Wednesday 8 April 2020

Keble, Oxford and Covid-19

The University of Oxford is taking a significant role in the response to the Covid-19 pandemic. Fellows, researchers and students all have a part to play, including many from the Keble community, some of whom are highlighted below.

Dr Rhys Evans is helping to recruit patients into the REMAP-CAP study, which is a Department of Health priority study looking at the efficacy of different treatments for Covid-19 patients: antivirals, steroids and immunomodulators.

Dr Simon Butt and his team have offered their services to work with the OUH Microbiology Covid response team testing patient samples.

Honorary Fellow Professor Lionel Tarassenko is leading a team of biomedical engineers and medical researchers who have been developing and testing technology that could be adapted for Covid-19 patients in the John Radcliffe Hospital.

Geography DPhil Sabrina Li has been working with a group of interdisciplinary researchers from the University of Oxford, China, and the United States to create a centralised, freely accessible database of individual-level confirmed Covid-19 cases to help inform public health planning, response, and containment in the UK and abroad.

Alun Vaughan-Jackson, a final year DPhil student studying Infection, Immunology, and Translational Medicine, is part of the James lab based in the Sir William Dunn School of Pathology, which is now one of the central coordinators of Covid-19 research in Oxford. He is part of a group developing screening methods for therapeutics, and, importantly, trying to model the infection of the lung using advanced Stem cell techniques with the aim of better understanding why the disease is more severe in some but not in others.

Our front-line clinical staff deserve particular mention for their dedication.

Professor Neil Herring is covering a Covid High Dependency Unit, while Dr Rhys Evans is working on the Cardiothoracic Critical Care Unit (CTCCU) which is Covid designated.

Dr Simon Hackett, Sub Dean and Lecturer in Pathology and Medicine, is working in A&E at the John Radcliffe Hospital.

And there should be special acknowledgment for our current 6th year medical students who, like many others across the country, have graduated early to take on bedside roles in hospitals.