OSU TRACE-COVID-19 adds saliva testing for antibodies

OSU wastewater testing in Bend.

Oregon State conducted its seventh round of TRACE-COVID-19 sampling on Saturday.

Posted: Jun 5, 2021 8:05 PM

CORVALLIS, Ore.-- Oregon State University conducted its seventh round of TRACE-COVID-19 sampling on Saturday with new saliva testing for antibodies.

"We see this as giving us a more complete picture of COVID-19 in Corvallis," said TRACE-COVID-19 co-director Jeff Bethel. "We're still testing for active infections but looking for that previous infection will give us that more complete picture of COVID-19 in the community."

Researchers said this new addition will allow for a more accurate fraction of Corvallis that has been previously infected. 

Several OSU students helped with the TRACE project, stating that they want to know more about how COVID-19 is transmitted within the community. 

"We're not scary or anything," said OSU student Chloe Ambalong. "We're just trying to help and everything helps the community."

OSU has been conducting TRACE projects since last April.

Officials report that participation percentage has consistently been around 70% of weekend door-to-door visits.

“It is our hope that community members will continue to participate at a high rate,” said Javier Nieto, dean of OSU’s College of Public Health and Human Sciences and one of the TRACE-COVID-19 project’s principal research investigators. “Participation is extremely important so we can calculate a valid estimate of prevalence in the community. We really hope people won’t say no because they were recently vaccinated or tested.”

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