Travel to and from our COVID-secure sample collection centres is permitted during the national lockdown.

The REACT-GE Study

GenoMICC COVID-19 Study

The Imperial College London REACT Programme is now working collaboratively with the GenOMICC Consortium and Genomics England in support of the GenOMICC COVID-19 Study. This means we are now inviting people to join both studies simultaneously, as both of our research teams are analysing people who previously tested positive for COVID-19.

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What is the REACT programme?

The REACT programme, which stands for Real-time Assessment of Community Transmission, is a series of studies that seeks to improve understanding of how the COVID-19 pandemic is progressing across England. Led by doctors and researchers at Imperial College London, REACT is being carried out in partnership with Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust and Ipsos MORI.

Doctors and researchers from Imperial College London are working with the GenOMICC research team, who are conducting a COVID study with similar groups of people, to help everyone speed up the process of sample collection, analysis and ultimately improve our understanding of the virus.

About these studies

The GenOMICC COVID-19 Study aims to find out whether people’s genes have an impact on how badly they get COVID-19 and why some people become seriously ill with the virus while others are hardly affected. You can watch a short film about the study here.

The REACT-GE Study will focus on identifying links between the proteins and small molecules present in your blood, urine and your DNA and how your genetic code is expressed in your body in relation to the susceptibility and severity of COVID-19.

Our trained nurses are provided through Trust MSS. They will contact participants to arrange appointments using the information provided during registration, and will also collect consent at the appointment.

For both studies we will carry out an in-depth analysis of the samples donated by people who have tested positive for COVID-19 antibodies and have suffered symptoms which did not require hospitalisation or even showed no symptoms at all.

Together, we aim to support the development of better treatments or vaccines for COVID-19.

Taking part

To take part in both studies we will need to collect a blood sample (up to 45ml, approximately three tablespoons of blood), some information about your health and lifestyle, your weight, blood pressure and a urine sample.

One of your blood samples will be sent to a laboratory run by GenOMICC at the University of Edinburgh, to prepare it for genomic sequencing by Illumina, our partners at Cambridge University. The remaining samples will be sent to a laboratory in London operated by Affinity Biomarkers who will process them and prepare them for sending to other academic and commercial partners in the UK and overseas to carry out analyses for research purposes.

The GenOMICC COVID-19 Study will also need your consent to sequence your DNA and store it, and to access and store relevant parts of your health records, now and in the future.

Important information for participants

We really appreciate you taking the time to take part in these important research studies and we understand there is a lot of information to read before you can agree to take part.

As we are asking you to consider being part of two studies simultaneously, there are two participant information sheets that you should now download and read over carefully. We have also included links to the privacy policies below for each study, where you can find out more about how they will securely store and handle your data. Please take a moment to read those policies.

GenOMICC COVID-19 Study: Please download and read this Participant Information Sheet for more details on the GenoMICC COVID-19 Study and what it means to be part of it. Read our privacy policy to find out how we will store and handle your data securely and confidentially.

The REACT-GE Study: Please download and read this Participant Information Sheet for more details on the REACT-GE Study and what it means to be part of it. There is more information about how your personal data will be used and stored in this privacy policy.

Directions

You can find the directions to the sample collection centres by clicking the links below (PDFs):

Further information for other centres will be added soon.

What happens when I join the study?

Once you have registered to take part online or by phone, you will be contacted by phone or text message by Trust MSS, our sample collection partner, to arrange an appointment at the test centre most convenient to you, which will be detailed on your invitation letter. Your information will only be used by them to schedule your appointment.

Prior to your appointment you will be asked to answer an online questionnaire about you and your health and lifestyle. This will take approximately 15-20 minutes to complete. If you cannot access the questionnaire online, then this can be done by telephone by calling 0808 2819 535.

At your appointment, you will need to bring ID such as a driver licence or a bank card, to confirm your identity. You will need to sign a consent form (GenOMICC Study and REACT-GE Study) that grants us permission to include you in the studies and to take your blood and urine samples and physical measurements. If you agree, the nurse will then take up to 45ml, or approximately three tablespoons, of blood. The samples will be taken from a single needle into five different tubes in total. We will also measure your weight, waist circumference and blood pressure and ask you to provide a urine sample. This should all take around 30 minutes.

After your appointment you may be invited to take part in a survey about your recent food intake.

Why have I been invited to take part?

You have been invited to take part because you previously took part in a COVID-19 research study carried out by Imperial College London in which you tested positive for antibodies (REACT-2). You also kindly agreed that we could invite you to join further research studies should we need your help.

How do I register to take part?

If you have received a personal invitation letter from the REACT-GE study inviting you to take part and you would like to do so, please register here. You will need your personal ID, which can be found on your invitation letter, to complete the form so please have this to hand.

Take part in the research

Although we have temporarily paused registration, if you had a positive test for COVID-19 and think you can help us with our study, then you can still register your interest in taking part.

  • Have you tested positive for COVID-19?
  • Are you over 18?
  • Do you live in the UK?
Help us solve the puzzle together.
Register your interest now