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Report from Malawi: Weathering a second wave—or tsunami—of COVID-19

February 10, 2021

  By Mina Hosseinipour, MD, MPH Officials announced the first confirmed case of COVID-19 in Malawi on April 2, 2020. At UNC Project Malawi, we’d been working for a month to carefully review and prepare for the virus. We established COVID preventive procedures and clinical management guidelines and planning for staff and staff relatives. We … Continued

Office of Global Health Education funds COVID-19 research, service learning projects

February 2, 2021

Projects include vaccinating farmworkers arriving in North Carolina, managing data from Nicaragua, and testing blood samples from Africa   UNC’s Office of Global Health Education (OGHE) is awarding $23,000 to teams of global health faculty and medical students to pursue COVID-19 related research and service learning in the spring or summer of 2021. During a … Continued

UNC investigators help prove a monoclonal antibody prevents, treats COVID-19 in nursing homes

January 21, 2021

  Eli Lilly today released results of a clinical trial that found bamlanivimab, a monoclonal antibody, significantly reduced the risk of contracting COVID-19 among residents and staff of long-term care facilities. The Phase 3 trial was conducted in partnership with the NIH”s National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases and the COVID-19 Prevention Network (CoVPN). … Continued

A Safe Space

December 17, 2020

A collaborative team, drawing in part on experience working with disease outbreaks in Africa, has remarkably transformed UNC’s Medical Intensive Care Unit to treat COVID-19 patients. They’ve demonstrated that it’s possible to provide critical care for patients while keeping providers safe. Like most of us during the pandemic, Billy Fischer, MD, has stayed put the … Continued

Promising COVID-19 drug is part of global study being led by UNC researchers

November 16, 2020

  Last week’s authorization by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for emergency use of bamlanivimab feels like a shot in the arm, so to speak, for David Wohl, MD, a UNC infectious diseases physician and researcher. A monoclonal antibody developed by Eli Lilly to treat mild to moderate COVID-19, bamlanivimab is one of the … Continued

Taking the long view: Cohen delivers Richardson Lecture

October 13, 2020

Human beings will continue to suffer from infectious diseases, some of them contagious. To fight a new disease, infectious disease physicians first work to determine the rules that govern the disease, its spread, and the gravity of the infection. Those rules then determine our prevention and treatment strategies, Institute Director Myron Cohen, MD, told his … Continued

‘Someone who looks like you’

October 7, 2020

Ernest Grant, RN, PhD, FAAN, president of American Nurses Association and an African American, shares why he is participating in COVID-19 vaccine trial   Spending a few hours at a University of North Carolina Health clinic, giving his health history and receiving an injection, might not be Ernest Grant’s favorite way to spend a Monday … Continued

Global survey aims to measure pandemic’s effects on sexual and reproductive health

October 6, 2020

  The expanding COVID-19 pandemic has transformed the social lives of people across the world. A collaboration between researchers at the UNC Institute for Global Health & Infectious Disease, the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, and the Academic Network for Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights Policy is seeking to discover the effects … Continued

Convalescent plasma clinical trial ramps up

September 7, 2020

On the heels of FDA authorization of convalescent plasma as a treatment for COVID-19, UNC researchers are conducting a clinical trial to determine the safety and efficacy of plasma that includes a higher amount of neutralizing antibodies against SARS-CoV-2. The new Coronavirus-inactivating Plasma (CoVIP) research clinical trial is designed to determine the safety and efficacy … Continued

Wohl launches clinical trial, one of 25 sites nationally testing COVID-19 treatments

September 1, 2020

  UNC Institute for Global Health and Infectious Diseases researchers have begun phase 2 and phase 3 evaluations of promising treatments for COVID-19. The UNC School of Medicine joins more than 25 initial sites participating in the clinical trials through ACTIV-2, a public-private partnership sponsored by the NIH’s National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases … Continued

ID faculty organize, conduct COVID-19 testing in hard-hit Lee County, NC

July 29, 2020

  It’s hot (especially wearing full PPE), it’s tedious, and it’s critical. A volunteer team of UNC infectious diseases faculty members along with UNC hospitalists has been conducting drive-up testing for COVID-19 in Sanford, NC, about 35 miles south of Chapel Hill, twice a month since June, seeing roughly 1,000 local residents so far this … Continued

Gay leading phase 3 trial of COVID-19 vaccine

July 28, 2020

In February 2020, as bits of data about the SARS-CoV-2 virus started to emerge, Cindy Gay, MD, MPH, and UNC infectious diseases colleagues began meeting to formulate a local response to the virus. They’ve met weekly ever since, resorting to Zoom calls once the university sent employees home in March. They’ve shared data, compared notes … Continued

NIH awards Cohen, FHI $9.2 million for development of COVID prevention studies

July 21, 2020

The National Institutes of Health has awarded Myron Cohen, MD, director of UNC’s Institute for Global Health and Infectious Diseases, and FHI 360 $9.2 million to support research through the new COVID Prevention Network (CoVPN). The National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases at the National Institutes of Health has formed the network to better … Continued

Cohen, Fischer, and Pettifor update Board of Trustees on COVID-19 efforts

June 7, 2020

  Three Institute for Global Health and Infectious Diseases representatives joined the May 21 UNC Board of Trustees meeting to talk about COVID-19 and the university’s response to the pandemic. Institute Director Myron Cohen, MD, talked about how so many of our researchers have pivoted their work to COVID, working on the development of vaccine … Continued

Parr, medical students conduct first study of tocilizumab in treating COVID-19

May 19, 2020

  In the first COVID-19 case series of tocilizumab in the United States, UNC-Chapel Hill researchers report sobering results. They say the drug should be used judiciously until randomized clinical trials determine tocilizumab’s true efficacy. Meanwhile, medical students sidelined from clinical rotations by the virus conducted the research with lightning speed, all virtually. In the … Continued

Study addresses COVID-19 infection rates for household members

April 24, 2020

By Alyssa LaFaro As seven states now require masks and face coverings for visiting essential businesses or using public transportation, it seems like those spaces are where we are most at risk for COVID-19 infection. But, in truth, the riskiest place could be our homes — at least, if you live with someone who tests positive for the … Continued

She’s raising funds to feed coworkers on frontlines of Covid-19

April 17, 2020

Kathy James was watching the evening news a week or so ago when she saw a story about people in Winston-Salem who were organizing to bring food to local hospital staff fighting Covid-19. We need to do something like that for our people, she thought. James is an administrative coordinator at UNC’s Institute for Global … Continued

From our director: Building national model for crisis response, management

April 9, 2020

  By Myron Cohen, MD Our UNC infectious diseases community, encompassing many disciplines, has responded remarkably to COVID-19. Our physicians have been deployed to patient care and to advise the University and health system’s leadership. Researchers are quickly pivoting their work to focus on COVID. Among the many who have responded quickly: David Wohl and … Continued