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Coronavirus infected cells, under microscope | Image credit: Dr. Susan Weiss
Coronavirus infected cells | Photo credit: Dr. Susan Weiss

In response to the global health crisis, and in consultation with leadership of the Perelman School of Medicine, the Microbiology Department is proud to announce the founding of the Center for Research on Coronavirus and Other Emerging Pathogens.

The goals of the Center are to:

  1. Expand and accelerate SARS-CoV-2 research at Penn, CHOP and Wistar.
  2. Provide centralized information on SARS-CoV-2 research developments in our community and globally.
  3. Compile information and catalyze opportunities for new funding for research on SARS-CoV-2 and other emerging pathogens.

The Center will be directed by Susan Weiss, PhD, and Frederic Bushman, PhD, with a highly distinguished set of researchers from Penn Medicine, the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP) and The Wistar Institute serving on our Internal Advisory Board. 

Support the Penn Center for Research on Coronavirus

Penn has long led the world in research on coronavirus, the virus class to which SARS-CoV-2 belongs. We are now asking for your help to support immediate needs in scaling up existing research capacity to meet increasing demand, and launch targeted new research projects.

Your support will accelerate and expand Penn’s ability to respond to this global outbreak with research in the development of new ways to diagnose, treat, and even prevent SARS-CoV-2 infections.

Donate Now

For any questions or to discuss supporting the Center, please contact the Penn Medicine Development team directly:

Ongoing SARS-CoV-2 Research at Penn

  • SARS-CoV-2 innate immune antagonists (PI Susan Weiss)
  • SARS-CoV-2 spike glycoprotein: mechanism of function and inhibition (PI Paul Bates)
  • Mechanistic studies of SARS-CoV-2 tropism (PI Jian You)
  • The lung microbiome during SARS-CoV-2 infection (PIs Ronald Collman and Frederic Bushman)
  • Pre-existing antibody responses and outcomes of SARS-CoV-2 infection. (PI Scott Hensley)
  • Role of immune responses in regulating airway epithelial regeneration and repair in COVID-19 (PI Hao Shen)
  • Discovery of antivirals active against SARS-CoV-2 and other human coronavirus. (PI Dr. Sara Cherry)
  • Development of DNA-based vaccines (PI David Weiner)
  • Development of RNA-based vaccines ( PIs Norbert Pardi and Drew Weissman)
  • Gene-based medicine to treat SARS-CoV-2 infection (PIs Frederic Bushman and Ronald Collman)
  • Multiplexed diagnostics for respiratory viruses (PI Haim Bau) 
  • Towards a non-invasive “breathalyzer” diagnostic for COVID-19 (PI Audrey Odom John)

COVID-19 Support

In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, we are assembling teams across medicine and engineering to address emergent unmet needs.

Current teams are working on:

  • Novel mask/personal protective equipment technologies
  • Novel, inexpensive ventilator tech
  • Pneumonia screening
  • 3-D printing applications

Please submit your needs and ideas for solutions ASAP and Penn Health-Tech will connect you to collaborators. Fill out this Healthteck form to submit.

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