MCRI researchers’ article is recognised as an influential paper

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Congratulations to our very own Associate Professor Shidan Tosif and Dr Melanie Neeland for their impressive article that has just been named an influential paper in the latest Nature Communications collection on COVID-19.  

Published in 2020,  Immune responses to SARS-CoV-2 in three children of parents with symptomatic COVID-19" describes clinical features, virology, and immunology in a family of two parents with confirmed symptomatic SARS-CoV-2 infection and their three children with negative viral testing. 

This case report, early in the pandemic, provided novel insights into the immunological responses in children exposed to SARS-CoV-2 and led to a number of further research studies on COVID-19 at MCRI.  By studying two parents and their three children, Associate Professor Tosif and Dr Neeland found that children mounted an immune response to SARS-CoV-2 without evidence of a confirmed infection. This suggests that the establishment of a SARS-Cov-2 infection can be prevented by protective immunity in children. 

Additionally, the study found that virological and serological testing in children may not identify whether a child has been exposed to the virus.

Shidan TosifAssociate Professor Tosif is a clinical scientist at Murdoch Children’s Research Institute (MCRI) and consultant paediatrician at The Royal Children’s Hospital. He has investigated COVID-19 infection and immunity in children with a team of MCRI researchers throughout the pandemic. 

melanie neeland LThumbDr Melanie Neeland is a team leader in the Infection and Immunity theme at MCRI and specialises in the early life immune origins of globally important diseases in children.

 A/Prof Tosif and Dr Neeland’s noteworthy article early in the pandemic has significantly contributed to our knowledge of how children’s immune systems react to the SARS-CoV-2 virus. Thanks to their efforts, we now have a better understanding of COVID-19 going forward.