Biological and Chronological Ageing Population
International research collaboration between the Buck Institute, Stanford 1000 Immunome Project, HLPO.Life and KCL looking at:
Age-dependent and Independent Symptoms and Comorbidities Predictive of COVID-19 Hospitalization
We use advanced bioinformatics techniques to identify features that predict disease severity and can be utilised to inform severe cases of COVID-19 even in younger individuals who may not be labelled as high risk. Continued rise in the number of cases, as societies struggle to balance reopening the economy and ‘flattening the curve’, places an enormous burden on healthcare systems around the world. Knowing the signs of possible severe cases like the ones derived in this study could help healthcare systems devote resources to intervening in potentially severe cases before they become costly to manage. The fact that, in our preliminary analysis, age-associated variables outperform age in the prediction of patient hospitalization indicates that biological age or immunological age could be appropriate measures in assessing an individual’s prognosis.
This work uses data provided by participants of the COVID-19 Symptoms Study, developed by ZOE Global Limited with scientific and clinical input from King’s College London. We would also like to acknowledge all data providers who made anonymised data available for research. We wish to acknowledge the input of ZOE Global Limited and King’s College London in their development and sharing of the data, and their input into the understanding and contextualisation of data for COVID-19 research.
SARS-Cov2 and the Aging Immune System
In this work, we focus on the role of the aging immune system on its ability to respond to SARS-Cov2. As we age, our immune system undergoes age-related immune decline in a process termed immunosenescence. Immunosenescence is characterised by an increase in senescent anti-apoptotic cells and accumulation of senescent-associated secretory phenotype (SASP). New science of ageing suggests that these processes enable a more sustained low grade chronic sterile inflammation that increases the chances of cardiometabolic disease and over time leads to deranged lipid profiles, pro-coagulant state and dysglycemia that is often followed by the development of cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes, dementia and certain cancers – disease that become more common with increasing age. Moreover, it may make the immune system of the biologically older patients more likely to form dysregulated reactions and less likely to mount an effective immune response and produce antibodies to vaccines, including potentially the future Covid-19 vaccine. We hope this work could inform scientists around to world to develop interventions that target immunosenescence as immune system boosters might be required together with the vaccine to protect the elderly from the infection.
The CEDiD Study – The COVID-19 Early Detection in Doctors and Healthcare Workers using Wearable Technology
A single-center, prospective observational study of healthcare workers in high-risk areas looking to protect the NHS workforce and reduce hospital-associated transmission of COVID-19. As all study participants are monitored with cutting-edge wearables, regularly tested and their clinical symptoms monitored, data will help in determining the early warning signs and validation of algorithm for early detection of COVID-19 in healthcare workers.
If successful, The CEDiD Study will provide important information for healthcare providers in advance of any possible future peaks of infection, to prevent spread of disease and ensure minimal disruption to vital healthcare service provision. By leveraging advances in telehealth, medical devices and data analytics, it is hoped that this study will identify new strategies to facilitate the early identification of COVID-19. ClinicalTrials.gov, NCT04363489.
Re-purposing of Lipid Lowering & Metabolic Therapeutics to Reduce the Severity of Covid-19 Infection in the Community
International Research Collaboration to identify off-label common readily available and affordable drugs that may treat or ameliorate Covid-19 symptoms and reduce the need for medical review and/or hospitalisation. We study the role of cholesterol level in the process of the coronavirus infection and focus on lipid lowering therapy especially statins which are relatively safe, commonly prescribed medication class which promote cholesterol reduction, plaque stabilization, cardiovascular risk prevention and have general anti‐inflammatory and potential antiviral properties.