Didier Allaer, CEO
" CE marked of Covid assay by RT-QPCR "
" CE marked of Covid assay by RT-QPCR "
" Development of Methods for Mask and N95 Decontamination (the DeMaND study) and reuse for healthcare workers at the frontline The aim of this study is to identify and test, simple low-cost safe decontamination methods to enable medical masks and N95/ FFP2 respirators reuse in healthcare settings where there are critical shortages. "
Funding: Open Philanthropy
ULB - FNRS
" During the Covid-19 crisis, I participated in a multidisciplinary research group (biology, medicine, economy) whose objective was to define a deconfinement strategy taking into account public health and economic requirements. We have published several articles for policy makers (VOX-EU), scientists (Nature medicine) and the general public (The Conversation). "
Publication References: Rapidly identifying workers who are immune to COVID-19 and virus-free is a priority for restarting the Economy. Dewatripont, M., Muraille, E., Platteau, J.-P., Goldman, M. VOX-CE, 23 March 2020. https://voxeu.org/article/rapidly-identifying-workers-who-are-immune-covid-19-and-virus-free-priority-restarting-economy Preparing for a responsible lockdown exit strategy. Gilbert, M., Dewatripont, M., Muraille, E., Platteau, J.-P., Goldman, M. Nature Médicine, 2020. https://www.nature.com/articles/s41591-020-0871-y Covid-19 : comment une stratégie de doubles tests permettrait de sortir du...
" This study aims to assess the potential roles of spike glycoproteins and viral proteins encoded by ORF6, ORF7a, ORF8 and ORF10 in the antagonism of several known restriction factors (BST-2, GBP5, IFITM, ...) and in the modulation of innate immune responses (NF-kB pathway and IFN response). These proteins will be expressed in different cell models and we will define their ability to bind and/or degrade restriction factors. Depending on results, we will perform sequencing (NGS) of these genes from clinical isolates in order to observe whether the genetic variability can be linked to the pathogenesis of SARS-CoV-2 viruses. "
Funding: Own funds
" The objective of this project is to perform SARS CoV-2 infection of cells from Vero E6 line. With a view to -Study the information of the infection on the immune activation pathways and the metabolic pathways within the cells - Perform virus viability assays in different environments and analyze the effectiveness of the hygiene measures taken to prevent transmission of the virus into the environment. - Study the neutralization and the cytopathogenic effect by antibodies from clinical samples "
Funding: own funding
" Thanks to high-throughput sequencing of the strains collected for the diagnosis, we document the viral spread within health care facilities. A better understanding of the virus transmission chains are key to evaluate the efficacy of hygiene measures that were implemented to avoid cross-contamination between patients and health care workers. A secondary objective is the analysis of clinical data related to the patients, in order to search genotypic differences that may possibly explain divergent pathogenic courses. "
Funding: Own funding, submitted calls.
UCLouvain - Royal Academy of Sciences, Letters and Fine Arts of Belgium
" Optimisation of bacterial strains for the expression of proteins from the COVID-19 virus Optimisation of bacterial strains for the expression of proteins from the COVID-19 virus Optimisation of bacterial strains for the expression of proteins from the COVID-19 virus "
" The first objectives of our approach was to strongly increase the testing capacity for virus by using protocols that are as effective as possible and above all not very dependent on the external sources of consumables and reagents whose supply is threatened. The ULiege testing platform can analyse more than 3000 samples per day and is member on the National testing platform. "
Contact: Prof Fabrice BUREAU Vice-Recteur à la Recherche, Université de Liège Place du 20-Août, 7 B-4000, Liège Belgique Tél: +32 4 366 32 14 Prof Laurent GILLET Université de Liège Quartier Vallée, 2 Avenue de Cureghem, 10 B-4000, Liège Belgique Tél: +32 4 366 42 86
" The University Hospital of Liège (CHULiège) has developed a diagnostic capability to detect the SARS-CoV-2 by RT-PCR in response to the need for more capacity testing in Belgium from March 2020. Indeed, from February 2020, clinical COVID-19 cases were already detected in Belgium thanks to the Reference laboratory for respiratory viruses in KULeuven (Reflab). However, it appeared rapidly evident that the capacity of the Reflab could not be further enhanced. Therefore Belgian university and non-university hospital laboratories started to develop RT-PCR assays which sensitivity were first validated by the Reflab. CHULiège developed an in house SARS-CoV-2 RT-PCR assay following an adapted version of the Charité Hospital (1) protocol with the aid of the Antwerp University Hospital Microbiology lab and the Reflab. We have chosen to include two targets: the E and RNA-dependent RNA polymerase (RdRP) genes. From the 6th March, we were able to run the test and since this date we run...
FARAH - ULiège
" As of today, one of the most promising therapeutic solutions against COVID-19 is the use of convalescent plasma. A subset of the antibodies present in this plasma are able to bind the surface proteins of the virus, chiefly the Spike (attachment) protein, and to neutralize the ability of viral particles to infect permissive cells. Upon request of the Red Cross and ULiège CHU hospital, we developed seroneutralization assays to determine the titers in neutralizing antibodies of convalescent plasma. In collaboration with KU Leuven (Rega) and ITM Antwerp, we just completed an interlaboratory ring test. We screen convalescent plasmas on a routine basis for the Croix Rouge and Rode Kruis. Only plasmas with a titer in neutralizing antibodies above the cut-off value will be used therapeutically. The scarcity of the scientific literature on the subject (only a few studies on the therapeutic use of convalescent plasmas are currently available) make it difficult to fix a cut-off...
LHUB-ULB - Royal Academy of Medicine of Belgium
" "The purpose of this study is to map the healthcare workers exposure risk in Saint-Pierre University Hospital by combining molecular methods with serological assays. In summary, the short-term objective is threefold: (1) Provide an estimate of the sero-prevalence at baseline among high-risk health care workers (2) Determine prospectively the incidence of new SARS-CoV-2 infections among high-risk health care workers (3) Estimate the healthcare worker exposure to the virus by serological data to help our five partner hospitals in their day-to-day management of the ongoing pandemic The mid-term objectives are: (1) Establish an accurate mapping of the spread of the virus among our population allowing to identify the chain of transmission, (2) Identify predictive immunological markers of susceptibility to infection and disease severity to inform vaccine strategies and, (3) Establish solid diagnosis algorithm that will help adequate lockdown...
CHU of Liège
" The aim of this study is to search for the presence of antibodies against SARS-CoV-2 in the staff of CHU de Liège and University of Liège, and to follow the evolution of antibody levels on blood samples taken 1.5 and 3 months after the first sample. This will allow to : • carry out a COVID-19 seroprevalence study by assaying anti-SARS-CoV-2 antibodies in people in contact with patients, compared to a population of "negative control" subjects, at baseline and 1.5 and 3 months after the first testing ; • observe the evolution of antibody levels between samples; • highlight possible seroconversion between samples in asymptomatic persons "
Funding: Wallonia Region CHU of Liège University of Liège Fondation Léon Frédéricq
Contact: Dr Pascale Huynen, Dpt of Clinical Microbiology, CHU of Liège and University of Liège Prof Pierrette Melin, Dpt of Clinical Microbiology, CHU of Liège and University of Liège Prof Yves Beguin, Dpt of Hematology, CHU of Liège and University of...
Cliniques universitaires Saint-Luc, UCLouvain
" The objective of our project is to describe the nasopharyngeal (NP) microbiota and virome of SARS-CoV-2 infected patients at diagnosis through unbiased nextgeneration sequencing analysis and to correlate microbiota and virome profile with COVID-19 infectious phenotype. At a second stage of our project, provided additional findings are raised, those data will be enriched by NP transcriptome analysis of infected patients, and background genomic determination. Integration of those data and analysis through systems biology approach will enable better understanding of multidirectional host-pathogen interactions. "
Funding: FNRS CUR requested. Additional funding will be requested for further steps.
" We are designing bacteria that produces the essential protease of COVID-19 and whose activity is associated with sensitivity to a specific antibiotics. This bacteria is a powerful platform for screening potential inhibitors of the protease (the bacteria becomes resistant to the antibiotics if the protease is inhibited). We will use it to screen large combinatorial libraires of cyclic peptides that will be produced by the bacteria as well. "
Funding: Lab funds. FRNS grant application ongoing.
Contact: Patrice Soumillion Louvain Institute of Biomolecular Science and Technology, UCLouvain Place Croix du Sud 4-5 1348 Louvain-la-Neuve
GSK - Royal Academy of Medicine of Belgium
" Support covid international: https://www.gsk.com/en-gb/media/resource-centre/our-contribution-to-the-fight-against-2019-ncov/ Support covid en Belgique: https://be.gsk.com/media/915368/cp-gsk-contributions-majeures-de-gsk-a-la-lutte-contre-le-covid-19.pdf NA NA "