Spectrum Health, MSU partner to identify current and future COVID-19 variants

0
84
Spectrum Health, MSU partner to identify current and future COVID-19 variants


GRAND RAPIDS, MI — Spectrum Health is teaming up with Michigan State University to identify which COVID-19 variants are circulating in West Michigan.

MSU was among four universities sharing an $18.5 million grant from the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services to “collect and analyze genomic data to address emerging infectious disease threats and enhance the state of Michigan’s ability to respond to them,” according to a new release.

The grant was funded by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Adam Caulfield, director of microbiology at Spectrum, said the partnership will help Spectrum and MSU develop a more rapid surveillance system to identify “how COVID is behaving in the moment and what variants or version of COVID is circulating locally in West Michigan.”

The effort could also help determine what variant is “around the next corner,” and if that variant “behaves differently,” Caulfield said. Typically, when Spectrum tests a patient for COVID-19, the test doesn’t identify which variant an individual has, he said.

Michigan Technological University, University of Michigan and Wayne State University also received a portion of the $18.5 million grant. The share of grant awarded to MSU is $2.5 million, Caulfield said.

“This project is essential as we focus on developing new computational tools for this pandemic and future viruses,” Jeremy Prokop, assistant professor in the MSU College of Human Medicine, said in a statement. “Through this collaboration with Spectrum Health, we will launch new tools that could one day be used by others to quickly take the sequence of a viral genome and not only correlate it to known strains of the virus, like omicron but also detect new variants that could have major public health impact.”

The effort being undertaken by the universities is being called the Michigan Sequencing Academic Partnership for Public Health Innovation and Response.

Read more:

Dates, prices announced for immersive Van Gogh experience coming to Grand Rapids

Only passenger carrier at Muskegon County Airport wants to end flights this summer

This Michigan vacation rental includes a private island, historic log cabin on a river



Source link

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here