Under leadership from Pulmonary Division physician-scientists at UCSF and ZSFG the COMET Study (COVID-19 Multi-Phenotyping for Effective Therapies) has enlisted an interdisciplinary team of scientists and frontline healthcare workers to study COVID-19. The purpose of this study is to better understand how it affects the immune system, why it causes difficulty breathing, and why some people become sicker than others. Learn more about the study at the COMET Study official website and the COMET Study page on this site.
Other COVID-19 Related Research
The Arjomandi Lab is studying the innate immune responses to smoking in health and COPD. The lab was recently funded by the Department of Veterans Affairs through a COVID-19 Rapid Response mechanism to study the interaction of innate immune system and smoking and how that interaction may affect the susceptibility to COVID-19 illness.
The Bhattacharya lab studies lung macrophages in acute and chronic inflammation. For COVID19, we have been interested in boosting antiviral type 1 interferon responses by these first-responder cells through the use of TLR agonists, which we are testing in mouse and human lung macrophages.
The Gordon lab is studying the basic mechanisms of SARS-CoV2 virulence using human airway epithelial cells. Our hypothesis is that a key virulence factor in the SAR-CoV-2 virus, the E protein, triggers IL-1B secretion from epithelial cells in a gasdermin and caspase dependent manner. IL-1 secretion acts in an autocrine fashion, to inhibit critical interferon responses that are required to constrain the virus to the upper airway and prevent lower airway infection. We are examining these effects in cells from old and young individuals and using CRISPR-Cas9 to determine the basis for cytokine secretion. We are testing novel therapeutics that target these pathways.
The Greenland lab is investigating novel therapies for COVID-19. With excess tissue obtained at the time of lung transplantation, we are using epithelial air liquid interface culture models to study therapies that may inhibit infection, cell injury, and cytokine storm.
The Reiter lab in the Department of Biochemistry and Biophysics is mapping SAR-CoV-2 infection, replication and transcriptional responses in human airway epithelial cells in collaboration with several other groups here at UCSF. In addition, they are investigating whether a nonstructural protein produced by SARS-CoV-2, NSP13, interacts with centrosomal proteins to control viral replication.