Ten Jefferson Parish Sheriff’s Office deputies volunteered to participate in COVID-19 research at LSU Health New Orleans and the National institutes of Health by donating blood samples. The deputies have recovered from infection with SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19.
“This sample collection from COVID-19 convalescent patients is part of ongoing research projects by several of our investigators and in part a collaboration with the Director of the National Cancer Institute,” says Augusto Ochoa, MD, director of LSU Health New Orleans Stanley Scott Cancer Center. “Our researchers and those at the NCI are trying to determine which type of immune response -- type of antibodies or immune cells -- is important to kill the virus and cure the disease.“
LSU Health New Orleans is collecting the samples, and will process them in its laboratories.
“Part of the serum will be sent to the NCI, and the remainder will stay at LSU Health New Orleans for the ongoing research,” said Ochoa. “The NCI is also trying to validate the many tests that are being offered to make sure the information provided is accurate and can help guide the development of new vaccines or new treatments.“
"Those in the medical profession are on the front line of this pandemic, and a better understanding of this disease will help us all fight it and beat it,” says Jefferson Parish Sheriff Joseph Lopinto. “I am glad our deputies were able to help in any way, and I am confident that the staff at the LSU Health Sciences Center and our other area providers will do all they can to help the community through this time."