None of us knew when we first heard the words “COVID-19,” we would be nine months into a pandemic with little signs of slowing down. Yet here we are in November, reading the CDCs’ recommendations on having a safe holiday or preparing for it without loved ones. Many wonder when it will end or what it would take to get us back to normal again. The answer is clinical research studies, and they are the key to ending COVID-19.
Clinical Research Studies
When new options for different medical conditions are discovered, they must be determined to be effective and safe before they are made available to the public. Research studies evaluate the safety and effectiveness of how an intervention like a new medicine, device, therapy, or diagnostic approach responds with the human body. Volunteers participating in studies make these advancements possible.
For COVID-19 and many other conditions, ways to treat the virus once someone has it, and vaccines to prevent people from getting it are needed.
- Vaccine Studies (236 in development, 40 in testing through research studies)- Help our bodies develop immunity to COVID-19 without getting the virus. The three main types of vaccines in testing are:
- mRNA vaccines -Contain material from the virus that causes COVID-19 that gives our cells instructions for making a harmless protein that destroys the virus.
- Protein subunit vaccines- Include dead or inactive pieces (proteins) of the virus that cause COVID-19 instead of the entire germ.
- Vector vaccines -Contain a weakened version of a live virus—a different virus than the one that causes COVID-19—that has genetic material from the virus that causes COVID-19 inserted in it.
- Treatment Studies (90 in development, 270 in testing through research studies)- Help our body fight COVID-19 in the event we get infected. Types of treatments in testing:
- Antiviral drugs -Keep viruses from multiplying.
- Immunomodulators– Help reduce the body’s immune reaction to the virus in cases where the body begins attacking its organs.
- Neutralizing antibody therapies– May help individuals fight the virus and include various antibody therapies, including those taken from people who have previously had COVID-19.
- Cell therapy products– include cellular immunotherapies and other types of cells such as stem cells and related products.
- Gene therapy products– Modify or manipulate a gene’s expression or alter the biological properties of living cells for therapeutic use.
BFHC is Helping to End COVID-19
Bandera Family joins health officials and researchers around the world in the fight to end COVID-19. Volunteers are needed for upcoming COVID-19 research studies here at BFHC. Help us make medical advancements and history, but visiting our website for more information, or call (210) 296-2445.