Differences in infection rate
The research team then examines whether there are large differences in the degree of infection and the subsequent response of the decreased epithelium. Also, lung epithelial responses to SARS-CoV-2 are compared with lung epithelial responses to other pathogenic coronaviruses such as SARS-CoV, MERS-CoV and less pathogenic coronaviruses. “For example, we can investigate what makes the current coronavirus special and whether it infects the respiratory tract differently from other (corona) viruses. With that knowledge, we can also ultimately better understand the long-term consequences of the current coronavirus, ”explains Van der Does.
Investigating long-term lung damage
Part of the grant will be used to develop a Fibrosis Long-Chip. “This chip can be used in the near future to investigate long-term lung damage in COVID-19,” says Van der Does. “When developing the chip, we are trying to develop a model in which we can simulate the effects of the current coronavirus in patients as closely as possible. With this model, we then want to find out whether (long-term) lung damage can be inhibited or even prevented with the help of medication, for example. ”
By: Nationale Zorggids