The aim of Dr. Terrier and the VirPath team at the International Center for Infectiology Research (CIRI) is to generate new data on the biology of SARS-CoV-21 to identify the biomarkers for prognosis and/or diagnosis and future anti-viral strategies.
In order to characterize the biology of SARS-CoV-2 and its related pathology, Dr. Terrier and the CIRI team are studying the following:
1Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome coronavirus 2
To allows this work to take place, Olivier Terrier and his colleagues have developed an infection model for SARS-CoV-2 in a reconstituted human respiratory epithelium model. This experimental pre-clinical model enables the assessment of treatments in conditions closest to the physiology of the respiratory tract. The respiratory epithelium’s functions include pulmonary ventilation, defense and conditioning of inhaled air; it plays a central role in the early stages of the infection.
The team at CIRI has been working since mid-January 2020. It has managed to isolate several strains of SARS-CoV-2 using samples from the first cases in France, hospitalized at Bichat hospital in Paris. The team started a program to identify medications that are already authorized on the market and that could be used for their anti-viral properties. The team has been involved in the pre-clinical evaluation of several candidate medications that are now in the clinical trial phase.
The Air Liquide Foundation is assisting with the acquisition of a fluorescent microscope, reagents and consumables.