellence in East Africa as part of a multi-institutional collaboration among the Fred Hutch, University of Nebraska, Uganda Cancer Institute, and Ocean Road Cancer Institute in Tanzania.
Jia Zhu collaborated with researchers at UW School of Engineering to submit a RADx proposal on immunoresistive sensor for rapid, point-of-care screening of COVID-19.
Content last updated 8/14/20
Michael Boeckh’s CovidWatch study was recently featured on the front page of The Seattle Times, “Fred Hutch Study Targets Front-line Workers Most at Risk from the Coronavirus.”
Amanda Casto was interviewed by a writer for UW Medicine for an article on clinician recommendations for the upcoming influenza season in the context of the ongoing SARS-CoV-2 pandemic. Article to appear in UW Medicine patient publication Right as Rain.
Emily Ford and Danniel Zamora are part of a team of volunteers deployed to area nursing homes to provide SARS-CoV-2 testing to people in facilities with multiple confirmed COVID positive cases.
Fellow Olivia Kates was quoted by KING 5 News in “Experts concerned coronavirus cases could rise with Seattle protests.”
Catherine Liu and Steve Pergam
Steve Pergam has been very actively involved in keeping the public informed. Some engagements include talking to KUOW for “Coronavirus outbreak means tough decisions for cancer patients, physicians”, the Scientific American podcast “Coronavirus Hot Zone: Research and Responses in the U.S. Epicenter”, and KING 5 news for “The Do’s and Don’ts of Social Distancing.” He was featured in The Seattle Times article “The etiquette of social distancing in the time of coronavirus, from the 'Miss Manners' of germs” as well as GeekWire’s story “Infectious disease expert Steve Pergam shares his prescription for a safe weekend get-together.” Recently he was interviewed by NPR and Scripps National News about the importance and timing of flu vaccination in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic. Other media engagements include quotes and interviews with the Wall Street Journal, USAToday, NPR, Forbes, Scripps National News, ESPN, Healio, ACCC, MedPage Today, CURE Today and Cancer Health magazines, The Cancer Letter, Poz, The Washington Post, Bloomberg News, KOMO News, Q13 FOX News, Patient Worthy, Unravel Pediatric Cancer Podcast, CureTalks podcast, Uromigos podcast, MyNorthwest, Women’s Health Magazine, the SCCA blog and podcast, and Hutch News.
Danniel Zamora participated in the Northwest Hospital surge capacity response earlier this year by working in the medical ICU treating/caring for COVID-19 and non-COVID-19 patients, and volunteered covering the hospital-wide UW Medical Center clinical COVID-19 pager answering and advising clinical questions regarding COVID-19 treatment and testing.