University researchers are studying COVID-19 in the Princeton community

Princeton University researchers Jessica Metcalf and Julien Ayroles are conducting a study on COVID-19 in the Princeton community.

Goals of the study include determining how many people in the community are currently infected with COVID-19, and how many have COVID-19 antibodies that indicate previous exposure and may help protect against reinfection. The data collected from the study will help draw a more accurate picture of the number of infectious cases, even among people showing no symptoms, and give researchers a better picture of the antibody response at the individual and community level.

All residents of Princeton who are over the age of two are invited to participate in the study.

If you are selected to be part of the study, a self-sampling kit will be sent to your home. The sampling kit will ask you to collect three things on your own. You will be asked to swab the inside of your nostrils with a nasal swab, prick your finger with a lancet and place two drops of blood on a small filter paper, and prick another finger with a second lancet and place 2-plus drops of blood in a small tube containing a preservative.

The researchers will provide community-level estimates of infection rates, but not individual test results because of federal regulations. Participants will be provided with results from antibody tests, and will be tested for antibodies every two months in order to detect new antibodies and to measure the persistence of pre-existing antibodies. A positive antibody test would suggest that you have been exposed the infection at some time in the past. If antibodies aren’t detected, it means that your body hasn’t produced them yet or the test didn’t detect them because they are at low concentrations.

The enroll in the study, visit the website princetoncovid19.com.