Marc-André Langlois, University of Ottawa, CoVaRR-Net Executive Director, Project Co-Lead
Curtis Cooper, Ottawa Hospital Research Institute, CoVaRR-Net Biobank Clinical Associate Director, Project Co-Lead
Angela M. Crawley, Ottawa Hospital Research Institute, CoVaRR-Net Biobank Director
Amy Hsu, Bruyère Research Institute, CoVaRR-Net Data Platform Director
Raphael Saginur, The Ottawa Hospital, CoVaRR-Net Bioethics Co-Director
Co-Investigators and Collaborators
Corey Arnold, University of Ottawa
Ronald A. Booth, Eastern Ontario Regional Laboratory Association (EORLA)
Catharine A. Buchan, Ottawa Hospital Research Institute
Julian Little, University of Ottawa
Kiran Nakka, University of Ottawa
Martin Pelchat, University of Ottawa
Jennifer A. Quaid, University of Ottawa
The Stop the Spread Ottawa research project started in fall 2020, funded by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) and the COVID-19 Immunity Task Force (CITF). It has 1,000 participants and studies immune responses to SARS-CoV-2 over time. Participants may have tested positive for SARS-CoV-2 infection, been vaccinated, or both. Participants donated blood and saliva samples monthly for 10 months. Thousands of blood and saliva samples have been analyzed and more than 1,500 detailed study questionnaires have been completed over the course of the study.
Questions, however, remain. Notably:
- How long does immunity last after SARS-CoV-2 infection or vaccination?
- Does having two doses of the same vaccine brand provide more robust long-term immunity than “mixing-and matching” vaccine brands?
- Are people with certain characteristics more susceptible to breakthrough infections?
- How well does a previous SARS-CoV-2 infection and/or vaccination protect against new and emerging variants?
- How does the time gap between vaccine doses affect immunity?
- Does vaccination protect against post-infection symptoms (i.e., long COVID-19 or post-COVID)?
The research team is trying to answer these questions. To do so, we will continue to follow 300 of our Stop the Spread Ottawa study participants for an additional two years. Every two months, they will be asked to provide saliva and blood for serum isolation. Every four months, they will be asked for a larger blood draw to allow for further research. These samples will enable the team to track immunity due to a previous SARS-CoV-2 infection, vaccine efficacy, and breakthrough infections by emerging variants. We will compare the antibody responses from people with different characteristics and the duration of those antibody responses. Importantly, we will also contribute regular blood samples from participants who have been followed for nearly a year already – before vaccination, and at times before infection – to the CoVaRR-Net Biobank.
CoVaRR-Net: $300,000 cash contribution