David Kelvin is a professor at Dalhousie University and he also holds adjunct professor positions at institutions in China and Italy specializing in infectious diseases. He is a top Canadian researcher perfectly suited to work on the COVID-19 pandemic because he was already studying emerging infectious diseases that lead to lower lung infections and pneumonia before the COVID-19 outbreak.
In March he received funding through the Canadian Institutes of Health Research rapid response program which at the time of this blog had approved 99 projects worth a total of $54.2 million. His research team is spread around the world in China, Vietnam, Spain, Italy, Mozambique, Sudan, Ethiopia, Egypt, Morocco, Cote D' Ivoire and Canada.
The international team he is leading will be identifying the biomarkers that will help predict the course of the disease from mild to severe in COVID-19 patients. A biomarker is a chemical, metabolite, or other substance that indicates the presence of a disease or infection. In this case testing blood for indicators such as the cytokine protein which points to the presence of the COVID-19 virus.
Don Hill talked with Dr. Kelvin about his latest research and some of the factors affecting the path of the pandemic.