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Ahmad Awada, Chef de Service, Medical Oncology - Karen Willard-Gallo, Laboratory Head, Molecular Immunology - Aspasia Georgala, Infectious Disease Physician - Maher Khalife, Chef de Service, Anesthesiology- Alain Roman, Chef de Service, Intensive Care

ULB, Bordet Institute and CHU Saint-Pierre
" The limited capacity of intensive care unit (ICU) beds and the high mortality of patients requiring ICU care after COVID-19 infection are major problems that urgently require solutions. Early evidence suggests that an individual patient's immune responses to this virus are a key factor in their disease pathogenesis. This response can be further compounded by underlying factors, which for patients at Bordet can be exacerbated by their cancer status. A recent study shows that some cancer patients (particularly lung, blood or metastatic cancer patients) are three times more likely to die from COVID-19 infection. Thus, there is an important need to understand and identify immune biomarker(s) that measure functionality of innate and/or adaptive immunity in the blood with rapid turnaround to provide much needed information for clinical decision making. The anticipated results of this collaborative research project include the identification of...

Anne Van den Broeke, Doctor

Institut Jules Bordet
" Contribution to the application and implementation of a novel Covid-19 diagnostic testing method developed at the GIGA/FARAH academic research institutes. Starting with a handful academic scientists from different disciplines, we established a Covid diagnostic lab with the goal of increasing the testing capacity in Belgium during the heaviest period of the crisis. The lab was entirely and exclusively build by training academic volunteers dedicating their time and energy to a joint effort to "beat the virus". Today the lab has a testing capacity of > 3000 samples/day, 7days/7. The diagnostic lab contributed - and still contributes - to the federal Testing Task Force as one of the five partners involved in screening nursing homes and more recently "centres de triage". We believe extensive testing may be critical to assist and better understand the nascent "deconfinement". Making available our expertise in virus-associated diseases accumulated over years of...

Benoit Misset, MD

CHU Liège
" Multicenter randomized trial to assess the efficacy of CONvalescent plasma therapy in patients with Invasive COVID-19 and acute respiratory failure treated with mechanical ventilation " 
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Delphine Canivet, PhD

Erasme Hospital
" Objectifs : L'épidémie du coronavirus a eu des conséquences délétères sur la santé mentale de la population générale1,2. Aucune étude ne s'est encore penchée sur l'impact psychologique du coronavirus sur les proches des patients ayant été infectés par le covid-19. Cette étude permet de comparer les proches de patients survivants ayant séjourné ou n'ayant pas séjourné en soins intensifs, des proches de patients décédés. Méthodologie : Les familles (N=200) dont le proche a séjourné en soins intensifs ou en unité COVID à l'hôpital Erasme seront contactées par téléphone et invitées à compléter des questionnaires en ligne au minimum 1 mois après la sortie d'hospitalisation de leur proche, ou après son décès, et ensuite 6 mois après la première évaluation. Les variables psychologiques qui seront évaluées sont : (1) la qualité de vie (The Mc Gill Quality of Life Questionnaire), les symptômes anxieux et dépressifs (Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale, HADS), les...

Francois Mullier, Prof - Alain Dive, Prof - Michael Hardy, Dr - Sarah Lessire, Prof - Isabelle Michaux, Prof - Jonathan Douxfils, Prof

UCLouvain, CHU UCLouvain/UNamur
" Evaluation of the thrombotic risk associated with SARS-CoV-2 infection and its management in the intensive care unit: a clinical and biological longitudinal study. Background Since the beginning of SARS-CoV-2 outbreak in December 2019, data accumulate regarding the high thrombotic risk associated with this infection, which could explain substantial part of the observed morbidity and mortality (1). Accordingly, a retrospective study suggested that prophylactic anticoagulation could reduce mortality in severe COVID-19 patients with sepsis-induced coagulopathy (2). Furthermore, a European cohort reported a 27% incidence of venous thrombo-embolisms (VTEs) despite systematic prophylactic anticoagulation, raising the question whether deeper anticoagulant regimen would be beneficial in severe COVID-19 (3). Some authors also suggested that fibrinolysis alterations could be a significant determinant of SARS-CoV-2 infection's prognosis, as it is in...

Gilles Parzibut, Doctor

ULiège, CHU
" La recherche de biomarqueurs fiables, sensibles et peu invasifs est un enjeu de premier ordre pour la médecine moderne. En effet, ces biomarqueurs ont le potentiel de transformer la prise en charge médicale en améliorant le dépistage et le diagnostic, mais aussi en permettant de mieux appréhender la physiopathologie d'une pathologie ou sa réponse à un traitement donné. Fort de nos travaux précédents, nous proposons de réaliser une étude prospective sur une population adulte souffrant d'un SDRA modéré à sévère post SARS-COV2 afin de caractériser une signature exosomique plasmatique propre à cette population. "
Funding: FLF FIRS CHU de Liège
Publication References: hankar-Hari, M., Fan, E. & Ferguson, N. D. Acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) phenotyping. Intensive Care Med. (2018). 45;(4): 516-519. Thompson BT, Chambers RC, Liu KD. Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome. N Engl J Med. 2017;377(6):562–72. Johnstone RM, Adam M, Hammond JR, Orr L, Turbide C. Vesicle...

Julien Guiot, MD PhD

ULiège, CHU
" We are facing a COVID-19 infection pandemic. This pathogenic virus is a source of pulmonary complications greatly aggravating the prognosis of our patients. Today, both the pathophysiological mechanisms involved and the predictive markers of the severity of the disease remain unclear. It therefore seems urgent to be able to identify prognostic and diagnostic markers for our patients on the one hand. In this context, several paths that can quickly be explored appear to us to be critical. This is why we are planning the evaluation of the neutrophilic activation pathway by studying the Exosomes and circulating nucleosomes containing neutrophilic activation markers. This tool would make it possible to identify people at risk of clinical deterioration but also to approach the pathophysiological mechanisms involved. "
Funding: Fonds Léon Fredericq
Publication References: 1Danthi P. Viruses and the Diversity of Cell death Annu. Rev. Virol. (2016) 3:533–53 2 Wang Y et al...

Marie-Pierre HAYETTE, The RT-PCR diagnostic platform of CHU Liège for the detection of SARS-CoV-2

" 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...

Mickael Aoun, Infectiologist

Bordet Institute
" On April 11th, 2020, four patients hospitalized for more than 7 days developed fever some of them respiratory symptoms compatible with Covid-19 infection and were detected positive for SARS-CoV2. A 5th patient was also detected positive , had minor symptoms and was admitted 2 days earlier for collecting PBSC As a consequence of this mini-outbreak a screening of healthcare workers at this Unit revealed 2 staff members positive for SARS-CoV2. Severe acute respiratory distress syndrome Coronavirus 2(SARS-CoV2), causing Covid19 pandemic is rapidly spreading from person-to-person, via respiratory droplets, direct contact with mucous membranes or indirect contact through touching infected surfaces and then touching own eyes, nose or mouth. Airborne transmission after generated aerosols (intubation, bronchoscopy, tracheal aspiration,…) have been previously reported for other Coronaviruses(SARS-CoV1, MERS) and has been postulated for SARS-Cov2. In critical units such as the...

Olivier DURANTEAU, Doctor

Erasme Hospital
" Precise the frequency of thrombosis events in COVID19 patients "
Funding: No need
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Ph. DELVENNE, FNRS Research Director / Chef de service Anatomie pathologique - J. GUIOT, Chef de clinique Pneumologie - L. RENAUD, Chef de service Pneumologie - M. MOUTSCHEN, Chef de service Infectiologie- B. MISSET, Chef de service Soins Intensifs

ULiège, CHU - Royal Academy of Medicine of Belgium
" Nous faisons face à une pandémie d'infection COVID-19. Ce virus pathogène est source de complications pulmonaires aggravant fortement le pronostic de nos patients. De nos jours, tant les mécanismes physiopathologiques en cause que les marqueurs de sévérité de l'atteinte restent indéterminés. Il apparaît donc comme urgent de pouvoir identifier des marqueurs diagnostiques, pronostiques et prédictifs pour nos patients. Dans ce contexte, plusieurs voies rapidement explorables nous apparaissent comme critiques. Le but final de cette étude est de contribuer à une prise en charge plus ciblée des patients porteurs d'une infection au SRAS-Cov-2. "
Funding: Fonds Léon Frederic
Publication References: Dix publications représentatives : 1) Prevention of murine radiogenic thymic lymphomas by tumor necrosis factor or by marrow grafting. HUMBLET C, GREIMERS R, DELVENNE P, DEMAN J, BONIVER J, DEFRESNE MP. J Natl Cancer Inst 88 (1996), 824-831. IF...

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c/o F.R.S. - FNRS

Rue d’Egmont 5

B - 1000 Bruxelles

Tél : +32 2 504 92 11


Brussels & Wallonia against COVID19