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The Oropharyngeal Microbiome and Outcomes in COVID-19

Date Posted: Wednesday, September 01, 2021

The composition of the microbial community of the upper airway may influence severity and disease manifestations of COVID19. We have previously reported that the presence of certain bacterial species within the oropharynx are associated with the need for respiratory support among COVID19 patients as well as the development of prolonged COVID19 symptoms or long-COVID. In our continuation of this project, we are obtaining blood samples, in addition to oral and nasal swabs, from COVID19 patients to obtain information about how the immune system is responding to COVID19 and make connections between the bacteria present in the upper airway and how they influence the immune system's response to the virus.  

We continue to enroll COVID19 patient through the Emergency Department and we are seeking health care workers who have tested positive for COVID19 regardless of vaccination status. The study's goal is to determine if the oropharyngeal microbiome influences the immune system's response to COVID19 and how this could lead to outcomes like need for respiratory support or prolonged COVID19 symptoms. Future work could determine if interventions to change the oropharyngeal microbiome, such as probiotics, could mitigate severe disease manifestations or prevent the development of prolonged symptoms.  

 What are the benefits for participants?

  • <unsure if there is monetary compensation for HCWs>
  • COVID subtyping will be performed on obtained samples and this information will be shared with participant
  • The opportunity to help advance research on potential theraputics in COVID-19


Interested? Please, contact us at:


Phone: 508-925-0348