A New Study Finds Genetic Variations in COVID Patients That Could Point to Better Drug Treatments

Coverage of a new study published in Nature by an international group of researchers, including the UCLA Precision Health COVID-19 Host Genomics Biobank and investigators from Computational Medicine, Neurology and Pediatric Immunology, identified 13 key locations in the human genome that may influence a person’s susceptibility to coronavirus infection or their risk of developing a severe illness.

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The institutional investments made to develop and support ATLAS and the precision health biobank allowed UCLA Precision Health to pivot quickly in the face of a growing pandemic to support COVID-related biomedical research.  The ATLAS biobanking infrastructure and workflows were quickly adapted by Dr. Chris Denny and Dr. Clara Magyar to support the collection of biospecimens from COVID patients, extraction of DNA, and subsequent genotyping. 

The UCLA ATLAS Community Health Initiative collaborates with UCLA CTSI with the aim to recruit 150,000 patients across the health system with the goal of creating California's largest genomic resource that can be used for translational medicine.