As part of its Researching COVID to Enhance Recovery (RECOVER) initiative, the National Institutes of Health (NIH) has awarded $40 million to Mayo Clinic to develop a comprehensive biorepository as the source of clinical samples for long COVID research studies.
Launched in September, the research initiative seeks to understand why some people who were infected with COVID-19 don't fully recover, or develop new or returning symptoms after recovery — what the NIH refers to as "long COVID" or post-acute sequelae.
"Mayo Clinic is in a unique position to provide support to this very important initiative with its state-of-the-art infrastructure and expertise in biobanking for researchers to tackle the long-term effects of COVID," says Mine Cicek, Ph.D., director of the Mayo Clinic Biospecimens Accessioning and Processing Core Laboratory and the principal investigator of the award. Stephen Thibodeau, Ph.D., and Thomas Flotte, M.D., in Mayo Clinic’s Department of Laboratory Medicine and Pathology, are co-principal investigators of this award.
In addition, Mayo Clinic has received an award for the Post-Acute Sequelae of SARS-CoV-2 Clinic Studies Recovery Network: Clinical Studies Component for Autopsy-Based Studies, also known as PASCnet. This initiative will be led by Mayo Clinic anatomical pathologist R. Ross Reichard, M.D., and Mayo Clinic's COVID-19 Task Force.
"This award is an incredible opportunity to collaborate with colleagues across the country to lay the foundation for research to understand PASC (post-acute sequelae of SARS-CoV-2 ) better and help those suffering from the long-term consequences of COVID," says Dr. Reichard.